Sunday, August 26, 2007

When Sunbeams Make You Cry...

Yes, it's true. My sunbeams made me cry today. Well, not my sunbeams...just ONE sunbeam.

Here's the story. I have a class of 6 kids. Mostly girls, all of which are fantastic. Who cares that they like to be ballarina's in the middle of sharing time or eat extra cups of goldfish...they are really good kids. They say prayers, they answer questions, they giggle, they are goofy...but who cares, they are good kids.

And then there is Triston. Don't let his little blue eyes and dimples fool you. He can changes personalities in a heartbeat. One moment he'll be telling you a secret and the next he'll tell you he hates you and start hitting other children.

So, today I came prepared...or so I thought. I came up with a little chart with jobs for the kids to remember while sitting in sharing time.

A hand: to remember to keep our hands to ourselves
A chair: to remember to sit in our chairs
A mouth: to remember to talk in quiet voices

The first 30 mintues went well and then it started. Triston- "I don't want to be nice..aghhh!!" "I hate this song" "I don't like you" "This is my evil voice"

Then he starts scooting in his chair across the sharing time room. I take him and put him on my lap since he keeps doing it....he grabs my arm with his fingernails and starts pinching. Finally he stops with me threatening to get his dad. (I hate to resort to that).

Then in class...he chucks the goldfish across the room, he spills all my little marbles on the floor, he tries to lock himself in the closet, he rams his chair up against my legs, he squishes himself between the chairs and the walls, he holds his fist like he is going to punch me. Meanwhile, it's not like I'm a bad teacher. We are playing all the really fun games with finding animals, acting out pioneer songs and everything.

Triston starts getting crazier and crazier and I try to ignore him. But, then I can't take it anymore and all the other kids are getting weirded out by him too. Instead of them being fun, they are all just sitting there and watching Triston self destruct.

I look at Triston and say, "you are making me very sad today."

Class ends, his dad comes and Triston chucks the crayons on the ground and walks out the door.

"That wasn't very nice," said Triston's dad, "say thank you."

"thank you," says Triston and he walks out the door.

Mike comes to the door and asks me how class went...and that's when I started crying. The other kids were so busy coloring they didn't notice.

I hope I don't cry every week I leave church, but I might.


McGiven Family.... said...

You need to tell his parents. That is the biggest thing I learned from being in nursery. Usually the parents know if their children are like that. We had the craziest kid in our nursery and every week his mom would ask us how he was and we learned to be honest and if he was bad to tell the truth. A lot of the times they will make the parents start coming to class with the kids because it gets out of control. Even though I am laughing at this story, I am also feeling really bad for you. You need to tell his parents how is acting though because he is what 3 or 4? He is not going to stop on his own. I am so sorry you had such a bad day. At least you have cute girls in your class to help a little bit.

Brooke said...

Ang! I'm so sorry you had to deal with such a bad kid! That sounds awful, I would have cried too! He reminds me of some of the kids that were in primary with us when we were little...

I hope things get better!

jillf said...

My dear Angel! It sounds like you are a WONDERFUL teacher, and that you have a very troubled little boy. You need some help, like a parent or an assistant. It sounds like he has a disorder and should get some medical/professional help. The sooner a little guy like that gets some intervention, the better his chances of having a positive experience as he progresses through childhood. You are AWESOME, and those kids are lucky to have you. I am proud of you. Enlist some help from your presidency.

jillf said...

It's me again. I reread your blog, and I'm thoroughly impressed that you had 30 good minutes! That's amazing. If someone were helping you, you could have them ready to intercept and remove Tristan when he starts down the "destructo" path. You can build on your success, but you need support!

becca said...

Yes, I would have cried, too. You had such fun things planned! I wish I could send Seth to your class! He's blond, blue-eyed, dimpled, and "so self-sufficient" his teacher tells me.
His lesson today: "Tarzan", says Seth.

Hannah said...

Angie! You are amazing, really! I promise that this child's behavior is not a result of your teaching. In fact, he probably is used to getting attention by doing "bad" things. Since, you ignored him (way to go), he went crazy because that's probably not what other people do and he misses the attention. It's so hard being in charge of other people's kids because it's impossible to change a child's behavior when you only see them a few hours a week. I would agree that you should get an assistant and talk to the president. Also make sure the parents know and see if they have any tricks. I'm sure I would start ignoring him too!

You're great!

Heidi, Greg, and Jackson said...

Greg and I used to team teach the 4 and 5 year olds and we definitely feel your pain! And you are doing it alone. That takes guts! Aren't you just so excited to be a mom someday! I used to tell Greg every Sunday: "this calling just shows me I am sooo not ready to be a mom!" The good news is parenting is nothing like sumbeams (and you only get one a time-unless you're sarah) Keep us posted on your progress!

Ryan and Brittany said...

this story is so sad. i remember all to well putting tons of effort into teaching those sunbeams only to have them melt down in the middle of class. the job chart sounds awesome. what a great idea, and sarah is right, if you tell the parents whats going on, they are likely to help you figure it out.

Sharon said...

I think teaching primary is one of the hardest jobs in the church. It sounds like you are doing a fabulous job. I'm so sorry that you have to deal with that little guy. I agree with your mom, he does sound like he has some sort of medical/behavioral issues. It sounds like you handled it beautifully though. I would definitely talk to his parents and the presidency. It sounds like you do need an assistant just to deal with him. Those kids couldn't have a better teacher than you, though. They are so lucky. Good luck. Hopefully next week will be better.