Student Z was not in my classroom today (I'll be meeting with the SRO (sheriff) tomorrow morning to share notes and come up with a more individualized discipline program for this student). His cohort in crime was in class, and I was ready for him. Withiut his buddy to egg him on, he remained on task the entire time. He actually partnered with a special needs student and their project is off to a good start. He initially tried to get out of the classroom by pretending he was told to come to the office during fifth period. "If they need you they will send for you.", I told him, and that ended that. He not have to be redirected or warned during the entire time he was in my room. I spoke with his parents today (regarding somethings stemming from choices he made on Tuesday. We all feel that with a concerted effort we can get him headed in the right direction.
Today is only one day, but I can see some payoff and other strategies I can use with this child. One almost down and one to go!
On another note, I attended a wonderful lecture on the spread of Buddhism from India to China. Even though it was over an hour drive each way (after work), it was worth it. The National History Project is just as meaningful as the National Writing Project. They both offer teachers great resources and opportunities. Seize the opportunity if you get a chance to get involved with either of these programs.