What to do When Older Students Throw Up

Although it is usually kindergarten students who throw up in class (yay kindergarten teachers!), older students also sometimes don’t make it to the bathroom in time, much to their embarrassment. Here are some steps to take when that happens.

  1. Older students are far less likely to want help while they are throwing up, so it is ok to stand back until it is over. Although, you may want to move things out of the way, if possible – papers, backpacks etc. No judgment if you can’t!
  2. You will want to remind the other students not to say, “EEEEEWWWWWW” and to be respectful of the student who is sick.
  3. When they are done, they will want to go to the bathroom. If you have paper towel or tissues, you can give them some to take on the way to the bathroom. Ask if they want a friend to go with them. If they say no and are in the bathroom a long time, send the most respectful student of the same gender to check on them.
  4. Call the office and let them know the caretaker is needed for a “code green”. Or, you can just say it plainly. Also ask them to call the student’s parents to come pick them up.
  5. Again, go over with the students how to treat others the way they would like to be treated. If they are sick, they do not want anyone making fun of them or making comments. When the student comes back to the room to gather their things, explain that you expect everyone to be respectful.
  6. When the student comes back, send them to the office with their things.
  7. You may want to change rooms, if possible and open windows, if not. It is not as likely with older students, however you may wish to remind them walk around the soiled area.
  8. When the student returns to school when they are well, you may want to touch base with them to reassure them that this can happen to anyone and they have nothing to be embarrassed about (even though they will be embarrassed, it may help). Or, you may feel it best to just leave it. You know your students best!

I sincerely hope you never have to use this blog post!

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