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  #1 (permalink)  
Unread Aug 2nd, 2009, 11:07 am
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Default Dealing with a VERY difficult child in class

Hello all

I know this is very popular question, and maybe someone has already answered it. I haven't scoured this entire site for it yet. If it comes to it, I will.

I have to teach a very difficult 4? 5 year old. He has a very short temper and likes to yell and scream to the point my other kids are covering their ears. He will occasionally participate in a game, but his attention is short and eventually will disrupt the game. For example, if we're playing a game and he doesn't want to play, then he won't just sit out he'll snatch the item that we're using and throw it outside. He'll climb the windows, he fights with the other kids and cries if the other kid hurts him back. However, he will also be ridiculously affectionate, want to sit in my lap and occasionally gives me a drawing.

I see him as a massive attention whore, as such ignoring him has it limits because he'll do something bad like slam doors, kick me and shove things to get it back.

At the moment I am a glorified babysitter and this is a private school. I've told others about this and was told that this behavior is not new and the past teacher had to deal with it too. I want to kick him out of class as some suggested to me, but I worry he'll just make more noise and a bigger mess outside and there are other classes going on. I try praising him when he does well, maybe it is not enough positive attention. I recently started a point system with stickers, wasn't too successful. Help please.
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  #2 (permalink)  
Unread Aug 2nd, 2009, 11:16 pm
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Default Re: Dealing with a VERY difficult child in class

I had an annoying child in one of my classes - not as bad as your kid, by the sound of it, but still disruptive and annoying to me and the other kids in the class - and I tried positive reinforcement. I knew that the theory says it works, but after reading about it again in a book recently I decided to try it with this boy. Ignore the bad behaviour as much as possible, but praise any and every tiny thing that he might do right. I find touching is good too (as a female teacher): along with praise, give a quick stroke on the back of the hand, a shoulder squeeze, a stroke on the head if this is socially acceptable in your country. If he likes to sit on your lap he could well be responsive to a bit of physical affection.
As a completely ignorant layperson, I would also read up about ADD and ADHD and ways to deal with such behaviour.
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Unread Aug 7th, 2009, 10:57 pm
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Default Re: Dealing with a VERY difficult child in class

Is the problem than he/she is too full of energy? Also ask yourself if he is feeling bored. What positive things does he do? He can't be all bad. Identify their strength and commend them for it - This is positive reinforcement. Focus on the good things they have done and give praise rather that demonize the kid for disruptive behaviour.
If he is just hyper, then that may be something to do with energy. Try activities at the start of the class that burn their energy. I had a class of hyperactive kids and at the start I would use some high energy games that almost tires them out. After that they can focus on settler type of activities or low energy games. A good energy burner is the volleyball game
Without this approach I can't get them to concentrate.
Some kids may just be plain spoiled and it may be coming from home. May be they are used to getting all the attention they need at home. In that case talk to the parents.
I do not encourage bullying but sometimes a bit of peer presure helps a kid realize how their bad behaviour is affecting others.
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Unread Aug 11th, 2009, 04:18 am
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Default Re: Dealing with a VERY difficult child in class

According to me while dealing with a child, think of all the experiences that you have survived and enjoyed in your life. Think of the times in your life when you thought ‘ If only I had the courage to…", "How I wish I had thought this through…", "This is the best thing that has ever happened to me…".
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Good resource when teaching sight words
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  #5 (permalink)  
Unread Aug 11th, 2009, 09:40 pm
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Default Re: Dealing with a VERY difficult child in class

i had a similar experience with a child like that in class. everyone called him 'the monster' and he was known throughout the school as a menace. now he is tame, and at least respects everyone. he is not fighting as much, and dosen't get in trouble too much.

i took a diffrent approach. i used some modified military discipline routines and strict discipline on the entire class for about the first two to three weeks of class. I don't have any trouble with any of them now. as far as this child is concerned...he didn't like it at first, but after 5 periods of time out and a modified timeout punishment (when he wanted to play games and sing in the corner)...he dosen't give me or anybody else trouble.
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