The following are observations of Jacob, a child with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), which was made at Cornell Junior Public School. The school is a community-based learning institution whose functions are grounded on the cultural strengths of the surrounding community. The school was started in 1959 and has had great progress ever since it was established. It has a population of about 900 students, who comprise learners from kindergarten to sixth grade. The main philosophy of the Cornell School is to provide its students with a learning environment that is safe, supportive and secure. The school is set up in a suburban environment and it offers services, such as music nights, special events, curriculum open houses, and co-curricular programs.
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Cornell Junior Public School is large and spacious enough and as a result, it can adequately accommodate its population of 900 students. The school has well-built classrooms that suit its population, which comprises students from kindergarten to sixth grade. The classrooms are also built with large windows, which ensure that the rooms are properly ventilated and well lit during the day when the teaching sessions are ongoing. The chairs in the classrooms are well designed to ensure that they are sufficiently comfortable for purposes of learning. The school also has other facilities, such as the computer lab, gymnasium, and music room, which are used for nurturing skills and talents among the students. The PCs in the computer lab are used as assistive technology to facilitate learning at the school.
At Cornell School, it is the responsibility of the teachers to monitor and ensure that their students are well behaved. The teachers guide the students in classrooms during learning sessions, in the fields when they are playing, and in any other places within the school. The school has several specialized programs that are used to enhance students’ behaviors and their co-curricular abilities. The programs include physical education, special education, drama and music, and computer technology.
The school, due to the high number of cases of students with special needs, uses Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS) and Response to Intervention (RTI) to ensure that students with special needs are properly looked after. Some of the PBIS strategies that the school has in place are rewards and incentives, such as tours and gifts, which are given to learners who excel in their studies. The RTI strategies applied in the school mainly include measurement and monitoring of how students progress about classroom, scientific, and research-based interventions.
The student who was observed in this classroom observation is called Jacob and is 8 years. Jacob is about 4 feet tall, well-built and looks friendly to everyone, including strangers. Also, he is vigorous, restless, and tends to be full of energy as proven by his wiggling, foot-tapping, and unwillingness to sit still. Although at his age Jacob is expected to demonstrate a significant break-through in language and literary skills, that is not the case; he can neither read nor write.
In addition to Jacob’s inability to read and write, he also showed several signs and symptoms, which signified he could be suffering from ADHD. Some of the symptoms include difficulty in paying attention, daydreaming in the class, getting easily distracted, being excessively talkative, experiencing frequent squirms and restlessness (Lougy, DeRuvo, & Rosenthal, 2007). He was also observed to enjoy intruding on fellow students’ conversations. Jacob also had difficulty following the teachers’ instructions to the letter. Another symptom that indicated that Jacob might be suffering from ADHD is his inability to sit patiently.
It was observed that Jacob had difficulties associating with his peers who mostly consist of his classmates. Jacob lacks social skills, which can enable him to relate well with his peers. Several reasons make it difficult for Jacob to relate with his peers. Firstly, he is more aggressive and impulsive than them, which makes them fear him. Secondly, he is unable to pay attention to someone continuously and easily loses patience, making his peers reject him. Lastly, Jacob does not perform well in class-work, making him feel inferior to his peers.
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The relationship that Jacob has with his peers is almost similar to the one he has with other people. He tends to fear other people just the same way he does with his peers, probably because of the feeling of inferiority. The bad relationship with other people may also be attributed to the fact that Jacob is restless, aggressive and experiences difficulty in paying attention to what he is told by anyone.
Jacob strives to do most of his things independently and he wishes to stay away from any interferences. For instance, during the observation, he wanted to sit alone, away from other members of his class. He also tends to protect his books and other belongings from other students, thinking that they may tamper with them. Another sign that showed that Jacob is independent is the way he refuses to share any of his class-work with his classmates (Lougy, DeRuvo, & Rosenthal, 2007).
Lougy, R. A., DeRuvo, S. L., & Rosenthal, D. K. (2007). Teaching young children with ADHD: Successful strategies and practical interventions for preK-3. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin Press.