Sunday, October 10, 2010


"Ugly Sucker"

     I am a retired teacher of learning disabled and behavior disordered (high-school) youth.  Often it becomes necessary to come up with unorthodox methods to maintain order in the classroom.  One student, in particular, presented me with quite a challenge.
     This student was transferred into my room from a hospital facility.   They were hoping to normalize him in public education (an experiment that failed, miserably).
     This young man had learned to get attention by throwing himself on the floor and faking an epileptic seizure.  He would thrash around, drool, cry out, and generally disrupted the whole class (even those next door).
     I tried to tell the IEP team that the fits were faked, but they would not listen to me (what did I know).  They were certain he had medical issues.
     To prove my point I brought a HUGH garden spider to class from home.  You know the kind I'm referring to.  It was a black and yellow, ugly sucker that spins a humongous web.  They are usually about 5 inches in diameter and the kind of spider that causes one’s skin to crawl.
     When he came to class the next day, I covertly released the spider onto the floor not far from this student's desk.  Then I walked a short distance, jumped and yelled, “Oh my goodness, look at that horrible spider.”  I went on to say, “Good thing you didn’t have an episode today because you would have been right there beside that nasty thing."
     That student NEVER had another episode in my classroom!   Interesting! 
     I apparently CURED him.
(Incidentally, I thanked the spider for a job well done and returned to his home in my back yard with the ants (read blog #1-5 to learn about my relationship with ants).

kt 2010