Any advice will do! LONG VENT!

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by txmomteacher2, Aug 28, 2009.

  1. txmomteacher2

    txmomteacher2 Enthusiast

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    Aug 28, 2009

    I am going to preface this by saying I am new to the district and the community so I don't want to do anything that would offend anyone BUT....When we had meet the teacher night last week this parent asked for a "meeting" to introduce "herself" more to me. I met her after hours in my classroom. VERY nice lady, in fact she is one of those way to nice parents. You know the one that wants to help ALL the time. In fact she made me homemade bread and brought it to me. She is one of about three that are there every day for lunch. The three of them are very good friends. They don't seem to think that the rules apply to them. The kids are supposed to go to the cafeteria before school. Every morning at least two of them have brought their kids down to the room where I feel obligated to "entertain" them. When I have made the kids take my own daughter down to the cafeteria the parents stay and gab in my classroom. The other one has been late 4 out of the 5 days. One of the boys is VERY smart. In fact I think he could be placed in the next grade if the parent would let him. Well anyway on the 3rd day of class the Mom came in and told me that she wanted harder work for her son. I was very nice and asked her to give me at least a week or so I was still evaluating the class. ( I have some very bright kids and we might just be able to skip ahead to some harder stuff if they will just let me get my head above the first week flood zone) Well this afternoon I informed the whole class that I was pretty tolerant of the rules not being followed to the letter of the law this week. I mean they are after all only first graders and some of them are very young first graders. But I warned them I was going to stop being so nice next week. This student went home told his mom that I was going to stop being so nice and he wanted to quit first grade. We get out of school at 3:25 and at 3:52 she was emailing me. I don't know whether to laugh or to be a little upset. I mean this kid is super sweet, hasn't broken any rules, I haven't even had to look at him twice. I didn't even direct my statement at one child, I directed at the WHOLE class because this afternoon was total chaos in my room. I was just giving them fair warning. Anyway I know this child and his family are going through some health issues right now. So how would you guys approach the Mom's that their kids need to go the cafeteria and not our room first. I do want to have an open door policy to my room so that parents don't feel like I am ignoring them, but these three kids are great and no issues whatsoever...... except their Moms.:lol:
     
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  3. shouldbeasleep

    shouldbeasleep Enthusiast

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    Aug 28, 2009

    I think I wouldn't be in my room around the time they arrive. Or I would have the door shut and "Please do not disturb" sign out and be at my desk, diligently "working". I be very distracted and keep looking at the junk on my desk if they barged in anyway. I'd look around the parents and remind the student to go on to the cafeteria, now, darling. I'd put my hand on the door and say, "Thank you for coming in." I'd take extra-strength Advil in the morning.

    I'd close that open door policy for a week until they got the message.
     
  4. monsieurteacher

    monsieurteacher Aficionado

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    Aug 28, 2009

    I would just explain nicely to them that you really need the time before class to prepare for your day, and that is why the rule is in place that they need to take their children to the cafeteria. You want to give their children the best education that you can, but you need to have that time right before they come in to prepare yourself. Try your best to put it in child-centred terms... while it is for your sanity, it is also for the kids sanity (cause they don't want a grouchy teacher!) It sounds to me like these parents are helicopter parents, and they only want what's best for their child.

    Also, you can inform them that you would be more than willing to speak with them after school, on your lunch break... or whenever you feel comfortable talking to them... they already have your e-mail, so if you're ok with them contacting you there, encourage that instead... different teachers have different comfort levels, but just give them as many avenues as you are comfortable with in order to get in touch with you on YOUR terms.
     
  5. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Aug 28, 2009

    I would concentrate on how important it is to teach kids that the success of the class community depends on rules being followed. That anarchy is no way to learn anything, and of course we want her darling to learn all he can. Now that the 'Honeymoon" phase of school is over, it's time to set up the rules that future teachers will expect to see kids following:cafeteria before school and so on. That these are school rules, designed to ensure the safety of all these kids in the school.

    Don't make it about you or her or her child, but about the process of being part of the school community and following school rules.
     
  6. kpa1b2

    kpa1b2 Aficionado

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    Aug 28, 2009

    When I have those parents who think the rules of go to the gym until x time, I leave my room. I take that opportunity to make a last run to the bathroom or go to another teacher's room to talk. Yes, it was an excuse to visit with a friend!
     
  7. JoviHawk

    JoviHawk Rookie

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    Aug 29, 2009

    I've locked my door before and went to another classroom to "hide" for a few days. They got the hint.
     
  8. TeacherSandra

    TeacherSandra Enthusiast

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    I'd lock my door and not answer. If it's the office, I'm sure they will get you by intercom.
     
  9. passionateacher

    passionateacher Comrade

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    Aug 29, 2009

    I'd lock the door. That way if they knocked, you could answer it like you're really busy and say, "Hi. Is there something I can help you with?" so that they know you're only going to speak with them if they have a question. They'd probably get the hint that you're not there for chatting. Well, I'd hope they would anyway.
     
  10. TeacherSandra

    TeacherSandra Enthusiast

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    If you do answer, hold onto the knob and say, "I'm in the middle of something..." and see if they can wait. You would think that they'd get the hint after a few times like this, but some people just won't take no for an answer. :blush:
     
  11. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

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    Aug 29, 2009

    We have this issue too and I usually am one to get to school early; they would bring them down to the classroom earlier and earlier. I tell the parents that it's school policy for students to be dropped in the cafeteria. We don't want the kids wandering the halls with no supervision. Also even though I'm there early, sometimes I have to go make copies or go talk to the office and I can't just take the kids with me to do those things each day.

    It's very hard for me to be firm on this, particularly in the beginning and with the young ones.
     
  12. tiffharmon2001

    tiffharmon2001 Comrade

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    Aug 29, 2009

    I keep my door locked before school and usually put out a sign that Mrs. H will be opening the door to the classroom after I pick up the other students from the playgroud (where they are supposed to go before school). If someone knocks I just ignore it and keep working. I also put it in my weekly letter for several weeks at the beginning that I need that time to prepare for the day and that their child will not be supervised in my classroom if they come in early because I may have to run out to make copies, etc.
     
  13. TeacherC

    TeacherC Connoisseur

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    Aug 29, 2009

    If it is school policy, you might be able to pull out the admin.'s rules...something like "The principal is pretty strict about letting kids into our rooms early and I don't want anyone to get in trouble"...or something. I would hate it if there were kids in my room early every morning- I do leave often, so I even teach the kids that if I am not there they need to be in the cafeteria waiting.
     
  14. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Aug 29, 2009

    Develop the habit of grabbing a folder and heading out your door to a 'meeting'.
     
  15. Yank7

    Yank7 Habitué

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    Aug 29, 2009

    Tell them that the school rule states that all children must report to the cafeteria before school begins. Since this is the rule you must enforce it for everyone.This is for safety precautions in case the teacher is occupied and cannot stay with the child.
    Also,as I have learned the hard way,it is dangerous to make blanket statements to the whole class,as it is usually the ones who have done nothing wrong who get the most upset. Those who create the problem usuallydon't realize that they have done something wrong.
     
  16. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    Aug 29, 2009

    I agree with the other posters. You want an open door policy, but your time before school is not part of that policy. I had the same kind of problems and had to resort to locking the door until it was time for the students to enter. And don't spend any time talking to the parents when you do open the door. Stand right there and say good morning but don't let any parents in the room. Your teaching day begins the moment those children enter your room, you can't be distracted by parents. You may feel that you are being mean to the parents, but they have to learn to follow the rules just like their children.
     
  17. Lynnnn725

    Lynnnn725 Connoisseur

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    Aug 29, 2009

    Put a little reminder in the peek of the week or classroom newsletter that school policy states that all students should go to the cafeteria before school. I love to blame everything on "school policy."
     
  18. txmomteacher2

    txmomteacher2 Enthusiast

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    Aug 29, 2009

    Thanks everyone for the advice. i just found out that one of these moms will start back to school next week so that is one down and two to go. I think I am going to start closing the door and if I have to resort to locking it I will.
     
  19. jenejoy

    jenejoy Companion

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    Aug 30, 2009

    I'd let them know (basically how you did with the students) that now that the first week of school is over they need to drop their students off in the cafeteria. You need the morning to prep for the day so you can give your best to their children and the rest of your class. Let them know that if they need to speak with you they can make an appointment ahead of time by calling or leave you a note and you will get back to them that day or see you after school. Then I would lock my door. It understandable in the first week for this to happen, but I would not let it continue any longer.
     

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