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2 Bumps

"My teacher pulled my hair."

I was talking to my 4YO DS. I always ask him random questions, like favorite things, etc. I asked him who is favorite teacher was and he said, Mrs. Joan*...not Ms. Ashley*.

I asked him why and he said, "Ms. Ashley pulled my hair like this," and he grabbed his hair to demonstrate what happened. I asked him what he said to her afterward and he said, "I said sorry." I asked him why he said sorry to her & he said, "So she won't be mad at me anymore."

He was kind of smiling when he was telling me, but I am very concerned. He goes to a great daycare/preschool & I feel like we have a good relationship with his teacher. She's nice & does well with her class. I've never had a reason to not trust her. I have a feeling that my DS is just making it up, but at the same time - I'm concerned. Would you confront the teacher? What should I do?!

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Anonymous

Asked by Anonymous at 8:18 PM on Apr. 10, 2013 in General Parenting

Answers (12)
  • skip telling the director. Go straight to cooperate. Cooperate won't feel the need to protect anyone.
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 8:22 PM on Apr. 10, 2013

  • Does the facility have a place where you can go and observe the classroom without the children or teachers knowing you're there? If they do, I'd stop there first, and see what's going on in the classroom.

    I wouldn't confront the teacher, but I might have a conversation with her: "Johnny told me his hair was pulled the other day in class, can you tell me what happened?"

    I used to work in a daycare facility. Parents that came to us calm and curious got more response than those that came in ready to knock someone out.
    Rosehawk

    Answer by Rosehawk at 8:29 PM on Apr. 10, 2013

  • If your son is otherwise happy I'd wait. Ask you son what happened, why does he think MS. Ashly was angry. I'd also stop by unannounced to observe the class.
    RyansMom001

    Answer by RyansMom001 at 8:30 PM on Apr. 10, 2013

  • Rather than "confront" the teacher, since you are wondering if your son made it up, just "ask" the teacher. If her response doesn't satisfy you, then move up the ladder.
    SWasson

    Answer by SWasson at 8:31 PM on Apr. 10, 2013

  • The teacher is likely to lie about it. I would just make a complaint to the supervisor there so that they are all put on notice. Better safe than sorry. Make sure you document it somehow, maybe with an email first, then a follow-up call.
    hellokittykat

    Answer by hellokittykat at 9:59 PM on Apr. 10, 2013

  • If it were me I would be there and talking my head off. I would nsist the Miss A not be anywhere near my child and your complaint be filed in here file as well.
    Dardenella

    Answer by Dardenella at 10:03 PM on Apr. 10, 2013

  • this is why no one wants to be a teacher...parents that flip out over every word their kid says before they even know if its anything real! im not saying youre doing that OP, just giving you heads up not to be that parent b/c the teachers & admins will write you off as "one of those parents".

    calmly talk to both teachers about it. if its a great school and the teachers have been great all year, why go on the defensive right out the gate? just say "my son said that ms. whoever pulled his hair yesterday. is that true? it really concerns me." you'll know if they're lying by the way they react. if they stop to tell you what happened then its likely the truth, if they get hostile or ignore your concerns (make sure its not a time they're super busy) then thats a red flag. it could be something as simple as ms. whoever brushed past him and her zipper yanked his hair a little. kids exaggerate, not saying its bad, they just do that.
    okmanders

    Answer by okmanders at 10:21 PM on Apr. 10, 2013

  • I agree that a cool head should prevail. If the teachers have been great, give them the benefit of the doubt. Could Mis Ashley have accidentally pulled your son's hair while she was helping him get his jacket on? Or maybe her bracelet got caught while she was bending over his art project?

    I'm not saying nothing bad ever happens, but a friend of my sister's had a parent flip out on her because she "scratched" a kid, and it turned out her nail just made a little red mark on his neck while she was zipping up his coat. Kids aren't clear in he deails, and accidents happen.
    Ballad

    Answer by Ballad at 10:46 PM on Apr. 10, 2013

  • I'd explore it, starting with his perceptions of if she was "mad at him." How he knew that, what he thought she might have been "mad" about.

    Then I'd talk with the teacher.

    Also, consider that you were asking him about "favorites" & that might have subtly set him up to "try" to give you what you seemed to be looking for: one teacher better than another. The memory might be random/out of context in order to come up with something in response. (I used to talk to my first in those terms a lot: asking what she liked best & what/who was her favorite, until I noticed that it was essentially conditioning her to prioritize judging her experience, dividing her world based on preferences & judgments of good/bad/better/liked/not-liked. Then I shifted to being responsive to what SHE initiated. I asked differently & noticed preferences rather than implying she "should" have them. I did less directing of the content through my questions.)
    girlwithC

    Answer by girlwithC at 2:48 AM on Apr. 11, 2013

  • I'd probably try to get a sense of what the incident was (keeping in mind it might have been something very long ago) from whatever he can describe of the context. Depending on what emerged about it overall, I'd probably explore it with the teacher in the context of my son remembering his hair getting pulled, and that he seemed to be thinking that the teacher had been mad, that I wanted to follow up on this because I was concerned about his perceptions and what did she think/remember about this scenario?

    My oldest told me about a school experience with an older child (it's a mixed-age ungraded school) that was confusing & upsetting to her. It sounded from her report like the older child might have been trying to shut down a topic of conversation using a threat; she'd said something like "If I told you, you could never eat again." I mentioned it to the teacher & she explored it. It was NOT that at all but needed clarification.
    girlwithC

    Answer by girlwithC at 2:58 AM on Apr. 11, 2013

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