Oppositional Defiant Disorder
An Educator's Guide
What is ODD?
ODD is usually present in students by the age of 8 but can appear earlier or be triggered by external events in a students life.
What are the Signs?
- Is easily angered, annoyed or irritated
- Has Frequent temper tantrums
- Argues frequently with adults, particularly the most familiar adults in their lives, such as parents
- Refuses to obey rules
- Seems to deliberately try to annoy or aggravate others
- Has low self esteem
- Has low frustration threshold
- Seeks to blame others for any misfortunes and misdeeds.
A short video for all those visual learners (Not too fond of the music)
An Educators Tool-Kit
What NOT To Do
What To Do
Decide which behaviour you want to eliminate and which you plan to ignore. Pick the most important ones and ignore the rest, engaging with all of them will be too time consuming and will validate the unwanted behaviour in the student's mind.
Work with the student to create the behaviour plan. They will be engaged and view you as less of an authoritarian to defy.
Praise positive behaviour. Even the little things, praising or rewarding positive behaviour will encourage it in the future.
Avoid absolutes and power struggles. If you are engaging in a power struggle you have already lost. Always give the student a choice, even if both outcomes would be preferable to you.
Do not take the behaviour personally. The student does not hate you, or is not acting out because of something you did, you are just the target. React calmly and simply, do not get frustrated. It is better to ignore and walk away then to engage in a power struggle.
Listen to the student. Establish and build a positive relationship with them. Get them to see that you are there to help them and do not define them based on their behaviour.
To teach students how ODD is identified, and treated
To help students develop empathy for other students who may have ODD
To normalize the discussion of mental health issues
Follow up by asking them how it makes them feel and how they usually respond to being asked to do those things
Explain that some people can develop a condition that causes them to see even the most harmless request as something they do not want to do and develop negative behaviours as a result. Today they are going to learn more about Oppositional Defiant Disorder.
Review the learning objectives above with them. They will be conducting research and presenting their findings to the class. Ask them if they already know anything about ODD or someone who has ODD and discuss their responses.
Students will be placed into small groups and and each group asked to research one of the following things:
Characteristics of ODD
How it is diagnosed and general statistics
Treatment for ODD
They will summarize the information they found on a large piece of chart paper
Each group will also be asked to brainstorm some strategies they think would be helpful for someone who has ODD.
Students will be given a handout with a chart that they will then complete by taking a gallery walk around to the other chart paper in the room.
At the end the teacher will ask the students to share the most interesting thing that they learned in the lesson. This would also be an ideal time to ask if they think that the classroom rules are fair and would help or harm a student with ODD (This could be done as an exit card or reflective journal as well)