Just Need A Little Advice

Discussion in 'Early Childhood Education Archives' started by ksmomy, Sep 17, 2005.

  1. ksmomy

    ksmomy Companion

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    Sep 17, 2005

    I recently accepted a position in a preschool program as a teacher assistant. I had a bad experience in a previous preschool which kind of left me "burned out".I was there for 2 years.(The school was very poorly run) I did have a job right after that, also teaching four year olds. Even though it was very demanding (head start, lots of paperwork!) I enjoyed it and I only left because it was seasonal (only ran for 6 months). I thought it would be great to be the assistant for awhile and see someone else's ideas and maybe get my fire for teaching back. I thought it might give me a little break. Well, the teacher has no experience working with preschoolers and while he has a degree in education it is in high school education, not early childhood. He is not even familiar with the basic state requirements such as sanitation, division of child development, etc. I know he was only hired because the director had no other qualified applicants to choose from and it was getting so close to time for the program to open. He only took the job because it works with his college schedule. He is working on his master's. I am qualified for the job, but I didn't apply until that position had been filled and the assistant's position was open. That's enough background. I have tried to give him ideas and help him with scheduling, center management and other things but he either doesn't understand or doesn't want to understand. I don't know which. He doesn't even do a circle time. He keeps all of the children at their tables and has them count to 20, count to 10 in Spanish, sing their abc's and do the pledge. They also do some stretching exercises. Then he tells them what center to go to. He tells some of the children to stay at the table for art. They have to stay even if they cry and want to go to another center. He then tells them what to draw and how to draw it. Throughout all of this time he is telling them they are going to time out or losing their outside time if they don't follow instructions. I hear this all day long. They even have to be silent at the tables for lunch. He has no idea on how to do a lesson plan or how to incorporate a theme into the daily activities. I have tried to explain all of this to him. I demonstrated a circle time with calendar etc. It didn't help. I have been to the director twice and she has talked with him. He still doesn't seem to get it. My question is; how much more do I try to help him? He is getting the teacher's salary, should I do lesson plans and continue to help him? I didn't mind offerning advice and the director suggested I do so but where does it stop? I don't want to end up doing his job for him. I don't like to listen to a lot of gossip from other people but the assistant in the other room who was there before me said he is lazy and only does what he is made to do. She also let me know that she had been to the director before I got there about him. Should I keep going to the director or should I just wait this out and see what happens. I'm thinking it can only be a matter of time before the parents start to notice. I just hate for the children to miss out and be treated this way. I've been there since Sept. 1st by the way.
     
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  3. JenPooh

    JenPooh Virtuoso

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    Sep 19, 2005

    Keep going to the director, eventually she will get sick of listening to it and do something about it, hopefully! In Wisconsin it is illegal to have someone who does not have the ECE requirements be considered a head/lead teacher. I had an employee once who I hired that had an elem. degree and even she had to take all of her ECE courses to become certified in the classroom before she could be a lead teacher. Check this out, you may have the same policies, but you have to check with the STATE requirements, not the centers policies.

    It sounds like you're having a rough time. I don't blame you for being frustrated. Coinsidently (sp?) I worked with a guy like the one you are mentioning. He had a degree in Russian Education and had very little ECE education and no experience. The only reason I was hired was to help him. He finally got sick of me taking over the classroom so he left. Maybe he'll get tired of listening to you tell him the way to do things and leave. In my experience, the ones who cause the most problems are the ones who end up not staying around, it just takes patience trying to watch time pass before it happens. But you have to be consistant and not back down. I am appauled at some of the things you mentioned. A time out if they don't follow directions correctly?! That's the sign of someone who does not know how to handle preschoolers. Expectations are so different at that age! Be firm next time you talk to her and tell her that something has to change if she wants the school to have a good reputation.
     
  4. ABall

    ABall Fanatic

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    Sep 19, 2005

    ask him if he wants suggestions. If he says yes, bring it on, if not look for a different postion, if possible, because you don't want to get to the point of being so frustrated that you never want to teach again.
     
  5. ABall

    ABall Fanatic

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    Sep 19, 2005

    ask him if he wants suggestions. If he says yes, bring it on, if not look for a different postion, if possible, because you don't want to get to the point of being so frustrated that you never want to teach again.
     
  6. scarlet_begonia

    scarlet_begonia Comrade

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    Sep 20, 2005

    I noticed you asked, "should i keep helping him?" I think that's a personal choice. If you asked, you're probably thinking about doing it anyway. I know how it would make you mad to continue doing his job for him when he just doesn't get it. Have you thought about having smaller groups where you are in charge of a few kids a day? It could be done so many different ways, like you could be in charge of two centers or you could take 5 kids a day for small group instruction--that's 20 kids in four days, with one day left over for "whatever." Doesn't "whatever" happen in preschool all the time?!?! You could be in charge of morning message every day. These are all things YOU can do without doing HIS job.
     
  7. ksmomy

    ksmomy Companion

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    Sep 20, 2005

    Thank you all for your responses. It does meet state requirements for him to be the lead teacher as long as he has a 4 year degree in some field and agrees to pursue his BK certification. I am trying to help him and I really don't mind but he rarely follows through with the suggestions. I have tried breaking up into smaller groups but he doesn't understand this either. He will call certain kids out of my group to do something else. He also keeps threatening them with time out over and over. I modeled the morning message for 2 days but then he started doing it again. He did start singing the days of the week with them but otherwise it was the same as before. I don't think he is doing any of this out of arrogance or deliberately trying to do the wrong thing. I just think he has no idea what to expect from 4 and 5 year olds. The director has talked with him three times now and he doesn't seem to realize what he is doing wrong. The coordinator for our program is coming tomorrow so maybe she will have some suggestions on how this situation should be handled. The problem is not necessarily with the person, it is with the program. Someone with no early childhood experience or training should be given a leadership position.
     

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