Shut down?

Avatar for foxinsox1
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-26-2003
Shut down?
2
Fri, 04-18-2003 - 10:57pm
What do you do with a kid who has completely shut down? Out of the 120 kids I have there are maybe five that have done absolutely nothing this year (they are already repeating the year). For whatever reason, they have chosen to just shut down. They resolved to believe they will not officially pass this year, so why try? That select few who has failed before KNOWS that despite if they pass or not, they will get promoted onto the next year. I can't tell you how many kids in previous years I failed and were moved on without my consent. They know the system. They know that they are only allowed so many years in the grade and then social promotion steps in, which in some cases I can UNDERSTAND to some extent - who wants their kid in seventh grade sitting next to a sixteen year old? I understand, but there has to be an alternative. Anyway, what to do with the kids who have chosen just to give up the year. They sleep or do nothing or just determined to make life for themselves, me and others miserable with attention getting tactics. Any wise advice would be welcome!

D

iVillage Member
Registered: 03-24-2003
In reply to: foxinsox1
Sat, 04-19-2003 - 10:34am
I read some research somewhere that says kids start to make decisions and set priorities about school between third and fifth grades. It's part of the maturity and growth processas as they approach adoloscence. Anyway, the point was that some kids make the choice to do less and less becasue it's a way of exerting their independence and testing their freedoms. Some parents and teachers don't catch on to the process until it's too late. For examle, I taught fourth for several years and it's what some call a bump year. There is a big change in the content and the level of performance...more analytical, less literal. Some kids don't want to rise to the occasion so to speak. They might have issues with confidence, ability, parental support, parental pressure etc, so they just start to adjust to a comfort level. An A student settles for B's or a C student will settle for D's and F's. It starts a cycle and by MS they are in real trouble. The choices also reflect in participation in other activities such as sports, academic teams, scouting, etc.

It's sad that by MS we often can't save a student without a lot of help. Too often the things that started the problems have become very ingrained. Their choices have reinforced their negative concepts and increased the problems.

I agree that social promotion becomes a game to them. It also makes them believe that life will let them by. Many schools are starting alternative schools or tracks that become ungraded when a student enters the program. They must pass skills tests/achievementlevels skill by skill, topic by topic to move on. Many allow early graduation or they can stay as long as it takes. Some end with a GED. I don't know the answer, but I sure feel your pain. Maybe earlier intervention and more self-esteem activities are a step, but what else can teachers add to their plate?

Sherry

Sherry

 

Avatar for kindredyogi
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-30-2003
In reply to: foxinsox1
Sun, 04-20-2003 - 1:56am
One thing to check out is, "Can the student understand the work?" Sometimes kids with learning disabilities will act surly to cover up for the fact that they haven't a clue. Rick Lavoie, an expert on learning disabilities, says that kids would rather be perceived as being bad than as dumb. If you think that this could be a possibility for the child you're thinking of, see if there's a way you can engineer extra help for him in a manner that isn't obvious to the other kids. An example would be having him tutor a child in a lower grade, so that he himself can review the concepts (in order to teach the other child). Check out ricklavoie.com for lots of info on LD, if you think this may be a factor.

Best of luck!