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Do you require students to make eye contact?

Date: February 21st, 2013
By: Polly Bath

Watch this video [1:33] to learn why you might not want to say to a student, “Look at me when I’m talking to you.” Polly gives three important reasons.

When I see “Student will make eye contact ” on an IEP, it makes me crazy.

For one thing, you can’t enforce it. (Unless you do an eyeball restraint, which really isn’t recommended!)

When considering eye contact, the first thing we have to recognize is that looking at you can be a distraction for a student who is trying hard to process what you are saying.

Secondly, many kids don’t make eye contact for cultural reasons.

And finally – do you remember what it felt like as a child to be in trouble, to be scolded? Where did you look? You looked down or to the side. The last thing a kid in trouble is going to do is look the adult in the eyes.

And that’s OK.

Click on my video above for more.