My Class is Mean : (

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by NewTeacher05, Dec 11, 2013.

  1. NewTeacher05

    NewTeacher05 Rookie

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    Dec 11, 2013

    I'm a 1st year Kindergarten teacher. I'm at my wits end tryign to figure out what to do with my class. They are super mean to each other. In the past week alone I have gotten two reports from parents that students are choking and hitting their child. One incident happened at recess the other happened on the bus. Two different students in my class are doing the hittind and choking. I feel terrible that this is happening.

    They also argue with each other constantly, stick their tongues out, push and shove and talk about "someone stole something from me" when they never actually saw anyone do anything.

    I've seen hitting and kicking in line as well. When I ask why, the student who was doing replies "Well they did it to me first."

    I have said several times that just because someone does it to you does not mean you do it back otherwise you get in trouble too, but that message does not seem to be working.

    I deal with all issues I see in the classroom, but the behavior still continue. I do not understand where this agressive behavior is coming from. What am I doing wrong?
     
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  3. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    Dec 11, 2013

    At my school, the classroom teacher is not responsible for handling behaviors that happen outside of the classroom. If something happens in a special class, that teacher takes care of it. If something happens at lunch or recess, the supervisor takes care of it. If something happens on the bus, administration gets involved.

    I would ask for support from admin.
     
  4. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Dec 11, 2013

    Absolutely.

    First, and foremost, to get advice on how they want it handled. But, almost as an aside for kids this young: anytime there's an ongoing problem with a kid, you want a paper trail.
     
  5. HorseLover

    HorseLover Comrade

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    Dec 11, 2013

    Do you have a mentor? That person may be a huge help in knowing not only good ideas, but also school policies
     
  6. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    Dec 12, 2013

    I had a horrible class on year. Someone from special ed came in every day and worked with the whole class on behavior. Maybe you could find someone to do that, or find a resource for you to do it.
     
  7. MissScrimmage

    MissScrimmage Aficionado

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    Dec 12, 2013

    One year our school social worker came in weekly and did lessons on caring for ourselves and eachother. I think the program was called Bee Your Best!.
     
  8. i8myhomework

    i8myhomework Comrade

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    Dec 12, 2013

    All of this? From a kindergarten class? Holy Toledo...

    OP, have you gotten any support from admin? What has your P said?
     
  9. Ponypal

    Ponypal Comrade

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    Dec 12, 2013

    I too have a class of some challenging kids. The girls are so mean to each other. I am not responsible for what happens outside of my class, but I make sure that I'm aware of who was involved and what it entailed.

    A few questions...

    Do you have a classroom behavior system? If so, what are the consequenses for behavior? Do you have parental support? Do you have a premade form to inform parents of these behaviors in which they need to sign and return the form?

    Can you separate and pair these students with a "model" student?

    Can you frontload these students with expectations, directions and consequences for each activity? This takes a long time, but pays off as you gradualy taper off.

    Do you have a school counselor that will help with citizenship issues?

    These are all things that I use and work for me. It took a while, but things run so much better when I put all of them into place.

    I wish you well.
     
  10. Em_Catz

    Em_Catz Devotee

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    Dec 15, 2013

    :yeahthat:

    These are all excellent suggestions. I would also try to focus on a culture of caring. It's hard for me to put it into words, but I often refer to myself as a "Teacher friend" and from day one, one of my rules is being nice to each other.

    I demonstrate and reiterate what that looks like. In first, the big thing is "Jessica hit me!" when in reality maybe was backing up and bumped into Susie who was standing directly behind her.

    (ie: Jessica should say excuse me, or if Jessica doesn't know she hit bumped into Susie, Susie should tell her, Jessica should apologize and Susie accept it).

    Sometimes I imitate the things the students do to each other and it makes them giggle and put into perspective how ridiculous it is. (For instance I'll talk about the teacher next door and say, "If Mrs. Catz is taping up our book reports in the hallway, and Mrs. Byrd comes out and starts taping up book reports her class did, should I start yelling that she's a copy cat and try to pull down her papers, then cry and tell the principal Mrs. Byrd is copying me?")

    You can't prepare for every situation, but when I notice patterns, I sit the class down and try to address it as a whole group and model/discuss what we should do.

    I discipline children for saying, "I'm not your friend" and I often use myself as an example, like, "How would you feel if Mrs. Catz said she wasn't your teacher friend anymore? Would that make you feel good?"

    I also encourage the children that if someone isn't being nice, then to stop engaging them and go play/interact with someone who is being a good friend to them.

    I've also noticed that it's very rare that EVERYONE has an issue in the class. There are usually a few kids who start stuff and the other kids are simply reacting to them. I identify the troublemakers/starters and I aggressively work on modifying their behavior by:

    1. Reaching out the guidance counselor
    2. Nipping the beginnings of their misbehavior in the bud as often as possible
    3. Involving parents
    4. Frequent time outs and lost of privledges
    5. Staying on top of them and not letting anything slide (I mainly do this in the beginning, like the first month or two of school).

    Basically I'm trying to the consequence of hitting, kicking, bad words, spitting, choking, stealing, etc, so unpleasant that it's not worth the gratification of the bad behavior.

    Hang in there! It's almost Christmas Break :hugs:
     

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