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Discussion in 'New Teachers Archives' started by 1st-yr-teacher, Oct 19, 2006.

  1. 1st-yr-teacher

    1st-yr-teacher Comrade

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    Oct 19, 2006

    I am already turning into the teacher i never wanted to be, I have the most chatty class ever and nothing I do seems to work, silent simon says, one two three look at me, marble jar, pulling clips, nothing. Everything I do works for less than a minute and the behaviors(talking and playing) reoccurs.

    It is my first year teaching and I wonder if I can make it. My patience is so far gone by 1 oclock and my students know it(which i know they are feeding of off that). Does anyone have any advice to keep cool and collected? I am always fussing and it does not even faze them.


    I also wanted to see how many you all have been given a difficult class to deal with your first year? I have 21 students. Seven of my student have little to no self control, one has stolen from me twice, three others have the maturity of a 4 year old, 1 adhd, and the rest feed off of others misbehavior...

    I don't know, I am just so down and distraught about this whole thing. I have always wanted to be a teacher and I am going to stick it through this year, I just don't want to fail my kids or my school and I feel that if I don't get their talking and playing under control I may not be able to be successful in teaching them anything.

    Sorry about the long post...I just need to vent and hope for some good advice on how to keep my cool and maybe some listening activities for my class.
     
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  3. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Oct 19, 2006

    Have your guidance counselor come in and have a friendly talk about your most common issues. Sometimes kids need to hear from others (that they don't see on an every day basis) about social skills and strategies they can use to help themselves. I am not proposing that this will solve your problems or they will keep it up, but just as a start or something different. Listen to what the counselor says because you can use key phrases she said to remind them of the previous topic of how to deal with that situation. As for the more problematic ones, I will let others comment on that. Nothing has a fix all bandaid approach.
     
  4. 1st-yr-teacher

    1st-yr-teacher Comrade

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    Oct 19, 2006

    unfortunately, they really don't even respond to that, she has done listening activities with them and everything..although they are better behaved for her...not completely though and when she does come in, it is nearly impossible for her to complete her activities with them due to the constant redirecting.
     
  5. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Oct 19, 2006

    Eh, it was worth a shot to suggest it. I wish I could help you more. Here is a hug.:D :) :D
     
  6. Lesley

    Lesley Habitué

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    Oct 19, 2006

    Have you set up consistent class rules and consequences to go along with the positive reinforcement of proper behavior? I had a very chatty and aggressive first grade class. I had a form for the kids that basically stated:
    kids name___________ date___________
    then lines. On the lines I wrote exactly what the child did, how I handled it and if the behavior changed. At the end of the day I made a copy and sent it home for the parent to sign. Some kids had a page full of comments from me, some never had a paper behavior go home. (I would send a paper home with every child every day-some had behavior issues others just simply said-Had a great day or Had a fantastic day! Thank you)The children were instructed that if the paper did not come back to class the next day that a phone call would be made. For some just knowing a call home would happen straightened them up, for others they did not believe me until the next day and they did not bring in a paper. As soon as they came in the room and I asked for the paper and they said they did not have it, I had the child walk to the telephone with me (it was in the classroom) and we called the parent. I explained why we were calling and then handed the phone to the child. This, for some of them, made a big enough impact to change their behavior, still others could care less. For the tough ones I made a simple smiley chart, as misconduct occurred I crossed off smiley faces. What I had set up with the parent was if three (you can pick any number) smiley faces came home daily, it was up to the parent to reward their child. Once the child received a reward from home the behavior started to change. Some of the tough ones are just looking for positive interaction with their parent. Then, unfortunately there are those who really don't care and will constantly interrupt and misbehave-for those I say an extra prayer.
     
  7. 1st-yr-teacher

    1st-yr-teacher Comrade

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    Oct 19, 2006

    thanks...today was just a bad day. I am at a reading first school and our state lady came in today to do observations and another lady who was with her to see how we were meeting our lower students academic needs. And of course my kids acted like they have never been or seen a center/small group time before.

    My main problem is that my students feed off of the others bad behavior which causes a domino effect.
     
  8. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Oct 19, 2006

    For what it is worth, we have the same issue (luckily small numbers) and it is a constant battle. For our kids many of them are a bit immature for their age and most of them have language delay (lack of prior knowlege about some things) and a few have other issues going on. It makes it for a challenging group and many days it seems overwhelming and other days we celebrate because we made or saw small successes. It DOES happen that if a few have issues that others follow. It's hard to nip it in the bud. Try making a small chart and keep track of what's going on and when. This might help you see when things are happening the most (Are they cutting up in math because they don't feel confident in math? Are they restless after lunch? etc). Also keep track of who. Sometimes we see the big offenders and we miss subtle cues. Someone might have a problem with anger, but another person might be silently egging it on by doing something you think is no big deal but sets the anger kid off every single time (but they don't tell you that). (That last suggestion may be impossible with a larger class). I guess my point is see if you can analyze what is going on and why. Look at the successes when they come. DO try other discipline/reward strategies if this one is not working for you. Be consistent. P.S. the strategies of how I dealt with students last year is not at all the same as how I deal with them this year. They react/are motivated by different things and it took me a while to figure it out.
     
  9. Lesley

    Lesley Habitué

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    Oct 19, 2006

    OH I hear you. I am at a reading first school too, That 90 minute block can make the kids crazier than normal. If we could only remove the ones that get the rest of the group going. I tell the kids to pretend so and so is not in the room. We will know he is back when he decides to make the right choices. RIght now they are getting very good at ignoring the out of control kids and the out of control kids are starting to see that the rest of the kids are tired of their behavior-but, alas there are always those that just keep goofing around for attention.....
     
  10. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    P.S. I didn't mean to imply that I have it all figured out (with my class). HAHA! Heck no!
     
  11. 1st-yr-teacher

    1st-yr-teacher Comrade

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    Oct 19, 2006


    I have and every time they pull a clip I tell them what they did to have that happen and every time I drop a marble I explain what they did to earn that marble. The behavior form is a good idea but I would be spending all my time on writing the things that happened and then my whole planning time(which most days are spent in meetings, but that is another post) copying for them to be sent home. As of now, I have 7 students on checklist and proves difficult to get that done.

    They are very restless after lunch. They are "through" with wanting to work after lunch and while I would like to break things up and have activities for them throughout the afternoon I have to do Saxon Math. I can deal with the mornings, it is the afternoons that are killing me. It is like teaching to a brick wall...
     
  12. 1st-yr-teacher

    1st-yr-teacher Comrade

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    Oct 21, 2006

    i have been thinking over the last couple of days about my discipline system. My current one is three paper plates that are glued to a yard stick with red, yellow, and green in the middle of each plate(looks like a red light). I have students names on a clip and they move them up. I give them one warning and if the behavior continues, they move their clip to the top of green. If they move it again, their clip goes to the bottom of the yellow which means five minutes, top of the yellow means 10 minutes and bottom of the red means no recess and a note/phone home and the top of the red means to the office.

    well, lately, my students have been spending a lot of time finding their clip and socializing. I was thinking of changing it to a pocket chart with sticks so that they could just put a stick in the pocket that matches their number. I would have the same punishments as before just with the number of clips.

    would this be a bad idea? i know that kids need consistency but i feel that this may help me with keeping up who owes time for the next day and will leave no room to dawdle.

    any opinions?
     
  13. koocat008

    koocat008 Companion

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    Oct 22, 2006

    As far as your patience level goes....COFFEE in the morning, and maybe a diet mountain dew or something to keep my energy level up...Caffeine is my bestfriend to get me through the day, I know I can be short tempered when alll the kids want to mess around, and being energetic and ready to take them on helps a ton... good luck :)
     
  14. teach2heart

    teach2heart Rookie

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    Oct 27, 2006

    I like your new discipline plan idea. It doesn't hurt to try it and see how it works! I just started a new plan with my class as well. I am also a first-year 1st grade teacher. I have 21 students (more girls than boys) and they are a very chatty bunch! I also had a challenging class while student teaching so am continuing to try different techniques I learned. I would love some ideas and suggestions as well! Good luck :)
     
  15. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    Oct 27, 2006

    Try to work with the kids. Your efforts to reward and punish them haven't served you well, so maybe this is a 180 degree turn that will help. Sit down and tell them what the issue is: you know each of them deserves a good learning experience at school, and the talking and playing is getting in the way. Ask them what they think the problem is. Make a double-list on the board: things I like about having a noisy classroom & things I don't like about having a noisy classroom. There will be someone in your class who can start the "don't like" column - maybe many! You can participate too by putting your thoughts into the columns. You like the kids having fun, right? But you don't like feeling like your lessons are being missed. Then brainstorm solutions. Make a chart of class rules, written by the class. Having their ideas taken seriously and put on paper will probably be a new experience for them. If someone offers a whacko rule, like: we all get to talk whenever we want; suggest there be a timed period every morning and afternoon when they get to talk as much as they want, then agree on a time limit (5 minutes after lunch, for example). Get into the fun of it with them - during those timed chat-fests, get all chatty and into it along with them. They'll crack up! If an unworkable rule gets vetted by the whole class, you can say "Ok, let's try that for a day (or half-day, or week, or whatever) and see how that works out. Even if you KNOW it won't work, they will learn from the experience of being responsible for themselves. Make sure everyone agrees to the rules. Then let them enforce them on each other. When "Amy" starts yakking during math, ask the class if anyone can remind Amy what class rule she's breaking.

    Good luck!
     
  16. kidatheart

    kidatheart Habitué

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    Nov 2, 2006

    1st year - have you tried moving the clips yourself... just sort of walk over and move it without verbally acknowledging it to anyone and continue with whatever lesson you are working on.
    But, while you finish up your lessons, continue to praise little Sue for sitting quietly and Steve for working so well on his paper, etc.
    Do you have a buddy teacher that you can send a kid out to if it gets to be too much?

    I have 4 really problem children in my first grade, but luckily it is a small class. It is so trying to continually redirect the problems. I feel like I am neglecting the good ones some days!! One of them is disruptive constantly, one is specifically disruptive in the afternoon.
    When you figure out an effective plan, let me know!!! :)
     

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