I'm trying so hard not to be "that" parent. Frustrated.

Princessclab

Mouseketeer
Joined
Jun 1, 2007
Without opening means of communication with the teacher, this is a very one-sided perspective. Before getting riled up about notes in a planner and “going over her head,” as suggested, have a conversation.
It appears that the OP has tried to communicate to the teacher with no positive results. The teacher appears to be unapproachable and inflexible.
Perception is reality; if a parent believes their child is struggling at school they should do what they believe is necessary to help their child. Even if it is straightening things out between all. The school systems are there to help and would not want a parent and child to struggle because of issues they are having with a teacher. No one should tell them they can't ask for help even if it means going over their head.
I know I would and pity the child that has parents that are unwilling to look for a better school experience for their child.
There is nothing wrong with challenging the school system, they are never perfect and are obligated to help all kids.
 

PollyannaMom

I was a click-clack champ!!
Joined
May 16, 2006
I certainly wouldn't hold back a kid over cursive. Cursive is designed to look pretty. It really isn't practical. There are far better things to be done with learning time than learning to write the alphabet all over again. And it certainly isn't as fast as typing. And now that we do far less personal correspondence in writing, its uses are declining. There isn't any more need to teach it any more than there is a need to teach women how to use a spinning jenny.
I also wouldn't hold a kid back for that. I disagree that there isn't any more need to learn it, though - as someone has to be able to read it. (But at this point, it could be an elective that older kids choose to take, not required for every second grader.)
 

Jennasis

DIS life goes on
Joined
Jun 11, 2000
I certainly wouldn't hold back a kid over cursive. Cursive is designed to look pretty. It really isn't practical. There are far better things to be done with learning time than learning to write the alphabet all over again. And it certainly isn't as fast as typing. And now that we do far less personal correspondence in writing, its uses are declining. There isn't any more need to teach it any more than there is a need to teach women how to use a spinning jenny.
No. It is designed to be practical. Pretty is not it's purpose. While I agree, learning to write in cursive is like having to learn to read and write hieroglyphics (a dead language), the very reason cursive writing was designed was for practicality and to save time and effort while writing. It allows words to be written without having to lift the utensil off the page, thus saving time and effort.
 
  • GreatLakes

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 6, 2015
    True. But some teachers don't use such systems. Our high school has had direct communication link via online for years. And at least half of my kid's teachers didn't want to/like to/wouldn't use it.
    That is just a lack of leadership. If we have a technology package we expect our employees to use management enforces it.
     

    mjkacmom

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 20, 2006
    It appears that the OP has tried to communicate to the teacher with no positive results. The teacher appears to be unapproachable and inflexible.
    Perception is reality; if a parent believes their child is struggling at school they should do what they believe is necessary to help their child. Even if it is straightening things out between all. The school systems are there to help and would not want a parent and child to struggle because of issues they are having with a teacher. No one should tell them they can't ask for help even if it means going over their head.
    I know I would and pity the child that has parents that are unwilling to look for a better school experience for their child.
    There is nothing wrong with challenging the school system, they are never perfect and are obligated to help all kids.
    The teacher writes notes to the parents frequently, and the OP says they were meeting after school. Why does the teacher seem unapproachable? As for the socks, I know many who went to Catholic private schools, who were sticklers about uniforms.
     

    DopeyDame

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jul 8, 2010
    It's only by luck if anyone in my family happens to be wearing matching socks on any given day.

    Just looked down. One running sock with a pink stripe and one with a gray. I still got through my day just fine.
    I decided when my kids were toddlers that I just wasn't going to stress myself about matching socks. I swear it made my life so much better.
     

    LovesTimone

    Christmas Day 2017
    Joined
    Apr 29, 2009
    I want to address the socks... what in the world, who cares.... he has on socks... and is a kid.. for goodness sake, ... it certainly is not going to affect his learning by having on mis-matched sock... or disrupt the class.... this is absolutely ridiculous... nit picky and completely unnecessary...

    Not everything is one size fits all... as well as learning is not all one size fits one kid...

    Your son might need a different environment to learn in, different teaching style or approach, classroom set up, and such..
     
  • jaybirdsmommy

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 27, 2008
    OP here again,

    I've slept on this, had a conversation with both the teacher and DS (separately). I think I can better answer what's going on here.

    1. As I said in the earlier post, she's concerned that he is shutting down/getting angry when asked to re-do things. She is concerned that 3rd grade moves at a much faster pace than 2nd and that this behavior will put him behind very quickly and that he seems to have trouble grasping new concepts. The handwriting is a concern because it's so inconsistent. One day it's beautiful, the next it's illegible. My issue with this is that a. he is obviously getting the subject material based on his grades (this isn't a school that gives A's for effort) and b. I don't like the notes written where he can see them. Hopefully this will stop now, if not I'll talk to the principal.

    2. He doesn't like her. When DS decides he doesn't like someone, he REALLY doesn't like them and there's nothing they can do to change it. He's currently angry because she made him miss recess a few weeks ago when he showed up without his homework completed. He had to stay in to finish it, hence his decision that he doesn't like her anymore and his getting angry / refusing to make corrections/whatever else she tells him to do. We had a serious "come to Jesus" discussion this morning about how that is unacceptable and that he needs to do his work and if he doesn't do want to make corrections he needs to do it right the first time. If it was grammar that he was having to re-do I'd be a little more sympathetic since he does struggle with that, but yesterday it was clocks and penmanship. He's been able to read clocks with no problem since kindergarten and the penmanship was a worksheet practicing the number 3, since his entire math homework the night before his 3's looked like Ss.
     

    luvsJack

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 3, 2007
    I want to address the socks... what in the world, who cares.... he has on socks... and is a kid.. for goodness sake, ... it certainly is not going to affect his learning by having on mis-matched sock... or disrupt the class.... this is absolutely ridiculous... nit picky and completely unnecessary...

    Not everything is one size fits all... as well as learning is not all one size fits one kid...

    Your son might need a different environment to learn in, different teaching style or approach, classroom set up, and such..
    Exactly! DD had a teacher in jr. high that did the dreaded "sock check" every morning. I took another pair of socks ONE time. After myself and 3 other sock bringing parents spoke to the principal (We didn't make an effort, she was just in the school secretary's office when we went in); she informed the teacher that "if you have to ask the kid to raise their pants legs, that means you cannot see the socks and neither can anyone else. Leave it alone".
     

    gotomu212

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 2, 2010
    The really nice thing about private school is that it opens a ton of flexibility to find the right learning environment for your individual child. You can find the school that is the best fit. Based on your two updates I think it’s worth thinking about whether this is the right school for your son (and a school can be a perfect fit for child A and just a bad fit for child B and it doesn’t mean that A is better than B or the school is bad- it’s just that private schools have a narrower approach and when it doesn’t work, it really doesn’t work.

    If your son already repeated a grade, and there are signs that he will not be ready for the schools next grade, he’s having a hard time with new concepts, and he is having to struggle and work this hard in 2nd grade, it seems this school isn’t fitting his needs. He may need additional accommodations that many private schools don’t address, it may be that the work is beyond him, it may be that the school doesn’t provide enough support to kids that struggle...whatever the reason I’d be very worried about another year held behind.

    Checking out the local public school or other private schools doesn’t mean you have to decide to move but you can ask very specific questions about things your son is struggling with and find out how they approach them and whether it works better for him. Then you’ll have the information and options.
     

    jaybirdsmommy

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 27, 2008
    Is this the only classroom of students for this grade?

    How are your public schools?

    In our area, public schools don't demand as much cursive as the private ones do.

    Also, our public schools have more specialized services and help than our private.

    I have a friend whose oldest 2 flourished at the local elementary school. Her younger child learned differently and after working with the administration had to move her to another nearby district with different teaching methods that reached the child and met their learning needs much better.
    Our public schools are excellent (oldest DS is in 10th grade, public all the way, no issues at all with his teachers ) but this kid just couldn't function. He needs the stricter, quieter setting that this school provides. He went from being such a behavior issue that the school wanted me to medicate him in kindergarten (5!!!!!!!) to being consistently rewarded for good behavior when we changed schools. When we went to visit the private school for the first time, the first thing he asked was "where's the color chart Mom? How do they know who the bad kids are?"

    first I would start with occupational therapy.second I would inform the school that the student should use any means to record information such as a lap top or tablet. If he she can’t type then the use of a scribe. Handwriting should never hold a student back
    No tablets or technology at this school. I agree, I won't let them hold him back on handwriting alone but he does need to be able to write.

    Is your son left handed by chance? It is so much easier for a leftie if the notebook is upside down, because the binding gets in the way the "correct" way.
    No, he writes right handed, he just does everything else left-handed. No idea what's up with that.

    No. It is designed to be practical. Pretty is not it's purpose. While I agree, learning to write in cursive is like having to learn to read and write hieroglyphics (a dead language), the very reason cursive writing was designed was for practicality and to save time and effort while writing. It allows words to be written without having to lift the utensil off the page, thus saving time and effort.
    Completely agree, I love that this school emphasizes cursive. My oldest learned just enough that he can sign his name. That's it. youngest actually writes better with cursive than he does printing. He was allowed to switch a little earlier than the other kids to see if it improved his consistency. Unfortunately, it didn't. I don't know that it's an occupational therapy issue so much as laziness, but we'll try some of the hand strengthening suggestions that others have made to see if they help.

    I can't do a lot of writing in print, my hand cramps up. Cursive is so much easier.

    That is just a lack of leadership. If we have a technology package we expect our employees to use management enforces it.
    Agree, oldest has a teacher this year that refuses to use the online system. Drives us both nuts.

    I want to address the socks... what in the world, who cares.... he has on socks... and is a kid.. for goodness sake, ... it certainly is not going to affect his learning by having on mis-matched sock... or disrupt the class.... this is absolutely ridiculous... nit picky and completely unnecessary...

    Not everything is one size fits all... as well as learning is not all one size fits one kid...

    Your son might need a different environment to learn in, different teaching style or approach, classroom set up, and such..
    My socks don't match most days, either. I honestly thought he'd get by with it that one time, both socks were uniform appropriate, they just weren't the same sock. Live and learn I guess.

    There are only 10 second graders at this school, so this is the only second grade class. I told him this morning that if he didn't like his current teacher, he needed to straighten up and do his work correctly this first time and with a better attitude or he'd be right back in her class next year.
     
  • jaybirdsmommy

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 27, 2008
    The really nice thing about private school is that it opens a ton of flexibility to find the right learning environment for your individual child. You can find the school that is the best fit. Based on your two updates I think it’s worth thinking about whether this is the right school for your son (and a school can be a perfect fit for child A and just a bad fit for child B and it doesn’t mean that A is better than B or the school is bad- it’s just that private schools have a narrower approach and when it doesn’t work, it really doesn’t work.

    If your son already repeated a grade, and there are signs that he will not be ready for the schools next grade, he’s having a hard time with new concepts, and he is having to struggle and work this hard in 2nd grade, it seems this school isn’t fitting his needs. He may need additional accommodations that many private schools don’t address, it may be that the work is beyond him, it may be that the school doesn’t provide enough support to kids that struggle...whatever the reason I’d be very worried about another year held behind.

    Checking out the local public school or other private schools doesn’t mean you have to decide to move but you can ask very specific questions about things your son is struggling with and find out how they approach them and whether it works better for him. Then you’ll have the information and options.
    We have checked, unfortunately the only option for him is back to public. The other private schools in town (only 3) are either too expensive for us or have the same size classes as the public schools. The benefit of private for him is the small class size. This school currently has 10 kids in second grade, 4 kids in 4th, 6 in 5th, 2 in 6th,2 in 7th and none in 8th (they lose the middle school kids due to lack of sports teams, not quality). Put him in a room with too many other kids and he becomes a behavior problem.

    I don't know what to do. I wish kids came with an instruction manual. My gut tells me to keep him there for now, unless they refuse to let him go to third. Then we will have to re-evaluate.
     

    mjkacmom

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Feb 20, 2006
    OP have you had your son evaluated? It sounds like he has some anger issues which can be associated with certain disabilities (my 12 year nephew has been medicated for several years and it makes a huge difference, teachers can always tell when he forgets to take them). Most of my kids have different levels of cross dominance, dd22 writes lefty but does other things righty, ds20 writes righty but does all sports lefty (couldn’t hand down his sports equipment to ds16, who is righty all the way except soccer, stronger left foot).

    Unfortunately, public schools tend to be better with disabilities, as they are legally required to address them and make modifications.
     

    jaybirdsmommy

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 27, 2008
    OP have you had your son evaluated? It sounds like he has some anger issues which can be associated with certain disabilities (my 12 year nephew has been medicated for several years and it makes a huge difference, teachers can always tell when he forgets to take them). Most of my kids have different levels of cross dominance, dd22 writes lefty but does other things righty, ds20 writes righty but does all sports lefty (couldn’t hand down his sports equipment to ds16, who is righty all the way except soccer, stronger left foot).

    Unfortunately, public schools tend to be better with disabilities, as they are legally required to address them and make modifications.
    No, but I probably do need to do so. We may look into that this summer. We'll have to pay for it out of pocket, I'm not going to let the school system do it, they completely missed my older son, we had to go private to get his issues diagnosed (mildly autistic with processing issues). Plus, while our public schools are great, like most other schools they have limited resources and it's like pulling teeth to get any assistance for a child that isn't failing.
     

    luvsJack

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Apr 3, 2007
    No. It is designed to be practical. Pretty is not it's purpose. While I agree, learning to write in cursive is like having to learn to read and write hieroglyphics (a dead language), the very reason cursive writing was designed was for practicality and to save time and effort while writing. It allows words to be written without having to lift the utensil off the page, thus saving time and effort.
    Not disagreeing with because you are right that it is supposed to save time and effort. BUT, as someone who gets to see way to much paperwork filled out in cursive, I have learned that the great majority of people do not write in a way that can be read. We have started asking that all forms be filled out in print.

    DD knows how to read cursive but was never really made to learn to write it. It just wasn't deemed important in their school. She said in 6th grade, they were going to make them all write in cursive. I think the teacher's eyes got tired and they just let it go. Dd prints anything she writes (which isn't much) but does sign her name.
     

    gotomu212

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Sep 2, 2010
    We have checked, unfortunately the only option for him is back to public. The other private schools in town (only 3) are either too expensive for us or have the same size classes as the public schools. The benefit of private for him is the small class size. This school currently has 10 kids in second grade, 4 kids in 4th, 6 in 5th, 2 in 6th,2 in 7th and none in 8th (they lose the middle school kids due to lack of sports teams, not quality). Put him in a room with too many other kids and he becomes a behavior problem.

    I don't know what to do. I wish kids came with an instruction manual. My gut tells me to keep him there for now, unless they refuse to let him go to third. Then we will have to re-evaluate.
    With your updated information it does sound like this school has the best chance of success. Your post about the color wheel almost had me in tears. I’m sure you already do this, but I’d pour on the compliments and support for how hard he does work (if a 5 year old thought he was “bad” I’m sure he has some issues around self esteem when it comes to school). I know it’s a ton more work for you and the teacher but maybe you could set up a regular standing communication appointment so that you know right away when he’s struggling with a new concept or has a day where he misses work. If you got updates twice a week you could help step in before something spiraled into a two week struggle with the teacher over staying inside. Not to disagree with the teacher but to provide back up and help your son with techniques to cope with the situation.

    It sounds like you’re doing a great job, and if you approach the teacher as “hey I want to be a teammate with you and provide you the back up and support to help Jim through this year” she won’t think of you as “that mom” but as the mom that’s helping her and providing the best environment for this student (and I think that means you can be SUPER annoyed about the socks but it’s better not to make an issue over it)
     

    lifesavacation

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Jan 24, 2016
    I just wanted to say that I wouldn't worry about being "that" parent. Maybe instead it's "that" teacher. Seriously, not all teachers are skilled or easy to work with. In every profession, most are good, some are great, and some are bad. As long as you approach your conversations respectfully, I wouldn't worry about bringing up concerns with the teacher.
     

    Wishing on a star

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 7, 2002
    It is really SO SO hard....
    But, if this teacher and this school do not seem willing to bend on Cursive and some of these other issues, until you have a full and objective eval, that would be the deal breaker.
    PS: My son was also ambidextrous.

    There are only like, what, 4 months left in the school year...
    I would request a meeting with the teacher and with adminstrative staff (Principal?), in writing (important to have this in writing if an IEP becomes involved) and request that any 'undue' pressures and expectations be removed, on any of these issues that might be due to underlying deficits/disability, until this eval can be done.

    This is what I did with Math, with my son.
    He was diagnosed with significant to severe Mathematical Reasoning deficits. Which are common with his Visual Processing disorder.
    I basically told his first grade teacher, at about this time of year... maybe March... that I wanted the pressure of all math taken off his shoulders.
    No pressure on performance, grades, passing/failing. And that I was in the process of getting a full eval, and would be awaiting results.
    Incredibly, this was agreed to.
    But, unfortunately, by the end of the year, I basically stopped sending him to school for a few weeks, as things had gotten so bad.
    I then scheduled a full IEP meeting for when I finally received all of his eval results.
    He was then scheduled to go back to school, on a full IEP, into second grade.
     

    Wishing on a star

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Aug 7, 2002
    PS: in a separate post, so this doesn't get lost in the longer post above...
    We too were in an area with limited schools and resources.
    When I pulled my DS out of the school system, we did try a small Private school, similar to what you describe.
    I had such high hopes for this.
    The Director even had a son (older than mine) who had learning disabilities, and was on the Autism Spectrum.
    Unfortunately, this only lasted for a few weeks, and was a truly devastating failure.
    Smaller isn't always better.
     
    Joined
    Oct 23, 2015
    Is your son left handed by chance? It is so much easier for a leftie if the notebook is upside down, because the binding gets in the way the "correct" way.
    Right-handed people just don't understand the pain of the spiral part of the notebook :P

    I dealt with 'normal' notebooks but had to place my notebook in an odd angle to be able to write in a comfortable way.
     



    Connect

    Disney News and Updates

    Get Daily Email Updates

    DIS INSTAGRAM

    Top