What's acceptable expectations for a project?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by apple25, Dec 12, 2010.

  1. apple25

    apple25 Comrade

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    Dec 12, 2010

    We are currently researching and building a model of an element. It doesn't have to be fancy - I told students any material would do . . . foam balls, pompom, cereal, pasta, string, old wire hangers, beads, buttons, etc. I also have a limited amount of material available on a first-come, first-serve basis.

    I just received an email from a parent upset that they spent too much money to complete the project. I don't understand how this miscommunication occured. I (1) wrote instructions down on a paper (with ideas for materials), (2) stressed to students to find cheap stuff at home, (3) said if they wanted to buy stuff, keep the cost under 5$, (4) wrote an email to all parents telling expectations and suggesting they not spend a lot of money, and (5) had supplies for those who needed some.

    I feel that I have done everything possible to prevent this from occuring, but that doesn't change the fact that a parent did spend a lot of money and is upset.

    I have responded and suggested they return the supplies for a refund and the student can see me for some free materials. I reminded them that I stressed to students not to spend money and that I had supplies available.

    I don't feel, however, that I was wrong to ask students to do this type of project (especially with the support I have provided along the way.) Has this every happened to anyone else? I hate the fact that a lot of money was spent - exactly what I tried very hard to avoid.
     
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  3. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

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    Dec 12, 2010

    Did the parent get the email? I'd check. If they did, then they have no reason to be upset with you.
     
  4. DallasTeacher

    DallasTeacher Companion

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    Dec 12, 2010

    What I have found is that all my middle school students give correct info to their parent(s). What I do to help eliminate miscommunication ( and since most parent(s) do not have email they share with the school) is send written project instructions home with the student. The instructions (due dates, materials needed, etc) must be signed and returned. The signed paper is the first grade of the project. There will always be a parent who complains about cost or time or something, but having that signed piece of paper is proof they knew in advance.
     
  5. apple25

    apple25 Comrade

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    Dec 12, 2010

    Nice idea about having a parent sign the info sheet. I will defintely do that next time to avoide going through this kind of stress again. It is possible that the student may have lost it.

    I know for a fact that they did get the email as that's what they responded me with (I resisted the urge to underline the important parts)

     
  6. mopar

    mopar Multitudinous

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    Dec 12, 2010

    I think that you did more than enough to alleviate cost! There is always at least one upset parent. If you didn't do projects, you'd have an upset parent.

    So, just be glad that there is only one. And well, you did give options.
     

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