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  1. #81

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    Quote Originally Posted by rjblue View Post
    eta- Can someone make a concrete suggestion as to how to teach a child to be quiet,calm, and focused while in a large group of their peers? (This a serious request. I can't think of anything that doesn't involve attending school with him, and that is not allowed)
    My niece has a very rambunctious son who has a hard time in groups. He ADORES the First Tee golf program. The children are expected to adhere to a certain decorum, but he has zero problems managing himself in that setting. He wants to learn and fit in so much, that he just does it. Would something like that appeal to your son?
    AceOn6, the golf loving skating fan

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    Do I get to define "how things were in the past" too? Can I apply my personal experience across the board and say not "This is how it was for me" but "This is how it was"?
    When I wrote about "how things were in the past," I of course referenced my own experiences. But I also indicated at the beginning that I knew things were not the same for all students. I knew it at the time, and I have not forgotten it.
    I apologize if I gave the opposite impression.

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    I just want to say that two of my three daughters will be the ones that get caught when 2 or more kids are goofing around. Someday, they'll learn that the family curse of "extra rules" applies to them.

    Someone else can blatantly run a red light, I'll be the one to get the ticket.
    Someone else can send in a check a little late, we'll get ours back in the mail six weeks later.
    Someone else can doodle in class, whisper, pass notes, pick their nose, have a giggle fit.
    My kids get caught, even if they didn't start it. They get no sympathy from me, because my answer is "yes, but you CONTINUED the mistake."

    Some kids learn real quick how to instantly switch back to a "serious, yes I'm paying attention" face in classes while fooling around. Not my kids, they get caught in full dopey-face mode, lol.

    Ah well, keeps them from getting in mischief regularly.
    Last edited by FigureSpins; 04-10-2011 at 02:58 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rjblue View Post
    eta- Can someone make a concrete suggestion as to how to teach a child to be quiet,calm, and focused while in a large group of their peers? (This a serious request. I can't think of anything that doesn't involve attending school with him, and that is not allowed)
    Chess, museum visits, children's plays/musicals/puppet shows?

    I taught my kids to count things when they're trying to ignore someone else's behavior. They can count the lights in the room, the number of anything behind the teacher or how many seconds they can go without looking at the restless kids. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't, but it certainly wouldn't hurt and they can say to someone trying to distract them, "Shhh, I'm counting the number of grey hairs on our teacher's head." lol

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    Quote Originally Posted by Grannyfan View Post
    When I wrote about "how things were in the past," I of course referenced my own experiences. But I also indicated at the beginning that I knew things were not the same for all students. I knew it at the time, and I have not forgotten it.
    I apologize if I gave the opposite impression.
    You didn't; I appreciate the fact that you qualified what you said. But you also said:

    Quote Originally Posted by Grannyfan View Post
    What happens at school is a reflection of the greater world, and the world was different then.
    And I think it's important to realize that "the world" was really just one of many, even then.

    Quote Originally Posted by Aceon6 View Post
    Standards of behavior were fairly consistent from neighbor to neighbor, so it wasn't that uncommon to get a scolding from the lady three doors down. I think that's why I am sometimes impatient with my younger relatives parenting styles as it was SO consistent in my day, I have a hard time wrapping my head around what's done now.

    It was VERY different.
    Again, it was VERY different--in your world. Do you think it was consistent everywhere?

    I went to six schools before I was in high school. The "world" surrounding each school was different, as were the parenting standards and family habits. In some places where I lived, families were primarily stable; in other places, they were not. In some of the places I lived, the kids ran wild and no one cared; in other places, the parents kept a careful eye on their kids. In some places, kids were expected to go to school, mind their manners and behave; in other places, not.

    Now it could be that that's just my experience and I just happened to hit the only places where there were such striking differences, and everyone else in "the world" lived where everyone was the same. I don't know; perhaps it was the time that I went to school. I went to school mostly in the 1970s and I must say that I think it's hilarious to think that things are worse now. Erm, really? By what objective measure?

    Quote Originally Posted by FigureSpins View Post
    Chess, museum visits, children's plays/musicals/puppet shows?
    Um, isn't he 14?
    "The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources."-- Albert Einstein.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aceon6 View Post
    My niece has a very rambunctious son who has a hard time in groups. He ADORES the First Tee golf program. The children are expected to adhere to a certain decorum, but he has zero problems managing himself in that setting. He wants to learn and fit in so much, that he just does it. Would something like that appeal to your son?
    Many such programs are very helpful in working with children about appropriate behavior in different settings. Obviously my experience is limited, as I only worked with children in a dance setting and while obtaining my certification to teach. I don't have children of my own and went back to a PR career rather than teaching for a variety of reasons.

    My biggest suggestion is to work with the teacher as compared to against him or her. I had a 5 year old student who would say he was Spiderman when he didn't want to do something. He would scream, kick, bite, and threaten if he was asked to do the simplest things, including being asked to write his own name. When called his mother would just break down in tears. His father would throw out his own threats and explain that teachers had never had a problem with the daughter in the family. The teacher and I were more than willing to try different techniques to work with him and get him to be a part of the class, but we received no support. The principal said work with the parents. The parents cried and threw out threats. We had to bribe other teachers to take him into their classroom when I was being observed by my professor, as this little boy would scream four letter words out while I was attempting to teach the other children. Looking back I laugh because I had a minister's daughter in the class who would immediately start praying for the little boy each time it happened and two other children who would burst into tears. Needless to say I was terrified the professor would mark me down for the situation.

    That was an extreme case, but there were others. I had some who were violent and bruised me numerous times, tried to choke me when I wouldn't let him play ball in the classroom during reading time, and one who broke my finger when I was taking up a standardized test he didn't want to put his name on after being told several times. All of those resulted in conferences or at least phone calls. During those...only one parent ever asked what she could do at home that might help. I remember it because I was mentally preparing myself for the accusations that the behavior and lack of control was my fault. To receive an apology and feel like someone wanted to make progress was shocking but appreciated.

    I know that the quality of teachers and the quality of parents is going to vary in every circumstance. However, I can say that I was trying my very hardest to be a great teacher. Was I perfect? No, I wasn't. But it was something I believed wanted to do and I put everything in my life on hold to go back to school to do it. However, what I saw and experienced told me that it wasn't for me. There were too many nights I cried to my husband, mother, friends, etc. There were times I went to the grocery store and left shaking because the mother of a student worked there and proceeded to yell at me because I "made her son finish his classwork" before he could play a board game or read for fun. Another parent e-mailed my supervising teacher and principal when I gave his son a zero on a test because I caught him cheating. The father told them that I must have made the test too hard that his son would need to cheat. It was open book and multiple choice. We aren't talking about a horrible test. One of the tests asked who was the author of the book. Hello! The answer was on the cover!

    But I am getting off topic. I admire teachers very much these days. It is a job I obviously can't do. I am still a firm believer that parents and teachers working together can make out so much better than one against the other with the child ignored in the process.

    In the case of the little boy being pepper sprayed. I'm inclined to think the problem is at home with this little boy. Mom is too busy threatening law suits and getting herself on television to actually seek a solution to her son's issues. That says it all for me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ArtisticFan View Post
    In the case of the little boy being pepper sprayed. I'm inclined to think the problem is at home with this little boy. Mom is too busy threatening law suits and getting herself on television to actually seek a solution to her son's issues. That says it all for me.
    Did she threaten a lawsuit? Has she made more than one appearance on TV? If she has, I apologize for missing it.

    She's had him evaluated multiple times. He's in a special school. What is that if not seeking a solution?

    I'm not defending her because I don't think she should be putting this on TV (although I find it hard to believe that she worked at it) or allowing her son to be exploited this way, but to say that the fact that she is threatening law suits, not seeking a solution and busily getting herself on TV says it all for you strikes me as
    "The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources."-- Albert Einstein.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Karina1974 View Post
    You make it clear to them that, even if other kids are acting up, THEY are expected to behave at all times, that you don't get to predicate your behavior on someone else's. There is that saying in response to "but so-and-so was doing it too" - "if everyone else is jumping off the bridge, are you going to do it as well? 'Course, you say that to kids nowadays, and you'll have to hear them saying "what if there's a good reason for it?" but you get the idea...
    Bullshit! Someone up thread said that it used to be xyz, and that they never remembered anyone daring to misbehave (either themselves or when they were young). That we need to tell them to behave and they will, that we are buying into the whole self-esteem garbage.

    What happened to those kids in the past? well, some were victims of child abuse where someone beat their child(ren) to point of serious injury or death because the parents were expected to make them behave. They dropped out of school at an early age, maybe not even making it to middle school. They became social problems - drinking, drugging, etc. They got into fights outside the school yards, they just disappeared from the classroom and no one cared because the child was a problem. And for some, they became homeless bums because they were not able to function in society and no one cared enough to help them or their parents.

    Why are we seeing more of these problems? - I don't necessarily think that we are seeing more, it is just that people are aware of issues. Media splashes of violence, like this child, bring it to the forefront. PEOPLE who do not know what it is to live with a child with issues think that they KNOW the child can be controlled by methods of beating or telling them no, etc. Many who are blaming rjblue for her son's behavior DO NOT KNOW what she is experiencing, yet you tell her that she is not a good parent. GMAFB.

    Again, I ask how many of you who are judging parenting and children's behaviors actually, you know, parent a child with issues? How many of you are willing to mentor the parent of a child who has issues - if you are such wonderful examples of how things should be done?

    rjblue - I don't have any answers for you, just an empathic ear.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rjblue View Post
    eta- Can someone make a concrete suggestion as to how to teach a child to be quiet,calm, and focused while in a large group of their peers? (This a serious request. I can't think of anything that doesn't involve attending school with him, and that is not allowed)
    Don't know how relevant this will be to your specific situation, but to me it sounds less like an issue of discipline, and more of an issue of teaching social skills. If he's 14 and bright, I would talk with him rather directly about the issue. What is getting on people's nerves at school? While he may think he's being funny or a class clown, that's not how he's coming off to others. When he comes off as immature, other people don't want to be friends, and his teachers won't respect him. Identify the behaviors that come off badly, and help him to see how others are viewing him when he acts that way. Part of immature behavior IMO is the inability to see things from another vantage point (and often lacking in appropriate boundaries and limits). So teaching him to view his actions from the POV of his peers and teachers can help him develop better discernment around his actions in the future.

    IME, children who act young but are otherwise bright can quickly modify their behavior if you talk shop about boundaries and appropriate comportment. This can mean discussing how far away should you stand from people before you squick them out, what topics aren't appropriate for jokes, the proper way to respond to a question, etc.

    Just from what you've written, I get the sense your son is trying *very* hard to fit in with his peers. But the way he's trying to do that is only alienating others. So talk shop about how to make friends instead of repelling them and teachers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    Did she threaten a lawsuit? Has she made more than one appearance on TV? If she has, I apologize for missing it.

    She's had him evaluated multiple times. He's in a special school. What is that if not seeking a solution?

    I'm not defending her because I don't think she should be putting this on TV (although I find it hard to believe that she worked at it) or allowing her son to be exploited this way, but to say that the fact that she is threatening law suits, not seeking a solution and busily getting herself on TV says it all for you strikes me as
    She and her son appeared live on Good Morning America and the Today Show. They have also done not in studio interviews with multiple large markets. If she wants to call attention to an issue, that is one thing, but parading her son on television leaves a horrible taste in my mouth.

    As for the special school, maybe she is attentive and trying to work out a solution, but truthfully I don't see that in her current behavior. I have a feeling that he was in the school he was in as a last option. Few parents I know would opt for that if there were still other avenues to explore. From my understanding via media reports, he is now enrolled in another school. I hope that works out for him and everyone else involved. However, parading her son on national television doesn't bode well for the great first impressions from the teachers, students, and parents at the new school.

    I used the words about the lawsuit too strongly. She has only said she is not ruling one out.

    The fact that she has sought out or at the very least not refused interviews on national programs does tell me enough to form my opinion of her. I've worked in media and public relations long enough to know how someone gets on a show like Today or GMA. They aren't forced or dragged kicking and screaming. YMMV but I see it as a woman violating her son's privacy and hindering his future ability to make friends and be accepted by some people.

    I understand that she is probably frustrated by a lack of diagnosis for him. I realize she would probably give anything for answers as to what causes his outbursts. I get all that and sympathize with the family on those issues. I sympathize with the teachers who felt so out of control in the situation and feared for their safety. I feel for the police officers who had to deal with that and are now having people second guess them.

    Where I find the family failing is in the expectation of an 8 year old to do media interviews. If Today or GMA wouldn't talk to her without him, then she should not have done the interviews. It is that simple. Her father or father-n-law seems more than willing to talk to the media too. The school doesn't seem to be talking - not the teachers and not the prinicpal. The local media probably got a hold of the story through a police report or via a scanner. That would have provided only minimal details and usually not the name of a minor. The mom seems to be the one sharing all the details. So yes, that is all I need to know about the mom.

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    Quote Originally Posted by agalisgv View Post
    Don't know how relevant this will be to your specific situation, but to me it sounds less like an issue of discipline, and more of an issue of teaching social skills. If he's 14 and bright, I would talk with him rather directly about the issue. What is getting on people's nerves at school? While he may think he's being funny or a class clown, that's not how he's coming off to others. When he comes off as immature, other people don't want to be friends, and his teachers won't respect him. Identify the behaviors that come off badly, and help him to see how others are viewing him when he acts that way. Part of immature behavior IMO is the inability to see things from another vantage point (and often lacking in appropriate boundaries and limits). So teaching him to view his actions from the POV of his peers and teachers can help him develop better discernment around his actions in the future.

    IME, children who act young but are otherwise bright can quickly modify their behavior if you talk shop about boundaries and appropriate comportment. This can mean discussing how far away should you stand from people before you squick them out, what topics aren't appropriate for jokes, the proper way to respond to a question, etc.

    Just from what you've written, I get the sense your son is trying *very* hard to fit in with his peers. But the way he's trying to do that is only alienating others. So talk shop about how to make friends instead of repelling them and teachers.
    I quoted your whole post, because it is an extremely accurate analysis of my son's problem. And I left out part of the story. When the situation came to a head, we told the school we were no longer going to punish him, because it was making it worse, not better. And they (along with us) started a strategy of helping him focus on only improving one aspect of his classroom behavior at a time. He can't see himself as others see him, so he needs to focus on one thing at a time, and build good habits.
    ‎"You emerge victorious from the maze you've been travelling in." Oct 21,2012- Best Fortune Cookie Ever!

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    Quote Originally Posted by ArtisticFan View Post
    She and her son appeared live on Good Morning America and the Today Show. They have also done not in studio interviews with multiple large markets. If she wants to call attention to an issue, that is one thing, but parading her son on television leaves a horrible taste in my mouth.
    She says she wants to bring attention to the issue in order to ensure better training for the police.

    Quote Originally Posted by ArtisticFan View Post
    The fact that she has sought out or at the very least not refused interviews on national programs does tell me enough to form my opinion of her. I've worked in media and public relations long enough to know how someone gets on a show like Today or GMA. They aren't forced or dragged kicking and screaming.
    Of course not; OTOH, it will certainly weaken her chances of winning or even filing a lawsuit. And if you are in media and public relations, you understand the power of going public with your message.

    Quote Originally Posted by ArtisticFan View Post
    YMMV but I see it as a woman violating her son's privacy and hindering his future ability to make friends and be accepted by some people.
    I beg your pardon?

    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    I'm not defending her because I don't think she should be putting this on TV (although I find it hard to believe that she worked at it) or allowing her son to be exploited this way
    Quote Originally Posted by ArtisticFan View Post
    So yes, that is all I need to know about the mom.
    Then that's all there is to it, I suppose.
    "The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources."-- Albert Einstein.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    She says she wants to bring attention to the issue in order to ensure better training for the police.
    Better training to do what, exactly?
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Better training to do what, exactly?
    I guess to subdue raging children who otherwise act like perfect angels at home.
    -Brian
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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Better training to do what, exactly?
    From the article:

    She insists that his two previous scrapes with police ended without serious incident because the police who responded were specially trained to deal with children in crisis situations.

    And proper training, she says, is what she would like to see come out of this situation. “I do want them to get training ... for crisis situations with children. I don’t think it’s right for an 8-year-old to get pepper-sprayed.”
    "The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources."-- Albert Einstein.

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    Because all scrapes with police are the same and are always expected to have the same outcome. Got it. Was the kid armed with a sharp, pointy object during those incidents as well, I wonder.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    I went to school mostly in the 1970s
    FWIW, Granny and I were talking about the 50s and early 60s. I think a lot of it was the WWII influence. Nearly every adult had gone through similar experiences from the Depression through the end of the 40s, so it makes sense to me that they would be doing similar things. There are jokes about the Eisenhower years being the cookie-cutter years.

    I agree, by the 70s, things were very different, even in my little corner.
    AceOn6, the golf loving skating fan

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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Because all scrapes with police are the same and are always expected to have the same outcome.
    She does not know if the outcome would have been the same; you can't prove something that didn't occur. OTOH, you can't prove that the outcome wouldn't have been different, either, so it's rather pointless to think that the outcome is the issue.

    Would police officers who have been trained in handling crises involving children be more effective at managing crises involving children? That is the question--or one of them.
    "The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources."-- Albert Einstein.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    She does not know if the outcome would have been the same; you can't prove something that didn't occur. OTOH, you can't prove that the outcome wouldn't have been different, either, so it's rather pointless to think that the outcome is the issue.
    Which makes her entire point, well pointless. She seems to be pre-occupied with the use of pepper spray which is of course, an outcome.

    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    Would police officers who have been trained in handling crises involving children be more effective at managing crises involving children?
    The police officers in this case managed the crisis effectively with minimal harm to the child and to themselves.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aceon6 View Post
    FWIW, Granny and I were talking about the 50s and early 60s. I think a lot of it was the WWII influence. Nearly every adult had gone through similar experiences from the Depression through the end of the 40s, so it makes sense to me that they would be doing similar things. There are jokes about the Eisenhower years being the cookie-cutter years.

    I agree, by the 70s, things were very different, even in my little corner.
    I was actually, by extension, my experience as well with how my parents raised me. They were 37 and 35 by the time I was born in 1974, so they themselves were raised by parents who experienced the Depression (my youngest gp was 17 when it started), and my mother is old enough to remember the war years (she's the older of the two) so their priorities were very different as far as what is and what isn't important in life. For example, you spend what $$ you have on things that you need, not merely on things you want. Try telling that to people today, though... in spite of what's gone on in the past few years with the economy, there are many who will never get that concept.

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