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Teaching Students with LD and ADHD

behavior issue without a solution (yet)


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Joined: Mar 08, 2007
Posts: 2
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Posted Mar 08, 2007 at 10:19:23 PM
Subject: behavior issue without a solution (yet)

Our school is experiencing a particularly difficult child - as a team, we have done everything we can think of and have had very little success. Our student refuses to participate in school. This student sleeps, sometimes actually sleeps, other times fakes it. I teach 7th grade, the child can barely read at first grade level, math skills are very low. He recently has completed his 5th Dr. visit - they have checked everything from sleep apnea to depression, to iron poor blood now. The child is very bright and has excellent verbal language skills. He just won't do anything except if he wants to. No reward can get him to work - He has learned that his parents will give him what he wants and he has said that he can wait everyone out.
I am requesting some "out of the box" solutions. Thank you in advance if someone has an idea we haven't tried.

mardan

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geodob
Joined Feb 06, 2005
Posts: 265

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Posted:Mar 09, 2007 12:55:41 AM

'He has learned that his parents will give him what he wants...'

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always_wondering
Joined Jun 12, 2003
Posts: 94

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Posted:Mar 09, 2007 9:14:29 AM

This is my third attempt at writing a reply. I'm really struggling with the fact that the child cannot read above a 1st grade level, is in 7th grade, and is expected to happily participate in the 7th grade curriculum.

Can you share what types of deficits he has?
What types of accommodations does he have in order to access and respond to the curriculum?
How much are those accommodations going to make him stick out from everyone eles?
What types of remediation of deficits are being attempted (now and in the past) to enable reading instruction to be able to work?

Apparently, what ever has been done for him in the past does not adequately meet his needs to access the curriculum. I'm sure his problems go beyond laziness. It may be laziness now, but there was probably a time in his life that he wanted to learn and was defeated with every attempt. Hence, the giving up. I would probably be just like him if I was faced with having to go to school every day and know that I was not able to do what all of the other could.

I may be better able to give you an "out-of-the-box" solution if I knew more about the kid other than his parents give in to him. I think the behaviors you see now are from years and years of both the child and parent being defeated.

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demarti
Joined Jun 15, 2005
Posts: 84

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Posted:Mar 09, 2007 4:36:12 PM

To get him to participate, you need to make him feel successful!!!! Teach him to read and do math at the level of his peers.

If I were in 7th grade and couldn't read and felt like I was a total failure, I wouldn't participate either!

Has he been tested for a Learning Disability? Is he on an IEP?

IMO, he is a product of the failure of the school system.

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demarti
Joined Jun 15, 2005
Posts: 84

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Posted:Mar 09, 2007 6:27:30 PM

I'm sorry if my previous post sounded flip. It kind of hit a nerve with me. I felt really bad for this kid.

I have had the experience of a son who had a rough middle school experience along with a number of his friends. Of which one, has now shut down in HS and refuses to work. All these boys are extremely bright and carry many of the same personality traits. All these boys are non-LD, so I can't imagine how this boy must feel.

I learned a key trait from my son and his friends,just from listening to how they talked about their teachers in middle school. Once you hit 7th grade, they are not children anymore and the level of respect the kids have for their teacher makes for the difference between a motivated student or a poor student. They are now young adults and want/need to be treated as such.

Half the teachers in my kids middle school still want to treat them as children. Their idea of commanding respect is to yell and scream at them. A huge mistake! My son had a teacher the first day of class tell him he wasn't allowed to go to the bathroom and he could just wet his pants. He completely lost respect for that teacher and had no motivation to be a 'good' student in that class. As an adult, if someone told me that.....? My son has told me on more than one occaison, 'Mom, I just sleep in that class. It's sooooo boring.'

These kids know the difference between a teacher who wants to teach and one who just gives worksheets all day. They want someone who makes them feel like they understand them and that they are good kids. Respect is HUGE and to get the kids respect, the teacher needs to respect them. My son has also told me, "Mom, I really want to do good in Mr. xx class. He really understands me and I like him."

In middle school, it's typically not cool to be smart and not cool to be dumb, but being a 'behavior' problem probably commands some respect from his peers. This kid has probably been failed by so many teachers, belittled, yelled out etc etc. that he has no respect for school.

It will take a special person to turn his direction. I would work on getting his respect and trust first, focus ALOT on what he does well. Make him feel successful and not dumb.


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Sue
Joined Jun 14, 2003
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Posted:Mar 12, 2007 9:50:22 AM

When I taught middle school, I was truly *amazed* at how much basically each and every student I had still, when it came down to it, wanted to please the teacher.
I loathe and despise the emphasis on "build their self-esteem" that's currently the rage. HOWEVER, When I found ways to let students feel successful and important - that were based on things **they did,** though, not me giving gratuitous random "praise" - they were pretty easy to turn around.
On the other however, this kiddo doesnt' sound like he's going to be that easy to turn around 'cause he's had years of learning that school is so much a waste of his time. Bright kiddos with low skills tend to be extremely frustrated and angry and confused. There's no magic wand..

Sue J, webmastress www.resourceroom.net

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Ralpho
Joined Mar 13, 2007
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Posted:Mar 13, 2007 10:24:13 PM

Considering the fact that I have been teaching for over 8 years now I certainly can see how this can be frustrating but the truth is his parents are going to play a crucial role. I find it very difficult to believe that he is reading on a first grade level in the 7th grade and is a "bright" child with great "verbal" skills. Someone needs to light a fire under his butt and it should begin at home, especially if his parents are interested in his education. There must be some consequences to his actions, the child cannot be in 7th grade and read at a first grade level without suffering from a learning disability or some traumatic experience with reading. Maybe the doctors he has been brought to are mommy and daddy's instead of a real professional that might actually be able to diagnose him properly. I certainly am not a doctor nor claim to be one but this child sounds depressed, possibly because he is not at an academic level with his peers or maybe there is trouble on the home front. Either way it is something that needs to be addressed, child protection services (CPS) or (ACS) might be a last resort but sometimes parents need to be snapped out of the delusion "not my child" These issues can and possibly will affect their child's life and shouldn't be taken lightly.

Please feel free to respond to this post and/or my e-mail.

I hope my response is helpful, I too feel sorry for the child but its already the middle of March and that boy is only getting older. He is going to face many more challenges in the future, so why not try to resolve this one before its too late.

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Ralpho
Joined Mar 13, 2007
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Posted:Mar 13, 2007 10:29:21 PM

I also wanted to add that my response was based on very little background information and could completely be misguided. It is however an honest answer to a situation that isn't new to me. I have dealt with a number of students who had lots of problems inside and outside the classroom. If that sheds any light on my post.

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Wonderwoman
Joined Mar 13, 2007
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Posted:Mar 13, 2007 11:10:39 PM

Quote Ralpho:

Considering the fact that I have been teaching for over 8 years now I certainly can see how this can be frustrating but the truth is his parents are going to play a crucial role. I find it very difficult to believe that he is reading on a first grade level in the 7th grade and is a "bright" child with great "verbal" skills. Someone needs to light a fire under his butt and it should begin at home, especially if his parents are interested in his education. There must be some consequences to his actions, the child cannot be in 7th grade and read at a first grade level without suffering from a learning disability or some traumatic experience with reading. Maybe the doctors he has been brought to are mommy and daddy's instead of a real professional that might actually be able to diagnose him properly. I certainly am not a doctor nor claim to be one but this child sounds depressed, possibly because he is not at an academic level with his peers or maybe there is trouble on the home front. Either way it is something that needs to be addressed, child protection services (CPS) or (ACS) might be a last resort but sometimes parents need to be snapped out of the delusion "not my child" These issues can and possibly will affect their child's life and shouldn't be taken lightly.

Quote Ralpho:

Please feel free to respond to this post and/or my e-mail.

Quote Ralpho:

I hope my response is helpful, I too feel sorry for the child but its already the middle of March and that boy is only getting older. He is going to face many more challenges in the future, so why not try to resolve this one before its too late.


Ralpho----
I respect the fact that your education experiences have given you much insight on children's behaviors in the classroom, however you seem to be jumping on the parent bandwagon quite rapidly. I agree it is possible that the parents are to blame for this child's lack of participation, enthusiasm etc but there could be some underlying issues. maybe there is a personality conflict with the teacher, or there could be students in the class that are making it difficult for the child to succeed. There are many factors to be considered. Also how is it possible for
a student to be on a first grade reading level in 7th grade? It just seems like a very peculiar situation that I agree with you must be dealt with immediately.

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geodob
Joined Feb 06, 2005
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Posted:Mar 14, 2007 2:07:22 AM

Wonderwoman, I am very aware of this 'blame the parent' as an escape clause for the school.
Yet it seems like it could be a major factor with this child?
Where the only possible solution, might be to have a conference with the Parents?
To try and get a clearer understanding?
Geoff,

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always_wondering
Joined Jun 12, 2003
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Posted:Mar 14, 2007 11:50:37 AM

I assumed a learning disability of some sort because it was posted on this board. I was hoping the original poster would have responded to the questions raised in the previous posts.

I wonder since this child is very bright and highly verbal if there is an underlying vision issue holding him back from reading. My son was to opthamologists and optometrists before seeing the appropriate developmental optometrist. My son was seen as lazy and not trying (not to the extreme of this child) - until we got his eyes fixed.

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mardan
Joined Mar 08, 2007
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Posted:Mar 19, 2007 4:03:43 PM

This student does not have vision or hearing issues. He would act out when being dropped off for school. Mom would let him stay home and eventually he was home schooled. Each year they would try and get him to go to school, but the parents chose to let him stay home before he hurt himself throwing a fit. His first couple of months at 7th grade, he was making himself vomit on the school sidewalks in order to stay home. He does not do this anymore. He is not fighting attendance now.
We are giving him rewards for keeping his head up, coming to school, and just about anything else we can think of. His participation in class is still the big concern, but I guess I would like too much too soon - getting him to get to school was huge.
Thank you everyone that responded to this post.

mardan

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darteach28
Joined Mar 18, 2007
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Posted:Mar 19, 2007 7:34:55 PM

Mardan you have to care for this child otherwise you wouldn't take the time to get online and try to find answers to help him. Be proud of that and let him know how much you care. If you haven't tried this already try talking to him on his level. Not being his friend but explaining to him that your goal is to see him succeed. The parents will play a huge role in this and if you can pull them in for a student parent conference it might help the situation and you will be able to see more about the family dynamics. Try to come up with a contract together and he breaks it there are consequences and if he succeeds make a huge deal out of it! Hope this suggestion helps. I had a student similar to your situation. The mom really did care about his education but she just didn't have the tools or guidance to help. Together we put together a plan and if he followed through with it at the end of the week the Mom allowed him to rent a video game. Try to find what sparks his interest and base everything around that. For example, if he likes Donald Trump focus all math around that and read a book about him, etc. Hope this helps!

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SDSPM
Joined Mar 22, 2007
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Posted:Apr 06, 2007 12:30:59 AM

WOW shame on everyone. bashing parents, bashing teachers. i have a 5th grade son in a similar situtation and i can see him progressing down the same road. it is up to us as the adults to see were we all failed this child. for starters we need to get rid of all the paper work crap, that is not realistic, and get real help for these kids. which bluntly i believe is, one on one help or at least much smaller class room sizes. he is not trying to disrespect anyone nor is he intentionally, or should i say maliciously, trying to manipulate anyone, he is trying to survive.

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SDSPM
Joined Mar 22, 2007
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Posted:Apr 12, 2007 1:26:55 AM

UPDATE A SOPHMORE STUDENT IN MY TOWN JUST STRAPPED A BOMB TO HIMSELF AND LOCKED HIMSELF IN THE PRINCIPALS OFFICE. ***WAKE UP CALL*** WE NEED TO FIX THE PROBLEM. HIS REASON WAS HE WAS GETTING PICKED ON...WONDER HOW HE WAS DOING ACADEMICALLY?

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