Bathroom privacy question, mainly for 3yo teachers

Discussion in 'Preschool' started by MsAnn, Feb 12, 2007.

  1. MsAnn

    MsAnn Companion

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2006
    Messages:
    221
    Likes Received:
    0

    Feb 12, 2007

    I teach a 4 year old class of kids who are 4 and 5 years old. I require them to use the restroom alone and to close the bathroom door at all times. However, after subbing in a 3 year old class of children who are 3 and 4 years old (the kids I will get next year!) they were all using the bathroom together (boys and girls) and boys were 'hanging all out' and girls where doing the same. Good gracious I about fainted!

    What is your policy? Do you allow this or do you require 100% privacy as well? Am I prude and overprotective or is this other teacher slacking in a serious area?

    Thanks for all input.
     
  2.  
  3. JenPooh

    JenPooh Virtuoso

    Joined:
    Oct 13, 2004
    Messages:
    6,367
    Likes Received:
    1

    Feb 12, 2007

    Hummm...well, in my situation, I have my daycare in my home and I only have one bathroom. In order for all the kids to get done in a timely manner sometimes one is going while the other is washing their hands. However, they are all turning 5 soon and I have had them going one at a time lately and practice more "modesty" and privacy. At 3 I don't think it's a big deal to me personally, but at nearing 5 I think it's important for them to learn how to respect other people's privacy.

    I don't think you're a prude Ann, but I do think that each teacher will think differently and have different age guidelines in this area.
     
  4. teacherkasey

    teacherkasey Cohort

    Joined:
    May 31, 2002
    Messages:
    674
    Likes Received:
    0

    Feb 12, 2007

    In my center I require all teachers/classrooms to have boys only use the bathroom with boys, girls with girls. In our younger and older 2 year old classrooms two girls or two boys will go in together. Once they are in the 3-5 classrooms, teachers allow only 1 girl at a time in the girls restroom and 1 boy in the boys restroom. I have found that a lot of parents have a problem with their children (especially as they get older) being in the restroom with another child of the same sex. I also have found that only sending one at a time eleviates the problems of them lingering in the bathroom and taking a long time. We have sinks outside of the bathrooms so they can come out to wash their hands.

    I don't know how comfortable I would be with 3-5 year old girls and boys using the bathroom together.
     
  5. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2001
    Messages:
    24,959
    Likes Received:
    2,116

    Feb 12, 2007

    IN the preK I taught, there was a bathroom set up behind a half wall in the classroom. There were two stalls with no doors on them and a curtain hanging at the in 'door' and out 'door' of the bathroom area. Kids would line up at the in door and would have to pass by the other stall in order to exit the 'out door'. I don't remember what we did for boys/girls- maybe line up girls first, then boys? Anyway the bathroom issue nearly drove me crazy- Kids were required to be potty trained but weren't 100%, kids who wanted 'help' with a variety of potty needs (that's not potty trained in my book), on and on and on. One year was enough for me. Last year in 2nd grade a boy asked me to zip him. I called that parent that afternoon. I hated thinking that the privacy and intimacy issues with toileting really could put a teacher at risk for all kinds of accusations. NO THANKS.
     
  6. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2006
    Messages:
    3,565
    Likes Received:
    0

    Feb 12, 2007

    I personally don't see the big deal at 3 years old. Most of my mom's group kids strip naked to shower outdoors at our community pool after swimming in the summer, too. A the PreK my girls attend, the bathroom is for boys and girls.
     
  7. kimrandy1

    kimrandy1 Enthusiast

    Joined:
    May 8, 2005
    Messages:
    2,181
    Likes Received:
    1

    Feb 12, 2007

    My students are 4. I have one bathroom, single "stall." They must close the door and use the bathroom in complete privacy. I will help zip and button, but only if they come out and I do it in the big room in front of everyone.

    As a mom, I would not want my 3/4 year old using the bathroom or being partially undressed in front of others. I want to teach my kids to be modest and to protect their bodies...keep it only for themselves. Even that young, I tell my kids that their private areas are only for them to see, and the only other people that can touch them/see them are me (or dad) when I'm bathing or dressing them, and the dr. when she is examining them. I think putting that idea in their head at a really young age sort of makes it just part of who they are...and will, hopefully, help keep them safe. My sister was sexually abused as a young child (5 years old) by an adult family friend, and it went on for a long time. I don't think being naked, even partially, in front of strangers will LEAD to molestation, but I do believe that we are empowering our kids if we tell them that their body belongs only to them and that they should protect it from other people -both strangers and "friends."
    Kim
     
  8. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2006
    Messages:
    3,565
    Likes Received:
    0

    Feb 12, 2007

    I'm teaching a sexuality class at Sunday School for Kinder-1st grade kids and I agree that teaching children about being safe and healthy includes knowing about nudity. I didn't worry about privacy when my kids were 3, I was just with them all the time. Now that my girls are going on 5, they are becoming aware of their bodies being different from boys. I read them, "What's the Big Secret," by Laurie Krasny Brown (illustrated by Marc Brown of the Arthur series), and am answering their questions as naturally as I can. I also read a book to the Sunday School class called, "My Body is Private," by Linda Walvoord Girard and it generated a good discussion about good touches, bad touches, and being in charge of your own body.

    Kim, I'm sorry to hear about your sister. That is a very sad thing. I can almost not believe it really happens, but yes, it sure does and we all need to protect our kids.

    Back on the OT: I still don't feel worried about 3 year olds seeing each other in the bathroom. I would be more concerned about adults taking the kids alone to the bathroom. At my girls' preK co-op, two adults have to take the children to the bathroom unless it is the adult's own child.
     
  9. Dzenna

    Dzenna Groupie

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2006
    Messages:
    1,210
    Likes Received:
    0

    Feb 13, 2007

    Our class has one large bathroom with a sink, toilet and door inside and a second large bathroom with a sink, toilet and door outside. Both boys and girls use both, one at a time. My licensing agent told me, "there is no privacy in preschool", therefore the door should be open and a teacher or aide should be watching them at all times. It was very uncomfortable. Instead, we stand by the door with it closed 3/4 of the way, not looking in but making sure no one goes near the child. If a child chooses to close the door, we don't interfere (but I feel a little uncomfortable with the door completely closed).
     
  10. Myname

    Myname Comrade

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2006
    Messages:
    321
    Likes Received:
    0

    Feb 13, 2007

    We have 3 stalls that have doors on them. Both boys and girls share the bathroom. I tell them to shut the door and most do this anyway and lock it. We have a few 5 year olds not many and mostly 3 and 4's.
     
  11. clarnet73

    clarnet73 Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2002
    Messages:
    6,123
    Likes Received:
    0

    Feb 13, 2007

    shoot. i clicked off and my response got lost. grr.

    our 2's rooms (older/younger) are potty-training, so they share a 2-stall, doorless bathroom between them. Makes sense.

    My room (3's turning 4) and the PreK room next door (4's turning 5) stare a 3-stall, doorless bathroom between our rooms. We do send kids at the same time and don't worry about it. When it's busy (between lunch and nap, after nap), usually at least one of the 4 of us (2 from each room) is standing in the bathroom/doorway, not because we don't trust them but because they can't figure out how to find a free stall, so will stand around goofing off even with 3 empty stalls... so someone has to stand there and tell them which stall to go into. And we still have to remind them to wash their hands instead of playing at the sink. And to only use one squirt of soap. And one paper towel.

    Our older classes (K-age, and 1/2 day/scool-agers) share 2 private bathrooms. Those are ones that have doors that close, etc.
     
  12. tm91784

    tm91784 Comrade

    Joined:
    Oct 6, 2005
    Messages:
    375
    Likes Received:
    2

    Feb 14, 2007

    At my current school (3-5 yr olds) they have a door on the bathroom and separate bathrooms for boys and girls. At the other center I have worked at, they did not allow 3 yr old preschoolers to shut the door when using the restroom. Some of those kids weren't potty trained yet and needed a lot of help in the bathroom.
     
  13. Tigers

    Tigers Habitué

    Joined:
    Sep 30, 2006
    Messages:
    848
    Likes Received:
    0

    Feb 14, 2007

    Preschool age is an age where children are discovering and learning about their own bodies. If a three year old sneaks a peek at another three year old that is not bad...It is natural it is to be expected. Teaching them modesty is one thing but teaching them fear is another. I am completely surprised by the responses on this post.
     
  14. scarlet_begonia

    scarlet_begonia Comrade

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2005
    Messages:
    320
    Likes Received:
    0

    Feb 14, 2007

    The bathroom at my school is one large room with 4 toilets, only one has a stall around it. I send same sex together but if a boy really has to go, I'll send him to the stall if girls are in the bathroom. He has to walk by the girls to get to the stall, but I don't make a big deal out of it, and neither do they. I don't let them lock the door though. I tell them to close it but not lock it. As a preschool teacher, I must be able to get to ANY child at ANY time. I cannot reach them quickly if a door is locked.

    Also, at my center, we MUST take children to the bathroom. If a child is in the bathroom without an adult, we could lose our job and we would definitly get written up (this happened to me once!)
     
  15. ABall

    ABall Fanatic

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2005
    Messages:
    2,738
    Likes Received:
    0

    Feb 14, 2007

    clairnet: I'm trying so hard to teach my own kids to use one squirt of soap, to use a towel to dry their hands (not toilet paper!) to flush and close the door when in there, but leave it open when they are done so that others know when its occupied or empty, and TO SHUT OFF THE LIGHT!
     
  16. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2006
    Messages:
    3,565
    Likes Received:
    0

    Feb 14, 2007

    Our Preschool has a pictoral chart in the bathroom. I took the idea and made one of my DDs' morning routine. I took digital pix of them "Waking Up," "Making the Bed," "Brushing Teeth," and the rest and they cut out the pix and glued them to a newsprint. They like getting up and following the routine now. Not as much nagging needed. I also set the routine to the tune of, "A Day in the Life" by the Beatles so they can sing it. "Woke up, and made my bed, brushed my teeth and got dressed..." Maybe your kids would like something like this for the toilet routine.
     
  17. Pre-K Teacher 1

    Pre-K Teacher 1 Comrade

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2005
    Messages:
    383
    Likes Received:
    0

    Feb 16, 2007

    There is no Privacy in Preschool

    I teach 3s and I have two bathrooms with doors on them. They are not allowed to close the doors completely. I have door stops at each door. Boys and girls use either bathroom but I teach the children not to wait by the door looking at their friends. No children are allowed in the same bathroom at the same time! One child at a time. The child must completely exit the restroom before another one enters.

    It is a licensing rule here as well (NC) that the children cannot close the door!
     
  18. Joyride

    Joyride Comrade

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2006
    Messages:
    389
    Likes Received:
    0

    Feb 16, 2007

    At 3, it's not generally a big issue. I've never seen a child do anything inappropriate, even if there are two kids in the bathroom or kids of both genders. However, in my class, I still have some children in diapers, so it's not as though they have any real privacy while being changed. I encourage the other kids to play in other areas and more or less leave the child alone, but since they're being potty-trained, it's natural for them to ask questions and look.

    The potty routines at 3 probably aren't going to affect a child's modesty level. I understand your concerns, but I just don't think it's a big problem at that age. Our center is also required not to leave a child alone with the bathroom doors closed.
     
  19. ksmomy

    ksmomy Companion

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2005
    Messages:
    127
    Likes Received:
    0

    Feb 17, 2007

    I teach 3.5 to 4 year olds. We have two bathrooms that we share with the classroom beside us. Those children are 3 to 3.5. One bathroom is for girls and one is for boys. There are 2 toilets in each one so more than one child can go at a time. The bathrooms have doors on them but there are large windows in them so if the door is closed, you can still see inside. Most of the children leave the door open when they go anyway and at this age modesty has not been an issue. The children don't seem to care about or notice the differences yet. We always make sure we closely supervise when one of our children go to the bathroom in order to prevent them from playing in the bathroom.
     

Share This Page

Members Online Now

  1. miss-m
Total: 237 (members: 4, guests: 201, robots: 32)
test