Spent the day in the resource room at another middle school. At first, i thought i got into another unmanageable situation, like last Monday's. But the paraprofessionals were amazing at keeping the lid on things. When i first arrived, one boy was pacing like a tiger. He told the para that his meds had not kicked in yet.
I like this school. the staff smiles in the morning, and the tension is minimal. The teacher left directions to just follow the paras, which i am always glad to do. These paras are so cute with the kids. One of them really impressed the kids with her knowledge of Black Chynna and the Kardashians, hoping to get them to write. Anything.
Unlike the room on Monday, this room is spacious and airy, with high ceilings and carpet. These are kids who need to be able to move around, and it makes a huge difference in their behavior.
Even though these kids look like adults, when the para began reading aloud to them, they fell into a serene stupor, just like the elementary kids. It takes really special people to work with middle schoolers, in general. But the people who work with this population are really special and incredibly patient. They are pleasant and unflappable and it is evident that they really love these kids. It's like watching professional ballroom dancers, despite the outrageous behavior of their charges.
One of the paras uses knitting as an incentive to get these boys to behave. They love to knit. She taught them and they are working on gorgeous, gossamer scarves.
When everyone else went outside to PE, I stayed behind with Julio, who uses x-box just dance for PE. When i asked him where he fit in in his family, he said, "I am the dancing one with the dark, murderous eyes," as he walked toward me with menacing eyes.
He danced contentedly for a half an hour and it was a joy to watch.