Those kids who never pay attention and yet seem to understand everything being taught

Discussion in 'General Education' started by 5throx, Aug 13, 2010.

  1. 5throx

    5throx Rookie

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    Aug 13, 2010

    Those irritating kids.
    Does anyone else have those kids who are NEVER on task? No matter what you try, who are ALWAYS talking to their neighbors, or doing something else and yet there's not a lot you can do about it because they understand EVERYTHING?!?!?!
    I have two blasted kids in my class, one of them doesn't know how to put a cap on it. Literally, he doesn't stop talking. Ever. I take a recess away from him on average of once a day. It's so irritating, but he picks up on everything I say in class, even individualized help given during lessons to various kids in the class. The other kid spends more time dissecting his mechanical pencils than he spends, doing anything. The only thing he does more than dissect his pencil is worrying about when recess is going to be. Yet, I have yet to mark anything wrong on any of his assignments, quizzes, or tests; his standardized assessments are ridiculously high too.
    Don't get me wrong, I'm happy they are so bright, but yikes, I swear these kids are absorbing the information through osmosis off their desks.
    Sorry for the rant. These kids just kind of get under my skin, especially when they start distracting the lower kids around them.:|:|:|:|:|
     
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  3. robinsky

    robinsky Rookie

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    Aug 13, 2010

    I'm a fairly new teacher and am still learning how to do this well, but the answer is differentiating your instruction. Those kids don't need to pay any attention to your lesson in order to learn the material, so they are bored silly and act out because of it. Can you give them some more challenging work to do instead of the regular work? Call them in after class and present it as an honor, and let their parents know, that they will be working on special material because they can handle it. Or, let them be class helpers, and help the other kids.

    There are lots of ideas for differentiation, and it seems like these kids need it!
     
  4. hernandoreading

    hernandoreading Comrade

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    Aug 13, 2010

    Sounds like you've got a couple of gifted kids. Does your district have programs for gifted/talented students? If so, you should recommend these students.

    I agree with robinsky, differentiated instruction for these students is neccessary. Take whatever you are doing in class to the next level for these students - higher level thinking, problem solving, etc.

    But please, please, please don't just make them in-class tutors for their peers. This is one of the biggest teacher cop-outs when it comes to gifted students. It's a disservice to use them in that way, and it simply doesn't meet their needs. They need additional challenge and the chance to stretch their brains.

    There are some fabulous web sites with information about teaching the gifted. Start with Hoagies: http://www.hoagiesgifted.org/
     
  5. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

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    Aug 13, 2010

    I was that kid. My teachers started just making my own program of things for me to do in the back of the room. I had to listen to some of the instruction, but once I got it and started talking or "fiddling" I would just go to the back and work on something. There was no gifted program at my school, but classes were small enough that it wasn't a big distraction to others. I did all of the work everyone else did, and all of other work. If you think it's appropriate, ask that they be tested for gifted. What you are describing can be behaviors that gifted students show.

    (May I also recommend not regularly making them the class helpers. I always hated that when I was in elementary school. It didn't help me learn it better (I already knew it!) and I knew I was only being asked to do that to give me something to do. I was perfectly happy reading or staring in to space. Just my personal experience with that...)
     
  6. KateL

    KateL Habitué

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    Aug 13, 2010

    Wow. Can you imagine the reaction if someone wrote something like, "I have these two really low students in my class and they're driving me nuts! They try really hard, but they're just so slow! They can't even remember what 2+2 is. I explain and explain, but they just keep asking me for help over and over again. How am I going to deal with them holding us back all year long??" No, of course a teacher wouldn't write that. We've been trained to focus on the students who struggle. But why on earth would it be ok for you to have that attitude about the students on the other end of the spectrum? They need your help just as much as the low students!
     
  7. eddygirl

    eddygirl Companion

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    Aug 13, 2010

    Are they gifted? Maybe. Are they boys? Definitely. I work with boys, and they definitely learn differently than girls. They have a tendency to respond better to visual or kinesthetic activities, and may struggle to stay on task unless their hands are busy. One of the best books I have read about working with boys is Teaching the Male Brain by Dr. Abigail Norfleet James. She gives valuable insight into understanding how boys and girls learn differently. I highly suggest it if you want some strategies for keeping your boys on task.
     
  8. applecore

    applecore Devotee

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    Aug 13, 2010

    I so feel your rant!

    I'm prepping for possibilities this year :) I have early finish work for those who's lightbulbs go off minutes after I start teaching the concept. But I'm also going to using our computer gram/concept programs that I have on my student computers in the classroom for math and reading. That's what I'm starting with...I'm sure I'll have to come up with something else once that becomes an old hat :)
     
  9. WarmWillow

    WarmWillow Rookie

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    I had a student like this last year and he drove me up the wall! He was one who was much more concerned with getting attention from his classmates during instruction than giving his all to learning. He did not excel on his assessments but he got by. We worked on his behavior all year.

    It sounds like your student needs to keep his hands occupied. Do you think he might benefit from doing something hands-on if he finishes his work early or something he could quietly fidget with when you are doing direct instruction.

    Are students who finish early and process quickly most likely GATE? It seems that we jump to that assumption, but maybe they are just quick processors. I always thought that GATE was a combination of efficient processing as well as a depth and creativity of thought.
     
  10. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

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    That depends on the state, and even the district. In some cases, it's based only IQ, in some there are other various requirements. We classify students as gifted, talented, or both. I would certainly think it would be worth having them evaluated to see if they meet the criteria.
     
  11. PowerTeacher

    PowerTeacher Comrade

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    Aug 13, 2010

    Try giving them a description of the learning goal you are working on and have them design the assignment they are going to complete to demonstrate their learning. They just need to check in with you as they progress.
     
  12. teacher333

    teacher333 Devotee

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    Aug 13, 2010

    Is that what they call the Executive Skills? I am reading a book called "Smart But Scattered" about working with students who seem to be an educational "mess" yet at times can pull off the most difficult of tasks.
     
  13. bros

    bros Phenom

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    Aug 13, 2010

    Give them higher level material to do. Perhaps let them read when they finish early
     
  14. msmullenjr

    msmullenjr Devotee

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    Aug 13, 2010

    Sorry, I am that kid
     
  15. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

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    Aug 13, 2010

    Teaching with those hyper bright kids can be exhausting. I remember watching my adult son run around as a young child and wondering if he had an "off'" switch.

    You'll figure out how to make his personality and needs fit into the classroom. It's early still.
     
  16. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    Aug 13, 2010

    I have a student like that and she almost drives me nuts, BUT I just love her! I do keep her from bothering others as best I can though.
     

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