How to Avoid Giving Attention to an Attention-Seeking Behavior

Dear Kid Whisperer,

I teach 3rd grade and I recently had a student purposely roll around in mud on the playground. I had no idea what to do and I let my frustration be known. I had to teach and I had a nine-year-old standing in front of me covered head to toe with mud, and that made me react in a way that may not have been most effective. What would you have done? -Becky, Evansville, Indiana

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How to Use Consequences When You’re Not a Homeroom Teacher

Dear Kid Whisperer,

I am a reading tutor. I have had Love and Logic training and feel proficient at behavior management. At the beginning of January I started working at a new school, and I am now working with students who don’t know me very well. In addition, my caseload does not allow me to spend a lot of time with any students for very long. Is it possible to give kids consequences even when we have not built a solid relationship yet? -Morgan, Canton, Ohio

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How to Apologize to Your Students

Dear Kid Whisperer,

I am a sixth-grade student teacher. Because I attended your conference last summer, I am the only adult at my urban school who doesn’t yell all day long, every day. It’s been amazing. That was, until yesterday. I was with a sub when my cooperating teacher was out. The students got out of control because the work left for them was three grade levels too difficult. I lost it and yelled at them – a lot. They had never heard me yell, and they did what I said, but they acted very hurt and/or angry the rest of the day. What do I do when I see them after the weekend? I have been asking the other teachers and everyone says not to apologize. What do you think? -Brad, Fort Wayne, Indiana

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How to Troubleshoot When Consequences Don’t Seem to be Working

Dear Kid Whisperer,

I attended your Kid Whisperer University last summer. I am struggling with the delayed consequences skill. For most students, the interventions are working well. The students for whom I need to delay consequences are repeat offenders. It’s typically attention seeking kids that are abrasive with any type of authority. They are constantly searching for the grey area and loopholes in rules and directions. Do you have any suggestions?  -Scarlet, Shaker Heights, Ohio

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How to Minimize Attention to Negative Behaviors

Dear Kid Whisperer,

I am a kindergarten teacher. I have a well-behaved class except for one student. He is impulsive, he touches people, he blurts out, he takes materials from other students. I feel like I am constantly saying his name to tell him to stop doing all of these things. I think I spend 30% of all of my time talking to this student about what he is doing wrong, and his behavior just keeps getting worse. What do I do? -Kimberly -Des Moines, Iowa

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How to Handle an Unmedicated Student

Dear Kid Whisperer,

I am a third-grade teacher and I have a student who is medicated for attention and behavior problems. He is generally fine when he has taken his medicine, but he is totally out of control when he doesn’t. My principal and I have tried everything to try to get his parent to give him his medicine every day. I know the behaviors will get worse when there are no consequences for his actions, whether he is on his medication or not. I don’t know what to do. -Mary, Biloxi, Mississippi

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