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1mks  (Level: 221.1 - Posts: 5930)
Fri, 29th Aug '08 6:01 PM


Barely. It is not usual for me to have someone the first week but I had 3 and they were all 2nd graders. I find this to be very disheartening. I am not trying to be funny here either. I am so glad to only have two more years of teaching left before I can retire. I have watched new teachers struggle this week...and leave school in tears. I watched another seasoned teacher leave this afternoon in tears and she looked me straight in the eye and said, "I will never have children." I am NOT saying that all schools are like this....but I'm afraid that most inner city schools are. I had a child today, a girl, that had kicked her principal, the counselor, another teacher and spit on the asst. principal. Legally, we cannot touch her except to keep her from hurting herself or other people. I had to call my principal down to my room today because I was not about to lay my hands on her.. I refuse to put myself in that situation. She told me (while he was on his way down) that she would take off her shoe and hit him in the head until she "saw the white meat". He restrained her for over 30 minutes......I had to take the other children out and leave the room. Bitter? Yes I am. Under paid? Yes. Our hands are tied in cases like this. I'm sorry for the child yes..I talked to her Mother. The Mother was very nice...or seemed so. How does something like this happen in our society today? I am afraid that I am becoming very jaded. I dearly love children and joke around alot but days like today disturb me severely. I would never have become a teacher for any other reason. I like to think that if I can help one child turn their life around then it has been worth it. That was greatly tested today. I am just venting. Thanks for being there and listening. I am dead tired.

Fudypatootie  (Level: 207.0 - Posts: 1302)
Fri, 29th Aug '08 6:06 PM

When I first started teaching, we were told that 1 out of every 5 teachers would leave the profession after 5 years. Now I hear the stat is 1 in 3 will leave after the first year! There are so many things that have contributed to the child you had to deal with today. Indulgent parents, lack of discipline in the home, inability of schools to carry out any firm discipline, and on an on. It is disheartening.

I'm so sorry your day sucked. Hope the rest of the year is better.

Kimoira  (Level: 215.2 - Posts: 1201)
Fri, 29th Aug '08 6:08 PM

Marsha I am sure you have turned more than one life around during your time teaching. I know how disheartened teachers become especially in the Spec Ed system and it's cliche but these kids have no fear of adults or authority. There are no consequences for bad behavior other than winding up in a special setting where they can freely terrorize.

The main thing is for you to stay safe for your remaining time there. It sounds as though the principal is not afraid to be hands-on, so that's a good thing.

Papermanbill  (Level: 41.3 - Posts: 1312)
Fri, 29th Aug '08 6:25 PM

Marsha, I am very familiar with inner city schools and high schools. If I read right, you are with second or third graders,
these kids are probably 8 or 9 years old. Up here these kids are just about that age where they are expected to raise themselves (I'm sure you know what I mean). Alcohol, Pot, Cocaine, Crack, Heroine and any other junk sold on the street are why that kid was kicking the principal. It is not uncommon to see a kid walking to school at 8AM with a min-bag of Potato chips, that's their breakfast. One good thing about Chicago Public Schools is the Lunch program they have, at least the kids eat once a day (unless they dump it).

Spacecat  (Level: 165.0 - Posts: 676)
Fri, 29th Aug '08 6:33 PM

Hang in there Marsha. My wife who works with children in an after school daycare setting has commented on a few occasions how children have changed (more aggressive, less attentive) than just a few years ago. However you sound like you are at war with these children. And legally they have the power. I had a few teachers who pulled me around by the ear to make me behave. Can't do that today. Don't quit, there are still many children who have commented how a teacher changed their lives. Your reasons for joining the profession are still relevant. All the best. Let us know what happens.

Taco24  (Level: 142.3 - Posts: 589)
Fri, 29th Aug '08 6:49 PM

Oh, Marsha
I did not know you worked with the little kids. This is disheartening to hear. Yet, the politicians keep on trucking with the false promises that the schools are going to shine under a democratic leadership. Not anytime soon, I expect. Too many people having children who should not have children, etc. etc. etc. What amazes me is that the "honeymoon period" is over so soon. Remember when kids were pretty well behaved the frist couple of weeks? Now, their true colors appear quickly. Very scary.
I am so grateful I am not a new teacher either. I still have ten years to go though before retirement. "Sigh" Just keep to it, and grit your teeth. In addition, keep hitting those word rounds for stress relief.

Eesusbejesus  (Level: 75.0 - Posts: 3640)
Fri, 29th Aug '08 6:53 PM

When I was in school, we lived in fear of corporal punishment. I think now, because teachers are so helpless in the ways they can discipline children, many kids have lost that good healthy "respect" that we used to have. They don't get disciplined at home and they know they can't be disciplined at school.

My kids both know that any punishment they may get at school will seem like Disneyland compared to what will happen at home if we hear of any misbehavior. I can't remember the occasion but I do know that two little kids got to spend an entire weekend shoveling horse crap, washing cars, stacking wood, and whatever else we could find. I have no tolerance for little A-holes.

Bbear  (Level: 168.0 - Posts: 2291)
Fri, 29th Aug '08 8:01 PM

Just a thought -- I have a dear friend with an extremely hyper kid. His continual punishment for misbehavior was to have to skip recess and skip gym and sit at his desk with his head down.

She went to the principal and explained what she does with him.

Now when he misbehaves he has to run around the schoolyard 10 times.

The behaviors have almost stopped.

Not a teacher, but is this a good idea?

The biggest shame is that 10% of the kids take up 90% of the teachers time. Totally unfair for the other kids and cruel for the teacher.

Good luck

Papermanbill  (Level: 41.3 - Posts: 1312)
Fri, 29th Aug '08 8:08 PM

Anyone see the movie "Sleepers". I went to an all boys Christian Brothers H.S. in the late 50's. There were a few
jokers that taught and beat there (in the name of God). I begged my mom to get out of there and go to public school and she took me out. I saw these no good jerks hit kids with paddles, golf clubs and whatever they could get there hands on.
I guarantee if movies like "Sleepers" was around back then, that crap would've stopped quick. I actually saw a 14 year old boy
pee his pants because of one of these pricks.

Kimoira  (Level: 215.2 - Posts: 1201)
Fri, 29th Aug '08 8:41 PM

That's the other end of the spectrum what some of the nuns and priests got away with. That wasn't acceptable either but it boomeranged back to now kids know there are no consequences of any kind and don't give a fig what anyone's opinion of them is. Not a good start to life.

Smeans  (Level: 109.2 - Posts: 301)
Fri, 29th Aug '08 8:56 PM

OMG....what a horrible day!! If my son, a 2nd grader, pulled something like that he would be in so much trouble at home it would not even be funny. I am just shocked that you have 2nd graders in detention already in the first week.

My gosh, my son got his video games taken away last night and was assigned "mommy homework" (20 addition problems, 15 sentences where he had to pick out the nouns, and 5 logic problems) because he failed to bring home his work folder home when there was homework assigned to him by the teacher last night. He said he forgot it....I'm nipping that excuse in the bud fast. I don't think there will be too many "I forgot" excuses used because he was fairly mad at me last night when I told him no video games and gave him his "mommy homework" to do. Which was more than the teacher had assigned to him. I sent the papers back to school with him today and a note telling the teacher that the papers were his "mommy homework" because he "forgot" to bring his folder with his real homework in it home. I told her that I still expected him to receive disciplinary action from her as well, i.e. card changes on the wall (green, yellow, red), loss of playtime to do his homework, etc. Mommy doesn't play any games....he is told "you will listen to your teachers, you will show respect to your teachers, you will do your work when you are suppose to or you WILL feel the wrath of mommy." Mommy is a fountain of worksheets, mommy holds control of the video games, mommy can set his bedtime earlier if he is unable to properly pay attention in class, mommy can gut his room to where he only has his bed, clothes and one book to read if he gets out of line too far. He's seen it done to his sister and he knows I will not hesitate to do it to him as well. LOL

I am hoping and praying that this year gets better for you. Hang in there....just two more years to go and you can retire. You have come too far now to walk away. Like others have said....if you can make a difference in just one child's life it's worth it. Head up, shoulders back and stay strong the finish line is in sight. (((((((HUGS)))))))

Chyenn  (Level: 210.7 - Posts: 1332)
Fri, 29th Aug '08 11:45 PM

Shawna, i think you should teach an "effective parenting" class. if more parents were like you, our teachers could actually take back the classrooms and teach.

Salzypat  (Level: 162.6 - Posts: 5425)
Sat, 30th Aug '08 1:03 AM

My oldest grandson kept "forgetting" to turn in his homework, so his mother (my daughter-in-law) told him if he didn't start doing and turning in his homework she was going to go to school with him and sit with him to be sure he got it.

My grandson didn't take her threat seriously, so the next time he "forgot" his homework, she took him to school, followed him into the building, into his classroom and pulled a chair up beside his desk and sat with him throughout his morning classes. He sheepishly told her before lunch he would not forget his homework again. And so far as I know, he never did.

I can't imagine how embarrassed he was!

My dad was president of the school board of the little country school I attended so every time there was a problem, the teachers cried on his shoulder. I had a few rough years, because if I ever got in trouble at school I got it double at home.

1mks  (Level: 221.1 - Posts: 5930)
Sat, 30th Aug '08 8:44 AM

A very deep thank you to all of you. I normally don't whine and I apologize for doing so in an open forum. Everything just seemed to snowball. My principal was actually awesome and that was a really good feeling. My "main" boss was even more supportive. I don't work for any 1 school...I am a district employee and my salary comes through student services so the Director of Student Services is who I really report to. I copied him on all my documentation to the principal where this child came from. He supported me totally and even got the ball rolling on her not even going back to her home campus but to our alternative school where she will receive daily counseling, etc. So everything worked out like it should have. I think what broke me down so much was seeing the younger teachers so very stressed....and that is nothing I can do anything about. I did take 3 of them a bouquet this week and tried to be supportive and tell them that things would improve. I guess I didn't listen to my own advice. Anyway, thanks a bunch. It will be better next week because I have all of Sploofus pulling for me. Jeez, what a nice feeling. Have a fabulous holiday weekend. Marsha

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