Constant Complainers

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by DTurner, Sep 25, 2019.

  1. DTurner

    DTurner New Member

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    Sep 25, 2019

    I am a veteran teacher, but have never been able to figure out what to do with the never ending "sick" complaints from my first graders. I always want to show compassion, but am very aware that most of the complaints are either minor aches and pains, attention seeking or copycatting. I can usually tell if a child is really sick, but have also had a couple throw up on the floor. What do others do about this?
     
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  3. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

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    Sep 25, 2019

    Always a hard call at the itty bitty ages, but I err on the side of compassion with that age group. Besides, what is minor to you or me, may, indeed, be significant at that age. Others may be looking for solace and compassion at school because it is lacking at home. I try not to second guess them - copy cats usually find that hanging out with the nurse, and missing recess is not as much fun as imagined, so a self limiting behavior eventually.
     
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  4. TnKinder

    TnKinder Companion

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    Sep 25, 2019

    I have found that a sip of water or a wet paper towel cures most of the minor ailments. If a student complains constantly about a stomach ache or sore throat, I send them to the nurse.
     
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  5. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Cohort

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    Sep 28, 2019

    Oh, my goodness! I feel like a big meanie after reading the other comments. I say, "Do you think you're going to live? ( In a joking way!) If they may be faking and I am not sure, I tell them to go to the bathroom. Sometimes I say, "We'll see how you're feeling after lunch." With certain kids who complain of minor things who have a sense of humor, I'll say: OK Get the scissors. It sounds horrible, but they always laugh because the paper cut is not that bad and I only say it to kids I know well.
    I do have a kid though who deals with a lot of anxiety. He is a different case. He's super sweet, but everyday tells me about 4-5 ailments per hour. He seriously makes himself feel sick, but not on purpose.
    If anything we are doing is hard for him, he tells me he is going to get sick. With him, I have him go get a drink, go to the bathroom, and distract him until he feels better. It is a challenge. I am thankful he is so sweet because if he wasn't, it'd be so hard to be patient with him.
     
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  6. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    Sep 29, 2019

    This is pretty similar to what I do. I also keep a big jar of bandaids out and let them get one whenever they want - whether or not they really need it. My current classroom happens to be right next door to the nurse's office, so sometimes I just send them even if they don't really need to go. It's less time-consuming than asking a bunch of questions about what is bothering them. I've also been known to say "I wish I had a magic wand to make you feel better, but I don't. So you'll just have to hang in there."
     
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  7. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Cohort

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    Sep 29, 2019

    I just learned a new saying from Bella. I am using going to use a magic wand on some whiners to say, Poof! Better, now? Just on the ones who use it as a conversation starter. :)
     
  8. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Sep 29, 2019

    I have one who isn't so extreme but the same ballpark. She's very sensitive, rather anxious. She came in with her mom saying she was anxious, but yikes, she really is! I found compassion combined with tough love and communication with Mom to be effective with her.

    "I'm sorry your nose bled a little bit. We will do basic first aid and you go take a big drink of water, but no, your mom doesn't need (nor want) to come get you."

    She's left with little choice but to get over it. Plus, our secretary is awesomely terrifying and doesn't tolerate kids milking the need for the sick room.
     
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  9. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Sep 29, 2019

    I've asked innocently "what would you like me to do?"

    I usually suggest drink/bathroom.

    Otherwise I rather don't mess with sick claims.
     
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