Arguing with Adults

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by jen12, May 29, 2013.

  1. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

    Joined:
    May 8, 2007
    Messages:
    1,010
    Likes Received:
    5

    May 29, 2013

    Do kids argue with adults more than they used to? I'll admit that I may be wrong, but as I remember it, I would never argue with an adult when I was a kid. I was terrified of getting into trouble, and "talking back" as my mother called it was huge on the NO list in my house.

    The last two days I was subbing in a second grade class where it seemed like all the kids did was argue with me. Some of it was just standard things that I face in any classroom. I was doing things "wrong" because it wasn't exactly the same as their teacher. Generally I just assure them that it isn't my first rodeo, that I've done whatever it is that they're concerned about before, and while my approach may not mirror their teacher's approach completely, it'll have the same ending effect.

    One student, though, was passionately arguing with me over a math problem. It was subtracting multiple digits and the digit on top was a zero. I explained that they had to borrow from the tens, cross out...etc...to make it from a zero to a ten. This girl told me it should be eleven. She would not let go of the idea that it should be eleven. I went back over it (I'll admit I've made errors before while trying to write and explain at the same time, just like any teacher) but there was no way to make it an eleven. She just would not accept that. "But our teacher said..." over and over, louder and louder. She would not let me move on. I finally had to just end it and move on.

    Another example has to do with the butterflies that they had changing. The students were asking about the red substance near the cocoons, thinking it was blood. The aide explained that it was just a substance that the butterflies didn't need, but the kids were convinced it was blood, raising voices with "Our teacher said!"

    I also had a kid trying to tell a parent volunteer what he would or wouldn't do.

    Oy...this is just this week's examples. Perhaps it is because I sub and the students are locked into their routines, but I encounter so much arguing...it amazes me. I generally shut it down very quickly, unless, like in the case of the math problem it might be an issue of not understanding.

    Is it an end of the year thing? Is that what's making them so difficult lately?
     
  2.  
  3. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2006
    Messages:
    7,946
    Likes Received:
    4

    May 29, 2013

    I would have had my butt whooped by teacher and parent had I sassed the teacher. No way would I have done such a thing!

    I do think students in general are more...um, confident? That's a positive spin to it, I suppose. Outspoken. Friendly with teachers, even. That can be fun but also problematic when they have difficulty understanding boundaries. I don't want children to be fearful, but respect is a necessity.
     
  4. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2007
    Messages:
    14,601
    Likes Received:
    2,711

    May 29, 2013

    I tend to agree. I wonder if there might be a cultural component to this as well.
     
  5. giraffe326

    giraffe326 Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2006
    Messages:
    7,075
    Likes Received:
    15

    May 29, 2013

    I agree with everything!
     
  6. stampin'teacher

    stampin'teacher Cohort

    Joined:
    May 15, 2011
    Messages:
    607
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 30, 2013

    Definitely agree!

    My school is more progressive, so the lines are even more blurry. Kids call teachers by first names, parents want to be friends with teachers, etc. This blur often causes students to feel it's well within their rights to argue more, or can act a particular way. It's almost as if they don't understand the lines because respectful habits aren't enforced. I make sure that even at a more "liberal" school, that I maintain boundaries, as I'm used to and more comfortable with clear lines of respect established.
     
  7. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2006
    Messages:
    4,858
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 30, 2013

    I see it too and it's truly one of my pet peeves. I am always telling them just trust me, I know what I'm talking about! And yes, I see it more and more every year.
     
  8. Securis

    Securis Cohort

    Joined:
    Dec 16, 2007
    Messages:
    695
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 30, 2013

    The trick here is to ask questions and keep asking questions but never really offer an answer. You're at least making them think about whatever it is and it's easier than being on opposing sides. i.e. "Why do you think that?" "Is there any other possibility?" Also, their little minds are so easily 'distractable' that a little misdirection will diffuse the situation for a revisit later.
     
  9. monsieurteacher

    monsieurteacher Aficionado

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,231
    Likes Received:
    66

    May 30, 2013

    I argued a lot as a kid. And yes, I even got in trouble for it at home. I think sometimes that teachers are often the ones who would never have behaved that way, and therefore they're shocked to see that behaviour in this generation. I can say it existed in me, and many of my peers.
     
  10. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

    Joined:
    May 13, 2004
    Messages:
    5,913
    Likes Received:
    172

    May 30, 2013

    In my opinion, there's a whole LOT of things kids do now that I didn't dream of doing when I was a child. Plus, I attended private schools where the rules were a LOT stricter. Times are just different nowadays with EVERYTHING & not for the better.
     
  11. Bella2010

    Bella2010 Habitué

    Joined:
    May 1, 2010
    Messages:
    807
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 30, 2013

    Very well said. I remember sassing one time, and I got a taste of corporal punishment and decided it wasn't worth it. I still can't argue with someone who is my parents age or older.

    Beth
     
  12. RedStripey

    RedStripey Comrade

    Joined:
    Apr 11, 2013
    Messages:
    287
    Likes Received:
    2

    May 30, 2013

    Yup! I work as a tutor and the other day I asked one 4th grade boy to start his work and he looked me in the eye and said "No. I don't want to." I would've gotten my ass kicked if I said that to a teacher or a tutor as a kid.

    On the other hand, I would talk back to my parents all the time. But I was terrified of my teachers haha.
     
  13. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2006
    Messages:
    7,946
    Likes Received:
    4

    May 30, 2013

    I would sometimes sass my mother, but I still tend to "excuse" it because she was sometimes difficult to live with. I'm glad our relationship is good now. :)

    But I knew that when I left the house I was to be on my best behavior and I representing the family and our name.
     
  14. SF_Giants66

    SF_Giants66 Cohort

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2012
    Messages:
    635
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 30, 2013

    So I guess the moral of the story should be if children argue with teachers they should get a whipping.



    I think maybe this problem is more because children aren't taught when it is and isn't appropriate to speak out. Maybe this could be solved by asking them to come after class to discuss issues or wait until a more appropriate time.

    I think all this, "the adults are the law and don't argue with them" attitude is pretty much teachers being narcissistic and full of themselves.
     
  15. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2006
    Messages:
    7,946
    Likes Received:
    4

    May 30, 2013

    No one said they should get a whooping. We just said that was the deal for us growing up.

    To me, disagreeing with a teacher and discussing an issue him him or her is a world apart from sassing and being outright rude.
     
  16. SF_Giants66

    SF_Giants66 Cohort

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2012
    Messages:
    635
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 30, 2013

    Okay, forgive my misunderstanding. However, what I read into those posts seemed to be a complaint that a lot of people have especially in more conservative areas that not hitting children more like it used to be has caused a lot of problems in which I argue fear mongering is a terrible way for people to get their points across, especially to children.

    I just meant we can make suggestions as asking the student to come individually or have their parents give us a call about issues they are having instead of giving them the impression that we don't think their opinions matter.
     
  17. dannyboy

    dannyboy Companion

    Joined:
    May 26, 2009
    Messages:
    129
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 30, 2013

    If a child is being disagreeable, then I come down hard on him/her. If they are having a logical argument, I applaud them for their guts in bucking the system. I encourage them in class to challenge me if they think I am wrong. I even say totally wrong things just so I can wait to see if I am challenged, and then chastise the class if they don't call me on the error.
     
  18. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2011
    Messages:
    5,770
    Likes Received:
    1,004

    May 30, 2013

    I've done this often. I have students who look exactly alike but are not related, identical twins, and students with names that are spelled the same but pronounced differently.

    Every time I mix it up, it's met with a "*groan* You don't know your own students' names!"

    I just respond with an "Oh, please, you guys have been in this class the entire year and you still can't name everyone in the classroom." :p
     
  19. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

    Joined:
    May 8, 2007
    Messages:
    1,010
    Likes Received:
    5

    May 30, 2013


    Why is it that in any internet discussion, there is always someone who takes the topic to the most extreme position?

    Nobody is talking about hitting kids. Someone mentioned that that is what happened to them. No one said anything about creating a fear culture.

    My position is that we are way too lenient. We have gone from the "it takes a village" level of teaching respect for adults to "how dare you correct MY child?" The kids know this and they abuse it.

    I have had similar experience to the poster who mentioned mixing names up or mispronouncing the names and the children just don't let it go. We live in a time of talkers rather than listeners. Just look at these discussion boards as an example.

    Telling a student that arguments will not be accepted in a classroom environment is not the same as telling them their opinions are not valid. You are teaching them to listen and hold their concerns until it is their time to talk rather than bursting out and confusing the lesson for the rest of the class. It also goes to classroom management. If a principal or parent or someone from the district walked in and saw a teacher arguing with a student, how much faith will that adult have in the teacher's classroom management skills?
     
  20. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

    Joined:
    May 8, 2007
    Messages:
    1,010
    Likes Received:
    5

    May 30, 2013

    Agreed. If I do make an error - and it has happened - usually if I'm writing on the whiteboard and talking at the same time. I have left letters out of words or written down the wrong number. I'll gladly fix it and thank them for correcting me.

    On the other hand, if I am explaining something and they think I'm wrong, I explain it two or three more times in different ways and they still argue, then their classmates tell them they're wrong and they still argue, it becomes less a case of being assertive and more a case of being argumentative.
     
  21. Bella2010

    Bella2010 Habitué

    Joined:
    May 1, 2010
    Messages:
    807
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 30, 2013

    Not what I meant. At. All. I'm not going to justify or defend my post. I said that's what happened to me and didn't mean to imply corporal punishment will solve everything.

    Different strokes, different folks.

    Beth
     
  22. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2007
    Messages:
    4,468
    Likes Received:
    1,497

    May 30, 2013

    Great thread, JustMe!

    I don't remember there being many issues (in the classroom) with poor behavior when I was growing up. There were always one or two naughty kids, but that was it!

    Personally, I only remember getting in trouble once in elementary school (it was first grade...I got a drink of water without asking). I went home crying because I was mortified that I had to move my name from the "happy side" to the "sad side".

    My parents never hit me, but I was very afraid of my dad as a kid. I did not want to get him angry because I knew I'd be grounded for a long, long time!

    Nowadays, I don't think enough kids are afraid of getting consequences at home.
     
  23. SF_Giants66

    SF_Giants66 Cohort

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2012
    Messages:
    635
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 30, 2013

    I just think if fear mongering is the way to get kids to be respectful then society has failed.

    Punishments should be used as last resorts, not something that hangs over kids heads and keeps them from ever making a mistake. All this emphasis on negative reinforcement isn't really healthy.
     
  24. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2011
    Messages:
    5,770
    Likes Received:
    1,004

    May 31, 2013

    My parents hit me a lot at home, and did their best to punish me when they felt I was walking astray.

    However I didn't hold nearly as much respect for them, or fear as I did the fear of losing the respect of my teachers. I was way more afraid of not being liked by the teachers I loved. (well in elementary school at least)
     
  25. John Lee

    John Lee Groupie

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2009
    Messages:
    1,486
    Likes Received:
    66

    May 31, 2013

    I think we are missing the point. Kids have not changed at all. It is the adults who have changed. In the 50's, a 30-year old man was a war veteran. He was often married. But he had to be responsible. All the way into the 70's and maybe into the 80's, you had to grow up. You had to get a job and work. It was a living (not necessarily a life's work). And you didn't work so that you could spend it on yourself. You worked hard because a dollar was worth something, and you couldn't just charge things whenever you felt like it. You needed to save (i.e. be responsible). My dad didn't have the newest pair of anything. (I don't remember him ever buying an article of clothing). He didn't spend money on Disneyland passes, his Crossfit membership, or Chinese characters tattood on his arm.

    Now... the reason I bring this all up, is that I believe that it is related, as to why kids seem less respectful. Dad (back in the day) was in no mood to hear about kids not wanting to clean their plate; Dad had to work hard to put food on the table, and you were expected to eat whatever was there. Nowadays it's not like that. He was in no mood, and so you better listen to him. He wasn't messing around, because he had neither the inclination or the energy to deal with nonsense.

    As a s(cr)ub teacher, I'm treated with the same level of respect as I remember as a kid. But when I act more informally, I definitely see a lowering of that standard. It isn't a them (kid) problem; it's a we (adults) problem.
     
  26. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2006
    Messages:
    7,946
    Likes Received:
    4

    May 31, 2013

    John, no doubt that plays a role. For sure. But I agree with whoever it was here who said a few days ago that of course children have changed as a result of technology and communication. It changes so much for everyone!
     
  27. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Messages:
    4,212
    Likes Received:
    8

    May 31, 2013

    This drives me absolutely crazy.

    One of the first things I teach my students is not to argue with grown-ups. I tell them, "When an adult at school tells you to do something, you do it." I always refer back to that when they try to argue with me about something.

    I also tell them that, yes, sometimes I might be wrong. However, if that is the case, please do what I tell you to do at the time, and approach me later with more information. (If I accuse a child of doing something that they didn't do, for example.) Do NOT argue with me about it.

    I consider this one of the most disrespectful thing that kids do. I have zero tolerance for it!
     
  28. emmalyne

    emmalyne Rookie

    Joined:
    May 31, 2013
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 31, 2013

    I don't see what's so bad about talking about to a teacher. I've done my fair share of student teaching and I've had plenty of students talk back to me. I don't take it as disrespectful or rude. Kids are people, too. I remember as a child, I use to get in trouble for talking back. It wasn't the fact that I was TRYING to be rude, I was just curious. I think when I get my own classroom, after my student teaching, I'll allow students to talk back. Students are human, they are people, and they deserve just as much as respect as the teacher.
     
  29. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2007
    Messages:
    14,601
    Likes Received:
    2,711

    May 31, 2013

    What's your definition of "talking back"?
     
  30. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2006
    Messages:
    7,946
    Likes Received:
    4

    May 31, 2013

    Anyone who will purposefully welcome "talking back" must have a different definition of it than I do. Discussions, questions, even pressing questions and curiosity is much different from what I call sassing and outright disrepect.
     
  31. DrivingPigeon

    DrivingPigeon Phenom

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Messages:
    4,212
    Likes Received:
    8

    May 31, 2013

    Exactly.

    When I tell a child to do something, and they say, "Why?" or whine, I find that disrespectful.
     
  32. SF_Giants66

    SF_Giants66 Cohort

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2012
    Messages:
    635
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 31, 2013

    In 6th grade I remember our teacher started out with a promise that she'd never make us do anything that we can't do, but asked we didn't argue about what she asked us to do in return.

    I don't have a problem with asking children to be respectful, but the authoritarian military approach is laughable in my opinion.
     
  33. msufan

    msufan Comrade

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2008
    Messages:
    261
    Likes Received:
    0

    May 31, 2013

    I can envision a genuine "Why?" or a whiny/impudent "Why?" getting very different reactions from me.
     
  34. emmalyne

    emmalyne Rookie

    Joined:
    May 31, 2013
    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    0

    Jun 1, 2013

    I had a little girl who kept talking during the lesson. I asked her to put her head down, until she can control herself and be respectful when others are talking. She straight out told me "No." and I asked her why. She explained to me that she wasnt understanding the lesson and asked her partner to help. I understood and told her the next time she has a question, ask me.I

    I had a 14 year old boy refuse to leave the classroom because he didnt think the reason why I kicked him out was right. I asked him why he thinks he got kicked out and he gave me an explanation. I understood and told him to go sit back down. after class, he came up and apologized for whatever he did.
    .
    I think its all about compromise. I do not believe in "not talking back because im the older adult". I'm starting to eliminate punishment from my philosophy. If I was upset and my teacher told me to go sit in the corner or get out of her classroom, I would get my parents to contact the schoolboard.
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

Total: 171 (members: 0, guests: 155, robots: 16)
test