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Rejected Children
Carmen Ryan Portland State University Counseling Individuals with Diverse Needs - Crystal Ellis March 16, 2013


Reject: to refuse to accept, to cast off.

Introduction After a year of inexplicably violent acts against innocent school children and adults, our schools dont know how to respond. For example, a 7-year-old Baltimore boy was suspended from school when a teacher complained that the boy chewed his breakfast pastry into the shape of a gun. Park Elementary School officials told parents that a student used a food to make an inappropriate gesture. The boy told reporters that he was trying to shape a mountain, but it didnt really turn out. In another incident, a 5-year-old girl was suspended for making a terrorist threat in the Mt. Carmel, Pa School District. The girl said she was going to shoot classmates and herself with her pink Hello Kitty bubble gum. Educators claim they have been extra sensitive to representations of weapons after the Sandy Hood Elementary School in Newton, Conn, while parents are frustrated with how hysterical people are who work at schools have become (, 2013). Were all scared of the recent violence, the question is how can we effectively address the core issues and respond appropriately. We can begin with the fact that all the shooters were young men that were rejected by their peers that didnt get the compassionate care to help them make smart decisions by the time they reached adulthood.

REJECTED CHILDREN Definition/Diagnostic Criteria Children who struggle to interact with their peers experience a wide range of behavioral and emotional problems and are at risk for future difficulties. These marginalized children have specific characteristics that fall into two categories (RedaNorton, 1995): Externalization of Problems Delinquent Behavior Offensive Interpersonal Behavior Hyperactivity and Immaturity Poor Academic Performance Internalization of Problems Depression Low Self-Esteem Loneliness Social Incompetence

Children who are actively disliked by their peers are normally described as disruptive, aggressive, attention-seeking, immature, and/or hyperactive. In addition, rejected children lack pro-social skills such as cooperation, leadership, and friendliness, and they fail to follow the rules. These children tend to maintain their unpopular status over time, and they tend to carry this status into new groups. Boys are more likely to be rejected than girls, and aggression is a main characteristic of these boys. Peer Descriptors Disruptive Aggressive Attention Seeking Immature Hyperactive Unattractive Classroom Characteristics Disruptive Talkative Language Deficits Restless Sensitive Rule-Violating Behavior

REJECTED CHILDREN DSM IV Diagnosis Adjustment Disorder Conduct Disorder Affective Disorder Developmental Disorder Attention Deficit Disorder Schizophrenia Oppositional Disorder Overanxious Disorder

Statistics There are no statistics on how many rejected children there are, as these children may fall into a multitude of diagnosis. We do know these children are probably in Tier 3 of Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports (PBIS), and they are getting referrals for their behavioral issues. So, I will look at the latest discipline referrals for Portland Public Schools to get an idea of the statistics for rejected children. The following are major discipline referrals defined as out-of-school suspension (1 day > suspension < 10 days) and expulsions. Elementary Schools
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As predicted, were looking at about 5% of the school population, and there is an obvious pattern in referral rates with African Americans, followed by American Indian/Alaskan, Hispanic and Multi-Ethnic. Is the problem one of racism; issues within

REJECTED CHILDREN the different cultures; or perhaps a combination of both factors. We already know the majority of the rejected children are boys. Impact One of the most important developmental milestones for children is learning positive interpersonal relationship skills and being accepted within peer groups. Rejected children lack various social skills, including: Cooperation Competition Leadership Conflict Resolution Friendship Skills No Stress Support

In addition, there are risk factors in educational pursuits and social development. Educational Pursuits Negative Perception of School School Avoidance Academic Difficulties School Dropout Personal/Social Development Juvenile Delinquency Mental Health Issues Loneliness Social Dissatisfaction Drug and Alcohol Use

Unfortunately, rejected children tend to retain their status over time and between groups (Reda-Norton, 1995).

REJECTED CHILDREN Treatment and Interventions - PBIS

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REJECTED CHILDREN Classroom Guidance In classroom guidance, we want to build an inclusive environment by promoting empathy, community and celebrating our differences. The issue begins in elementary school, so I will focus on this age group. Lessons can be done by teachers or school counselors. Grade Lesson Name K-2 Barthellos Wing a Tale of a Very Brave Bug K-2 Getting Along with Others/Teamwork Character Traits Citizenship, Respect, Caring, Tolerance Cooperation, Citizenship, Tolerance, Respect K-3 The Skin You Live In Cooperation, Caring, Respect, Self Control K-5 K-5 K-5 1-4 1-4 3-5 What is Fair? The Giving Tree Toestomper & the Caterpillars The Crayon Box That Talked Oliver Button is a Sissy The Rough-Face Girl Fair versus Needs Kindness, Giving Purpose, Peer Pressure Uniqueness, Cooperation Differences, Stereotyping Citizenship, Caring, Respect, Tolerance 4-5 Terrible Things Courage, Integrity, Tolerance

REJECTED CHILDREN Small Group Rejected children lack essential social skills, including cooperation, competition, leadership, conflict resolution and friendship skills. The small group sessions will focus on these skills for elementary students. Target Audience Elementary Students Time Allotment 20-35 minutes, depending on age. Note: Groups should not include more than 2-grade levels. Session 1: 1. Welcome students. 2. Review purpose of group (from intake interview). 3. Establish group rules. 4. Group activity (Name Game: getting to know each other). 5. Discuss personal objectives and goals. 6. Review and closing. Session 2:

1. Welcome students. 2. Review and discuss previous session. 3. Kokology exercise. 4. Story.Read Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day (Viorst). 5. Group activity (discuss feelings). 6. Sharing and closing. Session 3: 1. Welcome students. 2. Review and discuss previous session (feelings). 3. Optical illusion exercise. 4. Story. Read: My Best Friend (Hutchins). 5. Group discussion (meeting new friends). 6. Sharing and closing. Session 4: 1. Welcome students. 2. Review and discuss previous session (meeting new friends). 3. Kokology exercise.

REJECTED CHILDREN 4. Story. Read The Giving Tree (Silverstein). 5. Group activity (ways to keep friends). 6. Sharing and closing. Session 5: 1. Welcome students. 2. Review and discuss previous session (ways to keep friends). 3. Story. Read: Jessica by (Kevin Henkes). 4. Group activity (identifying emotions; reacting to happy or sad friends). 5. Literary discussion and homework (pass out books by Kevin Henkes). Books: A Weekend With Wendell, Chester's Way, Chrysanthemum, Julius, Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse, Owen, Sheila Rae The Brave, Wemberly Worried. Session 6: 1. Welcome students. 2. Discuss previous session (Jessica/identifying emotions). 3. Group activity (book reports). 4. Identifying differences and similarities through literature. 5. Evaluation and closing. (Berman, 2005) Closing Thoughts


Its become really evident that we havent set up our schools in a way that leads to success for boys. Boys are tactile, they need to engage and be moving. Schools have become overcrowded and underfunded, and keeping order becomes the priority. (Griffin, 3/14/2013). As future school counselors, this is a challenge we will face.

REJECTED CHILDREN Resources Awareness, empathy, skills: Site created to help educators learn about neurobehavioral disorders -- the "hidden" disabilities that can impair a student's academic, behavioral, and social-emotional functioning. This website contains tips, materials, and strategies to help children with a variety of disorders and information on classroom behavior Intervention resource: tools and resources to help school staff and parents to promote positive classroom behaviors and foster effective learning for all children and youth - Specific interventions for ADHD - Futures without violence: Everyone has the right to live free of violence. Futures Without Violence, formerly Family Violence Prevention Fund,


works to prevent and end violence against women and children around the world - Childrens books online: This site contains full versions of dozens of classic children's books, including David Copperfield, Grandpa in Oz and Peter Rabbit. A number of the books are available in different languages, including Polish, Italian, German, French and Russian

REJECTED CHILDREN References Benner, G. J., Rogers-Adkinson, D., Mooney, P., & Abbott, D. A. (2007, Winter). An investigation of the relationship between receptive language and social


adjustment in a general sample of elementary school children. The Journal of AtRisk Issues, 13(1), 13-20. Berman, L. (2005). Small Group Therapy for Social Skills [Therapy]. Retrieved from American School Couselor Association: Boxer, P., Goldstein, S. E., Musher-Eizenman, D., Dubow, E. F., & Heretick, D. (2005, 10/1). Developmental issues in school-based aggression prevention from a social-cognitive perspective. The Journal of Primary Prevention, 383-397. Capuzzi, D., & Cross, D. R. (2008). Youth at Risk (5th ed.). Alexandria, VA: American Counseling Association. Griffin, A. (3/14/2013, ). Mental illness: A difficult diagnosis with sometimes deadly consequences. Oregonian. Retrieved from Jongsma, A. (2006). The Complete Adult Psychotherapy Treatment Planner (4th ed.). Hoboken, New Jersey: John Wiley & Sons. (2013). Reda-Norton, L. J. (1995). Elementary school predictors of adolescent adjustment problems (Doctoral dissertation). Santostefano, S. (1984, Spring 1984). Cognitive control therapy with children: rationale and technique. Psychotherapy, 21(1), 76-90. Tong, M. (2000). The school in school violence: definitions and facts. Journal of Emotional and Behavioral Disorders, 8(2).