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Saturday, April 17, 2010

Big fat cheater

Yesterday, one of my little girls made me so mad. This is a girl that has been a headache all year long. She bullies other kids, she copies, she tattles, she disobeys, she talks when she shouldn't, she pretends to read when she should be reading, and she is way more concerned with what the people around her are doing than what SHE should be doing.

Yesterday after lunch, I sat in on an SST (Student Support Team) meeting where the focus was this girl. Her mom was even there, talking about the problems the girl is having.

When I got back to class, the TA had gotten the kids started on their math test. Shortly after I had returned, I caught this same little girl cheating!!! She was trying to sneak glances at her multiplication tables inside her desk!!

This little girl is no lightweight, and it took every ounce of my willpower NOT to call her a big fat cheater (though all 3 parts definitely apply). Instead, I left out the word "fat" as I sent her to the corner.

UGH!! Makes me so mad that the adults in her life are trying to help her, and she doesn't want to put any effort into anything other than trying to be sneaky.


Unknown said...

Not that you're not trying to help, but the adults are not helping her. She is getting some pay-off from her behaviors, and it started at home. Lying has been more rewarding than honesty. All parents deal with a child's first attempts at lying, and how it's handled usually steers the child from then on. I have had to build trust with my own children - if you lie, things will be worse. Let's deal with the truth so we can handle the problem. She has nothing to gain from trusting anyone, especially herself. She knows she can't, so why bother?

Or, maybe she's just a little sociopath.

Margaret said...

She's trying to hide the fact that she can't do something the same as everyone else. The acting out behaviors are her cover-ups, (and attempts to feel better even though she stinks at the school stuff) but she's not sneaky slick enough to not get caught doing them. She may have a learning disability, but if things progress to the point of testing, she may perform too well to be identified. She may also have to be dealing with utter nonsense from the grown-ups at home and have no support from them if they're too wrapped up in their battles to pay attention to their offspring. She sounds a bit like a little gal I know, except for the cheating part, she'd get in too much trouble for that one to be worth trying. Best wishes for finding a solution for lil' miss cheater-bully.

Ricochet said...

In high school when I have copiers, I make their test different. (Love math - just change a number in each problem) and let them copy. Copiers never show work and I have a no work no credit policy.

We had a meeting with a senior last week (SOOOO close to graduation). Kid is failing everything because, when he is in school, he feels he doesn't have to come to class. Have no idea if heard what was said to him or not.

I agree with Margaret in part. Have you tried testing her orally (if you have time) to see if you can nail down any gaps? I have had the opportunity to do that in some of the team-taught classes I teach.

TeachEnEspanol said...

I definitely have a student like that and I've actually pulled him aside to explain to him exactly where I was, who was there with me, and what we were all talking about (him!). I think it made him realize that he was being monitored by EVERYONE so he better get his act together. And, while this might be harsh, I think it shamed him when he realized that we didn't have to have those kinds of meetings for every student in the class...just him.

Sarah Garb said...

That's the worst--when you're at a meeting about child X, and you walk back in to find child X up to the very thing you were just meeting about!

Chris Osborne said...

You're a better person than I am. I would have sent her up to the office.

But I'm just a sub and don't have any idea of the history of the kid, so I'd do it partly so someone who does have an idea can deal with it appropriately.

Anonymous said...

I see this type of behavior, as well in my preschool setting. Although we don't take math tests, some kids believe the rules don't apply to them, they hideout in the bathroom to avoid work, lie & tattle.

Mister Teacher said...

This little girl apparently runs the show at home, even bullying her own mother. I don't know exactly what I as a teacher am supposed to do about that, other than NOT letting her do the same thing here at school.

I don't think she's trying to HIDE the fact that she can't do a lot of academic things -- it's pretty much wide out in the open. Orally, she can't explain herself any better than on paper. I would give her a different test, except that the one she was cheating on was a test over the multiples of 12, so there isn't much variation possible.

It's really a shame to see a child like this at 3rd grade, because it's going to get SO much worse by the time she is in high school...

Christy said...

I had a SPED referral meeting for a student this week in which every single one of her teachers was there, her principal, her counselor, her parents, and a translator, and it really kind of ticked me off because the only reason she is failing her classes is because she skips class and doesn't do her missing work. I get so frustrated going to meetings like that....they feel like a waste of time, especially since by the time I get them (age 16), their habits are pretty much set. Good luck. those kids are pretty challenging. Only a few weeks left!

Art Belliveau said...


It is even worse when they are tenth graders and the same type of situation occurs.