How do I help this kid? (before I lose my mind)

Discussion in 'Kindergarten' started by puff5655, Mar 14, 2012.

  1. puff5655

    puff5655 Cohort

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2006
    Messages:
    726
    Likes Received:
    8

    Mar 14, 2012

    Okay, so today at clean-up time, the kids are dutifully arranging blocks on the shelf, while "M" is crazily running around and throwing blocks any old direction.

    Me: I need you to put the blocks away the right way or go sit at your desk to calm down.

    "M" throws block across the room, stomps to his chair, picks it up and slams it on the floor.

    M: I'll go to the office! (he LOVES getting to go to the office, even if he's going to get YELLED at by the principal, so I try to avoid sending him)

    Me: No, you need to sit down or you'll stay after school for a half hour again (the only consequence he doesn't like)

    M sits down, proceeds to kick over the chair next to him. I try to ignore him because I know he's trying to get a reaction and get sent to the office where he wants to be.

    M gets up, throws down all the chairs around his table and at the other tables.

    I decide to treat him like a Preschooler since he's acting like one (mistake since he's stronger than a preKer!) I take him by the hand and walk him out of the classroom while the other kids get ready for lunch. He thinks this is a great game and giggles and laughs while trying to get away from me.

    Me: You're going to eat lunch in the office.

    M smiles and runs full speed to the office and in "his" chair, happy as can be.

    :help:


    I know I'm going about this wrong...just never had a kid this awful before who doesn't care a bit about rewards or consequences. We've tried all kinds of positive reinforcement...no difference.

    His parents are no help at all. They are very strange people who make him stay in the house all the time (no visitors, no visiting), but don't interact with him at all. He wasn't socialized at all with other kids before PreK. He's spent all his spare time playing video games and watching movies.

    He doesn't know how to be a human being.

    ???
     
  2.  
  3. Rebel1

    Rebel1 Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2008
    Messages:
    1,522
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 14, 2012

    I have 3 right now in my Pre-K class who do similar things.
    I give them a choice and action right away. I have learned that it is just a waste of my air and time to tell these kids over and over, SO come clean up time, I delegate to them what to do and they get their stars moved on our star chart. They need to see the results/actions RIGHT AWAY. I even have some of the kids whose stars are at the end go to the Star Box right there while they are watching. It works pretty good 'cause they all want to go to the Star Box.
    Let him be your helper. Hand him a bag and ask him to pick up the yellow, blue, red, etc. blocks, OR anything to keep him busy.
    -You can make him a personal chart of stickers where every POSITIVE think he does, he gets a sticker; get to the end, get a reward. MAKE him feel special that you made him his own chart.
    Oh! Find out what his favorite cartoon character is or computer game character is and see IF you can work with parents about making him earn points towards a new game OR any of the sort.
    WOW! I went back and read your note, SO I had to get rid of some of mine that you said did not work.
    He definitely needs ROD THERAPY!

    Rebel1
     
  4. ciounoi

    ciounoi Cohort

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2009
    Messages:
    593
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 14, 2012

    Is this a student with a disability?

    First, I might try to figure out why the student is doing what he's doing. It sounds like he either doesn't know what he's supposed to be doing (which I doubt because apparently all of your other students know how to put away the blocks!), has trouble sitting still/listening/processing info (hence running around and not listening), wants attention (you mentioned he was trying to get your attention with knocking down the chairs), or wants to go to the office (you also mentioned this). It could also be that he is just having difficulty getting used to K, given that he seems to be cooped up at home a lot.

    I might do one of the following:

    -Leverage the office into a reward. Tell him if he's good for X amount of time, he can go to the office. If that's not practical, he might work for a token to be redeemed to going to the office at some point after he has earned enough tokens, although honestly, since I'm not a K teacher, this might be waaaay too developmentally over his head!
    -Give one warning and one consequence every time he throws a fit. I noticed that you mentioned two seperate consequences - sitting down in the chair and staying after school. You might be able to make a time-out place for him or something like that - if he'll stay!
    -Ignore as much as possible (provided that he understands what he's doing is the wrong way to do things). If he gets really out of control or gets into something you'd rather him stay out of, I'd grab him by the arm and guide him back towards a more neutral area. No eye contact, no talking, just nudging in the right direction. If the behavior is occuring because he wants attention, this might do the trick.
     
  5. puff5655

    puff5655 Cohort

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2006
    Messages:
    726
    Likes Received:
    8

    Mar 14, 2012

    I had a lot of kids like this when I taught PreK too, but they're smaller! So when they were having a fit I could just pick them up and hold onto them until they settled down!

    I'll ramp up the rewards, and I had been thinking about making the office a reward... you can go there and rest after lunch if you are good in the morning.

    No disability that we know of..yet.

    "detention" today failed. He ran out of the room (he's too strong for me to hold onto), chucked his shoes off and put on his winter gear while huffing and puffing, stomping his feet and yelling at me "You're wasting my time!" I just called mom and told her he's coming home. The principal is out of town...I'll see what he says when he gets back.
     
  6. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2010
    Messages:
    10,924
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 14, 2012

    Definitely try making the office a reward if he enjoys it in there. You may want to chunk it even smaller though. Maybe try 30 minutes of good behavior or 1 hour of good behavior. An entire morning might be too long for him.

    I would keep one part of the office or somewhere in the school as a time out area for him. That way when he starts the negative behaviors, he needs to go to this area. He doesn't get yelled at or talked to, just sits for 5 or so minutes and then comes back to class. He might be craving the negative attention because he isn't getting much at home.
     
  7. puff5655

    puff5655 Cohort

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2006
    Messages:
    726
    Likes Received:
    8

    Mar 15, 2012

    Going on vacation today (need it!) for a 5 day weekend, but I'll be mulling it over while I'm gone. Thanks guys for your support.
     
  8. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2006
    Messages:
    4,858
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 15, 2012

    That was my thought too-especially since it sounds like he was never socialized in a normal way. It definitely sounds like attention-seeking behavior; he just doesn't know how to go about it in other ways. I would ignore as much as I possibly could-unless he's endangering other kids, ie throwing chairs; and really drum up the reward for positive behaviors. If we're cleaning up and he throws all the blocks on the floor-oh well, I 'd leave them there and clean them up when the kids were at lunch, just move on with the next part of the lesson, not even acknowledging his behavior at all.

    I had a child like that once who had a horrible childhood already and he was only 5. He was in the foster system because his parents were drug addicts and the kids got removed. Anyway, I literally had to teach him step by step-if you're upset about something, instead of throwing chairs, this is what you can do. It took time, but I could see him really trying to use those tools.

    That's a really tough thing to have to deal with on a daily basis. Any support from admin?
     
  9. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2010
    Messages:
    10,924
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 15, 2012

    Enjoy your vacation!
     
  10. puff5655

    puff5655 Cohort

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2006
    Messages:
    726
    Likes Received:
    8

    Mar 20, 2012

    I did enjoy my vacation, thanks!

    While I was gone, M ran away from the sub- ran around the building laughing and smiling. She gave up chasing him and the secretary took over- she also couldn't catch him. Finally the principal came out and grabbed him and he sat in the office for the full day.

    Today after school we've got a "plan of improvement" meeting for him. I'll bring up the rewards/ignoring negative behavior ideas.
     
  11. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2010
    Messages:
    10,924
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 20, 2012

    A plan of improvement is a great place to start. Good luck getting something in place.
     
  12. mrsammieb

    mrsammieb Devotee

    Joined:
    May 2, 2006
    Messages:
    1,101
    Likes Received:
    140

    Mar 20, 2012

    WOW... this little one definitely need something. I hope he's okay. (and you stay sane!) Hang in there!
     
  13. puff5655

    puff5655 Cohort

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2006
    Messages:
    726
    Likes Received:
    8

    Mar 21, 2012

    OK, we've got a plan, I hope it works!

    When M is getting frustrated:
    He'll have a cool down place to go that's enjoyable and comfortable
    -Got a place under a table with carpet squares, blanket and stuffed animal

    When M's having a good day:
    He gets to put stickers on his chart. He gets a nap in the office after lunch, playtime in Prek at the end of the day, and a toy car at the end of the week

    He'll get 1:1 attention and supervision all day


    I'm feeling positive about this! He was out today and yesterday but should be back today!
     
  14. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2010
    Messages:
    10,924
    Likes Received:
    0

    Mar 22, 2012

    Good luck today! That sounds like a great place to start!
     
  15. mrsammieb

    mrsammieb Devotee

    Joined:
    May 2, 2006
    Messages:
    1,101
    Likes Received:
    140

    Mar 22, 2012

    So now you have extra eyes to help you! Poor fella. I can only imagine that he is STARVING for something with his home situation. I hope the plan is helpful!
     
  16. puff5655

    puff5655 Cohort

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2006
    Messages:
    726
    Likes Received:
    8

    Mar 26, 2012

    New Problem

    We survived Friday, his first day back, but today was disastrous.

    He was grumpy when he got here this morning, did ok in the morning.

    But he went and hid in the hall before lunch, smiling when we found him, then refused to eat lunch and ran around on the bleachers. When it was time for recess he snuck out another door and walked home.

    Tomorrow we meet with mom or dad.
     
  17. HOPE-fulTeacher

    HOPE-fulTeacher Comrade

    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2010
    Messages:
    263
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 3, 2012

    Curious to hear an update on this story since I have a similar situation with a kiddo of mine in 1st.

    Any things you've implemented that have seen some success?
     
  18. puff5655

    puff5655 Cohort

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2006
    Messages:
    726
    Likes Received:
    8

    Apr 12, 2012

    Nothing has helped. About half the days he comes he's just in a terrible mood and there's no hope.. he doesn't want to be here and knows if he acts up, he gets to go home. He's been running out of the classroom and hiding in the halls more and more, and his new favorite thing to do is to say he's not hungry at lunch, throw out his plate right away and either run around the cafeteria or try to run out the door.

    He's been sent home at lunch 4 times in the last 2 weeks.

    I hope the summer changes him..
     
  19. dragonflym

    dragonflym Rookie

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2012
    Messages:
    48
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 12, 2012

    First of all, I'm sorry it's such a difficult situation for everyone involved. Second of all, do you know anything about his diet? I only ask because I had a child with similar behavior patterns; some days he would come in kind of grumpy and by lunch time he was not only grumpy but angry, and wanting to get away from everyone. Other days he was totally fine and cooperative. I watched this for about two weeks and then I talked to my director to see if it was okay to approach the parents and ask them what he was having for breakfast. Turned out on the "grumpy" days he was getting a "treat" like a donut or some other high sugar content type food and on the "fine" days he usually had cereal or eggs. It might be something like that? Hopefully it's something that simple at least. Also, perhaps you have to stop offering going home as a way out for this child? They're always going to want to be home more than be at school and setting him up to do so, unless the parents are planning to home school him, is only going to get worse as he gets older. Good Luck!
     
  20. puff5655

    puff5655 Cohort

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2006
    Messages:
    726
    Likes Received:
    8

    Apr 12, 2012

    He gets a free relatively-healthy breakfast and morning snack (fruit or veggies) here at school.

    His dad is kind of an odd and scary "tough guy" who is in and out of jail for various alcohol-related crimes, and he comes from a family of hermits. I can see him growing up to be just like dad. :(
     
  21. dragonflym

    dragonflym Rookie

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2012
    Messages:
    48
    Likes Received:
    0

    Apr 12, 2012

    Yikes! I'm sorry about the child's father. Perhaps, the family needs some kind of counseling? Maybe the child is used to really huge extremes to manage his behavior and when you're all pretty consistent he doesn't know how to deal with it so he acts out? I hope he's able to get some help.
     
  22. puff5655

    puff5655 Cohort

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2006
    Messages:
    726
    Likes Received:
    8

    Apr 20, 2012

    Maybe it had to get worse before it got better?

    I changed our whole schedule just for him and it seems to be working much better. We used to have playtime for an hour in the morning, but I've moved it to the end of the day. I think that unstructured time was the most challenging and stressful for him, since he has difficulty interacting with other children appropriately. So we're keeping it structured until 2:00. He's been manageable all week and is enjoying the rewards he gets for behaving.
     
  23. mrsammieb

    mrsammieb Devotee

    Joined:
    May 2, 2006
    Messages:
    1,101
    Likes Received:
    140

    Apr 20, 2012

    Yeah Success! Crossing my fingers it sticks!
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

Total: 149 (members: 2, guests: 126, robots: 21)
test