Your little darling is so convinced they will be a millionaire professional sportsperson/musician/actor because you've always told them how 'special' they were, that they carry this overinflated sense of entitlement into the classroom along with 30 other 'special' kids.
I see this attitude in the classroom every day but I chalk it up to: * intellectual immaturity and lack of realistic future expectations * internalizing "gangsta"-style bragging * parent[s] modeling abrasive, confrontational behaviour rather than to "you're special" talk. As a general rule, my classrooms look like: 10% - want to learn 80% - warm bodies, can be kept on task if the situation is optimal. 10% - deliberately disruptive/destructive The 10% learners will learn no matter what. Sometimes they resort to iPods to drown out the chaos from the disruptives. The 10% disruptives can sometimes be reached, but usually they serve to undercut the success of the 80% "normals". The 10% disruptives that are not amenable to casual behaviour modification in the classroom (ie, cannot be altered without 100% teacher attention) need to be booted from the class until they can behave civilly. But having to send a kid out of the classroom for discipline/referral is widely regarded as signs of poor teacher performance. Why couldn't s/he keep control of the classroom, huh? I am as anti-1984 as the next guy, but I swear we need video cameras in the classroom so the parents/public/administration can see the scope of the problem.
Consider the postage stamp: its usefulness consists in the ability to stick to one thing till it gets there. -- Josh Billings