The Magician is my most challenging student right now. He has no idea how to make friends, refuses to work at times, lies, is disruptive, has gotten into fights...the list goes on. (On the flip side, he's super fun and loves attention. He loves magic tricks and will talk your ear off about his favorite magicians. And his laugh is a terrific giggle. ) Due to a serious fight at the bus stop, he's been involved with the juvenile justice system. His first court date was today and because he didn't understand what was happening to him, the court date had to be rescheduled. This made his lawyer, counselor and mother angry. His mother spent the rest of the morning yelling at him and then dropped him off at school.
Upon entering his math class he started pushing desks around. I got involved when I had just sat back down at my desk after getting a student started in another class when I heard someone screeching in the hallway. The shriek was other-worldly and primitive - like a non-human animal in it's death throes. It was the Magician. His face was teary as he stomped out of his classroom and tipped over a chair in the hallway. I gave him a beckoning signal so he followed me down to the office and sat in a conference room where he could be by himself. I reminded him to use his self-calming techniques like deep breathing and counting but not before he let out another anguished shriek to leave him alone.
At that moment, one of the APs asked, "Is that the Magician? His mom is here looking for you." His mom hadn't even left the building yet having stuck around after dropping the Magician off in order to let me know it was probably going to be a really hard day for him. She told me that she had yelled at him from the minute they got out of court until she dropped him off.
This is a really, really difficult kid whose behaviors are aggravating and off-putting. But if you heard the anguish in his voice your heart would have gone out to him. Even his math teacher, who is not the most understanding teacher (to say the least), was really concerned and forgiving of him.
Hi mom ended up taking him home for the day to make sure he didn't get himself into anymore trouble.