Friday, November 9, 2012


Teachers! Have you ever felt defeated at school?  Like to the point that teaching can barely even happen because behavior is so off the chain!?!?

Parents! Please help me out!!!!

Why is stupid recess more important than learning?
Why is football practice a bigger priority than doing homework?
Why are you doing their homework for them?
Why is your child always telling the truth and the teacher is lying?
Why in the world does your child have the audacity to speak to an adult (much less their teacher) with SUCH disrespect?!?!
Parents, why is it ok to speak to your child's teacher with such disrespect?

I could go on...but I'll spare you.

I just don't get it. It was never a thought in my head to speak to my teachers in the way these kids do. AND if I got in trouble at better believe I got in trouble at home. There was no such thing as believing me over the teacher. My parents defended our teachers no matter what...not talk bad about them in front of us. I've never experienced anything like it. Kind of just makes teachers want to throw my hands up in defeat. It seems as though parents could care less that there child HAS TO pass state tests to go onto the next grade level...I just don't know what to do anymore, because like I said...I don't get it! Please tell me I'm not the only one!?!?!?!?!


  1. Katie, I am a long time "reader" but don't believe I have commented before. I am in the EXACT same situation this year! I am drowning in all of the same respects you are. I have a class of kids that have no respect, no appreciation, and no regard for school.
    It's really frustrating and sad because I have lost all desire to work with them, and that just isn't in my nature.
    I wish I could offer some advice- but at this point - I don't have any!
    So sorry to hear that you are feeling this way and dealing with these issues.

  2. Oh Katie,
    I am COMPLETELY with you on this post. We have the same things happening at our school. Even the principal has been the target of name-calling and verbal abuse. It's just crazy!

    Here's what I have been doing: I know I have to teach every one of my little darlings. But I (secretly) try and focus on the accomplishments of a different child each day. I don't make it obvious. I just tell myself: Today, he took out a pencil without a reminder, he only yelled out 5 times instead of 10, he read for 4 minutes without being distracted... You get the idea. Then I throw in a little praise here and there...

    It breaks my heart that so many kids have such horrendous behavior. If I cry over all of them on any given day, I lose track of the reason I am here. So, try to pick one. And if that kid falls apart, remind yourself you get to focus on someone else tomorrow!

    Sending you a cyber hug and a reminder that Thanksgiving break is near...

    Finding JOY in 6th Grade

  3. Oh Katie... Yesterday, I stood in the hallway with 3 other teachers trying to talk one of our colleagues out of looking for a "different" job. The problem is that between the 4 of us we have 78 years of experience and none of us are sure why we should stick around anymore. We are worried about, frustrated by and crying over the same things you mentioned. It makes me worried about the world my own children will grow up in. Please know that you are not alone and that even though things are changing, you are making a difference for so many children each day.
    Funky First Grade Fun

  4. This is the group that I had last year. As a matter of fact, the whole grade level was that way. They had been that way from Kindergarten. And they are still that way for the fourth grade teachers this year. However, my fellow grade level teachers and I kept trying.

    I did find that I could focus on several children each day. I worked with them and kept hoping that the rest would get the idea. It would would for about 2 days and then all heck broke lose again. And if there was a weekend or a holiday in there, all bets were off. We constantly had to change up the rules and enforce them very strictly.

    By February, we actually had some students doing the things they were supposed to be doing. But, we still had to stay vigilant to keep the others in line.

    The group this year, total opposites. I ask them to do things and they actually do it.

    The experience from the year before was hard, but I did learn something from it. I made sure that I gave really clear directions, followed through on rules and modeled the behaviors I wanted from them.

    Hang in, it will get easier.

  5. Katie,
    I'm so sorry! I was in the exact same situation about two years ago. I wanted to quit. I wanted to get out of there bad. I found that I just had to endure. The only thing I found is that I couldn't stick with the same classroom management very long. I had to change it up about every two weeks. To keep them with me. I promise next year will be better. Anything has to be better right. Hang in there. Just do what you can!
    The Hive

  6. Katie, my heart goes out to you. I think all of us at some time have felt this way especially when receiving an unjustified parent call or note with an angry tone over a situation that was twisted by the student or misunderstood by the parent. I believe our society is changing in such a way that there is a lack of respect for authority that carries over into the classroom.

    Parents are busy, overwhelmed and frustrated with daily life. If their children are a handful for you in the classroom, chances are they are at home too! I think you may have been the punching bag for some of their hostility that was misdirected. It's hard to do, but people have said to consider the source. You do not have to continue a conversation with anyone disrespecting you. You can politely call them out on their behavior and let them know that you can continue the conversation at a later time when it can be productive!

    Hang in there and be confident that you are making a difference and instilling good values in your students the best you can.

    Come stop by some time and say hello!


    Creative Lesson Cafe

  7. Katie,
    I heard about your blog through Kimberly's blog at Funky First Grade Fun. I'm a Elementary & Special Ed. Major and will be student teaching in the Spring. I've assisted in many classes which are experiencing the same thing you are. In the class I'm in now, the teacher sends home information about the week every Monday. She e-mails the parents every monday in order to inform them what work is due. And when it doesn't get turned in on Friday, she calls them. 5 of her kids in her class are failing simply because they don't do the homework. This is not a solitary event. It is happening around the U.S. I even see parents in my neighborhood who I can tell aren't having their kids do their homework. It baffles me. I am a single mom and my kid does her homework every night (granted, she's in Kindergarten). However, my nephew (whos mom is also a single mom) is doing his 1st grade homework every night. If we can do it, there is no excuse for the other parents. I don't understand it either. Hang in there! Praying for strength and understanding.

  8. My heart goes out to you, my year last year was like that. Lack of respect seems to be the problem we face every day. Don't give up, I would suggest sending home a weekly behavior card on Fridays. I kept them mostly for myself so that I could recall the situation and also have the child and parent both present when discussing situations.

    I wish you luck and hope things get better soon. I have been teaching for over 20 years and never felt as discouraged as I did last year, the behavior cards and constant communication saved me.

    Hugs to you and hope also.

  9. I work in an area where, well for lack of a better way to say it, the average family gets everything for free... without working... while I bust my A** for the small amount of money that I get to bring into my home (that I pay for) each week. I have a mixture of kids and parents this year, some help, most don't, so I know where you are coming from. This has been my life since transferring to this school (which I love) 4 years ago. I stay because I know that even when I face that parent that calls me a liar and will not believe a thing I say about their child, I am and will continue to make a difference in at least one child in my class each year. I have given up on most parents, so I don't even send behavior notices home anymore. I take care of it in my classroom and document it there. If and when someone deems it necessary to talk about it, I have everything ready to go. Most never want to hear about it, unless their darling is in trouble everyday and then it is always me or after school care or the other kids that are a problem, not their darling. So all I can tell you is keep being you, in spite of it all, you are the light in someone's day, even if it is only one someone. I know it's hard, it will always be hard, but we are all in this because nobody else will ever be able to handle it like we do. Stay graceful and know that you are loved.

  10. Katie- You are not alone! This year in particular seems terrible. I'm lucky this year with my parents since they have been supportive. I've already decided to leave my district this year. I hope I can find another job. It's so tough our team started a prayer group in the morning to get through the day. When you pass another teacher in the hallway and ask "How are you?" the typical response is "Well, I've only cried once today."

    I've started doing a linky party every month called "Tell Me Something Good" to try to focus on positives. I would love for you to join it when I post in December! It might help! Hang in there!!!! XO
    Rowdy in First Grade

  11. I feel you! Last year, my first year of teaching, I had a parent blast me in front of all THREE of her kids because she was not happy with the grade her kid got on his report card. She also wrote me an angry email accusing me of not knowing her kid. Days later, she came in my classroom after school, closed my classroom door, and told me that she has lost all respect for me. The kid is a great kid. But from that day on, my relationship with the kid was broken because of what the mom had done. I seriously reconsidered my career during that time. Fortunately, my colleagues and principal were very supportive of me and kept me going. I just had to remind myself that I am here for the kids and that no one can really understand what we teachers do until they are in our shoes. It's a tough job but I believe you can do it because you've made it this far already!

    Keep your head up! You can do it! :)

    Diary of a First Grade Teacher

  12. Yep, I totally feel your pain in this post. I work at a small school with less than 10 kids in each class. Each class have multiple grades. Lately a few other schools are about to close, which is going to make the smaller school take more children. One of those schools would be ours which does go from Kindergarten to grade 9. The grades 8 & 9 are internet based.
    Since all of this is happening, a lot of parents are after teachers about what is going to happen, where kids are going, its not going to be the same etc. Its kind of annoying because you have no say in it, you just have to nod and smile.
    We also have parents whose kids don't even attend our school say we are doing the wrong thing, teaching the wrong way etc.
    Hang in there.