Wednesday, May 06, 2009

I dwell

I tend to latch onto things and let them bug me for days on end. In other words, I dwell alot on stuff I probably really should just let go of. I am blaming all this dwelling behavior on the mass of gray hairs that have sprouted on my head.

And one of those things that keeps bugging me is something that happened to Ashley at school on Monday. She had art, a subject which she loves. I mean, this is the kid who got an art basket from Santa for Christmas, and was just as excited about that as her American Girl doll.

According to Ashley, her and the kids at her table were talking, probably when the art teacher was trying to talk in the beginning of class. So what did the teacher do? She made Ashley and all the kids but one kid at her table put their heads on the table for the rest of the class.

This is KINDERGARTEN. This is getting towards the end of the year. This is excited 5-6 year olds. I get it, they were talking, disrespectful. What the art teacher didn't see was how hard Ashley cried when she got home that day, sad that she had to keep her head on the table for an hour, sad that she didn't get to work on her painting, sad that she is behind all the other kids in her class on this painting, sad that she won't get to finish it.

I understand, this was punishment, and believe me, she got that. I know teachers work unbelievably hard - I know, I lead a Girl Scout troop and teach Sunday school. I get it. I appreciate all of Ashley's teachers beyond belief.

What I really wanted to do was to contact Ashley's teacher to see what happened, or even contact the art teacher to see if Ashley could come in an finish her painting on her own time. But Ashley did not want us to do that, and I respect that.

We told Ashley that some teachers are not as nice as others. Was this the right thing to say? I don't know, but it is true. Ray has vivid memories of some mean teacher he had in elementary school - I have vivid memories of my high school physics teacher throwing a chair at someone. And yes, we told her to try and not talk, focus on the teacher when the teacher is talking, show respect. Which she knows, it's just sometimes 5 year olds forget.

I am off to go pluck gray hairs out of my head now.


Brandi said...

Okay I get that the teacher has a right to enforce no talking in class, but head on the table for an hour?! Seems a bit extreme. I would definitely have a talk with the teacher.

As for the grays making you be a dweller...wonder if that is what is wrong with Savanna. She has grays already at 7, and boy is she a dweller!

Beckie said...

I agree - an hour is a VERY long time for a 5 or 6 year old to have his/her head down on a desk.

Sounds like the art teacher was having a bad day....

SJ said...

I can relate to you on this! Keven Jr. has hit some rough patches at school through the year and I thought the teachers were really over-reacting and being a little too harsh. But then I had to think about it and realized that maybe they weren't.

It's a tough call, kids are there to learn, not only educational stuff but bigger things that later on in life they'll appreciate.

It seems like in your case with Ashely though that the punishment didn't fit the crime - if it's really bugging you that much, call and talk to the teacher. Maybe you aren't getting the full story. Whatever you do - good luck!

Erica said...

That is too much! I am a teacher and that is just unacceptable. Rule of thumb is one minute for every year of the kiddos age. I would tell Ashley that teachers have bad days too, that kind of thing. But still....I would talk to the teacher or the principal. First go to the art teacher and hear her side then if you aren't satisfied, go to the principal. Good luck.

Martha said...

It is completely unreasonable to put a kindergartner in time out a) without at least two warnings and b) for more than ten minutes (and 5 is usually enough.)

Unfortunately at this time of year teachers are at the end of our ropes and we sometimes (or often) snap and go outside our usual discipline procedures. I'm not defending or legitimizing the punishment, but I do empathize with the teacher.

I'm sorry she had to go through that, I hope it doesn't impact her love of art.

Daisy said...

Hugs to you and your little one, too. If it's any consolation, she'll likely get over it before you do.

stewbie2 said...

That's really just too hard of a punishment for a kinder. Jenna's in 1st, and she has a teacher that i can't stand. She's gotten written up 3 times in the past 3 weeks. This is a kid who is NEVER in trouble. One of those times was because she was holding her friend's hand. The teacher wrote, "Jenna won't keep her hands to herself." Seriously. What an evil bitch.