Objects in Mouth Advice!

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by soleil00, Aug 26, 2011.

  1. soleil00

    soleil00 Comrade

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    Aug 26, 2011

    Here is the situation:
    I have a little girl who puts EVERYTHING in her mouth..... and when I say everything, I mean literally everything.

    Paper, her fingers, scissors, glue sticks, pencils, CRAYONS (yuuuck!), other people's stuff, stuff she has picked up off the floor.. and she often puts her mouth on her desk.

    I have talked to the grandmother, and she says that the child doesn't do this at home nor did anyone inform her of this problem happening in Kindergarten.

    It is extremely disruptive because she will not work. Instead of working on our lessons, she stares off and chews on stuff. It's really not even chewing, it's more... sucking maybe? That's the best way for me to describe it. Either way it is extremely disruptive because I have to stop what I am doing to get her to take it out of her mouth.

    We've done the clip chart for it and it doesn't phase her. I've taken her supplies away and given them as needed, doesn't phase her. Everything goes right back into her mouth.

    We have had a HUGE open discussion for two days in a row now about germs and hygiene, about how putting stuff in their mouths will make them sick..... doesn't phase her. She doesn't care.

    One of the Sp. Ed. teachers told me that I might have to get one of their items that they allow the kids to chew on in their room (it's like a necklace that has a chewy piece on the end) but..... wouldn't that be promoting the behavior? I mean I doubt they are going to allow chewing/sucking on stuff when she goes into 2nd or 3rd grade.

    I just... I am at a loss. I can handle her crawling around in the floor at random intervals, I've just about got that under control. I've gotten her under control in cutting things with her scissors that she isn't supposed to cut, like shoes or shirts. But this... chewing thing. I can't figure out what to do.

    Help?? :dizzy:
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2011
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  3. Zelda~*

    Zelda~* Devotee

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    Aug 26, 2011

    The Special Ed. teacher has the right idea. I personally find the chewy-objects a little gross, but that's just me. If a student needed them I'd be on board.

    You might want to give her chewy candy or gum---I'd also talk to OT if you can.
     
  4. Danny'sNanny

    Danny'sNanny Connoisseur

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    Aug 26, 2011

    The chewey necklaces can really help those kids that are sensory-seekers.

    My OT has also suggested a big straw (I just grabbed a bunch from Sonic) stuck on the end of a pencil.
     
  5. soleil00

    soleil00 Comrade

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    Aug 26, 2011

    The problem is, we (teachers) are not allowed to give the kids any kind of candy or gum otherwise that wouldn't be an issue other than the 20 others that would want some and.. the few out of that group that would throw fits until they got some. Either way though, I can't do it due to school policy.

    The thing is though... is that not promoting/supporting the behavior?

    I don't think it is something that she needs to learn, as it is distracting her FROM learning. I could very well be wrong, but to me allowing her to chew on something is promoting it.. though I see no other way to curve the behavior.
     
  6. Mrs.DLC

    Mrs.DLC Comrade

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    Aug 26, 2011

    I also suggest talking to the OT. She may need a substitute, especially if it is a sensory issue. I have used sterile fish (air pump) tubing. It was cheaper than the chew "toys". I have seen students focus more when their sensory needs are met.If you use something, be careful she can't bite pieces off and choke. Good luck!!
     
  7. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Aug 26, 2011

    Ask the K teacher if she did any of this in her room. I find it interesting that it didn't happen anywhere else.
     
  8. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    Aug 26, 2011

    And if it didn't happen last year, what has changed?

    I tell my kiddos the story of my son who swallowed a penny when he was 3 & how it was a surgical procedure to remove it from his throat. I get very dramatic, whining like he did then. I will also read them the story of Curious George Goes to the Hospital. That stops most of it.

    This sounds more extreme though.
     
  9. soleil00

    soleil00 Comrade

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    Aug 26, 2011

    I don't know. I will figure out who her teacher last year was on Monday when I can get access to her records and ask if she did it then...

    It just doesn't make sense to me that this is just all of a sudden like the grandmother acts like or thinks it is. This isn't something that just comes out of no where I wouldn't think. She has either been doing it and no one has noticed, or something has changed that has caused this problem...
     
  10. Zelda~*

    Zelda~* Devotee

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    Aug 26, 2011

    It really sounds like this is a sensory issue for OT. It would appear she's seeking comfort and this may stem from anxiety, or any number of other issues.

    Right now it is a health/safety issue. If she chews or mouths objects that have been on the floor, you're absolutely right, she could become ill. But--efforts to get her to stop cold-turkey are not working so a replacement is in order.

    Eventually she'll get weaned off the replacement, and OT will (should) help with that. It's sort of like quitting smoking. :)

    My guess is--if you can give her something to safely chew it will help improve her focus.

    Good luck! :)
     
  11. MandaNicole01

    MandaNicole01 Habitué

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    Aug 26, 2011

    I had a student similar to this a few years ago...but instead of sucking on things he needed to constantly have his hands on something... I would bribe him with it... I would tell him once he completed his work, I would give him paper to play with. Folding paper was his passion! It worked. I have a teething necklace I wear for my daughter when we go to church... It might work for her! Better something meant to go in her mouth than random objects...jmo!
     
  12. soleil00

    soleil00 Comrade

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    Aug 27, 2011

    I may have to ask if I can have one of their teething necklaces for her, at least temporarily.

    I am so afraid of her getting sick and giving it to everyone because she chews on stuff then gives it to her friends or group members...
     

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