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Old 08-31-2012, 03:49 PM   #1
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Horrible first week of 2nd grade!!!

UPDATE in POST #54!!!!!So I really need some outside opinions. This is kind of long so bear with me. My daughter is 7 and in the 2nd grade. She's been at school for 5 days. The teacher on the first day sent home her class rules and consequences which is normal but there were a ton of rules. When they break a rule they get a color change. Purple is outstanding, green is a warning, so on and so on. As they break the rules they get punishments like walking 30 minutes straight through recess (we live in texas so 100 degree weather at least), or sitting in isolation at lunch (which is them sitting in a desk facing the corner but in front of the entire 2nd grade. So I start reading the rules and there are some like she will get a color change if she is "Passive Aggressive" and she will get a color change if the teacher feels she isn't putting in enough "Effort". First off my 7 year old didn't know what passive aggressive meant which is a great reason why it is the dumbest rule ever and I wondered at what point she thinks it is enough effort. By the way my little girl is on the "A" honor roll and never had a color change in the first grade. She loves school!

On the 2nd day of school she has a substitute teacher who says that if they don't stand in line correctly then they are not allowed to have lunch!!! She had a different substitute teacher on day 3 then her teacher came back the last 2 days. So my daughter brings home her take home folder and it has other kids name on it in black marker all the way across the front. I said "Ella this isn't your folder". She said it is her folder and that she doesn't get to have her supplies. The name on the folder is the boy next to her. And the kids across from her has her crayons with her name on them but she isn't allowed to have them. Her teacher says it doesn't matter that her folder has the boys name on it (1 inch tall all the way across in Sharpie) because she assigned all the kids numbers instead of their names! (just like prison i thought) So she has a number 5 on everything but with other kids names on them! At the end of the day she calls their number so they get their work and they sign out for bathroom passes with their number. No need for names.... (Ella is 4 letters long for crying out loud!!)

On day 4 the teacher informs the kids that if they have to use the bathroom and it's an emergency then they will get a color change if she's teaching. So Ella of course was so worried that she might get in trouble that she almost had an accident at school because she didn't want to raise her hand. And what if at some point she gets a stomach ache and has to go more than once. Over my dead body that she will walk for 30 minutes because she has to use the restroom!!!!!

Ella has been so stressed that she felt like she was going to throw up today in class. She raised her hand and said "I feel like I'm going to throw up, can I please have a nurses pass?" Her teacher said "NO." Then the boy next to her raised his hand and said I have a headache, can I go? And she said yes! She also told them that if they get in trouble they will right their own notes to their parents because she doesn't have time for that kind of stuff.

So I would love your opinions because I will be going up to the school on Tuesday!! (Monday is a holiday) Yes I will be that lovely mom up at the school who is making a scene! I've just come to terms with it and now I'm going to embrace it!

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Last edited by MyVintageBliss; 09-03-2012 at 04:53 PM. Reason: Update!
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Old 08-31-2012, 03:55 PM   #2
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Re: Horrible first week of 2nd grade!!!

I was a 2nd grade teacher for 4 years.

I am wondering how much of this going on inthe classroom is actually true or what a 7 year old thinks is true.

As far as the "punishments" I don't agree with them at all...I would have a chat with the teacher regarding that. I hate the color coded things...reinforce positives not negatives

The numbers. I used numbers, and its easier on some things to do numbers. However the kids have to do their names too. Our books are all numbered and it's easier to assign them a number then write their name and cross it out every year.

with the bathroom...It's amazing how many kids go to the bathroom to get out of doing things. We do have to limit the unnecessary trips. If its emergencies then I don't bat and eye and let them go. You can tell when it is and when it's more of the getting out of things.
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Old 08-31-2012, 03:56 PM   #3
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Re: Horrible first week of 2nd grade!!!

I am a teacher (high school, but still) and that would NEVER happen in Maine. Here, it is the complete opposite: we treat the kids like kings. It was so aggravating I ended up changing school districts and I am a lot happier. Now, going back to your problem: I think that is excessive. Have any of those teachers/substitutes/principals heard anything about assertive discipline? Positive reinforcement? You get kids to do better and behave better if you reward positive behaviors rather than punish the bad actions.
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Old 08-31-2012, 04:09 PM   #4
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Re: Horrible first week of 2nd grade!!!

The teacher sounds extreme, but the beginning of the year is always super strict for the kids while teachers establish class rules. I wouldn't take anything the sub says to heart. The sub is the sub. That isn't related to the actual teacher and is a separate issue.

I actually like the 30 minutes of walking idea FAR, FAR better than a kid who misbehaves (often due to needing wiggle time) being deprived of the physical release recess allows. I actually like removing the student from their peer interaction at lunch as well. Not too thrilled with them being "in the spotlight," but I don't know that there's another way to do it without the teacher being in 2 places at once. I also like the writing their own notes home. I think that is more about teaching the children to be responsible and take ownership of their mistakes. And no, the teacher doesn't have time (and really shouldn't need to) to write notes home to parents about misbehavior.

My son has had a number (and a name) on his things for at least 3 years now (he's in 5th grade) so that is actually very common. Often the number corresponds to an alphabetical listing so that when the numbers are called, the students turn things in alphabetically. Makes it a bit more organized for the teacher and less likely for a grade to accidentally be assigned to the wrong student during grading.

I would be very careful not to be confrontational with the teacher. You want her to feel like you are on her side and that your daughter is also on her side. I would just let her know some of what your daughter is telling you at home and that your daughter seems a bit confused about some of the rules and policies and could she (the teacher) clarify them for you so you can help your daughter with them. That keeps the lines of communcation open instead of putting her on the defense. You may find many answers to your questions that make perfect sense. You may find some you disagree with. You may find that only half of what your daughter has said is true. There is a saying, "I will believe half of what your child says goes on at home, if you will believe half of what your child says goes on at school."

ETA: And it seems like you are only hearing about the punishmet side of things (which is what kids dread and tend to hone in on). Is there a positive side? Are there rewards the kids get for staying on green?
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Old 08-31-2012, 04:09 PM   #5
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Re: Horrible first week of 2nd grade!!!

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Originally Posted by stevensmom View Post

I am wondering how much of this going on inthe classroom is actually true or what a 7 year old thinks is true.

with the bathroom...It's amazing how many kids go to the bathroom to get out of doing things. We do have to limit the unnecessary trips. If its emergencies then I don't bat and eye and let them go. You can tell when it is and when it's more of the getting out of things.
In response to that first part, with all due respect and complete sincerity my daughter is in no way a liar. When she came home the fourth day and wet the bed for the first time in her life and when she tells me at school her stomach hurts her but when she gets home she feels better then I believe that she's worried. And when I pick her up and she doesn't want to talk about her day and at night when I heard her crying then I don't for any reason think that my daughter is lying to me.

And as far as the bathroom goes, I understand there are kids who like to go play in the bathroom, I helped out first grade last year. But to tell a kid they are going to get a punishments for having to use the bathroom is crazy!! I send my daughter to school to be taught. Not have someone on a power trip telling her that she may or may not get to eat lunch or that if she has to use the restroom too much then she will walk laps. That's crossing a line in my opinion. And the great thing about being a parent is that I get to set that line.
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Old 08-31-2012, 04:16 PM   #6
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Re: Horrible first week of 2nd grade!!!

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In response to that first part, with all due respect and complete sincerity my daughter is in no way a liar. When she came home the fourth day and wet the bed for the first time in her life and when she tells me at school her stomach hurts her but when she gets home she feels better then I believe that she's worried. And when I pick her up and she doesn't want to talk about her day and at night when I heard her crying then I don't for any reason think that my daughter is lying to me.

And as far as the bathroom goes, I understand there are kids who like to go play in the bathroom, I helped out first grade last year. But to tell a kid they are going to get a punishments for having to use the bathroom is crazy!! I send my daughter to school to be taught. Not have someone on a power trip telling her that she may or may not get to eat lunch or that if she has to use the restroom too much then she will walk laps. That's crossing a line in my opinion. And the great thing about being a parent is that I get to set that line.
I am not the poster you quoted, but I think you misread. A 7yo can honestly misinterpret things and believe them to be true. It doesn't mean that anyone is lying or that the stress feigned. It just means that the 7yo has gotten the wrong impression and it needs to be set right.
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Old 08-31-2012, 04:21 PM   #7
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Re: Horrible first week of 2nd grade!!!

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Originally Posted by mcpforever View Post

I actually like the 30 minutes of walking idea FAR, FAR better than a kid who misbehaves (often due to needing wiggle time) being deprived of the physical release recess allows. I actually like removing the student from their peer interaction at lunch as well. Not too thrilled with them being "in the spotlight," but I don't know that there's another way to do it without the teacher being in 2 places at once. I also like the writing their own notes home. I think that is more about teaching the children to be responsible and take ownership of their mistakes. And no, the teacher doesn't have time (and really shouldn't need to) to write notes home to parents about misbehavior.

My son has had a number (and a name) on his things for at least 3 years now (he's in 5th grade) so that is actually very common. Often the number corresponds to an alphabetical listing so that when the numbers are called, the students turn things in alphabetically. Makes it a bit more organized for the teacher and less likely for a grade to accidentally be assigned to the wrong student during grading.

There is a saying, "I will believe half of what your child says goes on at home, if you will believe half of what your child says goes on at school."

ETA: And it seems like you are only hearing about the punishmet side of things (which is what kids dread and tend to hone in on). Is there a positive side? Are there rewards the kids get for staying on green?
I have NO problem with the punishments at all! I think they make sense, I DO have a problem with what they get punished for! If my kid had to walk laps or sit alone at lunch in front of everyone because her stomach was bothering her then yes I have a HUGE problem with that. I'm not for embarrassing kids as a tool for teaching purposes. If you have a problem with a kid going too much then speak to that child about it or their parents. Same as the passive aggressive thing, you want that as a rule than they should be able to understand your what you require of them. It's only fair.

The number thing wouldn't bother me if all her supplies didn't say Westin on it, so when she calls the number 5 she also calls her Westin! Which has happened more than once. I provide her with all her school supplies and extras for her teacher and the class. This I think is just dumb!

And to each their own on the believing your kids bit. I work with my kids very hard about telling the truth and the importance of telling the exact truth. I'm not going to debate that because I think that's more of a parenting thing than a school thing.

And yes they got a reward today, they all got to chew gum in class!!!!
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Old 08-31-2012, 04:27 PM   #8
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Re: Horrible first week of 2nd grade!!!

I would have a meeting to over this and if it is the case I would have her moved to another class room. One of the first signs of a very poor teacher is when they have a huge list of rules.
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Old 08-31-2012, 04:31 PM   #9
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Sorry momma! I would be so upset That school is stressing your DD out. I would talk to the teacher and principal if need be and if your concerns are not settled then I would request a new teacher. If that wasn't an option I'd pull her out of that school.

The fact that she wet the bed really bothers me. No matter if what the teacher is doing is wrong or not, it is stressing out your DD and that's not ok. Best wishes for peace for both of you to come from your meeting.
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Old 08-31-2012, 04:38 PM   #10
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Re: Horrible first week of 2nd grade!!!

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Originally Posted by mcpforever View Post
I am not the poster you quoted, but I think you misread. A 7yo can honestly misinterpret things and believe them to be true. It doesn't mean that anyone is lying or that the stress feigned. It just means that the 7yo has gotten the wrong impression and it needs to be set right.
Yeah I never said your daughter was a lier...but she may be misinterpreting things and believes them to be true.
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