Divergent News

Teacher Exchange About Behaviors & Supports In Math Class | Messages From The Archives Circa 2006

Wed, Sep 6, 2006, 3:27 PM | Email From Teacher To Me

I had emailed this to you on August 29th.  It was returned undeliverable because I made an error in your e-mail address.  Sorry about the delay in notifying you.  Here are my concerns. 

Mrs. Hinson, my name is C. P. and I am Jared’s math teacher. 

Mary sent me your email so I may share with you Jared’s math experiences. 

While in class, Jared will open his math book if I repeatedly as him to.  He will take out paper and then sit with his head down on the desk.  I have a paraprofessional during first period and we both ask Jared to start his assignment, does he need help, would he like to sit somewhere else, etc. 

He will not do any work. 

I go over to him and tell him what page and what problems to work on and ask if he needs any help (it’s also written on the board). 

His response is to make a mad face.  When Mrs. H, who shares the room with us and is also a Resource teacher, asked him to the back table to work, he wrote three problems down but when she left his side to continue her own work, Jared immediately stopped working.

He has not turned in one paper during the time he has been in my classroom. 

Also of concern, when I stopped by his desk to ask him to start his math, he raised his arm from the elbow and began repeatedly clawing with his nails along his arm from his wrist down to his elbow. 

His skin was welted and fiery red from his fingernail claw marks.  He continued this until he started gouging his wrist with his thumbnail using slashing motions. 

Today, Mrs. H saw him gouging his wrist again, and asked him to stop.  The motions I am describing, are violent. 

Today when I asked him to start his work, he snapped his pencil in half.  He spends most of his time making the mad grimace, putting his head down on the desk, or asking to go to the nurse. 

I allow him to go to the nurse and I also emailed her about his acts of hurting himself in front of the other students. 

Please let me know your thoughts and how we can work towards Jared’s successful school experience. 

Thank you, C. P.

Sep 6, 2006, 3:29 PM | Email From Teacher To Me

I am sending my second message that was undeliverable.  C. P.

Hello, I am trying to see if this email address is right. 

The first email I sent you was returned undeliverable.  I am Jared’s RS math teacher.  I need to talk with you about Jared.  He is not being successful in my class. 

Please let me know what I can do. 

Thank You, C. P.

Mrs. Hinson, today Deb S. came to my math class to observe Jared.  He sat at the back table (the first day that he sat at this table).   

Jared puts his head down on the table and will not begin working on daily assignments. 

She spoke to him outside the classroom but when he cam back, he sat down and put his head down on the table. 

Deb is going to have another person (I believe from the county) come to observe him. 

I need your assistance and support in order to help Jared in this class.  So far, he hasnโ€™t turned in any work.   My school # is ***-****. If you would like to come to my 1st period room to observe, I would be more than happy. 

It is what you feel would be the most productive. 

Thank you, C. P.

Thu 9/7/2006 9:09 PM | Email From Teacher To Me

Mrs. Hinson,

Today Jared participated in math class and I am so glad.

I would  now like to address his homework.  He still has not completed an assignment and  progress reports will come out before you know it.  

Could I email his assignments to you and have you help him finish his daily papers?  Let me know. 

Again, Jared made himself a part of our class, spoke to students, worked on his paper and his positive attitude was appreciated. 

I hope he continues.  I will keep you posted. 

C. P.

Sep 7, 2006, 10:01 PM | From Me To Teacher

Hi Ms. Pearson, 

My apologies for not replying sooner.

I’ve pretty much worked the last  week straight from sun up til midnight to meet a big work deadline.

GOOD I’m glad Jared participated — we had a very big heart to heart the other day about school and math.

 I’d love it if you emailed his assignments. It would be really helpful and we’d help him get his homework done here. 

Thank you so much for letting me know how he’s doing. I’ve shared this information with Jared’s doctors.

If there is anything at all I can be of help with here to support you in class, please let me know. 

Oh, I should mention – Jared won’t be in school tomorrow. We’re going to the courthouse in Merced for the adoption finalization of his little brother. It’s a very big day for us – our ‘forever family’ day. ๐Ÿ™‚ 

 If he is missing work currently and you’d like to email it, I could have him work on it over the weekend. 

Again thank you so much for your emails, I really appreciate the communication. 



Sep 7, 2006, 11:08 PM | Email From Teacher To Me

A quick reply…thank you too.  Get some sleep. I had to laugh because we are both up late checking emails! I will get those assignments to you.  C. P.

Sep 12, 2006, 12:38 PM | Email From Teacher To Me

Mrs. Hinson, here are Jaredโ€™s math assignments he needs to finish and turn in. 

He needs Lessons 5, 6, and 7.  He needs to do the Practice problems and the Problem Sets 1-30 in each assignment. 

Today he was great.  At the end of class we talked about food and he mentioned eggnog.

I LOVE eggnog and we laughed about the consistency being so thick!  It was a good day.  He asked for help with math and was very polite. 

Thank you for your support. 

C. P.

Sep 12, 2006, 1:33 PM | From Me To Teacher

I’ll have him work on these assignments at home and get them turned in.

Thank you SO much for letting know what what he needs to do. I’m glad *very glad* he had a good day today and was interactive.

 Just to let you know – he wants a dual screen psp really bad – so I told him if he can get all C’s on his report card or higher, we’ll get him one.

I know it doesn’ t sound real high, but he’s had all F’s and I think it’s a goal he might think is easier than all B’s etc. ๐Ÿ™‚ Maybe that goal is helping!

I dont know ๐Ÿ™‚ but might be useful info if you need to nudge him in class later. 

Thanks again! 

(LOL on eggnog ๐Ÿ™‚ )


Sep 13, 2006, 7:34 AM | Email From Me To Teacher

Good morning! 

Jared did lesson 5 and 7 last night. I hope its okay if he does Lesson 6 tonight.

He did 7 w/o even telling me he was doing his homework (or me asking him to do it, a first!). I let him know he had makeup work too, so he did six.

He’s in Aspire club until 6 p.m. and he didn’t think to do his homework there (I’m working with him on that next!). 

I don’t know how ‘right’ the answers are, but he did take some time and focus on each assignment. 


Sep 14, 2006, 8:16 AM | Email From Me To Teacher

Morning ๐Ÿ™‚ 

OK, Jared corrected me and said he did Lessons 5 and 8. He had promised the day before to finish up his makeup work last night.

He came home and crashed out – missed dinner and wouldn’t get up. He slept through the night. I don’t know if it was avoidance or what. 

I told him you’ve been MORE than generous enough with letting him have makeup work. That if I was his teacher, I wouldn’t let him have another shot at it. 

I’m still going to make him do the lessons tonight — even if he can’t turn them in for points.

He wants to go to a guitar concert tonight at church — I told him his ticket in is to get those two lessons done in Aspire before I pick him up. Or he’ll miss the concert and have to stay home and do the work. 

Just wanted to let you know the status. 



Sep 15, 2006, 1:06 AM | Email From Teacher To Me

Hi  Jared worked on some problems this morning.  His attitude has continued to be positive. 

I helped him with several problems but sometimes he seems, I don’t know, maybe overwhelmed with the amount of work? 

It’s hard to catch up when you’re behind, I know that.  I hated to hand him that grade yesterday, but for the amount of work he’s turned in, I didn’t have a choice. 

Let me think about what I can do that would not stick out like a sore thumb to the other students. 

I am going to be at a conference Friday (It’s past midnight) but I will mull it over this weekend. 

I am so pleased that his attitude has softened towards me and I want him to keep positive thoughts without being reminded of unfinished homework. 

My goal is to have him caught up with his assignments and to stay on task from now on. 

Thank you, I enjoy your emails.

Sep 15, 2006, 8:38 AM | Email From Me To Teacher

And I thought I stayed up late at night!

 His attitude at home is improving towards his work too. He finished up two make up chapters and his regular homework last night to turn in today.

He has mentioned feeling overwhelmed about his work. But he’s continuing to work (except the one night) towards getting caught up.  I didn’t see any grade handed out yesterday – I’ll ask him about it today.  I’m very glad he’s working with you now too :).

Thank YOU for being in contact with me. I really appreciate it and enjoy your emails as well! Have a great conference today, ~g


By Eve Reiland

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