May have made myself look bad

Discussion in 'Substitute Teachers' started by jen12, Feb 21, 2011.

  1. jen12

    jen12 Devotee

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    Feb 21, 2011

    I was subbing in a kinder class that had one child who was very difficult--well, a few that were difficult, but one who found trouble every time I went to help one of his classmates.

    Anyway, after the kids left, I got a phone call from who I thought was the office manager saying that a student's mother came in to complain about something her daughter told her this boy did. Without going into detail that might make this school and student too easy to identify, I'll say it's the kind of thing that I would have seen in the classroom, and/or that every single student would have called my attention to, or that I'd have found some evidence of afterward.

    So...because I had no knowledge of it, I either looked incompetent, or I looked as if I was lying.

    I asked the two students who stayed after for tutoring if this had actually happened, and they said it occurred on the playground. I tried to call the office manager back, but apparently it wasn't hte office who had called me in the first place. It must have been some other teacher. I wasn't thinking fast enough to get her name.

    I wrote about the incident in the note to the teacher, saying I'd heard it happened but hadn't witnessed it, so couldn't say for sure if it was true. Later on, I thought about it and realized if it had happened while they were at lunch, it would make sense that I didn't hear about it because the kinder classes all rotated after lunch. By the time I got them back, they all would have moved on to other things in their minds and not be so eager to tattle.

    Anyway, I'm not sure how big a deal all this will turn out to be, but I feel badly that I didn't know about this when it happened and deal with it properly.
     
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  3. Cerek

    Cerek Aficionado

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    Feb 21, 2011

    Missing an incident on the playground does not make you look incompetent. It makes you look human. I monitor our students every day, either on the playground or in the gym. Even though I KNOW which kids need to be watched more closely, it is still far too easy to miss something in either setting because my attention was on a different group of kids at the time.

    Even if it had happened in the room, that wouldn't necessarily reflect badly on you. If kids were NOT able to do stuff without the teacher seeing it and/or stopping it, there would never be a reason for them to go to the office because their behavior would have been stopped before it happened. That may be the ideal, but the reality is that some things ARE gonna happen in a room full of 20-30 kids and, even if you are sitting/standing right there, you may not notice it at the time.

    I had an incident of two students passing a note to each other containing some extremely hateful ethnic rhetoric. Even though I know the two students bear watching in class at times, I did not see them passing the note nor would I EVER have expected to see the messages they had written. Fortunately, another student brought the note (and the incident) to my attention after class was over and appropriate action was able to be taken.
     
  4. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Feb 22, 2011

    It's almost impossible to see everything that happens out at recess or lunch w/ all those bodies running around. Heck, it's hard enough within the classroom. You shouldn't be blamed for anything & I certainly hope that you're not.
     
  5. DizneeTeachR

    DizneeTeachR Virtuoso

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    Feb 22, 2011

    Jen... when I subbed & taught & kids were tattling about stuff that went on at recess I'd say "Did you talk to the adult that was out there?" Whether they said yes or no I would say then they adult knows about it and dealt with it or you know I wasn't out there, so I can't really help you because I didn't see it.
    I know that sounds mean it was usully petty stuff, but didn't want to spend the next hour dealing with all the playground issues. IF I did see a reoccurring theme...either the playground adult or just overhearing the students, then we'd sit down as a class to talk about it.
     
  6. azure

    azure Companion

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    Feb 24, 2011

    They should have that mom come in and watch recess and see if she is able to see everything that goes on.
     
  7. Auter12

    Auter12 Comrade

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    Feb 24, 2011

    They need a "like" button on this forum. I don't really have anything to add; I just like that one!! It's a lot easier to keep an eye on everything, when there isn't 100 kids running around.
     
  8. MathematicsSub

    MathematicsSub New Member

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    Mar 15, 2011

    I subbed for a special needs class and had a mom call in and complain about an incident regarding the care of her child. The director even asked me about it and said in no few words that this is a bulldog of a parent that he is having to deal with. Long story short, bad situation, but did not stop them from keeping me as a long term sub for a few weeks and still call me when I'm needed. I'm sure you'll be fine.
     
  9. Carliee

    Carliee Rookie

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    Mar 16, 2011

    I'm subbing in the most out of control kindergarten class ever! Today while I was helping a student who was laying on the floor crying because another kid had hurt him, another kid (or other kids) were playing with the projection screen and one side came down swinging and knocking other things off the wall under it!

    I did a backpack check at lunch and found stolen items (from the classroom) in 4 or 5 backpacks. I had caught two of the kids putting classroom items in their backpacks. I'm here for a little over a week and am allowed to call parents. Unfortunately, parent numbers tend to be non-working numbers.

    Does that help you feel better about your experience? The Asst. Principal has been very encouraging and given me a lot of positive feedback. She knows this class is difficult and has let me know that so I'm not worried. I'm pretty sure the last two subs they had in here chose not to finish out their assignments.
     
  10. newmissteach

    newmissteach Rookie

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    Apr 4, 2011

    I had an incident happen when I was subbing, with a student teacher AND parent in the room. None of us saw it. At first I felt bad because none of us saw, I felt responsible, and worried that I would look bad. The truth is, this sneakiness is an ongoing problem.

    I am sure the regular teacher has issues with this student as well, and having a sub there probably only makes his behavior worse. This is realistic, and while you can try your best, you WONT see and stop every incident. I think you reacted properly by seeking out the truth, and letting the teacher know the situation.
     

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