One of my little lambs does not know how to ask for attention–from anyone. To get attention from his peers he has done any number of the following (singularly or in combination):
- throwing pencils
- tearing up paper and sprinkling on their head
- tearing up paper and throwing it at them
- clapping loudly each time they try to speak
- coughing repeatedly if they try to speak or work
- knocking their pencil off of their desk
- kicking their chair or table
- calling them names (ranging from stupid to full-scale racial slurs)
- accusing them of bullying him
- accusing them of calling him names (usually the name he just called them)
- twirling multiple pencil erasers or caps on the table (his own little flea circus)
- biting his own lip and accusing someone of hitting him
- getting hit or punched by another student for sympathy
- asking people to be his friend (multiple times)
- asking people why they don’t like him
- making fun of the teacher in the hopes that someone will think it’s cool
Now, none of this by itself is that odd (ok, maybe a couple of them). What makes this kiddo stand out is the CONSTANCY of his actions. If he is not getting attention (positive or negative) in any 60-second period of time, he will try one or more of these tactics. We’ve tried to teach the other kidlets to ignore, but after days of this, they often lose their cool.
The positive side? The kidlets are learning good ignoring skills. The difficult side? Our little attention-seeking lamb is constantly getting exactly that–attention. We watch him every second but he still manages to get the attention he is seeking. He’s been yelled at, kicked, punched, slapped, tripped. He has been bandaged, ice-packed, separated, counseled, sent home, and even suspended when necessary. He’s been counseled, punished, talked to, ignored–everything I can think of.
Yesterday I resorted to the Offside Rule. More to come on that.