Stinky Students???

Discussion in 'General Education' started by La Profesora, Jul 25, 2007.

  1. La Profesora

    La Profesora Cohort

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    Jul 25, 2007

    Hello All!!!

    Have any of you ever had a stinky student? I have at least one every year. Doused in nasty perfume, no deodorant, doesn't shower after gym, smells like wet dog, smells like the Marlboro factory, or just has a funny smell.

    any advice? What do you tell them? How do you tell them?

    I'm becoming really observant of smells, and I don't want to discriminate against the stinky kid.

    Thanks All!!
     
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  3. divey

    divey Companion

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    Jul 25, 2007

    Let's see....not sure what to suggest for the wet dog/marlboro smell...but:
    lousy perfume: maybe buy an expensive tester of nice (and lightly) scented body spray and tell the child "i know you like to wear perfume, and thought of you when I saw this at Wal-Mart"

    body odor: a 5th grade teacher I used to work with used to discretely call the offender to her desk and whisper that she thought their deodorant had worn off, and to go see the nurse for a little "booster".

    You could always have a smell-ums bag strategically placed in each bathroom that the kids could have access to......
     
  4. Mable

    Mable Enthusiast

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    I have scented candles, Lysol spray, and this year I am adding air fresheners.

    Need I say more?
     
  5. ~~Pam~~

    ~~Pam~~ Companion

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    I make referrals to our counselor and she meets with them. Sometimes it is an easy fix of providing deodrant and other times she has discovered that the child had no water (family unable to pay bill) and she has the resources to help these kids.

    It's not that I don't care, but I don't want to make the kids (middle schoolers) feel embarrassed.
     
  6. divey

    divey Companion

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    ps...my worst case was a little girl that always smelled like cat urine :( Now THAT'S a hard smell to ignore......:whistle:
     
  7. apple25

    apple25 Comrade

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    I remind my grade 7/8 students to take showers - usually after an especially "fun" gym class. Usually there will be only 1 or 2 bad offenders, but I will address the whole class. It can be that they didn't wash their clothes enough - you can have a quick talk about how often you can wear jeans before they need to be washed, etc.

    I had a case a few years ago - one of my boys went crabbing and didn't shower / change clothing before coming to school. I actually had to ask him to call home . . . it was an embarrassing conversation to have, but none of the other students could work with the smell!!

    You could also ask for help from your guidance counsellor - maybe they could have a discrete chat if the offender is the same person over and over again!
     
  8. apple25

    apple25 Comrade

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    I forgot - our school has a scent-free policy . . . maybe you could have one in your room?? That would take care of cheap perfume and strong deodorant.
     
  9. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    We have one as well--as there are lots of sensitivities to strong odors. For body odors, either I will talk to them privately or have a male teacher do it (for the boys). I have small sample size deodorants in my room for those who require them,
     
  10. deserttrumpet

    deserttrumpet Comrade

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    Read the book Christy by Cathirine Marshall. It is a story about a teacher and one of the first things she has to deal with are the smells.
     
  11. patsfan82

    patsfan82 Rookie

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    Oh boy! 5th graders STINK! Especially after gym. When I first notice it in the beginning of the year, I have a quick chat with them about getting older and starting to perspire more so they might want to start using deodorant if they don't already, esp. on gym days. Any other time after that I say "umm this room stinks so remember what we talked about" or "be respectful of your classmates noses"

    I really haven't had just one or two students because the majority of the class is going through hormonal changes. Oh yeah and I have to give the deodorant talk in the beginning of the year (usually when it gets cold because we don't open the windows) because the gym teachers doesn't talk about it until MAY!
     
  12. Upsadaisy

    Upsadaisy Moderator

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    Lots of parents don't t hink 5th graders need deodorant. (Invite them in to help out one day after PE.)

    We have a no fragrance policy at school as several teachers are severely allergic. Most comply. Some teachers spray their rooms down with Febreze or Renuzit (they both work great) before the kids come back in.
     
  13. BethMI

    BethMI Cohort

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    SOme of my 2nd graders need deoderant! That is hard to tell the parents, but I have done it. For the "dirty" kid smell, I talk to the social worker and she usually handles it. Stinky feet are bad too, esp in the summer when they are kicking off their shoes under their desks. My rule is they always have to have shoes on in case of a fire drill. I too have room deoderizers.
     
  14. Weazy

    Weazy Comrade

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    As long as I can keep my windows open it soesn't get too bad-- close the window and p-u! I teach H.S. and most kids are very conscientious about how they smell; however, I have had a few doozies! I usually don't point out anybody in particular, I blame it on being closed up and pull out the Febreze. I have had boys (I have freshman) who love to point out when somebody has a "gassy" problem, and well, ummm, I have had to use Febreze in those instances as well. Never a dull moment!! :rolleyes:
     
  15. meatball77

    meatball77 Comrade

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    I plan on having an arasol can of deodorant in my classroom in case I need to send a kid out with it.
     
  16. katenar

    katenar Cohort

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    This past year I had a student who would stink up the entire classroom. Other teachers (and students) would walk into my room and stop dead in their tracks - I'm serious it was absolutely awful. I had a chat with the Assistant Principal, mother of the child and the school nurse. Basically anytime he would come into my room and smelled my job was to send him to the nurse. It was discussed with him by my Assistant Principal (who was a male) about what was required and the student agreed to shower if he had too. He brought an extra pair of clothes to school that the nurse had in her office for him to change into. If I had to send him down there, he was to use the health office shower and clean and put on the other pair of clothes. However, towards the end of the year he was extremely defiant and refused to shower. That left the A.P. with no other choice but to call home and have him picked up because they would not allow him back in my room as the other students were starting to complain and it became a big issue.

    Mind you this was also the student who threw things at me and would repeatedly yell at me. Fun year! :naughty:
     
  17. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    I don't know how old your student is, so that would be my first question. Is this just plain old musty kid smell, or more than that?

    Have you ruled out any medical conditions? Usually, if somebody has an undiagnosed illness, odors are a immediate sign. It could be a food allergy (explaining the gas), or a metabolic issue, where they may be sweating excessively to rid the toxin from their body.

    Or it could be they just have a nasty house, and they will smell like this forever. :eek: I had preschoolers whose cots just stunk like that big time! Nobody else complained, so I imagined it was the neighborhood, the income level, and the teachers were used to this. Doesn't make it right, and it didn't matter that the sheets were washed once a week. By they always smelled, and the storage room that held them smelled too.

    I would call in the social worker. Ask for a complete home visit, parent conference, the whole nine yards. This kid could be a living time bomb.

    In Head Start, we sanitize everything with bleach solution. Yet, I have seen some teachers with air freshner too. I saw the Airwick Fresh Matic, timed spray, and fell in love! It can be stationed anywhere, and gives a shot of air freshner all day! Febreeze is good too, but be careful because it will make the floor slippery! You have to wipe it the area after you spray.

    Camoflauge doesn't solve your problem, however. I would document my efforts, name the smells as close as you can, determine if they are stronger before lunch/after gym, morning, etc. And see if he has any siblings in the school. Go sniff in their rooms! It may be hereditary, or if it is a nasty house smell...you will catch it right away.

    If this is true, they may need a home visit. They may be a case for the DCFS, and 6pm news! Usually smells that bad have been going on forever. Big difference is sloppy housekeeping and health hazzards to kids.

    And if you smell it, the other kids smell it, and it could be affecting their health, as well as their concentration and learning.

    You deserve a healthy work atmosphere.
     
  18. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    There are certain smells that, when coming from a child, signal sexual abuse, too. I imagine that it is something almost every teacher deals with, but I can't imagine how to handle it without completely embarrassing and ostracizing the offending student! I know that I will have cans of Oust! in my classroom, because it doesn't just put a layer of flower smell over the bad... it is supposed to actually get rid of the bad smell.
     
  19. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    yes PW...I had a 3 year old girl with a peculiar interest in her undies.

    ...and an unmistakable smell that went with it. Try explaining that to an old, fuddy-duddy director who has been celibant all her life.

    Two words - Social Worker, or three - Family Support Worker

    Ozium is a good air freshner too.
     
  20. nicknbeccarock

    nicknbeccarock Rookie

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    I had a 12 yr old that wa partaking in extracirricular (sp) activities with male students before and after school. One day she came to class in the same jeans from the day before and we had to switch rooms after 20 minutes. I let the room air out for a period. I tried to play it off by spilling paint on the table and saying that it was to strong but I am sure everyone knew what was up b/c I sent her to the nurse aout 5 minutes before that. I never want to experience that again for several reasons.
     
  21. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    Oh, my God, nicknbeccarock! That is horrendous! I have heard of horror stories like that, but every time I hear another one, it turns my stomach! There was actually a middle school classroom not far from here in which the class watched and egged on a couple of students having sex on the teacher's desk, and the teacher sat off to the side watching!!!
     
  22. ITeach4Him

    ITeach4Him Comrade

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    I read somewhere that having plants in your classroom would help neutralize the odors. I've never tried it, but it could be worth a try. I kept a candle warmer (no flames allowed) in my room with a gentle smelling candle.
     
  23. Ms.Jasztal

    Ms.Jasztal Maven

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    We cannot have any sprays or air purifiers in the room. It may work to just refer to guidance; it was difficult for me to specifically say anything in the past, but if I notice this year, I am certainly telling guidance or character ed. and hopefully one will go through with helping out.
     
  24. gmer22

    gmer22 Rookie

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    Ewww this is horrible. I am so scared of stinky kids. I already bought potpourri...candles...and lysol. I was thinking of buying mini body sprays for the kids that need it after gym. If the smell would be really bad I would probably send him or her to the nurse.
     
  25. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    I have no problem with kids that come in from recess or their 20 minutes of PE with the "kid playing" smell of sweat on them. What I have problems with are those who smell as if they haven't bathed in several days, or wear the same clothes all week, or have a "sexual" smell, or even bathe themselves in bad perfume!
     
  26. BASAM

    BASAM Comrade

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    What about the students who are playing outside and when they come in all hot and sweaty they go to the bathroom and cover their face/hair in water because the coolness is a relief but then the smell is just intensified? I made a rule last year that they couldn't do that anymore because the smell was too much for me.
     
  27. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    I still say check out his family. If anyone else smells like that, it must be the house. It it is just one kid, send him to the nurse. She should have him see his dr, and not come back without a complete bill of health.

    Do so snooping. See his physical. Are you sure he doesn't have some sort of allergies?
     
  28. ecsmom

    ecsmom Habitué

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    That cat urine smell is one to look into. We learned that is the smell produced in meth labs.
     
  29. La Profesora

    La Profesora Cohort

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    Man, you all gave me more to think about than I ever expected!!!

    Meth Lab/Cat Pee/Sex Smells?

    Oh Geez.

    I meant BO or kids smell like cigarettes or gym class, but I guess weird smells can indicate a lot more!!!

    My head is reeling!!!
     
  30. Mrs. R.

    Mrs. R. Connoisseur

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    Just wait until you smell those kids now that you're pregnant! You'll never be the same again! :)
     
  31. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Professora,

    Just FYI: now that you're pregnant, you'll probably be more attuned to smells than before. I know that some smells that I had never particularly noticed (like hazelnut coffee from 7-11) just made me soo queasy!

    I'm not sure of what you can do about it, but did want to warn you.
     
  32. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    Gee!!! what grade is this???
     
  33. La Profesora

    La Profesora Cohort

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    I'm talking 11th grade, and high school in general. But, I know stinky kids exist everywhere!

    Now that I am pregnant, I am SUPER sensitive to smells! I can't wait to try to dissect cats this year. Uggggg!!!!!
     
  34. pwhatley

    pwhatley Maven

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    First, congratulations on your pregnancy La Profesora! You will have many blessings, I am sure!

    I don't envy you teaching biology. Do they still keep body parts in formaldehyde? Yuck As a high school teacher I would think that the two most prevalent non-perfume smells would be cigarettes or pot. Other than that, just be on the lookout for teenagers who bathe in their favorite cologne!
     
  35. Mommy2wad

    Mommy2wad Rookie

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    Our school has a great nurse who is always willing to come into the classroom and do health lessons. When I started to smell that great body odor aroma (I taught 2nd grade last year and yes they too can have some not so wonderful odors) I asked her to come in and present a lesson on person hygiene. She does these lessons in a way that is not embarrassing to any particular child. It works out great!
     
  36. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    my daughter developed body odor at 7!

    I was shocked! I don't remember using deodorant until I was at least 12!!!

    Certain people tend to give off odors from the foods they eat as well. I always knew when she and her dad, (my ex) had speghetti, or anything with garlic! It just reeks off their skin for two days. They don't notice it. But I can smell it a mile away! She will give me a hug, and her arms smell like a clove of garlic!

    What do I say?? "Did you have a ceasar salad for lunch dear??" You can't put deodorant on your forarms can you??
     
  37. 6ertchr

    6ertchr Rookie

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    All this talk of body odor made me run out and buy a few deodorants. Rite-Aid has them on sale for 88 cents. I'll keep them in my classroom cabinet to give to kids that forget to apply it or just can't afford any. Now I just need to wait for a sale on air freshener!
     
  38. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    be careful...don't want any lawsuits from kids breaking out over something they never used before!

    :unsure:

    I knew a teacher who rubbed the same sun block lotion on everyone! One parent found out, and she was livid! What can you do?? Call each parent first???
     
  39. divey

    divey Companion

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    You're kidding?!? I just learned something new!!! So that just intensifies my soapbox against using meth! I've always wondered why in the world someone would CHOOSE to put that combination of crap into their systems voluntarily, but now, adding the fact that it smells like cat pee.....beyond me!
     
  40. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Most schools have a pretty strong no-tolerance policy as far as drugs go.

    Maybe it's just my school, but we get the occasional kid who smells of cigarette smoke after driving himself to school. But a kid who smelled of pot would be in the dean's office immediately, suspended shortly thereafter.
     
  41. La Profesora

    La Profesora Cohort

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    You know, the cigarette smell is tricky, especially because its not always the child smoking. Sometimes they reek because everyone in the house smokes, and their poor little bodies are in the vicinity. I believe that smoking in a house or car around a child is a type of abuse. Those poor kiddos don't deserve that.
     

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