How Much Time After School Will I Need?

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by TeacherShelly, May 27, 2008.

  1. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    May 27, 2008

    I know everyone is different - but I'm trying to arrange after school care for my daughters who will be in first grade next year (when I have my own classroom for the first time).

    On the one hand, I want to have plenty of time by myself to prepare, plan, meet with other teachers, my staff meeting, BTSA meetings....

    On the other hand, I don't want to pay for after school care if I can take lots of things home and make my kids' day more reasonable (don't want them pulling 12 hour days all week, you know?)

    I am deciding between having after school care two days per week or three. My staff meeting is every Tuesday, so that's a no-brainer... but should I just do Tues/Thurs or Tues/Weds/Thurs?

    Advice?
     
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  3. INteacher

    INteacher Aficionado

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    Are your kids in the same building where you teach?? I have always had my two girls just come to my room after school. They did their homework, played school, watched TV, ate a snack etc . . . when I had meetings, they went along and just sat quietly until they were old enought to just stay in my room by themselves. I was always lucky in that there were several teachers in my building with children so if we were needed after school for a parent meeting or a meeting with confidential info, when they were younger they would just pop over to my friends room. Now of course my girls are much older but we always have young teacher kids running around our building after school.
     
  4. New3rdTeacher

    New3rdTeacher Comrade

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    May 27, 2008

    I am not a parent but I always see parents keep their kids with them in their classrooms while they are working. I also see a lot of paernts take their kids to meetings. No big deal at all!
     
  5. MissFroggy

    MissFroggy Aficionado

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    May 27, 2008

    If you have to do child care, opt for 3 days a week. You will need the time, and in first grade, there are probably a lot of things you will have to prepare at school, rather than at home.

    The best option would be to keep her in your classroom, though.
     
  6. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    Oh, wow, This is welcome news... I would love to keep them with me - I just don't want to referee every little issue they have while trying to prep. I'll be teaching 2nd/3rd, and they are going to be in 1st.

    My kids are so easy going, they are perfectly fine spending time coloring, writing, playing while I work - but they can be needy and come to me with every unfair thing they do to each other :) Heh.

    The day care is on site. We would all be in the same place, but they would be watched over by the center workers while they color, play outside, etc.
     
  7. TeacherGroupie

    TeacherGroupie Moderator

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    May 28, 2008

    Tell them that, when they're with you after school, that's your workplace - and theirs. You could set a timer to allow them a period in which to decompress from the school day - maybe half an hour - and then their job is to behave so that you can get done what you need to get done.
     
  8. MissFroggy

    MissFroggy Aficionado

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    May 28, 2008

    If the daycare is on site, start with 2 days, and then do 3 days later if you need it. Hopefully they will be flexible.

    As a first year teacher, you will not be able to know how much you need to do after school until you are actually there. I think my first year I stayed until 6 every night!
     
  9. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    In my mind, I imagine it working like this: they get out of class and come to my room. They eat a snack, relax, talk about their day OR go outside and play for awhile. I spend the time getting things done and getting ready for tomorrow. We go home when I'm at a good stopping place (and take things home if needed).

    On staff meeting day, they bring something to do in the library while we have our meeting in the meeting room right there.

    Now, here's the sticky part. If they behave beautifully, I'm a proud mother and happy teacher. If they don't... I'm embarrassed and feel unprofessional.

    I'm so conflicted over this one...
     
  10. Miss Kirby

    Miss Kirby Fanatic

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    May 28, 2008

    It might be a good idea to have the day care Tuesday and Thursday. That way you can have a kid free staff meeting, and you can have Thursday to have some peace and quiet so you can concentrate and really get stuff done! The other days you can keep your kids in the room and work like the others have said!
     
  11. michelb366

    michelb366 Comrade

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    May 28, 2008

    I would definitely use the day care on your meeting days. I had a 4th grader and Kinder last year. My Kinder would come to work with me on weekends when my son and DH were out of town. She understood that the better she behaved, the sooner we went home. Can you make it a special "video day"? We would stop at the video store or library and she could pick out something special. I'd pack a snack and she was set for at least 1 1/2 hours. I agree with the previous poster to allow for a change if it just isn't working. After 3 years in the same grade, I still spent an hour every night after school and 5-6 hours on the weekend planning and grading.
     
  12. Beezus

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    May 28, 2008

    I agree with Miss Kirby. Go for the Tuesday & Thursday. If you find that there are no issues on Wednesdays with them, drop the Thursday. I would keep the child care for staff meetings, though. I've seen many teachers embarrassed over their child's behavior during staff meetings (it only takes once). Those are SO boring for them, too...why not let them stay at child care that day so they can go outside to play, etc.?
     
  13. Michael S.

    Michael S. Companion

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    May 28, 2008

    I work at an afterschool program, and the kids really enjoy being able to be with their friends and participate in the organized games (that they may not be able to do at home if they don't have a lot of kids in their age at home and in your case the classroom). Your decision should be based primarially on your projected workload and your financial situation.
     
  14. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    May 28, 2008

    Ahh.. so in the light of day my thinking is clearer. I think I'll sign up for T-W-TH because I found out SSTs are held on Wednesdays. Staff meetings on Tuesdays. Thursdays for my stress - I can only imagine I'll be pretty stressed my first year and don't want to yell, "Sit down and be quiet!!!" 50+x a day at my own kids :)

    I can afford it, even though I don't love spending money. This one is worth it. And the kids really do love playing after school. It is not the same - spending 10 hours at school with half of it playing and spending 10 hours in school studying. A 10 hour day with friends is probably ok a few times a week even for a 6 year old.

    THANK YOU for your help, everyone!!
     
  15. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    May 28, 2008

    Here's something else you may want to consider. Where I work we are not allowed to have our children with us in the classroom after school or at staff meetings. There is on site daycare so that's what most of the teachers who have young children opt for. The staff meeting is off limits due to privacy issues and adult discussions.
     
  16. Rabbitt

    Rabbitt Connoisseur

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    May 28, 2008

    DITTO for me!
    I put my son to work for me whenever possible as well.
    He's a great website tryer!
    Washes boards, sharpens pencils, runs an errand, etc.
    Some days are REALLY tough though as he wants to be entertained.
     
  17. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    May 28, 2008

    We can't have kids in our classrooms either.

    I ditto you taking easier on yourself. Your first year will be stressful. Take whatever help you can.
     
  18. TeacherShelly

    TeacherShelly Aficionado

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    OK, I made my choice. I signed up for three days (Tue/Wed/Thu). My girls went with me to see the place and liked it. There is a loooooong wait list to get in, and the P pulled strings for me to get in. Wow. So now I have my dream job, my kids get to go to my dream school for them, I have the summer off without job hunting, AND my childcare needs are squared away.

    You'd think I'd be entirely relaxed.......!
     

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