working with a teacher's aid. . .

Discussion in 'Preschool' started by irenebob80, Jan 10, 2008.

  1. irenebob80

    irenebob80 Rookie

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    Jan 10, 2008

    I need serious help. I am working with an aid this year who acts like she is the teacher. She is always speaking over me, telling the children to do things other than what i instructed or addressing parents with issues that i should be addressing. I don't know what to do?? I've tried addressing the issue but she always seems to have an excuse. Any advice??
     
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  3. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Jan 10, 2008

    Have you sat down with her and gone over what her responsibilities are and what you expect of her? It would be nice if you can get your principal/director to sit on your meeting with her to back you up.
     
  4. irenebob80

    irenebob80 Rookie

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    Jan 10, 2008

    at the beginning of the year i gave her a very very detailed explanation of her job and what i need her to do. . .it is so frustrating cause when i remind her what she should be doing, she gives me an excuse. Part of me also hates reminding her because then i feel like I am "babysitting" her too. Getting my director involved would be a great idea.
     
  5. sadundercover

    sadundercover Companion

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    Jan 10, 2008

    I agree with Smalltown!

    You definitely need to have a chat. When I was a TA, there was a person who also thought she was the teacher. No one ever said a word to her, yet they would say things behind her back. I am not really sure she knew how she was acting, and I think she would have appreciated the feedback, rather than the gossip.

    This will only get worse unless you have a chat soon! I really wish you luck. It is a tough position to be in, but you are the teacher. She may have been assigned to teachers in the past who let her be in charge. Whatever the case, it needs to be nipped in the bud as soon as possible.
     
  6. irenebob80

    irenebob80 Rookie

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    Thanks everyone for your advice. I just need to be brave and talk to her about what she is doing. Gulp. . .wish me luck!
     
  7. sadundercover

    sadundercover Companion

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    Jan 10, 2008

    I really wish you luck. It is not easy. But you really care and you know how to handle it in a nice way so that she will understand. You wouldn't be so concerned and have asked for help if you were not nice. :) I would definitely bring in your director, as Smalltown suggested. That way, you have support and what you say will be heard by someone else. It will all be out in the open.

    The excuses she gives you leads me to believe she may really know what she is doing....I don't know.
     
  8. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Jan 10, 2008

    I am not one for confortation at all, but you need to put a stop to the excuses. I'm sure she is just saying them because she knows exactly what she's doing.
     
  9. mrs.oz

    mrs.oz Companion

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    Jan 13, 2008

    My first couple of months I had the same problem. I finally had to go to the principal but that did not help. Luckily they had to hire an aide for Kindergarten. I talked the principal into moving her and giving me a new aide. She would scream out over me while I was teaching. She would take 4 tickets away at a time. She obviously expected too much from a 4 year old. I really don't know the answer to the situation unless there is somewhere she can be moved. ?????
     
  10. Dzenna

    Dzenna Groupie

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    Jan 13, 2008

    Boy, can I relate. I had an aide who was the nicest person in the world, but not the brightest. She kept making recommendations to me, none of which I thought were appropriate. Then, she went to the principal complaining that she was not being given enough to do. On my review, the principal suggest I use her expertise!!!! The principal wanted to include her in on a meeting I had with the Kinder teachers. None of the other aides were invited. I was livid!!!!

    Well, my aide took it upon herself to meet with the principal regarding the school library. Her suggestions reflected her lack of common sense. My principal realized what the situation was like in my class and asked if I would like an other aide (two years later).

    My current aide is incredible. I don't know what I'd do without her!
     
  11. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Jan 13, 2008

    I don't really know what to tell you on how to get through to her on what her boundaries are. One thing that might help her is to feel included and valued in other ways so that maybe she doesn't feel the need to step in areas where she isn't supposed to. You may already do some or all of the suggestions. Do you include her in a regular planning meeting? By doing this, you will open commuication channels up at a less hectic time. You will have a chance to explain WHY you do things the way you do while at the same time giving her a chance to contribute ideas and feel valued. Also, interestingly, my first teacher gave me my own center to shut me up. I had TOO much input. I was too excited and didn't have a clue as to what a teacher aide was. I don't suggest that but rather I'm bringing up a point. Sometimes if a teacher can identify the aide's strengths/weakness and desires/dislikes then she can tap into something that will help the aide find a place that is both productive and rewarding at the same time. Beyond that, some aides really are hard to work with and never do find that place.
     
  12. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    Jan 14, 2008

    I'm sorry to say, this story keeps coming back. :eek:

    Problem is, many aides want to be teachers, but they do not or cannot go back to get their credential (money, family, etc.)

    So, they just decide to run your room instead.

    I knew people who let this happen! :eek: And they did everything, I mean attendance, meal reports, monthly reports, report cards, it was just ridiculous! No, what was worse is that the director let it happen!

    I have a love/hate affair with aides. I love to have the help. I hate to have know-it-all, and "I-ain't doing-that!" people!

    I got one now that loves to eat snacks and drink coffee all day. She has been told more than once, by me and princpal, to stop doing this. She also insists on feeding my kids. One kid told her point blank, I don't want that! They have their own lunch! If one kid got sick or choked on one of her granola bars, that is my behind in trouble for sure!

    She also speaks very negatively in front of the children, and uses inapporpriate...let's just say GHETTO language!. Y'all should be doing dat, not dis! Dis here is fo later! I correct her all day long! I don't want her to write out anything, her handwriting is awful. She insists on putting up my stuff way too high, and posting my signs where nobody can read. I try to explain why I fix her stuff. When I give her things to laminate and cut out, either she cuts it out all wrong, or does not cut anything at all!

    then, I just get tired and do it myself.

    personally, I think she has a death wish, and is just biding her time, writing her ticket out of this job.

    That's what I am praying for.
     
  13. txteach2b

    txteach2b Comrade

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    Jan 14, 2008

    Maybe you could have a meeting with the principal and the aide together, so she can get an idea of what the expectations are for her. You have certain expectations, and so does the school. What if the principal came in one day for observation, and she was acting like this? It's your reputation on the line. She needs to know NOW what is expected.

    I'm a TA, but at the high school level. When I first came to the classroom I'm in (mid-fall semester '06-'07), NOBODY told me what to do...teacher, diagnostician, principal, etc. At first, I spent the first two or three days making observations, trying to put names to faces. I made a seating chart for each class to try to speed that up. After about a week, the teacher just basically said she wanted me there to grade papers and document the behavior in the class, especially if something went wrong. I was basically the class stenographer (sp?). She liked to be in total control of how the class was run.

    This teacher turned in her notice three weeks later, due to a better job. It was right after she left that I found out my true responsibilities in the classroom. The principal came and talked to me after making an observation, and I also had an informal meeting with the diagnostician.

    When the new teacher came, it was fantastic. I finally had someone to work with, who knew what they wanted out of me. It's been great ever since. My schedule constantly changes, but at least I know what is expected of me.
     
  14. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    Jan 14, 2008

    txt, that is what I called myself doing...

    I could see that the previously teacher just used her as a go-fer. Never seemed to even have a conversation with her! (but now that I remember, she was hesitant to stay with me, as if she knew I would actually have her working!)

    It does not make sense for a person to working side by side with another person, and not give them clear directions, expectations, and follow up.

    How else would you know what to do? That goes for any job!
     
  15. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    Jan 14, 2008

    and on that note...

    so, here is my pet peeve/aide rant for the day...

    I asked her to cut some things in half. She cut them with the scissors, and boy does it look raggedy! (Yes, we have two paper cutters, and she knows this!)

    I asked her to make some double sided copies. she gave me a funny look. I should have went with my gut reaction that she didn't want to, or know how to do it.

    Needless to say, she did not do what I asked, even though I clipped them together, held them together, and said twice what I wanted. (this page and that page, back to back, and the same for these other two) I gave her 4 pieces of paper. She just made copies the back and front of one page, and the second page didn't even have a back! (now how can that be double-sided??) And, that means two of my originals are missing. She has a tendency to leave my stuff on the copier.

    where, as you all know, is Never-Never land when you are around teachers! I may never see that page again! :unsure:
     
  16. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Jan 14, 2008

    There are so many personalities out there. It's amazing any work gets done unless the right connection between 2 adults is made.

    I agree with Master Pre-K in the sense that there are many TA (and Teachers) on power trips. I also hold defense because I'm one of those who wants to be a teacher but I'm realistic enough to recognize that if you put me the wrong teacher for me I might clash. I know I fit the above definition but I think it works for me partially because of the teacher that I have and partially because I do recognize the legal burden that teachers face and the boundaries that must be in place for that role to succeed. I respect it.

    I also agree with txteach. Aides are often clueless about what their responsibilities are. Teachers sometimes are too. That doesn't make for a good combination. I wanted to be a darn good teacher aide but one thing I didn't have a clue about was HOW to be a teacher aide. That teacher, however, told me something I will likely never forget. She said, 'They don't teach us how to work with an aide. They just give us this person and tell us to tell them what to do. If a teacher is wise she will realize that each aide she has will all have different personalities, strengths, weaknesses, motivations, etc. It is best to work with this.' (I'm not smart enough to remember word for word a person's convo. lol). If I already told that story in this thread, sorry...it bears repeating anyways.

    I also remember that of the first 2 teachers I had one of them started out saying things like, "What do you think about..." and the second teacher said, "I need you to do..." Both approaches were perfectly respectful and fine but the first got my creative juices flowing whereas the second one just got the job done. I was really nervous about working for ONLY the second teacher my second year because I never knew what she was thinking about me and I didn't know what my expectations were. She was always perfectly respectful and nice but not knowing exactly where I stand all the time and what was expected of me made me nervous to have input or to make a move without being told. It turned out to be fantastic but boy did she learn in a hurry from the other teacher to restate her requests in a way to get the fire lit under me. It's not something that works for everyone. The credit goes back to the teacher recognizing what works for ME and how to make that work to her advantage.

    I guess my advice is twofold. Sometimes you gotta figure the aide out and figure out how to make them feel valued and how to lit their fire. That's totally different for each aide. The other part is recognizing when to fold or to get help. Some aides just aren't good at being only aides, are stubborn, don't want to work or maybe have previous experiences that have soured them. Sometimes teachers have to analyze themselves and their expectations as well.

    Remember...Perceptions are like assumptions. Don't assume everyone is on the same page. Don't assume that when you tell an aide to do something or not to do something that they will necessarily understand why it was important or why you are doing it that way or that they will know that you expected them to be a certain type of aide or help only in certain types of ways.

    Geez, I sorta forgot the original scenario. Maybe I should go back and read it. ;)
     
  17. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    Jan 14, 2008

    I think it is unfair when teachers are asked to supervise and/or evaluate their aides.

    Uh, we did not hire them!

    We will not get a bonus or sleep well if they get fired!

    Isn't that the princpal/director's job?

    I don't police adults. I think that in any job, you should be given a job description, and if you don't get one by the 3 month, demand it until they get sick of you asking!

    and...like cng says...nobody says, "here is what you should do with your assistant" it is the wording... What we usually get is, "This is what you should have your aide do, I don't want to see teachers doing this or that during the day."

    still waiting for that workshop..oh, guess I am teaching it at the next teacher's staff meeting..

    now I got all off base!

    We will be ranting all night!!! I'm typing a few lesson plans!! Carry on with out me! :)
     
  18. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    There was some dissention among teachers/aides last year and the main thing I kept hearing was, "I've never seen our full job description (aides)" or "I've never seen the other person's job description (teacher and aides)." Part of me wanted to say it is on the WEB. Either way, it goes back to expectations. If the admin isn't really going to outline it then there is a wide open field for people to let their perceptions and assumptions run wild with 'what should be.' I got my job description this year. People wanted to see it and were reading it. The part that made me laugh though was, "and any duties as assigned." What is the POINT of having outlined job descriptions if we can basically be told to do anything someone wants us to do. What people REALLY want to know is where the boundaries are (even the aides) and what each of us really shouldn't do or where the line is drawn ethically and legally by definition of the admin.

    It drives me mad sometimes. On one hand, I could be viewed as one of those teacher wanna be aides who should watch it. I could be viewed as someone who has it together and is fantastic. My P loves me. I am careful to say I do a lot of things because they are my ideas and I'm lucky to have someone value them (so she doesn't get in trouble for me doing too much..and yes that would happen). I am also careful to give credit where it is due. Yet sometimes my P says, I'm well within my boundaries and I'm doing an incredible job and hints everyone should be as dedicated. Then in the next breath for the SAME thing my P can tell me I need to call it like it is and quit covering for my teacher (which is the very last impression I want to give).

    I sorta started the whole research as to what an aide's position is in schools nationwide because I was tired of hearing 'can't' when nobody even knew what the job description said and my teacher and I were perfectly happy. I found out many of those 'can't' duties are perfectly okay ethically for an aide to do. I think most clashes has less to do with DUTIES than it does with perceptions/assumptions and power/lack of respect for legal/ethic responsibilities. It's not CAN I do something. It's CAN I step back if the teacher makes a different decision. Yes, I can.

    Let's not also forget, everyone likes to feel respected including teachers. Having an aide override a decision especially in front of you or in front of other students (quite obvious), for example, shows a considerable lack of respect. That definately brings a clash even if it wasn't built into the legal and ethic duty of a teacher's job.

    I can run with this job in every thread I end up posting in. Sometimes I don't want to post just because I know I get sidetracked quite easily with the poster's original intentions and my own personal vents come out.
     
  19. mrachelle87

    mrachelle87 Fanatic

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    Jan 15, 2008

    When I have had an aide, it usually is because of a student's needs. So my experience is that the aide is responsible for most of the physical needs of the child. I am in charge of ALL learning in my room. I an in control, I can share the control, but my tush is on the line at the end.
     
  20. Mrs_Barrett

    Mrs_Barrett Cohort

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    Jan 15, 2008

    Boy I have had the same issue in my room this year! I was newly hired this past year to teach an intergated classroom. I have 2 aides. I started the year with both of them and went right to maternity leave after 4 days of school. 1 aide had been in this program for the past 7 years, the other was new. The old aide thought she knew everything. She was constantly on the computer, letting the kids do whatever she want, wasn't in dress code, answered her cell phone, and etc.

    I dealt with it for a while, docummented everything! Finally had to get the principal involved. She was written up and asked to transfer to a new program. Yay! I have a new one, who is wonderful. Our class is so much better now!
     
  21. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Jan 15, 2008

    To me that has nothing to do with aide vs teacher duties but rather she was just flat out unprofessional. I'm glad you got a new aide.
     
  22. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    Jan 15, 2008

    well, that famous line.."other duties as assigned" is found in almost every job I ever had! It's a catchall phrase that means, when we say jump, you say, how high?

    I have had people get mad at me for calling my house, and having the number disconnected..and it was a weekend anyway! (paid bill late, they turned phone back on Monday) Supvr said, "I need to be able to reach you at all times!" I looked at her like she was nuts!

    okay...point is, employees need to know what is expected, and people who work with them or give directions need to to know what their limitations are.

    which is my rant for the day...

    I think my aide has way too many limitations...
    I did not hire or interview her
    believe me, she would not have this job

    there should be a basic skills test and teacher aide certificate required for the job. I seriously think they slipped this girl in, because they needed a body, and she told them she was working on her test or certificate...and it ain't happening!

    I have resorted to doing many of the tasks she is 'supposed to do' myself. I just can't stand the idea of having my things destroyed, misplaced, and I end up doing it over or fixing it anyway! It is becoming too frustrating and I don't want to talk about it...

    because I think her skills illustrate her limitations!

    now what I saw in Head Start and child care centers is that a lot of bad apples stay on, because the directors feel they are good with kids. they know they can't do nothing else, and start trouble in every room.

    you can act bad, or be bad

    I can deal with one or the other, to a certain degree

    NEVER both!

    which is another question for me...

    along with that job description... does anybody have a office flow chart or an official, next-in-line-person designated in your school? Has this been explained to you??

    so when you and the aide are having a catfight on the floor, who comes in to break it up when the princpal is absent?

    okay...scratch :)rolleyes:) that last line...

    if you are having trouble with an aide, who can you talk to for an immediate response if the princpal is not in???

    and what can or can't you do??

    you know, like when the aide wants to share her lunch with the kids, and it is some fastfood take out! What are you supposed to do while she goes down the aisle, passing out french fries, shrimp fried rice, or nachos on everybody's plate?! :help:
     
  23. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Jan 16, 2008

    This thread is definately hijacked. Sorry. Op, if you want more advice, you may have to jump in.

    Master Pre-K you are a steady stream of thoughts today!

    We sorta know who is ABOVE our boss but that isn't the person we go to for immediate feedback since they aren't in our building. Our unofficial go to is first the secretary for basic stuff and then our behavior consultant/counselor for more official stuff. She knows when to contact the big guys for advice and helps with stuff she has the authority to. Plus she is right down the hall.

    I don't mind the "as needed" clause. It just goes to identify the major frustration between teachers and aides. Nobody knows what we CAN'T do except by PERCEPTION of what we should not be doing. That varies from person to person.

    I've heard frustration many times over the lack of basic skills as well. In general our aides are pretty good skillwise but there a few that aren't good classroom aides because of that. I've basically suggested to my boss that it is important to know what each aide's strengths and weaknesses are and what each teacher or situation's needs are and to minimize frustration place aides accordingly. Interestly we are so used to aides being placed in extra situations based on timing that we were thrown off when this wasn't the case this year for a unique situation. I was talking with our P and she basically started outlining why she chose the situation the way she did and it was based on skills and motivations. After we got used to the timing shock I've noticed that we have not been nearly as frustrated with our changes.

    A few examples of different kinds of aide strengths:
    Some aides were meant for recess and others were not (not me).
    Some aides have good classroom management and others can't.
    Some aides are good at secretarial mode and others need the teacher to be.
    Some aides are wonderful with children and other aides are better at secretarial and prep modes.
    Some aides are creative and can brainstorm problems with prep materials and other aides can't even copy the right pages.
    Some aides can go with the flow and come up with things on the spot if the teacher is not around and others need a play by play.
    Some aides are better at following a structured teacher that prefers to have the aide follow her plans all the time and other aides need more flexiblity (of course some just stink at it).

    I'm good at lesson planning and coming up with games, etc. I'm the only one in my building that does my own centers and I have been doing so since the first month with zero experience. I was given that responsibility by a teacher after I started suggesting things constantly and basically she wanted to shut me up. I'm apparently good enough at it though that my boss placed me in center timing for this extra situation, wanted me to be the main after school reading tutor (but we canceled the program) and other teachers have asked for my copy of my 3 month word study lesson plan as well as using some of my ideas for holidays. I'm not a recess person. I'm a warm body. I'm not good at being a school wide aide. If the school needs me to help put stuff in the hall, etc. I'm never pulled but some aides are. I'm horrible at artistic creations like the BB but wonderful with lesson, game and activity creations. My teacher asks me to trouble shoot her ideas or creations all the time. I'm wonderful with secretarial mode and often think ahead. I'm good with planning things. I'm good with figuring out how to shuffle the day if needed. I'm good at written parent contact (but won't do so without supervision for my own liability reasons) and any written contact. I'm horrible with face to face parent contact. My teacher is a whiz at it. I'm good at on the spot stuff but not necessarily with going with the flow. I want to know what's going on at all times if the teacher has a plan. For that reason the teacher and I have many planning meetings and we regroup after school everyday. I'm horrible with following too much structure in language arts, can deal with it most of the time in science (but flexible) but need it in math and social studies. I tell people what my strengths and weaknesses are. I don't mind changing them in temporary situations but I'm realistic enough to know that some of those weaknesses will cause a problem in long term situations if I'm not placed right.
     
  24. irenebob80

    irenebob80 Rookie

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    Jan 17, 2008

    Advice from my husband. . .and it worked!!!

    You guys have been great help!! My husband gave me really great advice. I think it can help us all.

    This week was hard. I asked my aid to do something specific with three steps. She skipped the first two. . .my husband said,"if you told her clearly what to do, then approach and tell her see needs to do it again with all the steps being followed. Tell her she was hired to do the things that you ask of her and if she can't it shows you it's time to find someone else."

    I hate confronting people too, but I actually did what my husband said, ( he was a manager once so i trust his "people skills) My aid has been fabulous the rest of the week, No back talk, no doing things her way, no roller her eyes. It's been great!!!! It was hard to do, but it paid off.
     
  25. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Jan 17, 2008

    Good for you. Rolling the eyes is a red flag of a disrespectful aide. There is a difference between capitalizing on different strengths and weaknesses/forming a team and dealing with someone who has let some things get to her head and doesn't respect your position. Some people you gotta do whatcha gotta do.

    One teacher on our floor was having trouble with her aid doing stuff wrong, not doing daily habitual things without prompt and having a hard time following directions. The aide actually wasn't a bad aide and wasn't disrespectful but it wasn't working either. She sat down one day and outlined a list of duties she commonly asked or COULD ask her to do and wrote them down by times of the day. Then she sat down and asked her aide to circle the things she liked doing, put an x by the ones she really is uncomfortable doing and then the rest is stuff she can do but it may not be her favorite thing. She told her that this was to help figure out where the two of them stood and she would take any duties that the aide is clearly uncomfortable with and give her more of the ones she liked as long as she understood that the rest of them was a shared duty and she would be requested to do those duties as the teacher need her to. It actually helped. It gave her a clear guideline that she helped form. Like I said, it is unbelievable to me to have someone roll their eyes at their coworker who is asking them to do stuff (and has the authority to do so). I'm sure your husband has listened to your rants enough to peg her well. Glad it worked out for you! :2up:

    And for the record, I wouldn't have the gall to flat out skip what someone told me to do. I might discuss it with them if I think I have a better idea, but I wouldn't just ignore it. Wow! DOCUMENT THAT!
     
  26. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    Jan 18, 2008

    I think it is sad that some people can bluff their way into a job, maybe even getting away with saying, "sure I have experience with kids, I got kids of my own."

    That principal should say, "It's not the same!" especially if your kids are older/younger than the grade level you are interviewing for. fact of the matter is, you have been thru or not been thru that stage yet. things are different, you may not realize ...or worse And, sheesh, we don't know what you do with your kids at home! :unsure:

    you are set in your ways, like an old fashion grandmother, who thinks she needs to sit down, bundle up each and every kid, and hand them a homemade oatmeal cookie as they walk out the door. you just have that mothering instinct, and you just give...despite rules, regulations, procedures and policies...

    some teachers are the same way...

    problem is, we are teachers, not grandmothers or babysitters

    your efforts to pacify the world, and make yourself feel better by giving out treats is sabotoging my efforts to build self-help skills and intrinsic behavior. If one teacher is not on the same page, they kids know it, and they always expect some kind of reward!

    and nobody around here has deep pockets. so you as an aide can't go around misuing, and abusing materials and supplies like there is a storage room full of them somewhere! 99% of the time, this is personal stuff the teacher brought with their own money!!

    you aren't replacing it, so don't sit there and waste it, or worse, watch the kids waste it!
     
  27. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Jan 18, 2008

    My principal wanted me to ask my teacher to pay for some of the materials I buy out of my own pocket. I don't like to do that because....

    Half of the time the ideas are not her own and she shouldn't have to shell out bucks for someone else's ideas all the time when hers might (and are) cheaper.

    I lose stuff (like sharpie markers) and don't want to feel guilty for doing so.

    I like having the freedom to create and trash or create at will and not worry about someone else's budget.

    I also don't like WAITING for someone to have the time to get materials or planning in advance so I can ask in advance so it suits me better to do it myself.

    Many of my ideas come when I see clearanced items and put them together. Shopping is almost just as creative as this forum.

    If the project IS her idea, I don't buy the supplies nor do I offer to. If it is her idea, I don't tend to use my own supplies either because technically I shouldn't be buying any. I don't have a problem using my teacher's supplies if she has them (but will purchase if it will use too much of it) but my teacher never asks to use mine. I have a 7 drawer storage tower full of stuff that are mine. There are a few things we chip in to buy like around the holidays and now we are considering a class pet. That's just us though.

    Bottom line is I do it as an act of love really and don't feel obgligated to do it but I do agree that an aide should be mindful of the teacher's budget. Teachers should also not assume they know what's been bought with their own money or that anything has. I'm still shocked that things like dry erase markers aren't automatically bought by the school district in many areas.
     
  28. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    Jan 19, 2008

    at a total loss here

    I am just waiting to see what happens next. I am really at the end of my rope. I don't understand why they would hire somebody who is not really capable or willing to do things. I think somehow, she really thought she would just be a babysitter, and now that she sees I won't let her sit around on her behind all day, she is annoyed.

    I refuse to be the scapegoat for her unwillingness to work. I'm just through with the whole ordeal.

    my next move is to get some parents to help, and just get through the rest of this year.

    if anybody asks me, I will say

    I don't think this staff member is cut out for special ed.
     
  29. yorkyfan

    yorkyfan Rookie

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    Jan 19, 2008

    I'm sorry but I must speak up because I feel that teacher aides are being trashed here. They are being depicted as ignorant, indifferent, and disrespectful. I am a teacher's aide. Before having children, I earned a Ph.d in geophysics. I set aside my career to stay home and raise two children. One child was learning-disabled. He is now a successful college student. The other child is an honors high school student. While I stayed at home with my children, I volunteered every week in my children's schools. I was a fundraiser. I taught art and science lessons at the teachers' request. I assisted the special ed teachers with their students' reading and writing (at their request). I may not have a formal degree in early childhood education but I feel my experience as a parent, as a volunteer in the schools, and as a professional scientist makes me an excellent teacher's aide. The other aides at my school are highly educated and motivated professionals. (One is fluent in three languages!) I would say this to the teachers: Find out about what your aides' strengths and interests are and exploit them!! You will then have a great relationship!
     
  30. Master Pre-K

    Master Pre-K Virtuoso

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    Jan 20, 2008

    Dear Yorky,


    Nobody here is bashing people, we are just stating facts.

    And the fact is, many aides have some college and education coursework, but still do not use good judgement nor support their teachers.

    The purpose of this forum is to give and get advice. We are very careful not to single out, insult or otherwise humiliate any one.

    BTW, if anyone post seems offensive, we have moderators that will jump in, remind us that we are adults, and if necessary delete posts, and close the thread.

    for the most part, people who send out a plea for help are looking for just that...help. Our venting allows us to think thru our problems, and get some ideas from others.

    If you read the OP statement, this is simply what she is doing...

    asking for advice....
     
  31. cutNglue

    cutNglue Magnifico

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    Jan 20, 2008

    That's been my point for most of my threads and you said it so simply. I always have to write a book. I do agree though that this op's aide is struggling with basic respect so it is a relationship that probably has to be put in place first before they can get to the good part.

    And WOW! Your aides are highly educated. Ours mostly have BA degrees and a few are working on their MA's. We have a few with no college degrees. You can tell the difference between each but at the same time everyone I work with is great at some things and that's why I agree with the statement you made. I was actually thinking of starting a thread on what things teachers like about their aides. We do tend to talk about the venting side, but I wanted to explore what they liked because then that might even be helpful to those aides on the board.
     
  32. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

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    Jan 20, 2008

    I don't think any one was aide bashing. I was an aide myself for four years before finding my first teaching job. I had my degree just couldn't find a job. Some aides are wonderful (I've been pretty lucky on classroom aides) and some aides you want to pull your hair out. It is just how it works. Sorry you felt offended.
     
  33. yorkyfan

    yorkyfan Rookie

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    Jan 20, 2008

    I also am stating facts. Last week, our most experienced aide stepped in to teach two classes of 3 to 6 year olds when, over four consecutive days, two teachers called in sick. After school she also reviewed medication forms and called parents for updated information for sixty kids. We also had a plumbing failure and had to cancel school. (Last week was a lulu!!) She stayed with the director to work with the plumbers and the landlord of the building because she speaks Spanish fluently and the plumbers and landlord only spoke Spanish. This year not one aide has called in sick or taken any personal leave.
    My point is respect and courtesy work both ways. Take the time to learn about your aides educational background, hobbies and interests. Have they worked as scout leaders, volunteers, or church youth leaders? Do they have education in language, mathematics, science, etc. If your aide is highly educated (maybe not in the field of education, but in another field) and all you do is ask her to wash tables, then you will have an unhappy aide.
     
  34. zawa

    zawa Rookie

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    Jan 20, 2008

    Yay for yorky :) Lots of us assistants in the classroom are there for reasons other than a lack of education and inability to get another job. I'm working on my dissertation for my PhD in anthropology (specializing in Mesoamerican archaeology) and have spent the last 2+ years assisting in various classrooms in a child care center. I'm there because it is a job that was offered to me when I evacuated here from New Orleans with hurricane Katrina. I enjoy the kids, so I work as an assistant whenever I'm not doing my fieldwork.

    I don't imagine that most people on the forums or even in this thread really mean to be bashing the non-lead teachers out there, but it would be nice to see a thread praising wonderful assistants too :D
     

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