Wow! Was my class naughty today!

Not all of them, but a lot of them.

I had focusing issues and chatty issues and getting work done issues and niceness issues and anger issues. Yup, anger. And I teach third grade.

This year’s third graders have been one of “those classes” since Kindergarten. You know, the class people refer to with the whole eye roll thing,

“Oh, he’s in Kindergarten?”  (insert eye roll) and, “You have lunch duty with the Kindergarten?” (yup, insert eye roll again).

I have some first hand knowledge regarding their reputation; I had them for lunch duty when they were in first grade. To keep them from messing with each other the whole period I taught one table of primarily boys finger puzzle games. This worked really well because it took them all year to figure out how to manipulate their fingers the way I was; they were so busy they forgot to poke and shove each other. But I kid you not when I tell you that some of the behavior issues I dealt with absolutely stopped me in my tracks. I had children making up stories to get other children in trouble; actually lying just to see what would happen. And I don’t think they really understood what was wrong with that behavior.

So this group is now in third grade. And they are still running rings around the adults in the building. They are just “one of those classes”. What causes it? Is it something in the water? Why is it that certain years we get large groups of really challenging children?

Fortunately, my class is quite bright. They are also very much on the young side. A lot of them have focusing issues. And then there is the elephant in the room; behavior. So my emphasis this year has been focused on getting them to recognize how their strengths (intelligent, funny, artistic, caring) are undermined by their weaknesses (anger, intolerance, impulsiveness, lack of focus). And what is pretty cool is that they get it. That is a testament to how smart they are. They actually understand how their behavior affects the learning in our room, but that hasn’t yet changed the fact that

they can be really naughty.

And today was one of those days. But tomorrow is another day and I begin each day with the highest of hopes! My cup is still half full!!!


15 thoughts on “Naughty

  1. They do come around, from time to time, don’t they. You sort of wonder what was in the water, or what cataclysmic event happened the year they were born. The good news, as you know, is that you will survive it and probably feel very close to some of those kids you had to work so hard with.


  2. I had one of those grades at my school. We had a large portion of fourth graders one year that struggled. My principal redivided them, reassigned, and we kept trying to reach them. I didn’t teach them in a classroom, but the all the classes came to my library throughout the week. 🙂


    1. I honestly rely on the specials teachers as my barometer. They know this group so well because they have had them since Kindergarten. I so value their feedback as to how we are doing!


  3. Okay, so you have inspired me tonight because I am also dealing with naughty. One little naughty who came to me in 1st with a rep from Kinder has been teasing and name calling. I thought we nipped it in the bud months ago but it has reared it’s ugly head again. Mom says he tells her every day that he doesn’t like school. This makes me so sad. I really need to work hard to reach this kiddo. Maybe I will focus on getting my kiddos to recognize their strengths too. Thanks for the idea.


  4. What is it about those classes? I’ve had many of them in my long teaching career. The fact that you came up with the word “naughty” instead of some other (stronger) word is a testament to your patience.


  5. I think many of us have been in the same situation as you. Sure makes for a tough year, but you seem to have a positive attitude about it. THAT makes all the difference in the world. Hope today is better for all of you!


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