Hard to relate to the parents...

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by TamiJ, Jun 22, 2013.

  1. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Jun 22, 2013

    My school has some of the wealthiest families in the city....but it is not so easy to relate to them. They are filfthy rich with body guards, drivers, live in help, etc. Evem many of the teachers here have live in help, or help that come daily to clean and cook, laundry and whatever. I have a cleaning lady who comes once a week and that is it. Many of the families are wonderful and down to earth, but not all are. I have never realized social differences but they are so big here and in your face. Does anyone else experience this? It's not a horrible thing but I just live in a completely different world than these families. What about you guys?
     
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  3. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Jun 22, 2013

    I work in a high SES district. Most families are very supportive.
     
  4. bison

    bison Habitué

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    Jun 22, 2013

    As far as teaching goes, I think the one thing you can probably fall back on in order to understand and relate is that they love their kids and want the best for them. I work in both low and high SES schools (although not as high as you are describing), and the only families I have trouble understanding are the ones that are not supportive of their children and children's education.
     
  5. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Jun 22, 2013

    The closest thing I came to wealthy people is when I was a child myself attending one of the private schools in L.A. Many of my classmates were wealthy, such as the Agaganian siblings whose family owned & racetrack, actor Richard Thomas' son & triplet daughters, etc. My best friend's parents were both lawyers & had a Jaguar shipped from Europe. Many had fancy mansions with a maid's quarters in the back of the property. BUT, I know this is totally different than being an adult teacher & having to deal with the parents of these rich kids.

    I sure wouldn't treat these parents like they're on a pedestal...even though they may think they're somebody. They all put their pants on one leg at a time like everyone else.
     
  6. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Jun 22, 2013

    John-Boy?! :wub:
     
  7. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    Jun 22, 2013

    The parents are super supportive and they really want the best for their kids. I guess the times I really feel this is when they invite us to events, like for teacher's day, Christmas, etc. In those instances I feel a tad bit uncomfortable. Just out of my comfort zone. Many of the moms have had plastic surgery and are dressed very glamorous. They look like stars, some of them. In spite if all this, I had a great group of parents. On the last day many moms came in to thank me and take pictures with their child. Then I receieved a handful of emails thanking me and saying I was a wonderful tracher and so dedicated to mynprofession. I am glad that even though the majority of these families are extremely wealthy, many of them still apreciate instead of just expect.
     
  8. Em_Catz

    Em_Catz Devotee

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    Jun 23, 2013

    I grew up in an upper-middle class family with both parents in a financially and emotionally stable household. Education was valued and it was understood that I would go to college and have a career and/or own a business someday.

    While we weren't rich, my parents took my brother and I on at least one "big" vacation a year and we took little weekend, out-of-state "get-aways" several times a year.

    We were the first family on my block to have a home computer (a big deal back in 1991). My parents encouraged a good work ethic and were down to earth, but yeah, in general I had a somewhat privledged upbringing which I didn't realize until I started teaching.

    Both of the schools I've worked at are Title One and in "urban" areas. Many households are broken and have one parent, or the parent has abandoned the child with a grandparent.

    So many of the parents are uneducated and some cannot write well. Once I almost accused a child of forging a note because it was so badly written, but upon talking to Mom, it turned out to be legit.

    It does not compute to me for the child to go without school supplies, yet the parents has a fresh pack of cigarettes in their pocket and a cell phone nicer than mine whenever I see them. Or for a child to be forced to "stay home" because their little brother is sick and Mommy has a job and not career so if she takes off they can't pay rent, so Little Timmy misses my class to care for little brother.

    I can't relate to "not being able to pay $5 field trip fee until pay day or a child missing three days of school because "Mom and Dad are having some serious problems and Mom has refused to bring child back on Sunday like she was supposed to."

    My mom always says the healthiest she ever was was when she was pregnant with me. So it baffles me that so many mothers smoke, drink and do drugs while pregnant, resulting in children that come to me with all sorts of emotional, intellectual and physical impairments.

    I feel like when I come to school I have to turn off my upbringing and turn on my students upbringing in order to relate BETTER to them, though when I stop and think about the situations deeply, it upsets me.

    When I start comparing my childhood against theirs, I am unable to do my job. It's hard to describe, but I guess the easiest way is to say it's like being bilingual. At my school, I have to speak the "language" of a not so privileged upbringing
     
  9. Rebel1

    Rebel1 Connoisseur

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    Jun 23, 2013

    I teach at a school where there are very rich families, and some that receive state help with their tuition. There are parents who will do all the activities with their children, and some who won't. It is expected to be this way, SO the owner is pretty good about working with us in trying to get all the parents involved. I have 14 students for the Summer program, and on my last activity; children were asked to bring in an instrument for our jam session, 10 did! The ones who didn't are the ones with divorced parents; the other parent did not know, etc.
    My activity for tomorrow is a CONTEST of silly/crazy hats that are created by the parents and their children. I will see tomorrow about the involvement. It is going to be fun. Last Friday, since it was the 1st day of Summer; we had an ice cream picnic outside; children brought Teddy Bears that were taken outside for a picnic. IT WAS A HIT! Only 2 children did not bring a teddy bear.
    There is never a 100% involvement, BUT it is getting a lot better.
    Rebel1
     

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