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What would you say to this teacher?

My son went from being the boy who gets the fewest number of daily reprimands in Kindergarten to the boy getting the most number of daily reprimands in first grade. I started the year speaking with other parents who's children had already been through this teacher's class and was told she seems very strict at the beginning of the year but as the kids start adjusting to the rules the number of "check marks" they receive will steadily go down. So, I figured I would give it some time and see what happens.
What has happened is that he is now receiving THREE check marks daily vs. the ONE he was getting daily at the beginning of the year. He's gotten worse. Now he constantly says he hates school because of the check marks and that now his friends don't like him anymore because the teacher doesn't like him.
His biggest issue is distraction. He constantly loses focus and tends to space off in the middle of a task. (Cont'd below)

Answer Question
 
sillyt

Asked by sillyt at 2:38 PM on Oct. 14, 2009 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

Level 13 (1,048 Credits)
Answers (7)
  • He came home yesterday upset because he got three check marks. He said that two of them were for the same issue. He was wearing a pair of athletic pants with a zipper on them and he kept messing around with the zipper when he was supposed to be listening to the teacher. When his math teacher caught him doing this she threw the dry board eraser at him. It didn’t hit him and maybe she wasn’t trying to. I’m sure she just wanted to get his attention but seriously, what kind of teacher THROWS a solid object at a child? I’m taking off work early today to go talk to her but I don’t even know what to say. I’m afraid I’m going to walk in and go off on her which wouldn’t help me or my son. What would you do?
    sillyt

    Answer by sillyt at 2:39 PM on Oct. 14, 2009

  • That definitely won't help your son, perhaps before you speak you should LISTEN and see what she has to say, perhaps that will change your opinion of her, enforce her opinion of her, give you understanding, etc... who knows, but definitely get her side first. Tell her you're very concerned about DSs behavior, all the check marks, and now going to school has become stressful for him. What can the two of you do together to help your son?
    gramsmom

    Answer by gramsmom at 2:43 PM on Oct. 14, 2009

  • Mom, count to 20 before you walk in there, I know you want to choke her but use your better judgement. I would simply tell her how you think her system iis doing more bad than good in your sons case and her throwing the eraser was not much help either, ask her to explain to you her version and take it from there.
    older

    Answer by older at 2:46 PM on Oct. 14, 2009

  • I studied this when I did my masters. She's using the token system. Some children respond well, hence the improvements she's seen in the past. However, it can also make it worse for others, hence your son. Sounds like your son gets distracted easily and if they give him 20 check marks in a day it's not going to matter.

    As a teacher, I would do the following. During a directed lesson (this is when they aren't supposed to be talking) look at him before he loses focus. Next step, say, "now DS check me to see if I make a mistake." Next step, HELPER! "Now as I read the sentence you will help me by following with your finger." I could go on and on and on.
    Also, Everybody stand up and repeat "sum is the same as equal!"
    Think, pair, share
    10-2 is the most important. You're supposed to teach for 10 minutes then give kids 2 minutes to tell their partner what you taught them.

    As I said, I could go on and on!
    Vero0724

    Answer by Vero0724 at 2:55 PM on Oct. 14, 2009

  • As you may have guessed I was completely against the token system and more towards community of learners (that's what my thesis was on). Problem is that the token system is the most popular and shows results faster. Go in there and as gramsmom said, LISTEN. If you don't like what you hear, then you give her my suggestions. Tell her in your own words "My child isn't a cardboard cut-out and the token system isn't working for him" "WE need to find more solutions" (because there are MANY OTHER SOLUTIONS!)
    Vero0724

    Answer by Vero0724 at 2:58 PM on Oct. 14, 2009

  • Thanks gamsmom and vero. I really am not a snap judgement type of person. It just breaks my heart to see how much my son loved school last year and how much he hates it this year. I do intend to listen to her side of the story and talk to her about working together to help my son with his distraction issues.
    I'm very nervous about this because I do know of another parent who had this same problem last year with this teacher and made several attempts to work with her to no avail.
    sillyt

    Answer by sillyt at 3:28 PM on Oct. 14, 2009

  • Let me know how the conference goes. I'm very curious to know how she responds. I had a parent come to me before school started and said her son was wetting his bed cuz he was scared of me. My nephew told him I was VERY STRICT LOL! I made it a point to let him know when he wasn't behaving but also let him know I cared about him and was interested to get to know him. Unfortunately I had to take a leave of absence and the substitute made his life very difficult. Mom told me he wanted to go to church to pray so that God would help his teacher be nicer to him and I could go back to work, That broke my heart!
    Vero0724

    Answer by Vero0724 at 4:16 PM on Oct. 14, 2009

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