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That one kid #sol16 Day 14

Have you ever had a student that you just can’t seem to get along with, no matter what?

Ugh, it’s so frustrating.  I don’t know what else to do.  Our relationship has gotten progressively worse over the last few weeks, and I can’t quite explain how or why.

He’s a funny kid, pretty smart, athletic. But he’s also one of those kids who’s still talking when you ask everyone to stop, or wandering around the classroom when he should be in his seat.  Which means he’s always the person I’m getting on to.

I want us to get along. I want class to go smoothly. I want to be able to joke and talk with him like I do with my other students, but he just doesn’t respond to me. I don’t want to hear him mumbling to his friends about how much he hates me or my class.

He’s that one kid I just can’t connect with.

There are ten weeks left, and I don’t know how to make it through them.  Unfortunately, this is what has been occupying my brain on this Monday afternoon.

How do you reach that one kid?

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I’m trying to write for 31 days straight with the Slice of Life challenge from Two Writing Teachers.  Wish me luck!!

22 thoughts on “That one kid #sol16 Day 14

  1. I’ve been there. This is SO tough!

    Have you sat down and talked to him one-on-one (without his parents, social workers, etc.)? Perhaps having a heart-to-heart about how you’d like the rest of the year to go might improve the present situation.

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  2. Yes, this a tough situation, and I think that most of us who have been teaching for a time can say that we’ve been there. Sometimes, I believe, the connection is not going to happen, no matter how hard you try. And, that’s okay; it’s not a reflection of you. I hope that you can get through the next 10 weeks, and enjoy the positive relationships you have made with the other children in your class.

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  3. Just keep swimming, just keep swimming! 🙂 You just keep trying. I wish there was some magic idea or thought coming out here (if there was, I’d be rich!), but you just keep being you. Sometimes, the cause of the problem is nothing that you’ve done, it’s just you are a teacher and he is a student, period. You smile, do what you can, and at the end of the day if you can say you’ve tried, you go forward! 🙂 Good luck and here’s to a happy 10 weeks!

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  4. I feel ya. There haven’t been many over the years, but honestly, there are a few kids that I just could.not.connect with–no matter what I tried. Funny, because when that happens with adults I just shrug & accept that not everyone is gonna like me. With kids, though, it is harder for me to accept. In the words of Dita Von Teese, you can be the ripest, juiciest peach on the tree, and there’s still gonna be somebody who hates peaches. I know you’ll hear a lot of words of wisdom telling you not to give up–and I’m certainly not suggesting you give up on the kid, just that you let go of the need to make this connection a brilliant one. Be in the present, do the best you can, teach the kiddo to the best of your ability and then breathe through it. Throughout history, no one has had everyone connect with them–not even the most lauded scholars, wise men, & religious leaders. It really is okay. (hugs, though, ’cause I know it sucks!)

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  5. For me, with my little ones, I do two things at once – move myself into ‘observe’ mode, simply watching him, wondering, and, two, re-invest in my relationship with him, get closer, enjoy him, follow his lead. Easier for me to do when they are preschoolers and I don’t have testing/data to worry about.

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  6. You immediately go to the positives with your writing, which says there is hope for both of you, yet! 🙂 I remember having a “let’s start over” kind of conversation with a student before. Heck, I’ve even had it with my own daughter some mornings. You do see the good in him; maybe he just needs to see it, too!

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  7. There’s got to be some sort of “in” with him, you’ve just got to figure it out. Maybe his parents or one of his friends can give you a tip on something he really likes that you can learn about from him? Just trying to think outside the box because I’ve been there and know how frustrating it is! Don’t give up-the fact that it’s bothering you speaks to the type of teacher you are. Many people would just give up and shrug it off.

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    1. That’s the thing, I’ve tried! Even when I talk to him about what he’s interested in, he looks at me like I’m crazy. His friends just shrug it off like “don’t worry about it”. But thanks, of course I’ll keep trying, it’s just going to be a long ten weeks!

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  8. My only comfort with “that kid” is in knowing that another teacher with a different style, approach, or personality might be able to make that connection. The kid I can’t connect with this year has a good connection with one of my teammates; the kid who drives her nuts is a kid I enjoy working with despite the challenges. We don’t all have the be The One for every single student.

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  9. If he won’t open up to you, could you ask a coach to help out? Or ask the coach for advice? What will get to this student? One would assume that he would want to stay eligible for sports. How can you negotiate so both of you can get what you need?

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