Most of What You Know About Violent Students is Wrong– Includes Online Class with More Effective Strategies

 

classroom management problems blog

Most of What You Know About
Violent Students
is Wrong


Includes Online Class
with More Effective Strategies

 


workshop trainer Ruth Herman WellsAs a mental health counselor who specializes in working with hard-to-manage children and youth, it always makes me upset when I read another article disseminating misinformation about extremely violent,unmanageable kids.

For decades, mental health,juvenile corrections, and juvenile court professionals have had tested, documented methods to best manage unmanageable, violent students. Even though these tools have been widely available for a half century or so, most of these targeted techniques and time-tested insights into unmanageable kids have not reached most K-12 educators.

Today, another major education outlet printed yet another misguided article that urged teachers to build stronger relationships with their most severely misbehaved, violent students. The author asserted that relationship-building is the best way to reduce violence, bullying,cyberbullying, disrespect, defiance, property damage, and harm to others. That assertion isn't just wrong, it's dangerous.

Any mental health professional can tell you that strong student-teacher relationships are important with MOST students, but that relationship-based approaches always fail with the violent students who act out the most. Even worse, attempting to use relationship-based approaches with this population doesn't just fail big-time, but these tactics generate other problems.

Here is just one example of the serious fallout that occurs when counter-indicated methods are used: Relationship-building sends an unintended message to the seriously misbehaved student, who interprets the trust-building efforts to mean that the adult "doesn't have a clue who they're dealing with so I can do what I want and get away with anything." Just as no one single text book would work with all students, one single style of behavior management interventions will not work with all students.

When educators use one-size-fits-all methods with severely misbehaved students, they will find "nothing works." You may have already have discovered that nothing seems to work to rein in your most unmanageable students. Now, you know why.


I'm Ruth Herman Wells, M.S., the Director and Trainer for Youth Change
Workshops. This issue has must-have, tested, documented, established,
more effective strategies for unmanageable students. These behavior
management strategies will work better than the counter-indicated
approaches you are using now. These methods are taken from my new
online class, Control the Uncontrollable Student (click). These methods
are also offered in my live workshops, and on-site trainings. We have
special treat for the readers of this magazine: If you would like to take
the $39 Control the Uncontrollable Student online class FREE, see the
easy directions below.


online classGet Control Uncontrollable Students online class without charge.
Take 2 steps by 4-5-12:


(1) Post a link to our website (http://www.youthchg.com) online on
your website, blog, Facebook page, or similar place. (2) Click here to email us the link to the page where you posted. We'll send you the link to the online class by return email. It's that easy.

 

The Top 5 Truths About Unmanageable Students
That Educators Need to Know Now


1. Learn Targeted Methods for Conduct Disorders


Mental health professionals have identified that some extremely
misbehaved youngsters are wired a bit differently than the majority of
students. They tend to be boys, and make up about 11-14% of the
population. Mental health clinicians have the ability to determine if a
youngster has a problem called "conduct disorder," a mental health
diagnostic category that describes children and teens who have no
conscience, no remorse, no empathy, and no real relationship capacity.


Advanced research in the 1990s and into the 2000s has clearly shown
that the brains of these youngsters are different, that the place where
relationship capacity should "reside" in the brain is not "lit." That is why
relationship approaches will never work. Every educator must know
about this youngster since conventional approaches always fail with this
type of student. Targeted methods must be substituted instead. You'll
need more than the quick info included here so read more on our
website here or view our online class as described above.


2. Learn the Operating System of Conduct Disorders
 

Most students are relationship-based creatures, and relationship-based
approaches like character ed can be tried. Character ed is so popular
right now in the world of education. Sadly, popularity doesn't correlate
with effectiveness or even worthiness. Relationship-based methods like
character ed can never succeed with youngsters who have conduct
disorder as this disorder means that these students lack empathy. It
also means that their "operating system" is different than most other
students. Instead of having an operating system that is based on
relationships, youngsters with conduct disorder care about one thing: I-Me-
I-Me. Character ed methods don't address that. That's why you
have to learn and use methods designed especially to work around that
difference. What works? Read Step 3 below.
 

3. Learn Targeted Behavior Control Methods
 

Students with conduct disorder only care about what happens to them.
That's why all interventions with them must revolve around that
dynamic. If you look at the sites that have expertise with the most
acting-out students, places like juvenile corrections, for example, they
tend to use a specific style of interventions. These sites tend to be very
regimented, very strict, and to respond very quickly and strongly to
misconduct. They developed this style of intervention because it worked.
If relationship methods had worked, they would be using those instead,
but those techniques failed, so they switched to what worked better.
You need to switch too. With other types of students, use relationship
methods if they work for you, but stop expecting them to ever help
conduct disordered kids behave better.


4. Avoid the Predictable Pitfalls
 

Students with conduct disorder are often very savvy. They can read us
like open comic books and easily manipulate us. There are many
predictable mistakes that caring adults can make over and over again
unless taught to do otherwise. What is one of the most common pitfalls
that will get you played? These youngsters may discern that you are a
good-hearted person, so they may manipulate you by getting you to
believe that you have shown them the error of their ways. Because of
that, be careful about automatically believing when the extremely
misbehaved child suddenly expresses remorse or sheds copious tears.
Instead, discern if there will be any benefit from expressing remorse.
For example, if apologizing gets the sanctions for misbehavior lessened,
then you want to be careful about believing that the remorse is
genuine.

Students with conduct disorders are very manipulative. Even
though it may be uncomfortable for some of us to acknowledge, it's part
of what they often do. All of us need to accept that premise in order to
be effective working with these youngsters. When you are repeatedly
vulnerably to the pitfalls, the student can easily manipulate and control
you and your classroom.
 

5. The Whole Team Must Know How to Control Conduct Disorders
 

The best way to manage unmanageable students is for every member
of your team to learn the do's and don'ts. That includes the school
secretary, and the bus driver who has to turn his back to even the
most aggressive students. When the whole staff understands how to use
different tools with these students, misbehavior can be more easily
curtailed. Sadly, the reverse is true: When the whole staff does not
know how to use targeted tools, then it becomes party time for your
most acting-out students, who are savvy enough to save their worst
behavior for the staff who are least likely to be able to manage them.

You need to have every link in the chain be strong. Your success with
conduct disordered students will be only as good as your weakest link,
so thoroughly educate everyone who is expected to be able manage
even the most unmanageable students.

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    teachermissYou have students who struggle. We have solutions for students who struggle…so your job doesn’t have to be so difficult. We have cutting-edge strategies to manage group and classroom management problems like behavior disorders, trauma, disrespect, bullying, emotional issues, withdrawal, substance abuse, tardiness, cyberbullying, delinquency, work refusal, defiance, depression, Asperger’s, ADHD and more.

     

    Schedule the Breakthrough Strategies to Teach and Counsel Troubled Workshop to come to your site. This is the one professional development inservice that produces results, results, results. Call 1.800.545.5736 now. This surprisingly affordable inservice also makes a terrific fund raiser. College credit and 10 professional development clock hours are available. Your staff will finally have the more effective, real-world tools they need to work with today’s challenging, difficult youth.

     

    Contact us now, and begin solving your worst “kid problems” today. Call 1.800.545.5736, or email.

     

    Working with Troubled Students Doesn’t Have to be So Difficult
     


    Behavior & Classroom Management Problem-Solver Blog Articles

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    Library of Congress ISSN: 1526-9981 | Youth Change, Your Problem-Kid Problem-Solver
    http://www.youthchg.com | 1.503.982.4220 | 275 N. 3rd St; Woodburn, OR 97071
    © Copyright 2019, All Rights Reserved | Permission granted to forward magazine to others.


Stop Cyberbullying and Self-Harm: Cyber Smarts for the Facebook Generation

 

classroom management blog

 

Stop Cyberbullying and Self-Harm:
Cyber Smarts
for the Facebook Generation
 


Someday they may call your students the "Facebook Generation." Their
worlds revolve around all things electronic. As a consequence, the
venue for student problems is shifting from the real world to the virtual
one. Unfortunately, virtual world problems can be very much real world
problems too.

Cyberbullying prevention has become a must-do
for most elementary, middle and high school classrooms.

At our workshops, we are getting a lot more requests for
help with students who are facing or engaging in cyberbullying. We
also have been getting a lot of questions about what to do about
students who are literally trashing their own reputations and credibility
by posting damaging pictures and comments about partying, substance
abuse, their interpersonal relationships, and their feelings about their
teachers and bosses. In a time when more and more employers and
colleges are requiring access to applicants' Facebook and My Space
pages, students continue to make themselves unemployable and unlikely
admission candidates when their less-than-sedate lives are splayed all
over the internet– forever.

In this issue, you will be seeing cutting-edge, never-seen-before,
powerful new tools for the Facebook generation. They are designed to
reduce the cyberbullying, and self-harm your students may be involved
in on internet social network sites.

Just like the saying, "What happens in Vegas,
stays in Vegas," "What happens on the internet
stays on the internet," potentially forever.

Help your students avoid being haunted forever
by indiscretions, vulnerabilities, or misbehavior that they
exposed to the world when they where just thirteen or fifteen or
seventeen.

Your students need help with cyber-safety, and fortunately, we have
great cyberbullying prevention strategies for you.

 

Cyberbullying Prevention Methods

 

FACEBOOK
THE ACCIDENTAL RESUME
 

Cyberbullying prevention poster 279Students who post on
Facebook and similar sites
about partying, their intimate
relationship details, substance
abuse, or their dislike for their
employer and job, probably
don't realize that they are
doing great self-harm. Make
sure your students know that
many employers and
university admissions staff are
now requiring access to
students' Facebook and My
Space pages, and they often
ask to review students' blogs.

In fact, there are now sites so cyberbullying poster 280
sophisticated that bosses and
universities don't have to ask.


These rogue sites gather
pictures and text from
supposedly private pages and
blogs. A student may be only
13, but their misdeeds as a young teen may follow them in cyberspace
for the rest of their lives. Youthful errors used to stay in the past, but that will stop with the Facebook generation.

Because the internet is forever, you can refer to Facebook as "the accidental resume."

The intervention pictured above gives you state-of-the-art tools to educate your students before they are harmed in cyberspace. It shows a Facebook page where a student has made negative comments about his/her job, and revealed his substance abuse.

This worksheet/poster brings the cyber world and real world together. Ask students to view this worksheet through the eyes of a boss, school admissions officer, or apartment manager. (Thanks to special ed teacher, Chris Wells for this
truly amazing worksheet.)

View Posters 279 and 280 here.
 

CYBERBULLYING
ANTI-SOCIAL NETWORKING HURTS BULLIES TOO


Bullying prevention poster 97Bullies, be they cyberbullies
or real-world bullies, they're not known
for their empathy.

If you want to change the
bully's behavior, avoid
relationship-based
interventions at all times.
Instead, show the bully
that by hurting others,
he hurts himself.

Bullies will rein in their conduct if they may lose something they want, so show bullies that if their expertise with people is being a good bully, they will have great difficulty keeping jobs, apartments, roommates, friends, etc.

Teach bullies that there is "no way to hurt others without hurting yourself." Be sure that you don't let bullies say they can stop bullying but they choose not to.

Use some of the phrases included on our Poster #097 – shown above, click on it to enlarge it– such as "Bully today, bully tomorrow. Stop now if you can."

To order this bully prevention poster for $8, click here.

 

CYBERBULLYING
IS CYBER CRIME


"But I didn't think it was cyberbullying." That's what
students often say to avoid responsibility for their actions
online. Wipe out that excuse before it happens. Begin by
ensuring that all your students know exactly what constitutes cyberbullying.

 

  •  


    Reprint or Repost This Article
     

    Bring the Breakthrough Strategies Workshop to Your Site

    Help Unmotivated, Failing, Troubled and Unmanageable Students

    teachermissYou have students who struggle. We have solutions for students who struggle…so your job doesn’t have to be so difficult. We have cutting-edge strategies to manage group and classroom management problems like behavior disorders, trauma, disrespect, bullying, emotional issues, withdrawal, substance abuse, tardiness, cyberbullying, delinquency, work refusal, defiance, depression, Asperger’s, ADHD and more.

     

    Schedule the Breakthrough Strategies to Teach and Counsel Troubled Workshop to come to your site. This is the one professional development inservice that produces results, results, results. Call 1.800.545.5736 now. This surprisingly affordable inservice also makes a terrific fund raiser. College credit and 10 professional development clock hours are available. Your staff will finally have the more effective, real-world tools they need to work with today’s challenging, difficult youth.

     

    Contact us now, and begin solving your worst “kid problems” today. Call 1.800.545.5736, or email.

     

    Working with Troubled Students Doesn’t Have to be So Difficult
     


    Behavior & Classroom Management Problem-Solver Blog Articles

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    Library of Congress ISSN: 1526-9981 | Youth Change, Your Problem-Kid Problem-Solver
    http://www.youthchg.com | 1.503.982.4220 | 275 N. 3rd St; Woodburn, OR 97071
    © Copyright 2019, All Rights Reserved | Permission granted to forward magazine to others.


How to Help Bullied, Potentially Suicidal Students

 

classroom management blog

 

How to Help Bullied,
Potentially Suicidal Students

 


workshop trainer Ruth Herman WellsIt's been the top story in the news: bullied students committing suicide
because they can't cope with the bullying.

I'm educational workshop instructor Ruth Herman Wells, M.S. with ideas that can help right away.

Even veteran counselors and social workers worry they might not always notice every student who is so distressed that they might engage in serious self-harm, but the reality is that the front line of "first responders" is actually made up of educators, who may not have even have mental health expertise.

Further, many educators may have dozens and dozens of students they see each day. That glimpse into a young person's world may not be enough for a teacher to become aware that a student is in serious emotional distress. Especially as schools increase teacher-student ratios, effectively tracking emotionally fragile students becomes harder and harder for even the most dedicated, aware educator.

Despite the significant obstacles educators face when working with deeply troubled youngsters, none of us ever want to wonder if we did absolutely everything we could to spot and stop bullying, and the staggering consequences that can follow. It is a tough, new job to effectively help bullied students.

This issue of our magazine is designed to help you be as pro-active as possible to prevent a tragedy at your site, but by no means is  this short tutorial comprehensive, so if you suspect safety issues, tell your administrator immediately. In the meantime, you can strive to better equip yourself, your students, and your school to be a place where bullying and ensuing tragedies are less likely to happen. This article is a first step in that effort to help bullied students.

For more help, come to our Seattle or Portland Breakthrough Strategies to Teach and Counsel Troubled Youth Workshop (click).

Bad budget? We've got work-study slots if you need financial aid. Call 800.545.5736 for details.

You can also take the distance learning workshop (click), or schedule us to provide a professional development inservice at your site. We also have free online articles, tutorials, strategies and more throughout our site.
 

New Methods to Help Bullied Students Now
 

EDUCATE VICTIMS
AND POTENTIAL VICTIMS


poster for suicidal studentsA good place to start is by educating vulnerable students on how and when to ask for help from adults.

It may seem obvious to you that a child would seek aid, but to the child the bullying can just seem so overwhelming,
massive, and permanent, that the child can feel there is no useful help out there. The printable poster (Poster 248) makes a good visual that can be an on-going reminder.

The resource can also be used as a worksheet to start off a
discussion of issues like these: "Will adults know how to help? " and "What should you do if you feel so hopeless that you want to hurt yourself?"

Gear the discussion to fit the age of your students, but have the discussion right away. Suicides often seem to engender more suicides, and that is why you need to tackle this safety issue right away.

 

STOP USING INEFFECTIVE APPROACHES TO
CONTROL BULLIES


anti-bullying poster 90If only popularity was the best gauge of a method's
effectiveness. The truth is that many very popular methods that are commonly used to rein in bullies are incredibly ineffective and outdated.

Many bullies are not capable of developing a "normal" conscience and compassion, yet many bullying intervention methods– like character ed– rely on students having those traits, or being able to learn them. If you truly want to become more effective at controlling bullies, you must switch to more up-to-date
interventions that don't require a conscience or compassion in order to have impact.

Here's a few examples of strategies that don't rely on the bully being able to have or rapidly develop compassion. Ask the bully to make a list of all the activities that he wants to do in life, then have the youngster go through the list and cross out all the items that "go well" with bullying. For example, the student may list his desire to be a truck driver. Ask the student to consider if the trucking company boss or the truck dispatcher is going to want to want to take time to deal with a driver who bullies dispatchers, co-workers, customers, or superiors. If the student resists, have the student actually talk to a truck company boss or dispatcher, and ask. If the student says "But I won't bully on the job," challenge the student to prove it by stopping bullying now for
one month. If the student can't or won't stop, ask the student who else will help him learn how to be different by the time he's on the job.

Use the expression "Bully Today. Bully Tomorrow." Notice how all these techniques show the bully that by hurting others, she is hurting herself. It is critical that all the interventions you use with bullies contain that element. Bullies may never care about others, but they almost always care about "Me-Me-Me." Use that to reduce the bullying behavior by convincing the bully "I can't hurt others without hurting me." Our Poster #090 (shown above) is another good example of how the bully will only alter her behavior when she sees it's in her own interest to do so. To order this bully prevention poster for $8, click here.
 

WORK WITH BOTH BULLIES
AND BULLIED STUDENTS

Most schools tend to focus on the bully. While a focus on the bully is certainly essential, since it takes two for the situation to occur, it is as important to work with the victim as it is to work with the bully. If you fail to assist the victim to develop the skills, motivation, and attitude needed to avoid further victimization, you are failing to use half the tools you have available.

To leave all the accountability with the bully– who has a demonstrated record of not being trustworthy or compassionate– is unwise, potentially dangerous, and
inappropriate.

It is always critical that you upgrade the victim's skills to prevent and manage victimization. To not do so could be considered negligent. To upgrade the bullied student's skills, focus on spotting aggression before it starts, what to say or do to avoid victimization, where to go, where to never go, and so on. But the recent student suicides are a reminder that adults have to help victims cope. Learning to cope  emotionally may be as important– perhaps more important– than just learning bullying prevention and survival skills.

Create a worksheet entitled "The Consequences of My Actions." This intervention can be used effectively with both bullies and bullied students. Design the worksheet to have three columns. In Column 1, students list their Behaviors such as bullying or being bullied.

In Column 2 and 3, they list the Money Cost and the Pain Cost of those behaviors.

For bullies, the worksheet captures the consequences of bullying, and how those consequences can be so distasteful that it can make bullying less appealing. For bullied students, this worksheet can show what positive outcome can happen when these youngsters learn and use new skills to actively avoid bullying. This worksheet also shows bullied students how failing to take protective steps can predictably yield poor results.

The hallmark of depression is powerlessness. This worksheet can help bullied students feel that their actions can have impact and power. For bullied students, this worksheet can help convince them to learn and use new skills, while also helping to combat the feelings of powerlessness that lead to depression and potentially, to desperate behaviors.

If you prefer to order this worksheet, purchase our Coping Skills Sampler book here.

 

  •  


    Reprint or Repost This Article
     

    Bring the Breakthrough Strategies Workshop to Your Site

    Help Unmotivated, Failing, Troubled and Unmanageable Students

    teachermissYou have students who struggle. We have solutions for students who struggle…so your job doesn’t have to be so difficult. We have cutting-edge strategies to manage group and classroom management problems like behavior disorders, trauma, disrespect, bullying, emotional issues, withdrawal, substance abuse, tardiness, cyberbullying, delinquency, work refusal, defiance, depression, Asperger’s, ADHD and more.

     

    Schedule the Breakthrough Strategies to Teach and Counsel Troubled Workshop to come to your site. This is the one professional development inservice that produces results, results, results. Call 1.800.545.5736 now. This surprisingly affordable inservice also makes a terrific fund raiser. College credit and 10 professional development clock hours are available. Your staff will finally have the more effective, real-world tools they need to work with today’s challenging, difficult youth.

     

    Contact us now, and begin solving your worst “kid problems” today. Call 1.800.545.5736, or email.

     

    Working with Troubled Students Doesn’t Have to be So Difficult
     


    Behavior & Classroom Management Problem-Solver Blog Articles

    Subscribe Unsubscribe/Change Subscription
    Contact Us*  *Not for Unsubscribing
     

    Library of Congress ISSN: 1526-9981 | Youth Change, Your Problem-Kid Problem-Solver
    http://www.youthchg.com | 1.503.982.4220 | 275 N. 3rd St; Woodburn, OR 97071
    © Copyright 2019, All Rights Reserved | Permission granted to forward magazine to others.


What Every Youth Professional Must Know About Violent Students, Part 2

 

classroom management blog


What Every Youth Professional
Must Know About Violent Students

Part 2 of 2

 

 

school violencePart 2 of 2

workshop presenter Ruth Herman WellsHere is Part 2 of 2 sections of this important article on violence prevention.

It is part of the intial three introductory articles inYouth Change Workshops' Behavior and Classroom Management Problem-Solver Blog.

I'm author, keynote speaker and workshop trainer Ruth Herman Wells, M.S. If you missed Part 1, find it here.

This is Part 2 of 2 sections on student violence prevention. Feel free to share this critical, must-know safety information about violent students, with your colleagues and administrators.

Recap of Part 1


In the last issue, we explained the term "conduct disorder", and gave an introduction to this youngster, who is perhaps at highest risk of extreme violence. The first part of this article emphasized how you must work differently with CDs compared to any other kids. Hopefully, we successfully conveyed how critical it is to work with CDs differently than everyone else, or risk finding yourself or others in dangerous situations. Hopefully, we also successfully emphasized how important it is for non-mental health workers who are new to the concept of conduct disorder, to thoroughly update their skills for working with these hard-to-manage youth.
 

Students at 2nd and 3rd Risk of Extreme Violence


These youth are not nearly at as great a risk as the child with conduct disorder. We will cover each of these 2 types of youth separately, but must stress that the risk for both of these 2 groups drops off from that posed by conduct disorders. Of course, remember that when any child appears to be potentially violent, you take that concern seriously, regardless of whether the child was on our list. This list is meant only to guide you when you lack any specific events or circumstances that show you how to apportion your time, supervision and other resources to best maximize your violence prevention efforts.

 

Thought Disorders

The risk posed by children who have thought disorder, is probably far less than that of conduct disordered youth. Part of the explanation is that there are probably a lot more conduct disordered kids than thought disordered ones. The other reason that explains the somewhat distant #2 status is that the thought disordered child may be well-intentioned, kind, and loving at times. These children do have consciences. The child with conduct disorder is really never is able to care about anyone else. Another reason to explain the distant #2 status is that often the thought disordered child will act in rather than act out. In terms of violence prevention, that means they probably pose more of a threat to self rather than others.

Unless you work in a treatment setting, just a very small fraction of the children you work with, may have what mental health professionals call a thought disorder. Like diagnosing conduct disorder, thought disorder can only be determined by a mental health professional. A lay person can do grave harm attempting to diagnose mental health disorders. While the thinking of the conduct disorder is clear and lucid, that assumption is not always true for the thought-disordered child. The child who has been diagnosed with this type of problem by a mental health worker, has very serious problems with their thinking. The child may hear voices or see visions that no one else can, for example. The child may believe demons or devils are governing them. If the voices, for instance, tell the child to hurt someone, then the child may feel compelled to do it. As for the implications for violence prevention, this is where potential danger could lie.

The thrust of working with a diagnosed thought disorder on proper medication, although focusing on skill building and structure are also important. The single most important concern will be that the child takes any prescribed medication regularly and properly, because when properly medicated, this child may function almost normally in many ways. When not correctly medicated, this child is at the mercy of any demons, visions, voices or upsetting thoughts that pop into their head.

 

Severely Agitated, Depressed Kids

The occurrence of extreme violence by severely depressed, agitated children probably also greatly lags behind the risk posed by conduct disorders. This term refers to a child who has experienced extremely severe problems with depression, and also struggles mightily at least once with agitation. Many kids, especially teens, struggle with depression, but this group endures some of the most prolonged, profound, deep depression; this should not be confused with typical adolescent ups and downs.

Crisis, sudden changes and the usual adolescent successes and failures can quickly de-stabilize this child who is already seriously struggling. This youngster is very vulnerable to more minor vicissitudes, meaning that the youngster can blow up in reaction to moderate set-backs. Often, it is "the straw that broke the camel's back" that can light the fuse. Bullying can be the source of the blow-up, but it can be almost anything that triggers this youngster. Like all the other disorders discussed here, only mental health professionals can diagnose severe depression. Consult one if needed. When facing violence prevention concerns with this child– or any other student– always seek immediate, expert help if you are even a bit unsure how to proceed.

Any emotion that a child has trouble managing may get acted out or acted in. Depression is generally acted in. Many view it as anger turned inward: the child withdraws, reduces their activities, may eat less, etc. But, depression can also be acted out. Feeling cornered, unable to endure any more pain, some children will act out, sometimes lashing out in very severe ways.

All things in nature strive to come to a conclusion. Storms eventually dissipate, the rain ultimately gives way to sun, and even the snow will eventually end. Humans, as part of nature, also tend to move towards resolution. For some children, extreme violence can be the flash point that offers that resolution. When there appears to be no hope, perhaps the child believes that there is nothing left to lose.

Depression can be tough on adults, but couple the depression with a child's lack of time concept, lack of perspective, their impulsiveness, immaturity, and resistance to understanding the link of actions to final outcomes, extreme violence can seem to be a solution. If this vulnerable child becomes involved with a conduct disordered peer, you can see how under certain circumstances, that could become a deadly combination as the depressed, agitated child may join in the acting-out.

To help this child, alleviating some of the torment will be critical. Help to manage anger in socially acceptable ways, tempering the depression, and alleviating some of the agitation can keep this child from remaining at the level of extreme discomfort they currently experience. If this child receives useful aid to vent the agitation and can find some tempering of the depression, any risk of extreme violence can be significantly impacted.

Of the three risk categories, this group's concerns are potentially the most amenable to intervention by you, and is of the three, the most hopeful diagnosis. You can have much lasting impact on this child. The three best interventions: Talking out problems, exercising and possibly anti-depressants.

 

Appraising the Risk

Now you can look at your class or group and not just wonder where the where potential, serious danger could come from. Now that you have more refined guesses about which youth potentially pose potential danger, here is a way to better rank that risk in your mind. A juvenile court judge in Springfield, Oregon, said after the shooting there, "These kids are like little match sticks waiting to be lit." To adapt that image a bit, here is how you can apply that thinking to the three at-risk groups listed here.

You can imagine that the conduct disorder is already lit; a flame is burning. Whether that flame becomes smaller, flares larger, or creates an inferno, is anyone's guess, but the flame is burning always, the potential for disaster is always there.

The thought-disordered child may be like a pilot light, a tiny flame that is always lit, but is fairly unlikely to inexplicably get massively bigger or out of control. Properly shepherded and assisted, this light may stay forever just a benign flicker. Unshepherded or inadequately assisted, however, this flame can get bigger, even flare out of control.

The extremely agitated depressed child may be the unlit match stick that the judge visualized. Outside factors will likely come into play to incite any flare-up. Outside forces could include peer pressure, bullying, crises, substance abuse, family woes, or just mounting problems that fuel the agitation and create a profound, all-encompassing sense of desperation that leads the child to "spontaneously" combust. Like the thought-disordered child, the severely agitated depressed youth can often be so readily aided if the community can identify them, then consistently care and effectively intervene.

In Summary

If you work with kids, but you are not a mental health professional, maybe it's time to at least learn some of the basics about children's mental health. And, no matter what your role with children, please consider it your obligation to train your kids to be peaceful. That may be the most important contribution you could make in a world that so thoroughly ensures that every child knows so much about extreme violence, and so little about anything peaceful.


For More Information on Violence Prevention:

Be sure to visit the web site for more information you can access right now. If you do come to our Breakthrough Strategies to Teach and Counsel Troubled Youth Workshop, we'll spend as much time on this complicated child as you want. Or, you can arrange an on-site workshop presentation on violent students held at your site for your staff.

webtitlesNeed an online alternative? Our Control the Uncontrollable Students Online Class has what you need, plus 1 free clock hour.

Conduct disorder book If you prefer to read, check out our All the Best Answers for the Worst Kid Problems: Conduct Disorders and Anti-Social Youth book or ebook.
 

 

Previous Behavior and Classroom Management Blog Issue:

The 3 Types of Students at Highest Risk of Extreme Violence (Part 1)

 

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    Bring the Breakthrough Strategies Workshop to Your Site

    Help Unmotivated, Failing, Troubled and Unmanageable Students

    teachermissYou have students who struggle. We have solutions for students who struggle…so your job doesn’t have to be so difficult. We have cutting-edge strategies to manage group and classroom management problems like behavior disorders, trauma, disrespect, bullying, emotional issues, withdrawal, substance abuse, tardiness, cyberbullying, delinquency, work refusal, defiance, depression, Asperger’s, ADHD and more.

     

    Schedule the Breakthrough Strategies to Teach and Counsel Troubled Workshop to come to your site. This is the one professional development inservice that produces results, results, results. Call 1.800.545.5736 now. This surprisingly affordable inservice also makes a terrific fund raiser. College credit and 10 professional development clock hours are available. Your staff will finally have the more effective, real-world tools they need to work with today’s challenging, difficult youth.

     

    Contact us now, and begin solving your worst “kid problems” today. Call 1.800.545.5736, or email.

     

    Working with Troubled Students Doesn’t Have to be So Difficult
     


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    Library of Congress ISSN: 1526-9981 | Youth Change, Your Problem-Kid Problem-Solver
    http://www.youthchg.com | 1.503.982.4220 | 275 N. 3rd St; Woodburn, OR 97071
    © Copyright 2019, All Rights Reserved | Permission granted to forward magazine to others.


What Every Youth Professional Must Know About Violent Students

 

classroom management blog


What Every Youth Professional
Must Know About Violent Students

Part 1 of 2

 

 

violent studentPart 1 of 2

workshop presenter Ruth Herman WellsThis is author, keynote speaker and workshop trainer Ruth Herman Wells, M.S. This article is one of the most important I've ever written. That is why we are making it one of our introductory articles for Youth Change Workshops' Behavior and Classroom Management Problem-Solver Blog.

This is Part 1 of 2 sections. Feel free to share this critical, must-know safety information about violent students, with your colleagues and administrators.

There are three types of kids who may be at the highest risk of extreme violence. Obviously, you must take seriously any threat or indication of danger from any kid, so if a dangerous child you know doesn't fit one of these categories, please don't just breathe a sigh of relief. Rather, the point of emphasizing these three top-risk youth, is to have you apportion your time wisely. You can't monitor each child equally. This information may guide you on who you monitor most closely, especially in the absence of other events or information to guide you.

In this space, we will have time to cover only one of these violent students in any kind of detail. We will cover the second two types of students in the third issue of this magazine, plus we'll expand a bit on the information covered here. Our information on the 3 most violent students was first published by The Child Welfare Report in 1998, and is updated and revised here.

The youth at highest risk of extreme violence may be the conduct disordered child. If you don't already know this term, visualize the fictional character, J.R. from the TV show "Dallas" because the hallmark of being a conduct disorder (CD), is having no heart, no conscience, no remorse.

Only a mental health professional can diagnose a conduct disorder for sure, but being aware that you may have a conduct disordered child in your class or group, is important to ensuring your safety, along with the safety of your students, because you work with conduct disorders completely differently than other kids. Since the child with CD has no conscience or relationship capacity, you should not use relationship-based approaches with a diagnosed conduct disorder.

It would be insensitive to call a conduct disorder a "baby sociopath," but that is close to what the term means. It means that the child acts in ways that appear to be seriously anti-social, and the concern is that the child may grow up to be a sociopathic type of person.

Since this child cares only about himself (CDs are predominately male), there are little brakes slowing this child from doing serious or extreme violence. Not every conduct disordered child will engage in horrific behavior. There is a range of misbehavior student with CD may get involved with, ranging from lying to setting fires or being a sexual predator. At the most serious end of the spectrum, lies the possibility of extreme violence, such as a school shooting. Sadly, youth with CD are often your violent students.

Conduct disorder book violent student workshopIn our workshop, we spend at least several hours helping you understand how to work with students with conduct disorder. You can come to one of our workshops, get the workshop online  or get some of our books or ebooks  that teach you how to work with this most hard-to-manage, violent student. But do something to make sure you thoroughly understand how to work completely differently with this violent student than any other child. Your safety– and that of your students– depends on how well you understand and manage these potentially violent youngsters.
 

Methods for Conduct Disordered Youth

There's not space for all the critical do's and don't's that you must know but here are some of the most important to give you a bit of an introduction to what you need to know:

DO

The main point we give in our classes is that these children operate on a cost-benefit system, and that to control your students with CD, you must keep the costs high, and benefits low. These children also especially need to pro-actively learn how to manage their fists, mouth, and actions. Your goal is to teach them that when they hurt others, it often hurts them too. All interventions must be in the context of "I-Me," because that is all this youngster is capable of caring about.

DON'T

There are so many "DON'Ts" that it's hard to know where to start. Even more problematic, many of the ordinary techniques that you use with other kids utterly fail with CDs, and are actually quite dangerous to use. Here are several of the most critical concerns to be aware of when you work with a diagnosed– that's the important word here– conduct disorder. Without the diagnosis, use these guides especially carefully. It's important to note that a little bit of information can be a dangerous thing, so be sure to upgrade your skills on CDs more thoroughly than reading this brief introduction. You can easily use our resources for this purpose. Since safety is always a serious concern when working with CDs, there is no substitute for learning more than the headlines listed here.

DON'T have a heart-to-heart relationship.

DON'T work on building trust.

DON'T rely on compassion, caring, empathy, values, morals.

DON'T expect compassionate behavior.

DON'T trust.

DON'T give second chances.

DON'T believe they care or feel remorse.

Hopefully this brief guide to the hardest-to-manage, most potentially dangerous youth will help you avoid using everyday interventions that will be unproductive, even dangerous. Hopefully this information will steer you towards relying on non-relationship-based interventions that emphasize learning skills like anger control, managing the fist, etc. along with firm rules, boundaries and limits.

 

For More Information on Violent Students:

Be sure to visit the web site for more information you can access right now. If you do come to our Breakthrough Strategies to Teach and Counsel Troubled Youth Workshop, we'll spend as much time on this complicated child as you want. Or, you can arrange an on-site workshop presentation on violent students held at your site for your staff.

webtitlesNeed an online alternative? Our Control the Uncontrollable Students Online Class has what you need, plus 1 free clock hour.

Conduct disorder book If you prefer to read, check out our All the Best Answers for the Worst Kid Problems: Conduct Disorders and Anti-Social Youth book or ebook.
 

 

Next Behavior and Classroom Management Blog Issue:

2 More Types of Students at Highest Risk of Extreme Violence (Part 2)

 

  •  


    Reprint or Repost This Article
     

    Bring the Breakthrough Strategies Workshop to Your Site

    Help Unmotivated, Failing, Troubled and Unmanageable Students

    teachermissYou have students who struggle. We have solutions for students who struggle…so your job doesn’t have to be so difficult. We have cutting-edge strategies to manage group and classroom management problems like behavior disorders, trauma, disrespect, bullying, emotional issues, withdrawal, substance abuse, tardiness, cyberbullying, delinquency, work refusal, defiance, depression, Asperger’s, ADHD and more.

     

    Schedule the Breakthrough Strategies to Teach and Counsel Troubled Workshop to come to your site. This is the one professional development inservice that produces results, results, results. Call 1.800.545.5736 now. This surprisingly affordable inservice also makes a terrific fund raiser. College credit and 10 professional development clock hours are available. Your staff will finally have the more effective, real-world tools they need to work with today’s challenging, difficult youth.

     

    Contact us now, and begin solving your worst “kid problems” today. Call 1.800.545.5736, or email.

     

    Working with Troubled Students Doesn’t Have to be So Difficult
     


    Behavior & Classroom Management Problem-Solver Blog Articles

    Subscribe Unsubscribe/Change Subscription
    Contact Us*  *Not for Unsubscribing
     

    Library of Congress ISSN: 1526-9981 | Youth Change, Your Problem-Kid Problem-Solver
    http://www.youthchg.com | 1.503.982.4220 | 275 N. 3rd St; Woodburn, OR 97071
    © Copyright 2019, All Rights Reserved | Permission granted to forward magazine to others.