12 June 2009

Comments on "Poetry Time, Part Eight"

While substituting a Behavioral Disabilities class at Duval, I had one class period with no students. Most of the classes were small anyway, so if one or two students missed, it was free time for me. In fact, this particular class was filled with students who would skip school anyway, so this class was somewhat the easiest class I ever had to cover. There was only one period that had more than a handful of students in it.

It was during one of these free periods that I had nothing better to do than write. (And, really, there's nothing better to do than write most of the time anyway.) This class was also one of the first substituting appointments I had, if not the very first.

"BD Class #1" was written after having an interesting experience with the previous class period, in which I only had two or three students. These kids were between 14 and 16, and talking very openly about their sexual, drug-use, and other negative experiences in much the same way one would talk about having gone to the movies the previous evening. Their language was also filled with profanity. (There was a teacher's aide in the class, too. This being one of my first experiences, I followed her lead on how to handle the students talking about what and how they were discussing. She never batted an eye about it, so I didn't throw.)

Behavioral Disability was a separate class to try to handle students who had problems behaving in normal classes. Normally, this is for students with varying degrees of autism, ADD/ADHD, or otherwise prone to violent or disruptive behavior. In this case, I think some students were put in the class whether they were behaviorally disabled or not. To this end, I concluded that "[t]he students in BD lose," by which I meant they were separated in an effort to change their bad behavior, but their bad behavior persisted.

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