When I think about this coming year, my tummy hurts...

Discussion in 'Kindergarten' started by DrivingPigeon, Jul 18, 2010.

  1. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Messages:
    4,212
    Likes Received:
    8

    Jul 18, 2010

    I'm trying to get excited for this coming year, but I'm so nervous...My team met last week to do our classes. We each have 18 kids: 12 boys, and 6 girls. To divide kids up, we looked at information from 4K teachers (if they attended), and parents. We had cards with each of the kid's names, and we placed a green sticker on cards with significant behavior problems (throws temper tantrums often, hits friends and throws things when he doesn't get his way, etc.). We ended up with 18 kids with stickers! :dizzy: That is 1/3 of each of our classrooms!

    In addition, I have three special needs students in my class. Two of them are severe enough ADHD (and possibly CD or LD, but not diagnosed in those areas yet) that they need a full-time aide. We don't have enough aides to go around, so they both have to be in the same classroom. The SPED teachers are nervous about them being together, because they are both very needy. Also, the aide that I am getting doesn't like working with younger children, and I haven't heard very many good things about her...

    I know that I'm going to have to do things differently this year...I want to spend a few weeks on building community, and I want to do community circles daily. I'm just REALLY nervous! This will also be my first year working with children with special needs. Any suggestions on how to survive the year would be great. ;) I'm sure I'll be posting every day on here.
     
  2.  
  3. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2005
    Messages:
    14,070
    Likes Received:
    1,886

    Jul 18, 2010

    Are you at my school, DrivingPigeon? This sounds like the make-up of our kindergarten classes--and we have to group kids as well in order to provide appropriate support to them. I'm going to be doing some heavy-duty brain-storming during the next couple of weeks and will be meeting with one of our experienced teachers who had several high-needs (behaviour, ASD) students last year. Hopefully, I'll have some ideas and strategies to share.
     
  4. UVAgrl928

    UVAgrl928 Habitué

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2008
    Messages:
    968
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 18, 2010

    Personally, I prefer having the special needs children in my room as a group. My team talked about whether we wanted to split them or keep them in one room. I guess it depends on their personalities, but I feel that it's a little easier to have a whole group of kids about the same ability, than one that is much lower than the others. I have a special place in my heart for children with special needs (I have a SPED endorsement, and I am required to have at least one child with an IEP in my classroom since I got my tuition paid for to get the endorsement), and find that these children are the ones that I have the closest bonds with at the end of the year.

    Two years ago, in my class of 23, I had 9 red files (these go in their permanent records, and they contain any referral to the admin). I also had 5 SPED students, including one that had to be physically carried out of my room. My year was chaotic, but I survived. This year, I only had 2 red files :)

    I think you and the aide are going to need to sit down and talk... I'm going to have to do this in the fall too, as it is the first time I will have one in my room! I think it would be good to talk about your roles, and pre-plan some strategies for working with these students. Also, it sounds like the SPED teachers are familiar with the 2 students you mention... use them! Pick their brains about how to handle them, how to help them, etc. I talk to my SPED teacher daily about my students. They are good resources for not only the SPED students, but also any other behavior problems that stump you! Most of them have seen it all, and have some really good suggestions!
     
  5. Lynnnn725

    Lynnnn725 Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2008
    Messages:
    1,786
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 18, 2010

    We had an astounding number of special needs cases this past year. They were divided between 2 classes. If anything, This year will show your character!!!
     
  6. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Messages:
    4,212
    Likes Received:
    8

    Jul 18, 2010

    Thanks, everyone...I know I am going to learn a lot this year. I'm excited to have the kids with special needs in my classroom. I just wish I didn't have so many behavior problems to add to the mix! I have a feeling I'm going to be talking to the SPED teachers and other co-workers quite often!
     
  7. mom2mikey

    mom2mikey Cohort

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2009
    Messages:
    550
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 18, 2010

    Looks like you are going to have a busy class! Consistency and organization are going to be so key for your flagged students but the wonderful thing is that the supports you put in place for these students will probably end up benefiting the other students in your room as much as they benefit the flagged ones.

    One day at a time. Do exactly what you plan to do... seek help with any specific issues that come up as quickly as they come up.

    There are always going to be hard years and easy years. I think we just need to figure out what we can learn from the hards ones. I'm saying this at the end of what was my most difficult year of my career by the way ;).
     
  8. sevenplus

    sevenplus Connoisseur

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2006
    Messages:
    1,721
    Likes Received:
    111

    Jul 18, 2010

    What you have working for you is your low total number of students.

    I have dreaded getting certain students before and then it has turned out just fine. Not necessarily easy, but not a nightmare, either.

    Work on building relationships with them and remember that time invested in doing this in the beginning is multiplied many times over throughout the year.
     
  9. Silmarienne

    Silmarienne Cohort

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2007
    Messages:
    541
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 18, 2010

    Amen to that. This year will pass, you will get through it, and -just going by my experience- you will end up loving those kids in a special way. :)
     
  10. VANewbie

    VANewbie Devotee

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2010
    Messages:
    1,141
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 18, 2010

    This sounds JUST like me. I am so nervous about next year. I will have 4 special needs in my class for the first time and their aids. I'm scared.
     
  11. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2006
    Messages:
    4,858
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 18, 2010

    Aww DP -you'll be fine! I do think it should be against the law to get 2 difficult classes in a row:p! Remember too, the behaviors that showed up in Prek may have been because they were less mature than they are now. Certainly, prepare for the worst-but I bet once you get in there and meet the kids it won't be as bad as you think.

    The classroom community activities sound like a really great idea, I'm going to try to incorporate more of that myself next year!
     
  12. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Messages:
    4,212
    Likes Received:
    8

    Jul 18, 2010

    That's a good point about maturity level changing. I'm hoping it won't be as bad as I'm expecting!

    I want to find ways to have more one-on-one time with students, too. I felt like last year all of my attention was on the 7 boys in my class with behavior problems. I felt like I didn't even know the other 14 kids in my class, which I hated. I'm going to have to find creative ways to do this, but I feel like it's important.
     
  13. MrsM7

    MrsM7 Rookie

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2010
    Messages:
    90
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 18, 2010

    This is a little off topic, but could you describe what you mean by Community Circles? Sounds interesting.
     
  14. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Messages:
    4,212
    Likes Received:
    8

    Jul 18, 2010

    I've only done community circle a few times, but it comes from Tribes. I used it with my class this past year when they were having problems with pushing at recess. They all got a turn to talk (using a "talking piece") about how they felt when there was pushing at recess, and then we came up with a solution together for what to do when someone was pushing.

    I would like to start and end each day with a meeting. In the morning, I would like to just follow the basic "Morning Meeting" format. I would also like to end each day with a meeting about what went well as a class, and what we could do better tomorrow.
     
  15. mrsc_teaches

    mrsc_teaches Companion

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2007
    Messages:
    113
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 19, 2010

    HUGS to you!
    I am coming off of a tough year myself. A severely ADHD child with a mom who refused to accept it and a Dad who thought it was just him being a boy, top it off he was an only parents recently separated and he was SPOILED as well. He was tough and then added a behavior chart (I dont like them) it was rough.
    I also had an ADHD/ODD girl who enjoyed screaming at the top of her lungs when she didnt get her way and it was always my fault with the admin.
    Then add in just the regular boy antics of 5 boys in the class who have been together since age 3 in Headstart....Let's just say I slept A LOT!!!
    (My para was also not helpful in the classroom, another story for another day.)
    I wish I would have come with a firmer discipline plan in the beginning and used my colleagues more often. I also should have contacted my ADHD boys parents together from the get go, they were splitting info and it was tough. I should have included my P with my ADHD/ODD girl earlier as well.
    Remember it is ok to have a temper tamtrum yourself once in a while :eek: I know I did.
     
  16. forkids

    forkids Cohort

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2006
    Messages:
    519
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jul 20, 2010

    I agree that the students may have matured since last year, and sometimes I think a teacher is just a bad fit with certain students -you may be just what these students need and have no problems with them. Good luck and keep us posted when school begins.
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. catnfiddle
Total: 233 (members: 2, guests: 200, robots: 31)
test