This child is the bane of my existence... and so are his parents.

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by Teachings4Me, Mar 11, 2012.

  1. Teachings4Me

    Teachings4Me Companion

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    Mar 11, 2012

    Hey everyone!
    I'm a second year teacher this year... I had an amazing group of kids last year and was so blessed to have them to help me ease into my teaching career. Well, the same can't be said for this year. I have this one student that makes me flipping crazy. It wasn't until the 100th day of school that I pretty much gave up. He has behavior issues first of all, and he's incredibly low on top of that. (Yes I understand the two can be related-- that's not my concern here.) My issue is that he flat out does not care 97% of the time. That other 3% he's BRILLIANT. Okay, not genius, but engaged, motivated, tender-hearted and kind. I sing his praises up and down when I rarely get this behavior from him. I write notes home talking about how great he his. I've even stopped our P in the hallway to tell her in front of him what a good job he's doing. Without fail, by the end of the day, he's obnoxious again. I really helped him the first half of the year but started to ween him off my help since the rest of my class can (and should be able to) do the work on their own. If you are not holding this kid's hand through everything, he just doesn't care. I told him I'm willing to help him here and there or with tough words because I know reading is hard for him (did I mention I tutor him once a week and spend 45 minutes with him daily in an intensive reading group with only 4 other students in it..?) but if it's not being read to him, forget it. I've explained to both him and his parents that I'm willing to help him when he puts forth some effort first. Okay this is getting long winded...bottom line-- his parents put no importance on his education (the zinger-- this is a charter school they CHOSE to bring their child to), his dad can't read and told him in front of his first grade teacher that it's okay he can't read, and he doesn't care that he's going to be retained because he "did first grade twice and momma don't care." At this point, I'm literally about to throw my hands up in the air and say screw it because he's going to be doing 2nd grad again next year anyway (and I'm being offered a technology position so I won't have to deal with him.) This makes me sound like a horrible human being, but I don't want to go to work because of this kid. I've got a tough bunch this year, but him added to the mix is almost more than I can handle. (I did my student teaching in an urban school-- I've handled a lot for being a young teacher.) Please help me-- if I can't help him, how can I at least tolerate him for the next 60 days of school? Bah.

    Thanks everyone.
     
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  3. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    Mar 11, 2012

    Sux for a dyslexic kid to be in a situation where he is required to do what is almost impossible for him to do before getting help doing what he can't do independently yet.

    Big clue - dad can't read either. Dad was held back. Think dad is really proud of this or just blustering to hide his embarassment? Do you think that just maybe dad's comment was because it is such a horrible situation to be in when you can't do what others can and are being called a problem because of it.

    This kid needs testing.
     
  4. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Mar 11, 2012

    You said some good things about him and it seems he has connected to you (wanting your help...). First work on building his confidence..get him started then back out and tell him you'll be back in a few minutes to check on him...praise him for taking steps on his own. It's so sad to me that his parents have basically given up on him...and now you are letting yourself get to that point as well...let this kiddo know that you believe in him...he needs someone who does in order to believe in himself.
     
  5. Teachings4Me

    Teachings4Me Companion

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    Mar 11, 2012

    He's been tested. He's been diagnosed. EC (SPED) say they got the paper work too late (it's now a year and a half old) and they say there's nothing that can be done. Please don't misunderstand. When I say he won't try, I mean he won't even put his name on the paper. Even with math which he does well in, if he doesn't feel like it, he just won't do it. I've helped this kid, I go over the directions, I model, I do guided practice... I have tried everything short of doing the assignment for him. If he doesn't feel like it, that's it. I know Dad had a bad experience, he's told me. I don't want it to be this way with this child, but day after day of the goofing off and careless attitude, I've got very little left to give him. I also have 3 other students that can barely read that also need my attention but at least they put forth effort. Please don't make me out to be like some sort of evil teacher who hates children that aren't perfect little learners.
     
  6. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Mar 11, 2012

    :confused:no ones putting that on you.


    This kid has the deck stacked against him...no support at home, no sped resources at school...(I'm not sure what EC classification is)...Keep documenting modifications and interventions you are making, continue to report concerns to the child study team and still work on building his confidence...just don't give up on this kid...everyone else has.
     
  7. Teachings4Me

    Teachings4Me Companion

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    I absolutely document everything... and we do adaptive aptitude tests 3 times a year and he has shown growth and will from the beginning to end of year but he still won't be where he needs to be. Frankly, I don't think EC (which stands for "Exceptional Children," a term used instead of Special Ed.) wants to deal with him. The main EC teacher also teachers my students PE so he knows this kid and his behavior... I don't want to give up on him and I still help him (by tolerating his antics for another hour for tutoring) but unless an act of God happens, he's going to have to repeat 2nd grade regardless, which I don't think is going to help his self-confidence.

    *Sigh* Tomorrow is a new day and a new week... I'll try to muster up some extra patience ....
     
  8. silverspoon65

    silverspoon65 Enthusiast

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    He has been identified for 1.5 years but no accomodations have been written? That's illegal.
     
  9. Teachings4Me

    Teachings4Me Companion

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    Mar 11, 2012

    His parents had him tested last August. They did not get us a copy of the results until about a month ago and I was told by the EC department that the paper work was too out of date. (Um, once dyslexic, always dyslexic, yes?) So I'm frustrated with that. If the EC department determined that he needs to have all of his tests read to him as a part of his accommodations, I'd be happy to do it, but I don't want him to get used to a bunch of help that won't follow him to 3rd grade, which starts end of grade testing. I'm going to touch base with them again tomorrow because I feel like this kid doesn't stand much of a chance if nothing happens. We had a really bright group of 2nd graders last year and even they are struggling with the standards and expectations of 3rd grade... I don't know if it's the teachers or the test prep that's troubling them, but students who I didn't anticipate would have any problems are... so I feel like my group this year is really going to struggle in 3rd grade...
     
  10. a2z

    a2z Virtuoso

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    Wow! Diagnosed, no help for 1.5 years which only adds to the issues. It makes big issues into bigger ones. How did they get the paper work too late. I don't understand that? Why can't they test again?

    Your system dumped on you. I'm sorry to hear it. But if you give up, who else is going to give a hoot. What is happening to the student and to you is illegal. I'm sorry you are frustrated, but don't give up on him.

    Czacza is right about making sure he knows you are there to help. Keep trying and please, let the frustration go. It isn't his fault he has a disability that isn't being delt with appropriately. Mom and Dad probably gave up on the school system because dad had such a bad experience and the same thing is happening again.

    You don't say his diagnosis, only that he is diagnosed. Therefore you don't really know what is impacting his education. What a shame.

    I feel for all of you. You , student, and his parents.
     
  11. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Mar 11, 2012

    Will your school assess him?
     
  12. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

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    Mar 11, 2012

    He sounds a lot like a student in my classroom. This student is new to the district this year, and is very behind. The difference is, she went through testing and is now receiving special education services. Before she received services, however, things were not pretty. And they still aren't, but they are definitely better.

    The student in my classroom is so far behind that she acts completely inappropriate when asked to complete a task that is too difficult. I try to provide support, but most of the time she doesn't accept it. I try being gentle yet firm, as well as very direct ("write this, here, now"), and nothing works. If she doesn't want to do something, she will hang on her desk, make loud noises, crawl around on the floor, etc. When it is time to do something she likes, she will turn it off and be a perfect student.

    As crazy as she drives me, I will not give up on her, and you can't give up on your student. Sometimes you even need to say that directly to them: "I know this is difficult for you, but you can do it. I care about you, and I want to help." Seems simple, but some of these kids don't hear that. Ever. From anyone.

    Also, I believe you need to press this testing issue. What has happened is so unfair to this child. You said that the special education teachers don't want to deal with him? Then they need to find a new career.
     
  13. EMonkey

    EMonkey Connoisseur

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    Mar 11, 2012

    If the diagnosis is too late then start the process over again. Your school is not following through with IDEA requirements it sounds like. This is not okay. Does the school not have the meetings that lead up to IEPs and 504s?
     
  14. luv2luv2

    luv2luv2 New Member

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    Mar 12, 2012

    You've done everything humanly possible for this kid. I agree with the previous suggestions that the school now has to get involved. Perhaps he needs an IEP....for behaviour and academics. A social worker visit from your school to the family wouldn't hurt. It sounds like the father is very intimidated by schools and teachers due to his illiteracy. He could certainly use a social worker visit.
     
  15. teacherman1

    teacherman1 Devotee

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    Mar 12, 2012

    I've been teaching 1st and 2nd grade for quite some time now. Your student reminds me of a boy I had in 1999. I wrote about him on my website. Here's the link...
    Steve

    PS He's frustrated!!! All the bad behaviors (including the "I don't care" attitude stem from that.
     
  16. bros

    bros Phenom

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    School needs to assess him, anyway. Doesn't matter if the outside assessment was 1.5 years ago, school is obligated the assess the child under Child Find regs.
     
  17. TeachOn

    TeachOn Habitué

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    Building a relationship with the kid will help both the behavior and the learning. I taught before Sped had much effect on how we taught. We would figure out where the kid was - skillwise, academically, emotionally, whatever - and teach him from there, making it possible for him to learn. You could do the same, Sped or no Sped, though it does seem to me likely that the kid needs an IEP at some point.
     
  18. readingrules12

    readingrules12 Aficionado

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    There is no doubt this child's behavior is serious challenging. I think you have done many good things to help him. I think it is important to come to peace with the cards you've been given. You don't have control over his home life. You can teach him a lot of things and get some work out of him. Decide what consequences to deal with in his work not getting done. Do this for your sanity as well as for helping him.

    Then, you are ready to work on motivation. See if you can get this child to be able to tutor younger children if he gets his work done. Take positive steps to help this child, but please quit beating yourself up over this child. It won't help him, you, or the rest of the class. You probably won't be able to do everything you hope to help this child. Don't quit or give up--but realize you are facing a pitcher with a 100 mile an hour fast ball and it is okay to strike out if you go down swinging. Your best is all you have.
     
  19. Teachings4Me

    Teachings4Me Companion

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    Mar 14, 2012

    No, we're a small charter school and don't do testing for dyslexia....
     
  20. Teachings4Me

    Teachings4Me Companion

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    Mar 14, 2012

    Everyone, I really appreciate your input. I think the problem is that we are a small school only in our 2nd year of being open. We have a new EC teacher this year who is phenomenal, but we have a considerable EC student population and she's filled to the brim with students. The EC teacher who is still on staff from last year doesn't care to deal with him. He sat in on a Personalized Ed. Plan with his dad and myself in which we finally got his diagnosis paperwork and it was at this point I was told it was too late to do anything for this student based on the year and a half old testing. I asked him if I should be reading his tests to him and he asked me if the student put forth effort and I told him how he hadn't recently, and he flat out told me not to bother. Needless to say, this teacher is on his way out, for more reasons than just this. His first grade teacher filled out all the tier paperwork last year and nothing happened, so now I'm just playing the waiting game. I refuse to fill out the paperwork again if it won't go anywhere. We need results. I feel like his Mom does car and wants him to be successful, she just doesn't follow through. I email her weekly on his progress. Monday was a great, great day for him. Probably one of his top 3 best days this year. I praised him up and down and he even hugged me on the way out and I felt like we really connected. Tuesday, he had shut down by about 9:30 (we start at 8, he had PE for the first 45 minutes!) and that was that. Today was better, but not great. Maybe we're make on an upward stroke but unfortunately, I think it's too late as far as his grades are concerned. Deep in my heart, I really think that if he had an IEP that would include tests being read to him (including the end of grade test by the state that begins in 3rd grade) he'd be okay. I don't know that he'll ever be an A student, but that's okay.

    readingrules12 I especially appreciate your comments... I can't help the hand I've been dealt but I can still go down swinging....
     
  21. bros

    bros Phenom

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    Mar 14, 2012

    Okay.

    Refer the child to their local school district for evaluation. They can assist.
     
  22. EMonkey

    EMonkey Connoisseur

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    Mar 24, 2012

    The districts are required to do testing in the state I work in for private schools and charter schools. The charter schools are required to hire district Resource Specialists services through the district.
     

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