Help!! Out-of-control student, need ideas

Discussion in 'Kindergarten' started by russell506, Sep 8, 2012.

  1. russell506

    russell506 Rookie

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    Sep 8, 2012

    This week was the first week of Kindergarten. Thursday was the first day, so we've only gone two days. These two days have been a nightmare! I have been given a VERY challenging student whom I'll refer to as Z. Z is completely defiant. Anything that we are doing, he does not want to do. He will not sit for circle time, he will not participate in songs/dances, he will not sit at his seat for activities. When it is time to walk in the hallway, he runs from me and runs all through the school. When we are on the playground, he tries to run away. When it is time to line up and go in, he tries to run away again. If I try to hold on to him, or restrain him in any way, he pulls my hair, hits me, etc. He taunts other children, pulls hair, hits, etc. When he is defying all of the classroom activities, he spends his time, climbing on top of chairs, trying to play in the bathroom, ripping things off the wall, getting into drawers. He's tired to "escape" from the room and run down the halls. I've tried talking with him about what he is feeling, trying to understand him, this goes nowhere, he usually runs or tries to hit. I've sat him in a chair and asked him to stay there until he's ready to join our group. He sits for no longer than a minute and is off to tearing something down or running off. I've tried to make him "special helper" and give him jobs "Hold our song sign" "Be the line leader" Still wants to run away or go off and get into something. I noticed that he kept gravitating towards the dinosaur books during one part of the day so on Day 2 I tried "If you join us for our morning meeting, you can choose to look at a Dinosaur book afterwards" Still wanted to run off or stand on chairs/table, or rip things off the walls, etc. I spoke with Mom in person after the first day of school. She shared that she did not send him to Preschool because she was worried about this very behavior. She shared he is no different at home and she said she is exhausted and needs answers for how to help him. We did a warm send-off on day 2 where Mom, myself and Z were first in the classroom. I had on calming music and dinosaurs out for him to play with since he has shown an interest in them. He was calm and relaxed for about 5 minutes but then wanted to get into anything and everything and his behavior continually worsened as the day went on. The guidance counselor removed him from the room for some time but still tried send him back in during various times of the day but the same behaviors described above continued.

    ADDITIONALLY, I also have another student, whom I'll call Y. Y cries at the top of his lungs from the start of the school day until the end of the school day. He can be heard all the way down the hall, with the door shut. He will wail "I hate school. I hate you teacher. I want my Mom." I've tried giving him a stuffed animal and saying "This is my special friend, he's scared to be a school, he thinks it's hard to be here with no one he knows and he needs a friend. Could you be his friend?" This worked for a bit but then he started hitting the kids with the stuffed animal so I had to take it away. He too also runs from me in the hall, tries to escape from the room, and tries to run off the playground.

    In the times that I have been successful with getting either Z or Y settled, the other will act up and then I'll be off trying to catch that child or calm them down.

    In the meantime, I have 20 other students who are now under no supervision because I'm all by myself trying to maintain the behaviors of 2 children all day.

    My school sets academic expectations for teachers and by next Monday I am supposed to start reading groups and centers. I have no idea how I am going to get anything accomplished with these two students.

    HELP!!! :(
     
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  3. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    Sep 8, 2012

    Z sounds like the child I had on Thursday! Except he has an IEP, that supposedly says speech delayed. Mom shared more information with me. He came into the room, couldn't sit still, flipped his chair. I moved him to my horseshoe table, I had to remove everything from the table. The rest of the class looked at him with these big, huge eyes. The kids said that he was swearing, I told them no, we can't understand him. I quickly emailed my P the information Mom shared with me. We tried to do calendar, but he kept spinning around, kicking his feet. I asked a group to move, he followed them. The only time we got anything done was when I was holding his hand. He had a long sleeved shirt on & it was damp!

    We tried to go to the bathroom, he couldn't stand in line. I ended up calling the office, telling them that someone had to come get him. My P came & took him. It had been the longest 1/2 hour of teaching ever. All I did was redirect him.

    They put him in a room with the resource room teacher & a TA to watch him. He pulled things off of the wall, threw toys, destroyed the room. Oh & the speech delay? Well, he swears quite clearly.

    Aunt picked him up & was told that Mom needed to bring the IEP and have a meeting with the P before he can return. She didn't come yesterday. So we'll see what happens Monday.

    For your student Y has he ever been away from home? One year I gave a star squish toy to a little boy who was having a rough time. He'd squeeze it when he got lonely. Another little girl, needed me to take her hand & walk her to her seat. We had to repeat that routine after every break. Maybe a picture of Mom/Dad/family to look at.

    With runners, you may need to hold their hands while in the hallway so that they don't escape. Maybe this means they can't play on the playground.

    Good luck!
     
  4. EdEd

    EdEd Aficionado

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    Sep 9, 2012

    With Z, it's definitely at the level that you probably want to involve others (admin, counselor) in assessment and planning. The behavior is severe enough that it sounds like you aren't able to handle it by yourself, and without a clear reason of why it's happening it's hard to suggest specific strategies. If you'd like to start problem-solving a bit, let's start with a few questions:

    - What generally starts the pattern of behaviors in motion?

    - Does he seem to like you?

    - Does he seem to like the other kids?

    - When he starts going off task, does he seem to just be distracted, or specifically defiant? Obviously he's defiant, but do you get the sense that that's his purpose, or it is more distractions?

    - How is his speech? Any delays?

    - Do you get the sense that he would be able to complete classroom tasks if he could just focus/attend to the events, or do you think they would be challenging to him?

    - What are your current consequences for misbehavior, and are there different consequences for being off-task vs. non-complaint?

    - How is your admin involved? Do you call them when he is noncompliant, and do they consistently respond and on time?

    In the meantime, if you're able, bring in a bag of candy or other tangible reinforcement that you can give in frequent doses that won't cost a lot. Give him reinforcements for very small increments of time and very specific behaviors - we're talking 1-5 minutes to start, and things like "sitting on the red carpet with your hands on your lap and your eyes on me." Also present directions/expectations 1 at a time, and use his name rather than expecting him to follow group directions. I'd also not restrain or attempt to restrain unless you're trained. Finally, once he leaves your room it's absolutely legally imperative that you involve administration - you certainly can't leave the rest of the kids physically unattended, and you can't let him run away either.

    Will respond to Y in next post.
     
  5. EdEd

    EdEd Aficionado

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    Sep 9, 2012

    With Y, do you get the sense that there's any connection with Z? If Z were gone, would Y still cry all the time? Again, what do you see as the purpose of the crying? Why do you think he wanted you to take the stuffed animal away?

    Finally, what's your personality as a teacher? Are you friendly, firm, detached, active, quiet, etc.?
     

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