Analysis and Synthesis
The student I chose for this case study is a second grade student at an elementary
school. I will call him John Smith. John is a Hispanic student who has two other siblings: a younger brother in first grade and a newborn sister. I chose John after observing him in the classroom and talking to his first and second grade teachers. Among a class of 19-second grade students, he is the only one who sucks his thumb and has difficulty interacting with other students. John can be extremely argumentative and short tempered with the other students. After speaking with his first grade teacher she stated she had a very difficult year with John. On many mornings, John screamed and cried in class and rarely completed any class or homework. Even after conferencing with his parents his academic performance did not improve.
John's current second grade teacher says that he doesn't cry and scream, but that he doesn't complete class or homework. The few instances he did complete some work it was very sloppy. His 2nd grade teacher, Miss Jones, says that John has the potential to do so much more in class because when giving oral responses, he understands the daily lesson, but fails with the written work. I continued to collect information about John by looking at his CUM folder. Inside his CUM was paperwork for a Student Intervention Team (SIT). A SIT involves the school counselor, teacher, and parent of the student who is experiencing difficulties in school. The purpose of a SIT is for a counselor and teacher to intervene and develop strategies to help a child. A SIT was conducted on John in October 2007. Miss Jones stated on the SIT the major problem she has with John is his
classroom behavior: remaining in seat, independent work completion, and organizational skills. Her second concern is his interaction with other children and temper. John is in a constant bad mood usually early in the morning before school begins. Ms. Smith, John’s mother, said she is concerned with his behavior and that he is struggling in math. In addition, she says she rarely sees his homework and that could be the reason why it is not turned in because he is not bringing it home. To attempt to address the problems, the counselor suggested shortening the length of assignments in order to keep John motivated to finish work, getting John involved in another agency who conducts group counseling with students on the campus one time per week for anger management, and the counselor will maintain weekly interaction with John.
On the back of the CUM is an area for the teacher to record student grades for the year and write comments before the child is promoted to the next grade. Johnny's kindergarten teacher wrote, “John has made many improvements this year. With more self-discipline, John would be on grade level.” On May 15, 2007, his first grade teacher wrote, “John needs constant praise and prodding. He's capable but lacks the thrill of achievement. Poor self-discipline.”
Finally, I viewed his report card for the last three quarters. He is receiving below average grades in reading and language. His grades in math are worse. He is earning far below basic grades. Miss Jones recommended after school tutoring and summer school for John.
I gave John a simple six question pre-test. The questions included the following: A. I complete and turn in my homework;
B. I try my best when the teacher gives me work to do;
C. I listen when the teacher is talking;
D. I always have my pencils, paper, and crayons ready to work in class; E. I like to read when my work is finished;
F. My class work is neat.
After each question John bubbles in a response to the question. The happy face is a response for always; the neutral face is a response for sometimes; the sad face means never. The final question is a sentence completion: The best thing about me is… As I was administering the pre-test I had to repeat what the meaning of a pre-test is because he...
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