Having a hard time!

Discussion in 'Elementary Education Archives' started by trayums, Nov 30, 2005.

  1. trayums

    trayums Enthusiast

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    Nov 30, 2005

    Hi all,
    I am feeling so upset and frustrated with the year and how things are going in my classroom. Not only do some of my children have major emotional issues, but rubs off on all of the children. This is a third grade class. I have 17 children and out of those i would say that 1/2 to more than that are behavior problems. The other problem is that I have been told that i am too nice! I try to use effective behavior management, but to no avail. I try the positive, I try the negative. I am sooo frustrated and upset. They won't stop talking! Then I get so frustrated that I start to yell... yes i said it... I start to kind of yell :( I am NOT that kind of person or teacher but, grrrr...
    I need some ideas... or advice or something. This is my firstfull year in my own classroom. Tomorrow I start parent-teacher conferences and give out report cards!
    I am SOOO nervous because I have to talk to some of these parents about their childrens' behavior. But... I feel this is MY fault!!! I feel awful...
    Help!
    THanks so much! This board is a GOD send!!!
     
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  3. 1st grade daisy

    1st grade daisy Rookie

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    Nov 30, 2005

    I hate to say that I don't have a ton of advice to offer, but I have to say that it was nice to see your post tonight. I teach 1st grade and I am dealing with many of the issues you highlighted above. I have 23 students. At this point I have only 5 students who are at grade level. Some how I got a very difficult group of kids! They talk CONSTANTLY! I am running out of things and management techniques to try. I too, feel like it is my fault that some of the kids have the behavior issues or learning issues that they do. I know deep down inside that it is not my fault, but I am the kind of person who wants to solve everything and make everything better! Again, I am sorry that I can't offer too much advice, but I just wanted to let you know that some one out there is dealing with some of the very same issues! Let's hang in there! Thanks again for your post!
     
  4. TeacherC

    TeacherC Connoisseur

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    Nov 30, 2005

    I'm sure you will get some teachers with good ideas to post, but I think you can find a lot on behavior management in the archives. I am in a long-term sub position in a third grade and am having some major behavior problems as well. I was considered the "nice" teacher at the beginning of the year because I didn't yell, and the other third grade teachers do. The kids think they can walk all over me...but I had to stop being "nice" and not let them get away with anything. I also feel awful when I yell, and it makes me think that I am an ineffective teacher. I hope that you get some good advice :)
     
  5. dlfan

    dlfan New Member

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    Dec 1, 2005

    I teach 1st and, again, don't have much advice, just empathy. I feel the same as you. I have 25 kids and some major behavior issues. All was going pretty well, then they put another student in my class that has behavior problems. There is no support at this school because it is not a district school. No counselor, no principal, no vice principal, nothing like that.
    Hang in there. Consider starting all over. Take some time to re-establish (sp?) routines and clarify your expectations. After your winter break you might feel refreshed. I know that's what I'm hoping for. Take care...you're not alone!
     
  6. trayums

    trayums Enthusiast

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    Dec 1, 2005

    THANK You all so much! You can't imagine how it felt to know that there are others out there who feel the same way! OH thank you! Just knowing there are people who feel similarly is comforting!!!!!!!!
     
  7. fourth-newbie

    fourth-newbie Rookie

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    Dec 1, 2005

    Well...I think we've all been in your shoes. First of all remember that YOU are always learning, not just your students. Patience takes work. Secondly, slow down on what you try to fit into a lesson or into your day. Less can be more. Next, try whispering to make the kids focus. I also have "the book" (notebook with today's date on top of page and if someone is breaking a rule, you say "Michael, sign the book".) You can discuss the behavior with them later if necessary. Also, you can add, "Will your folks be happy to see your name there?"
    But, here's my best tip. Buy a roll of tickets from Office Max or the dollar store. Rip up a whole bunch of them and put them in a container on your desk. Then, a couple of times each day, when you give a direction, start passing out the tickets to the kids who are on task. All I say (quietly) is "Thank you Alex for working quietly or "Thank you Tiffany for following directions"..whatever. The kids know they have to put their name on the tickets and put them in a basket. On Fridays I draw a few names to win prizes. Bubble gum, candy, riff-raff from home, pencils, notepad, whatever I can get kind'a cheap. Works like a charm. And about that yelling, I understand and will pray for you (and me) to have more patience. Pretty soon you'll start having more good days than the other kind and you'll realize you (and I)always have control.
     
  8. Beth2004

    Beth2004 Maven

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    Fourth-newbie, I really like the ticket idea. I'm a long-term sub in a fourth grade until March and I may actually use that. :)
     
  9. TeacherC

    TeacherC Connoisseur

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    I have never tried the ticket thing, but it sounds like a good idea. I had another one of those "Why Do I Do This Everyday" Days, so I'm willing to try anything. Thanks for the idea!!
     
  10. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

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    Dec 1, 2005

    I like the ticket idea. I have heard of it before. A teacher took a picture of his face and called it what ever his last name was dollars or something. I was thinking about doing something like that and calling it ....... Bucks.
    If they earn so many at the end of the week they can pick something not sure what yet.
     
  11. hescollin

    hescollin Fanatic

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    We give five tickets on Monday morning, If they do something good as a class they earn another ticket, If they get out their books quickly (they ones who are ready get a ticket, but not the others) brag on those that are ready. Sometimes everyone not ready owes you a ticket. They get so many minutes of free time on the computer during computer lab time on Friday. If they run out of tickets they owe one minute of recess with head on their desk.
    ---Another one is have a couple M&Ms or a gummy worm and give each student that is obeying a quick treat. You'll get their attention quickly. "I didn't get any" "Oh, I'm Sorry, you didn't follow directions"
    ----You can make a fun treasure box with stuff cheap from the Dollar Store. Like ten pencils in a pack. divide the pack up so you get 10 or 15 prizes for your dollar.
    ----Still another idea is give out tiny stickers and when they get their chart full they earn a piece of licorice.
    -----Positive saying.... Thank you Billy for waiting quietly. I see Sally, Betsy, Patsy, Emma, Reuben and Brett are studing quietly.
    ---Everyone that gets a hundred on spelling and other important test earn a piece of candy from the candy jar.
    A variety of things work best.... And they never know when you are sharing something
    ---miss one minute of recess with head on the desk. no longer they need to wiggle and you need the break also.
     
  12. fourth-newbie

    fourth-newbie Rookie

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    Dec 2, 2005

    Hi,
    I have an important ground rule. If a student asks for a prize, or whines about notgetting a prize, I say "remember, that asking or whining will get you no where, I won't allow it EVER. Then, don't ever give in. The other kids will usually tell the one breaking my rule to stop asking or whining. Hang in there!
     
  13. heyMiss!

    heyMiss! Rookie

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    Dec 2, 2005

    I like all your ideas for tickets, prizes, candy...

    In our school, we are not allowed to even give a student a cough drop, much less candy (unless it's a party after lunch).

    Also, my CT feels that students should be motivated to do well for that in itself and will not allow what she considers "bribes, buying their effort, or rewards" unless it is just a class party for all whether individuals were exceptional or mediocre.

    I just couldn't agree with this and am glad to know that there are still plenty of good teachers out there who don't spurn small reward systems.
     
  14. teacherintexas

    teacherintexas Maven

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    Dec 2, 2005

    Make a list of all the behavior problems you have seen, make a spreadsheet or word document with them listed, and make a chart for each day. Make tally marks or type numbers to circle for each student to document the behavior. I did that at an inner city school and it helped immensely. I made copies of the papers, sent the copy home to get signed, and had the original to attach with office referrals if necessary. Having documentation makes a difference. I could then conference with the students and help them set goals for behavior. Whenever they made the slightest improvement, we'd have a "praise" conference.
     
  15. Sylbyl

    Sylbyl Rookie

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    Dec 3, 2005

    My best advice is to keep everything simple including your behavior system it can evolve later. Have several clear consequences that you can follow through on. I use behavior folders and students with All-Star behavior get a sticker every day. The consequences for bad behavior are:
    1- No sticker
    2-Note home
    3-Time out
    4-Call home or Conduct Notice (make a big deal about this because they have behaved so badly the information won't fit in the space on their behavior sheetcopy for documentation)
    5-Referral to the office and site all of the previous behaviors on the referral.

    I usually don't include recess as a consequence because the kids need release to help with time on task in class and because after you have recess the students will think it is okay to misbehave.

    **I also do behavior parties for student with the most stickers in their folders (buy dollar store popcorn and let the students watch a 30 minute magic school bus movie. Students that misbehave have to visit another class during that time or they don't recieve any popcorn).

    If you need more ideas send me a private message or visit the behavior and classroom management sections of my website: www.access2academics.com
     
  16. Jaicie

    Jaicie Rookie

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    Dec 4, 2005

    Trayums and all the other wonderful teachers on this board, please don't give up! My heart goes out to all of you ... I've had very similar experiences myself and can relate to what everyone is saying! Please hang in there and don't give up hope. Make sure you take good care of yourself to reduce stress. Get a massage, give yourself a pedicure, use some scented lotion, exercise, listen to your favorite music, and eat right. You deserve to feel good! If you don't take care of yourself, who will? ;) You have to have your energy up to teach those kids!

    It's my 9th year of teaching, and this year's crew of 22 1st and 2nd graders is undoubtedly my toughest and neediest yet. :( 65% poverty, lots of emotional problems and behavior concerns, and three children who already have behavior goals on their IEP's. About 40% of my students are performing on grade level. I'm so grateful to have discovered Jim Fay's book Teaching With Love and Logic this past summer. It's completely changed my philosphy and my teaching style. I no longer yell. Instead of becoming angry, I react to students' misbehaviors with sadness. (Although most of the time I may be fuming inside! I just don't let it show!) Dr. Fay says to put the problem back on the student; don't take on the problem yourself. "Oh, that's so sad that you've broken all your pencils. You have a problem now. What do you think you'll do?" Have them come up with some possible solutions. Another component of Love and Logic is to increase positivity with your students. Greet them at the door with a smile every morning. Get to know them, ask questions about their families, interests, hobbies. At the end of the day I see my kiddoes off with a hug, high-five, or handshake, their choice. These are just a few examples from Fay's book.

    Don't get me wrong: using Love and Logic is very hard at first! But as you use the language more and more, it gets easier. (I also bought several of Jim Fay's tapes to listen to on the way to and from work, which are a great review every couple of weeks or so.) Although there are still lots of issues in the classroom, I do think my kids are becoming problem-solvers who better understand the logical consequences for their misbehavior.

    Sorry this is so long! Trayums, I hope things get better for you. Good luck and keep posting on this forum!

    ~Jaicie :)
     

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