Question by a soon to be teacher and a parent

Discussion in 'General Education Archives' started by mdawson, May 8, 2007.

  1. mdawson

    mdawson Rookie

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    May 8, 2007

    Okay, so I just graduated and I'm looking for my first teaching position. I also have two children that are in school now. My son is in first grade and my daughter is in Junior Kindergarten. My son's teacher has yet to respond to any note that I've sent home this year. Is that odd? How do you respond to a parents concern? The last note I sent stated my concern over other students telling my son that he was not good enough to play with them. I never received any response. Maybe to the teacher I'm a "needy" parent, I don't know.

    My son came home today and said that his friends buried him in the wood chips on the playground. This bothered me because you just don't know what could be under all of that stuff. Anyway, my question then is why didn't the teachers stop this and were they even watching? How closely do you watch your students on the playground? At the beginning of the school year his class was told that when they are on the playground they are not to bother the teachers unless a child is dying or bleeding. I don't know it just doesn't seem right to me. Then again I don't have my own classroom yet so maybe I'm jumping to conclusions.
     
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  3. Teaching Grace

    Teaching Grace Connoisseur

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    May 8, 2007

    umm... no. you are not overreacting. I would personally go and talk to the teacher. Or, if you have documented specific events that have occured as well when you contacted the teacher, go to the Principal. If that had happened to my child (the burying in the wood chips) I would be more than a little concerned!!
     
  4. teacheratheart

    teacheratheart Companion

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    May 8, 2007

    I jokingly tell my kids (2nd grade) that they are not to come tattle on the playground unless they are dying or bleeding. But they come up to me anyways. We don't have woodchips, we have sand, but our kids aren't even allowed to pick it up. Let alone bury another student in it. I can't imagine myself being so distracted on the playground that some kids can bury an entire child without me noticing. And I also cannot imagine an entire year has gone by without this teacher contacting you. Have you tried just dropping by before or after school? I would always rather meet with the parent in person and they know I have an open door policy. They have even come by when my kids are in special in the middle of the day. While a note is nice, they get lost, misplaced, or just thrown away by the child. I try not to rely on notes through the children as my main source of contact with a parent.
     
  5. JenL

    JenL Comrade

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    May 8, 2007

    Be concerned!
    First when a parent sends a note, emails, or calls I respond that day. I think that is just a reasonable thing to do. You do have their child all day long.
    Second I am appalled that a teacher would say do not bother me unless you are dying or bleeding. I teach first grade and many problems arise but you take on the ones that need to be taken care of. But burying a child in wood chips....something is not right with this teacher and you need to go and speak directly to the teacher. If this does not work, then approach the principal.
     
  6. Miss W

    Miss W Phenom

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    May 8, 2007

    I can see maybe one note not being answered (maybe it was a hectic day), but none of your notes answered. That's really not normal. Sometimes notes don't always make it to the teacher, but when she never answers your note I would be asking why. I try to stay in contact with my parents about their children. There has been those times (very few) that I have not been able to respond to a parent until the next day.

    Okay... I'm one of those teachers who will say if you're not hurt (bleeding, broken, scraped, etc...) then go play. I do want to know about bullying, but we talk at the beginning of the year how to define bullying. I can't imagine a child getting completely buried in wood chips with out the teacher knowing it. I mean, come on. We have 300+ students in our grade that are out on the playground at one time. With 3-4 teachers there, someone is going to see it. I would suggest phone calls, and trying to meet in person. If that doesn't work go to the principal.
     
  7. mdawson

    mdawson Rookie

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    May 8, 2007

    Thanks for the replies. I actually just finished my student teaching and I did it in the same school my children attend. I saw his teacher almost everyday in the hallways. The day I sent the last note to school she came into my room later that day to ask me about something else and never even brought up the note I'd sent. I figured I'd give it a day or two just to see what happened and still nothing. I e-mailed her (this must have been early last week) and I never received a response. I hate to make waves. This is a small town and I am trying to get a job. I just wanted to see what you all thought. I'm just grateful that the school year is almost over. I guess the way she handles things goes against how I want to teach and that makes it a little more difficult.
     
  8. Mamacita

    Mamacita Aficionado

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    May 8, 2007

    Are these paper notes that your small son was supposed to deliver? Are you sure the teacher ever got any of them?

    If it's a certainty that the teacher received notes from you, it is inexcusable that you got no answers. Make sure she did get them before you get upset with her, however. Why didn't you email her?

    If I were you, I'd send this teacher an email saying something to the effect of: "Since I've yet to hear from you, I'm wondering if you received any of the messages I trusted (your son) to deliver. Please let me know if he wasn't doing his job properly!"

    Sometimes a light touch does the trick.
     
  9. MsWK

    MsWK Habitué

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    May 8, 2007

    While I'm a little concerned about problem A (never mentioning your notes), I'm not so sure what to think about problem B (your son being buried in wood chips).

    A: There are many possible explanations, many of which other posters have suggested. The thing about this solution is, you'll never know until you ask the teacher.

    B: What is the school's policy on outdoor exploration? Do children commonly dig in the wood chips? If so, is it possible that your son's recounting of "being buried in the wood chips," is really more like "being sprinkled by a few wood chips?"

    I can tell that you don't want to cause a big fuss, and I don't think you have to. Sometimes a few simple questions are enough for you to open a dialogue that so that you're all more satisfied with the relationship.
     
  10. Emma35

    Emma35 Connoisseur

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    May 8, 2007

    Yes, I think you need to check into this. Did your son let them bury him, not that it makes it alright or excusable why the teacher didn't see. Either he let them or they held him down. If he let them you need to have a talk with him and if they held him down then you need to talk to the teacher pronto! Remember there are always two sides to the story. If it were me and I worked in the school I would find a moment to go talk to the teacher.
     
  11. GardenDove

    GardenDove Habitué

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    May 8, 2007

    Oh the woes and difficulties of small town life. My sympathies.:(
     
  12. mdawson

    mdawson Rookie

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    May 9, 2007

    I'm going to go in and talk with his teacher today. I had always assumed that the notes that I sent actually made it to her, but I guess I can't say for sure. She always received his permission slips, money for things and what not.

    My son willingly let himself be buried in the wood chips. I questioned him about it again and he said that he was buried up to his waist. He even had them in his shoes. I'm upset that he would allow them to do that, but I still want to know why the teachers didn't see it.
     

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