When you get a new student or start a new semester and there is a kid who is obviously a mess, what do you do? I have no tolerance for kids who sit around like zombies doing nothing. From the way some people here have responded to things in the past I would assume many would say something like, "I'd try to get to know the student and win their trust" or some such thing. Right off the bat, I have no patience for that kind of thing. My regular approach is to let the kid know that if they want to sit around like a fool they will be having a very hard time in my class and basically that they need to get their act in gear. If they don't respond after an initial phone call to parents, I put them far away in the room where they will be sort of out of my sight and out of my mind so they don't get on my nerves. Of course, if they show an interest in getting with reality and start working, I'm there right away to encourage. Anyone have some realistic (i.e. something teachers actually do in terms of strategies as opposed to good soldier talk) methods I might be able to adapt?