Friday, November 17, 2006


So I'm ready to explore (alittle) the source and path of my exhaustion.

Only because I'm feeling some relief.

Lately we've been unable to keep our students safe from the seemingly random, often vicious attacks perpetrated by one other of my lil darlings. No new strategy, firm consequence, altered behavior plan, or intervention had any impact on this child's aggressive outbursts. We are already a very restrictive program; it's not like he belongs somewhere else. Or does he?

The last straw came when the other children began to scatter like bugs when the angry child began to flinch. Very post traumatic stress like. So I gave it up. I can't do anything more for this child given our staffing ratio, etc. It feels weird to say we've done all we can, especially in the kind of high intensity job we're in.
You have an explosive kid? Send him our way. So annoying you want to pull out your hair? We can manage. We are in the business of finding some success where success seems unattainable.

But not this child.

So we're preparing a packet for referral to contract services. And as a temporary fix, I've developed classroom behavior plan (too intensive to maintain over time)that completely separates the guy from the rest of the kids. No playtime with others. No sitting with others at the work table. No group activities of any kind. By moving his desk to a corner behind my desk, we can provide a physical barrier of sorts. I can't 100% guarantee that the other kids will be safe, but I am doing all I can do, and therein lies my source of relief.

Today was day one, and happily, it was successful. No one was hurt, the class moved nicely through the day, and did a fair amount of learning. The angry kid was accepting, even alittle relieved I think. He, too, did a bit of learning, a nice side benefit.

But like my boss says, the first day of a plan usually works.

I'll keep you posted.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

I'm a slacker.....

So tired.

Can't get motivated to keep this up.

Is it the way the kids drain the life out of me each day? Or the added stress of having an intern? In any case, my beloved blog is no longer a priority for me, and that makes me a little sad.

What can I report? My class is always hopping, the issues we're facing each day are complicated, entrenched, maddening.

Abuse issues, real psychiatric disorders,neurological problems, cataclysmically poor parenting, baffling learning problems.... we're facing it all.

I'll need to end on a good note. The kids couldn't be cuter, and they often try, try, try with all their heart to do well and "be good".

Sometimes, that's enough to get me through the day.