Thursday, March 11, 2010

An A in Math and an F in Language

   First of all, I am not lenient about bad language. If my kids use "freakin" or other substitutes I tell them they might as well be using the real word,  it's the same thing, and they will get the same response from me. I've discussed modern day desensitizing of curse words and told them that using them repetitively  has taken the power of the words away and if we get in the habit of using them regularly it diminishes who we are and what we are saying without our even realizing it. I've told them that, for instance in literature, they are sometimes appropriate to the work. I've told them using bad language in a gratuitous way is too easy. And of course my REM CD that has a bad word in it is using it in context to show powerful emotion : )

My Mom told me, " Using ugly words makes you look ugly and you're too pretty for that" : )
Wasn't she Awesome?! Somehow I still had a filthy mouth for awhile in Junior High.

    Littlest  is easily stressed by distractions in class. This is most apparent in her math classes. In 8th grade she was in a class that was out of control. This is an unusual situation in the school she goes to. It seems that some how the class had a high level of kids who were disruptive and openly disrespectful to their teacher.  It was so bad that a veteran teacher was brought  to tears more than once and by the 2cd quarter a male teacher was asked to join the class to try to maintain order. They even had a special meeting with the principle, teachers & parents to try to get the situation under control. All to no avail. The class continued to have problems with these students.  I had contacted Littlests' teacher shortly after the year started because Littlest was coming home very upset about it & telling me she was having meltdowns from the stress. Her teacher was a wonderful woman and tried to address the situation by moving Littlest and a handful of other students to one row in the room where they were as separated as possible. Sometimes she would let them sit in the hall so they could focus on their work  because she knew they would behave. Littlest has to concentrate and work hard in math, this teacher had been very understanding & helpful with her and for the 1st time ever she was getting A's in the subject.

The Call

I had set my cell down and lost track of it so I was concerned when I saw a voicemail with a school number. Oh no, was there an emergency and I missed the call?
I listened and my stomach dropped when I realized it was The Call. One I never thought I would get with Littlest. The male teachers voice saying, Mrs. Grounded I am calling because.... we had a little incident today with Littlest....
There was some disruption in class and.....well.... she used some language that was ...not appropriate....
Mrs. Incredibly Patient Teacher and I have talked with her though and I think she understands....that she can't be doing that. We aren't going to take any further action....but we did want to make you aware of it.... You have a nice afternoon..

I could not believe this child was in trouble. I was so embarrassed, Oh My God, what did she do! This was the one kid I thought would, if not make me look like a good parent at least not leave me looking like a totally irresponsible one. And what was with "not taking further action"? What exactly did she say? What on earth was going on?

Despite her sometimes smartass  mouth in her private time, Littlest has always been a very serious kid when it comes to behaving in school. Even if she loathes a teacher she would never dream of being disrespectful or disrupting a class.  When it comes to peers she has problems with, she tends to keep to herself and tries to avoid them. One of the girls in particular had singled out Littlest to pick at because she realized Littlest had a problem with her behavior. Littlest is really good at just giving people blank stares if they mess with her, but unlike most, this one didn't get tired of not getting a reaction and give up. (She's keeping it up this year so keep your fingers crossed that I don't get another call at some point)   If Littlest is pushed too far she will stand up for herself and has a scathing tongue.  I'm not naive enough to think she hasn't used bad language when she was angry with an antagonist, (or because I wasn't around, but that's beside the point.) But this was a little different. I tried texting her but the bus driver didn't allow them to use phones.

Finally she was off the bus and in the car
What happened today?
Oh, did they call you?
Yes, what is going on, what did you say?
Umm, well that girl, So&So, I told you about her. Well, she just wouldn't stop today. She kept talking and interrupting the teacher and making comments. I asked her to be quiet, I was trying to listen  but she just said,"No, why don't you shut up" and then she started in on me again. And I just couldn't take it anymore....She kept going on & on & she wouldn't stop.
Alright, so what did you do?
Umm,  I got mad and I yelled something at her and then she was all like "ooh did you hear that, did you hear what she said?"
What did you say?
I don't want to say.
Tell me now!
I'm not allowed to say it. Am I in trouble?
Littlest, just tell the letter of the word it was, I can find out anyway.

...Itoldherto...Shut The F--- Up...... but I ......

You What?!!
What did your teachers do? You didn't get sent down? What happened?
Well they took me out in the hall, and I started crying and I told them I was really sorry but I just couldn't take it anymore.
And what did they say?
She said she was really sorry I had to be in that class and put up with that.
Thinking....Seriously? You're kidding?
Mr. Back Up Teacher said he understood how I felt but I shouldn't let that happen again.
But you didn't get a referral, they didn't do anything?
Well..... she gave me a hug.
What?! And then what?

I couldn't stop crying so they sent me into the sixth grade class to sit for the rest of the period. It was the same teacher I had in 6th. You remember her.

Yes, did she ask what was going on?

I guess they told her, Ms. IPT talked to her..... and then she gave me a hug too.
? OK.
She maintained that A average all year.

Ever wonder what teachers might really be thinking, but not saying ?

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  1. Oh, dear. I'm going to hang on to pre-school as long as I can... I feel for your daughter. Interestingly enough, the reason I didn't swear as a kid, and still almost never do now - is that my mother has the mouth of a trucker (no offense to truckers). It bothered me so much as a kid that I rebelled by *not* swearing. Go figure.


  2. I'm glad the teachers handled it the way they did. I hope the class situation gets more manageable somehow... soon.

  3. Sounds like the situation was well handled. Too bad about the constantly disruptive class, though. That's gotta be stressful!

  4. I'm actually pretty encouraged by the sensitivity of the teacher and how it was handled. I'm used to a zero tolerance policy and a blanket punish everyone stance. This is pretty refreshing in my eyes.

  5. I have to say I agree and I appreciated these teachers very much for looking at the whole picture and handling things this way and also for turning a child who struggled in math into an A student in the midst of it.

  6. Their thinking, Give me a F------- I'm sorry but sadly to say it ticks me off when kids have to put up with the madness of unruley kids. Many years I told my now anonomous(he says I talk to much) child, "tell the teacher". Now sometimes I'll say kick their butt and tell me about it when you get home. It's so annoying.

  7. Why isn't the teacher kicking the kids down to the principal's office when they start acting up and disrupting the other students in class? Maybe if the principal has to deal with them on a daily basis this little game will come to a stop. (I have no problem removing students removing students from class if they are infringing on the other students right to learn!) I feel terrible about your daughter and the stress she is in. Maybe some pressure from the parents of students "dealing" with this stress could help solve this too. Sorry-this just makes me so upset!

  8. Hello!
    I found you through FFF on MBC. You are very "fun" to read, if you know what I mean. Your personality really shows through. I'm following and will be back.

    As for this particular post, I think it's admirable the way her teacher responded. She's a good kid, and they seem to know that.


  9. Yeah, I never use language like that and I thought I was doing a good job of keeping my kids from hearing it on tv and radio until one day I sat on the stairs listening to them talk. My son sounded like a sailor. He knoew how to use every word. Had inflection where is was needed. At first I laughed then I came up the stairs opened a can on him.



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