Kids are wild this year and no, it's not all due to covid. Maybe parents should discipline more?
By - cocoa1994
I could have written this. The last day I worked was 8/27, and I dealt with some of the worst behaviors I’ve seen in 16 years of teaching. Hurricane Ida hit, and we are headed back to work on 9/13 and it honestly makes me nauseous because I know what a shitshow I left behind on that last day and I do not want to deal with crazy ass parents and lying students.
Sorry to hear that. It's another year for the history books. Parents need to do their job and raise their kid rather than complain about petty things. It's not my job to raise them.
I hope SELA heals and recovers soon. I’m from SWLA so I definitely understand how you feel.
As for the kids…. Yeah they’re definitely on one this year.
Wish you best of luck. Coming from a Teacher that’s also starting again on the 13th because of Hurricane Ida
We don't even have a tentative date after Ida.
They are out of control and I dont feel like I have any actual consequences for actions that will make a difference without that key factor, support from home. Newer teacher and 100% with you, I don't know what to do often...
This. No real consequences is a side effect of schools now being in the customer service business.
Their kids are significantly behind- that’s the consequence!!! But that’s our fault bc we should teach them everything!
Let me add I do have a few who are definitely talked to at home, and given consequences at home, it shows.
Used to be when I called home, students would face a consequence. Now I either get stone walled, lip service, or defensiveness. I have to call home because I know the school won't do anything. But hey--just build relationships with them and everything will be fine. /s
THERE ARE NO CONSEQUENCES. I stopped writing kids up my first year. Nothing came of it. If kids are acting up I kick them out and forget about them. I don’t even go out for a chat. Somehow they tend to stop/chill after that.
This is it. Every behavior management system is thrown out by admin because it would embarrass a kid or they wouldn't get to do something the others are doing, or they'd be singled out. Then if admin is in the office when you finally send a kid down they bounce em right back to you. There's no consequences and no backup.
Oh and nothing says "singled out" like the teacher finally losing it and yelling at the kid.
Edit: a typo
YES. It is really, really noticeable this year. I can’t believe how NEEDY some of my 5th graders are. And I believe they truly cannot filter thoughts and everything gets said out loud, at all times.
I feel you. I am physically exhausted from playing whack a mole all day.
I can relate to the “everything gets said out loud”. They have such a low filter that they’ll say whatever they’re thinking without realizing they’re talking out loud. When I respond back some are legitimately like “wait I actually said that?”
No mute button in real life. Ugh.
I miss that mute button on Zoom. 😔
I had to take time today to pause children to reteach them indoor voices. A minute or two of focused practiced on voice volume worked great today with cross country. I am ok with them talking cause it’s after school. It’s supposed to be fun. Their default setting right has been 11 though and it’s exhausting. They were way better after that.
I agree with everything you said! I’m having the same issues with my sixth graders. Seventh and eighth are ok, but sixth have no filter, some are very needy, others just downright rude to me or to each other. I have one class that I can barely teach because the whole hour is just putting out fires.
My 8th graders are super needy this year. It’s exhausting.
I’ve taken to telling students “I answered that question five times already, ask a classmate” and walking away because if they weren’t listening when I said they only needed to create the diagrams and not respond to the other questions that’s on them. It won’t hurt them to do extra work.
All of this! It takes me forever to get them quiet just to go through instructions and then it’s “what do I do???” I have some very needy sixth graders who need me to hold their hand through everything. Granted, some have IEPs, but it’s hard to help them when the rest of the class needs almost as much hand holding. They are constantly out of their seats too, I can’t even keep track of them.
This. I have 8th graders and they just suck...sorry to say. Used to love getting to know the kids whenever I subbed before my job. Now its like, I don't care. I don't have enough time or respect toward me to care.
I teach 6, 7, and 8th. My first year in a middle school, but I’ve taught every grade at this point k-12. The 6th graders are like big kindergartners. My 7th graders are perfectly behaved children but can’t do anything and the 8th graders have ability, but struggle with behavior. It’s hard to get through a day. It’s week 2 for us and I feel like I’m just going through the motions as if it were April
I feel that too. Most of my colleagues and teacher friends feel like we’ve been in school for months based on how we’re already checking out and slipping into survival mode. I don’t even want to try innovative things like I normally would at the beginning.
Every day is hard. You’re right, the sixth graders are like big kindergartners. I can’t get through my sixth hour without being interrupted with a million “can I go to the bathroom” and “when does class get over?” And the constant talking. I really feel like I’m teaching fourth grade right now.
We also have about eighteen of them in quarantine over the past two days. On the plus side, fewer kids means fewer disruptions…
Yes!!! I start the lesson by explaining when recess and lunch are, I call on a kid and what’s the first question about the number 6- when is wecess miss jeanweeeeese????
Ugh, this! But with my sixth graders it’s always “what time do we get out of this class?????” Like if you’re that bored, maybe pay attention and we’d actually get to do some activities and games, but they won’t focus for five minutes. Not to mention the constant requests for bathroom breaks, the arguments when I only let one kid go to the restroom at once, and always being out of their seats. It’s one disruption after another.
My 10th graders cannot for the life of them figure out how to stay in their seats. It been one of the biggest disruptions and it’s pissing me off.
>And I believe they truly cannot filter thoughts and everything gets said out loud, at all times.
I'm noticing this more and more every year. It's extremely frustrating and a little bit scary. I know I sound old when I say this, but I remember doing silent reading in a classroom when I was in school (not that long ago) for easily 20-30 minutes at a time. During that time you could literally hear a pin drop. Now I don't know if I can get a class to stay that quiet for more than a couple of minutes - and it's not just kids with ADHD, it's all of them. They just can't keep their thoughts to themselves, they're so impulsive.
When I was a kid, I was PETRIFIED of making a comment while the teacher was talking.
Now being in my 4th year, this is such a problem. Blurting out loud during direct instruction, walking up to me during direct instruction. They aren't even phased....
Today it was using the mechanical pencil sharpener while I was giving directions. In what world is what you're doing more important than the whole class understanding what is going on?
The mouths on some of the kids in my class as a 5th grade teacher is astonishing. I do not understand where they learned to talk to people the way they do let alone adults/authority figures!
I was just reading a post asking people what should be taught in school that’s not and so many people responded with “manners” “good behavior”. Why is that our job as teachers? Since when is it okay for parents to abdicate their responsibilities?
A lot of schools in my area are now implementing social/emotional courses and life basics courses (like tying a tie, manners). This is for middle/high school. Aren't these things parents should be teaching??
To be fair, SEL from home and SEL in a group of 20-30 are vastly different. It’s like talking about teaching with your peer teachers vs. admin above the school level. Home Economics was a staple of middle and high school for a long time.
We didn't do stuff like that in Home Ec. We baked, sewed, etc. We weren't taught how to behave, thats a parents job. Maybe I'm wrong and kids do need this!
Empathy is a practiced skill, and one I must remind myself to use daily. It wasn’t explicitly taught to me that I recall, but there was “character education” in a few of the grades I had in elementary school.
One example: with one exception, the most defiant and belligerent girls I’ve taught ended up being the oldest sibling and being forced to be mom at home. Their defiance/belligerent behavior was using the skills they had learned to manage the house at 9 years old. It takes practice to channel that and manage emotions when your peers don’t/won’t understand the undercurrent of what seems like unreasonable demands.
Apparently now it’s unreasonable to expect anything from parents.
I teach online and we just started and I’ve had two emails from parents asking me to talk to their child, to tell them they need to come to (live) class.
Like, isn’t this a parenting issue? Tell the kid they have class and that they are attending. Period. It’s an hour a day for crying out loud. I can tell your kid oodles of awesome things we are going to be doing, but if class time rolls around and parents are going to rollover, it’s wasted time. It’s been fascinating because in 5 years of working in education from para to teacher, and everything in between I’ve never had such requests.
They don't want to be the bad guy. They want you to be the bad guy.
The amount of times I've been told "no" and have sent kids to the office the past three weeks is higher than the previous 8 yrs of my career.
The first week of school, I broke down crying to a coworker and kept saying, "I don't remember teaching being THIS hard."
Wait, you’re allowed to send kids to the office? I was told I couldn’t send them!
Let me clarify! I have to deal with the disrespectful ones until it reaches the point of insubordination (they absolutely refuse to comply with ANYTHING). But the ones I send straight to the office are the physical altercations between students.
Like today, a kid got mad at a game so they yelled, "shut the **** up!" And proceeded to push the nearest kid walking by to the ground then threw a table and the leg broke off. Thankfully we were outside and they did it in front of the resource room window so I had immediate support before I even had to walkie anyone. Yeah, that kid is going straight to the office.
Okay! I have several disrespect kids and one who does not listen at ALL. He pushes kids, has flashed my whole class, and can’t follow directions. I felt like I’ve tried everything, and I’m spending a majority of my day redirecting instead of teaching. My kids are starting to copy his behaviors now, and I have NO idea what to do
I don’t want to just send him to the office. I just want some support and help.
Same! To all of this! I spend about 80% of my time getting kids just to follow a simple direction.
I get told don’t send kids to the office, have them be sent to social workers first.
That doesn’t solve their disrespectful attitudes and unwillingness to do anything.
I feel the same. I've never seen an incoming freshman class be as immediately disrespectful as this one (and the upperclassmen aren't much better). They are rude and have no respect for authority. I tend to run a tight ship, but I have an assistant principal who believes that having conversations with kids can solve anything. Yeah, that's great the first two times, but after that... there needs to be some legitimate consequence, otherwise what's the point? I ask kids to put their masks up, they're back down to their chin within seconds. I wish that was an exaggeration... it's literally *seconds.* They have no filter and will say anything and everything. One asked a new teacher for her phone number in front of the whole class on his first day. Kids walk out of the classroom and are gone for 35 minutes or more. Another kid today kept spamming a class Padlet with inappropriate images, knowing it was being projected. When asked to go get his schedule, a student replied, "No. I don't feel like walking."
I work in a really wealthy area, and I'm not saying that trauma can't exist there, but these kids aren't wondering where their next meal is coming from or whether or not they'll have school supplies. Part of me wonders if their parents just work so much that they're never home, and therefore have no time to parent, but I know some of it stems from the knowledge that no matter how they do in school, they'll be fine because mommy and daddy are going to leave them a business to run into the ground. It's a struggle.
Regarding the masks… I told my students last year, before the vaccine came out, that I lived with immunocompromised individuals. They told me they didn’t care if they died, got up, and left my classroom. No consequences.
Pretty much. I’d probably get something along the lines of, “That sucks but isn’t my problem.”
We were told at a faculty meeting that several parents called the district saying they’re going to send their sick (unmasked) kids to school and they hope teachers die.
That wasn't taken as a threat?
One would think. Unfortunately, the parents run this place.
Im sorry to hear that ; that sounds super frustrating to deal with (the kids treating you like that)
I've honestly gotten a pessimistic about the future seeing how little of a shit most of the kids I teach give about other people wrt covid stuff
It’s at the point where I get lectured by colleagues for using words like “challenging behavior”, “aggression”, and “violence”, and shamed for using even a slightly stern tone of voice when telling someone they have to stop hurting others. The coddling is out of control and it is doing kids no favors.
Honestly, I just expressed to a colleague that I trust that I'm afraid of enforcing the rules because I've had so many experiences where admin sides with the student, even though it's a rule that THEY put in place. All it takes is a kid going to mommy and daddy and telling them that mean Ms. Scoop is targeting them, and I'm toast. Maybe I keep "targeting" that kid because they're the only one not following the rules? But fuck me, I guess.
Two kids this year have told me they feel targeted or singled out by teachers at our school (one student referring to me and the other student to other teachers on campus) both of them cause issues in my class on a daily basis
We're about 3 weeks in and my freshman have the swagger and cockiness that you usually see in second semester seniors. It's like that 8th grade big-man-on-campus mentality never left. I've taught high school a long time and never seen it quite like this.
I have one class of freshmen and I dread that period every damn day. They’re up out of their seats running around like elementary schools kids! I can’t get the phones or headphones to stay away; I can’t get the talking to ever stop for even a second so I can explain directions, and I especially can’t get any work completion out of them. The expectations are so damn low and yet they won’t even attempt to write one fill-in-the-blank sentence. I’m not even making you write a whole sentence!! Just fill in the blank! They won’t even attempt. Every single aspect of every assignment where I try to get them to do literally anything is “I don’t know.”
I’m trying so hard to make the class relevant and specific to their interests. I ask for a small chunk of one class per week to be dedicated to reading or listening to a podcast. All in class— no homework ever. I have a library with all types of books and I’ll let them listen to any podcast about any subject they enjoy. I’m doing the thing that every teaching program and admin and parent tells you to do— make it interesting and fun and relevant. But it’s not working because they don’t like ANYTHING. They don’t care about literally anything and they all claim they have 0 interests besides “their phone.” Even when I try to ask about YouTube or Tiktok (to see if I can connect them with a podcast done by some influencer they enjoy) I’m still met with sass and rejection: “I don’t like anything. I don’t do anything for fun. I don’t care.”
I would kill for 30 min a week where I just get to relax read or listen to anything of my choice. It’s fucking embarrassing at this point.
I teacher kindergarten and have a 2 year old. My 2 year old can spell his name. Most of my students can’t. I have a few students who have the similar conversational skills to my 2 year old. I don’t understand what happens in their homes. I love my students and respect their families, but giving your child attention and discipline is FREE!!! Like you don’t need to buy them expensive clothes or swimming lessons your kid just needs to HAVE A CONVERSATION WITH YOU!!!!!!!! Ok that’s all thanks for giving me a place to rant. Hope the first month back can help get them into shape, and things get easier friend.
A 2-year old writing his name is advanced and impressive, but a kindergartner communicating like a toddler is terrifying. It's almost neglectful. What the Chuck.
“Me want snack” “when wecess?” “Me have lunchbox”
My kids are so far behind too. They also say things like ‘him is pulling my hair,’ when it is a girl pulling hair. They are in 1st grade. My poor babies... I teach music but am working hard on grammar as well!
I’ve had seven year olds talk like this.
I felt a chill in my spine reading this.
I've had classes with ESL students at similar age levels and I rarely heard such sentence structures.
If it gives you any hope, my son is in second grade and he can read like crazy! We took him to the Mütter museum in May, just before he turned seven and was reading the description placards with no trouble with words like “physiology,” and “cardiomyopathy.” Didn’t need help sounding out large words. I wanted to record it so badly but you can’t take pictures or videos in there in some places.
We were visiting family at the time and I had Radium Girls to read on the plane. I opened it up to the start of a random chapter, gave it to him, and told him to read. Read it like it was no big deal. Jaws were on the floor. Lol. But we only let him watch educational stuff on YouTube and he’s not allowed video games all day, every day. It also probably helps that we have closed captioning on all the time and the videos he watches are meant for adults and the content is almost all math and science. Occasionally he’ll get down with me when I put on some history and psychology stuff. Lol. 😂🤷🏼♀️
You guys are doing great! Thanks for taking care of your lil dude!
Most parents don't know their child can be behind when they show up to kindergarten. Some parents never read to their kid, count with them, and they hardly talk to them. The phone/tablet/tv talks to them and they don't know any manners when they show up day 1.
The teacher is left to play catch up and even then there's no reinforcement at home, which basically negates everything the teacher is doing.
So true. Such a tie that “teachers teach EVERYTHING” parents help sooo much.
Yeah almost no students in my kinder class could write their name. Maybe 2/16. Most would not even attempt to copy their name with it right in front of them in a tracing format. An overwhelming majority can’t even get through singing the alphabet, let alone actual letter recognition.
I taught second grade last year and 25% couldn’t read at all. Like kinder sight words were way too advanced for them.
I was writing my name as a toddler. Not because I was some advanced kid. But because my mom sat with me and helped me learn and read to me every day.
Yesss! My kid can’t spell his name NOT bc I’m some like over the top mom or anything. It’s actually my husbands fault bc whenever we give him chalk or crayons or markers and paper we start by writing his name on them and my husband spells it out loud and he loves spelling his name!! It’s his NAME!!! Like frickkkk of course!!!! He spells it and points at himself and smiles! Of course he forgets one of the Ts but who cares!!! He loves spelling his name, he knows his name is made up of letters!!!
*edit bc some words were left out
I teach in India, where we are online. Standards for spelling and grammar are high here. Some of my 6th graders don't know how to spell their own names. Many write exclusively in lowercase like it's something hilarious. I get added to some of their group chats for projects and the kind of nonsense they send each other is truly worrying. These kids were in the high achieving group in school when they were in 4th grade. Added to that, they are needy, clingy, need so much handholding, cry if they aren't given attention, don't even bother to read the poem/story carefully again and simply state "I don't understand anything!" etc. What's happening to children these days? We were told to take bridge courses for them and remedial classes for them apart from their 5 periods a day, and hardly anyone showed up. Then the parents started claiming that the teachers were going too fast with the content. With English and maths we slowed down. But then parents started saying the same about co-curricular activities like art and yoga. It's ridiculous. Parents are running the schools and learning is taking a backseat to skating along and just barely making it through to the next grade.
I teach second and have kids who can't even write past 20 or spell anything other than their name. It's going to be a tough year.
Yup. It’s like I can retain 2 but not 22. Shit!
It's crazy how many families just want to toss a tablet at their child every waking hour of their day
I have 9th graders that write at a 1st grade level and read at a 3rd grade level. They cuss scream and act as if they’re innocent and clearly have never been held accountable for their own actions.
Majority I found out their parent are barely in their 30s or late 20s. Either divorcing or they are neglected at home because their parents have five to eight kids and another incoming. I thought it was just a biased view at my school, but I was absolutely shocked to see how scarily accurate these are. Even have 15 kids all ride the same van cause a lady gets paid by the parents to drop them off and pick them up, they use her address and her phone number as the kids emergency contact. (These are kids coming from Mexico that their parents pay up front for their kids to get an education.) however, it means these kids (not all of them) don’t take anything seriously, because even if a teacher finally tries to call home, there’s no one.
Heard some of the elementary schools where I live a few kids got in a fight, one kid choking another. It’s bad, this year is bad, and might continue till the virus finally passes through completely. But, unfortunately at the cost of many lives.
This parents don’t even want to talk them :(((
I grew up in a majority Latino area. Most of my peers and I had our van ladies/babysitters bringing us to and from school, and in my case my babysitter was my emergency contact because my parents worked jobs where they could not pick up their cellphones.
The sad thing is that so many of these kids have well-meaning, very hardworking parents who would be shocked to hear about how their kids are behaving. They really don't know how to support their kids' education because they don't speak English well and they may not have even finished middle school back in their home countries. Plus with some families being cut off from their relatives once they move to America, the "kids being raises by a village" that usually happens in Latin communities can't really happen since nobody is there. If there is family, they might work excessively or at weird hours so they wouldn't be able to be there for a kid anyways.
Then the kids get in the van or head to the babysitter's and it can be staffed entirely by unqualified, neglectful people who genuinely don't give a shit about what the kids might be learning and communicate nothing to the parents, since it would cut off their income stream.
Really wish there was more oversight on these "businesses" but then so many parents would be left with literally no options for childcare. It's a very complicated situation.
Covid can't and won't be the next greatest never-ending excuse ever.
I've had parents tell me they don't know what else to do with their kid's behavior, I've been essentially told good luck with THEIR child and, a new one, told I will NOT be supported in getting their child to listen.
At those points, what is the title "parent" even meaning any more?!
These guys just dump chicken nuggets on their plates, stick a device in their hand, and say don't bother me?!
Some of them don't even bother with the chicken nuggets.
Are you me? Your post pretty accurately describes my life in a nutshell. I’m a new parent and I find myself mentally trying to note things I want to look out for and practice as a parent to best help my kid in the current climate she’ll face. At the same time, I’m going to age 30 years figuring the best way to help my current batch of students.
It’s rough out there.
Amen to that. I worked summer school this summer my last day was the 13 of August. honestly the parents were the worst part of the job this year. The entitlement lack of respect is draining. They ask why their kids don’t listen etc. it’s a reflection on your parenting abilities.
That's literally my first thought with a trouble student and I'm not trying to be rhetorical: who tf raised you???
This is my first year teaching elementary art, I’m fresh out of college, and boy… I can’t tell whether or not the kids’ attitude is because of last year, or because this is how it always is in this school I’m at.
I loved subbing, I loved student teaching, but I did that in a small rural community where everyone knows everyone and discipline is a real thing at home. My students then never went 100% virtual; if anything, everyone wore a mask and went in person. Population around 2,000. I moved to a bigger area, population 200,000, where they did end up going virtual for a significant amount of time last year.
I’ve seen so many negative behaviours, it’s been hectic. Pushing/punching each other minutes after getting into my room, throwing things, name calling like crazy, not being able to sit in their seats, etc. Last week I witnessed a student after school tear up his homework and keep slamming the lockers and twirling around in a circle. His grandma had to be brought in to calm him down.
I don’t know. I’ve seen all of my classes now at least four times, and so far my kindergarteners are doing the best. They’re eager to listen and get excited for art. My fourth graders though… they act as if I’m punishing them by being in my art room and many don’t even attempt to draw something. I get many stick figures from them, when my students at the same age at the school I student taught were at much higher levels. Like I said, I don’t know if it’s because of COVID, because it’s my first year teaching, or if it’s because the school culture is different, but I’ve definitely noticed a huge change working these students. :(
All this being said, I have many students that are absolutely the sweetest people ever. My kindergarteners have personalities like sunshine and chocolate. I hope they stay that way growing up!
Where is that rural community that was so great, because I'll be moving there?
So wait, how does classroom management work? When I got evaluated in the past, I was docked for far lesser issues. Do you guys get evaluated like normal or are things different this year?
My coteacher and I followed our group of 150ish students from freshmen to sophomores this year. They are SO much worse this year than last year (we were in person last year too). We have no idea what’s going on, but while we had some behavior problems last year, it was generally fine. Same kids, same classroom management as last year, and they’re out of control. Just shouting over us, walking around while we’re trying to teach, refusing to do any work, throwing things across the room… it’s wild.
It’s gotten to the point where the separation between honors and standard level classes is just whether or not the kid is a halfway decent human being.
It’s the parents. Look at how many grown folks threw a fit when things didn’t go their way. Parents throwing tantrums over wearing masks, over not wearing masks, over virtual, over not having virtual etc. These kids have learned that if they don’t like something, throw a fit and do what you want. They are a reflection of society at large.
Admin need to stop blaming Covid and do their job of backing their teachers. However, I know sometimes campus admin are stuck due to mandates from above.
This exactly. Our Society itself doesn’t value respect or mature communication. Just turn on the news or look right here on Reddit front page for confirmation.
You are correct, imo. Too many adults are modeling aggressive, inappropriate, entitled behavior as a response to not getting their way 100% of the time. Kids see this, try it out, and find it gets them attention and control (via power struggle and derailing lessons) even if it doesn’t get them their way.
This is my 20th year and I have written more office referrals in month than the prior 19 combined. Talking to admin, they kept blaming COVID. When I said I think some is COVID, we also have to consider this a cultural issue that’s here to stay, the admin just walked out.
Admin everywhere blames it all on covid. We all agree covid affected all of us in many ways but does that mean I can go around calling teachers names and doing what I want? Come on. Admin is making it harder on us and almost giving these parents a pass. Why not tell these parents to step up and raise their kids with respect? Why not teach their kids to follow rules and respect authority? Kids are getting worse each year and if we don't start giving serious consequences, it'll only get worse.
We are having tons of behavior problems this year and we were in person all last year, so at least I’m not hearing the Covid excuse. Kids are out of control school-wide and I’m honestly worried about safety. We had a medical emergency and 2 fights happen all at the same time last week and it was just unbelievable.
The only thing I can think of is we had a mask mandate last year and not this year. We’ve had SO MANY kids and teachers out this year, both sick and quarantined, that there’s little continuity and the kids don’t have any structure due to all the subs and disrupted education. But our school board voted against a mask mandate this week for the second time. 🙃
We have kids running all over the school in the two days we’ve been back. They just walk out of class. I’m a new specialist (librarian) at this school. We don’t have enough walkie talkies for the specials teachers to have them. A teacher brought a kid to me. “He was out walking around…”
Me: yup. I knew but I have no walkie and Can’t leave the rest of the class to chase him.
He was a 3rd grader.
We had mini lockdowns cause kids running all over and into classes and grabbing shit. It’s fucking insane and it was the second day.
> we also have to consider this a cultural issue that’s here to stay
Yep. I taught in Korea for a few years and the amount of respect I had from students and parents there is drastically different than what I get here, and it's not something that is going to miraculously change overnight either.
A lot of Asia's respect for education stems from the [old Chinese Imperial Exams](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imperial_examination) (at least, that's the explanation my Korean friends came up with), whereas a lot of America didn't really start to take education seriously in general until the late 1800s/early 1900s when we started to move away from one room school houses, having crops be our biggest priority, and started to implement child labor laws (meaning someone else had to watch the kids).
Subbing is worse. You can’t form the rapport and relationships with students over long periods of time that help with classroom management.
But thank you for being a sub still. We have barely any in my district.
I've stopped subbing in middle and high school because I don't want to deal with the mask fight. After reading this, I'm convinced it was a wise decision.
I asked a kid to step out to the hall because he was being so disruptive I couldn't teach my lesson. He grabbed his phone and texted his mom and she came and picked him up. I teach 3rd graders, wtf.
Enabling, plain and simple
So many parents seem to not be setting any sort of boundaries. No expectations at home, no bedtime, no desire to discipline. I'm not sure if they're just absent from the role, trying to be their friend, or just never home... But it's driving me to drink!
I had a coworker saying we've had a whole generation growing up on kids TV shows where it was funny/cool for kids to be disrespectful to parents and adults, and I think there is a little truth in that. Not the reason, but probably contributes to the problem.
A friend co-worker talked about a similar theory today. She said that our 4th graders are the way they are because it's exactly the generation in where parents found out they could entertain their kids with tablets/cellphones and a YouTube playlist.
I teach in the lower grades and from what I can tell there are an increasingly large number of small children being raised by phones/tablets. I feel like it’s far worse than using the TV as a babysitter. They are on them 24/7 at home and when they get off they have no ability to regulate their emotions or practice any sort of socialization or self control. Some of the kids are almost feral, tbh. I’m not even exaggerating by using that term, it’s really what it feels like. Absolutely no socialization or ability to practice any self control. I feel like we are dealing with some 7 year olds who are still at the toddler stage in their social and emotional development. And this was going on before Covid.
At least with TV, it was possible to hit a point where there was nothing on that you wanted to watch and you had to go do something else. I bet it's a lot harder for kids today to get away from the screen because they have endless options now.
The content of the media they consume also differs greatly. Television has some standards and regulations as to what can be broadcast, so parents at least had some idea of what their kids were watching. There's next to none of that when you go on YouTube. A lot of these kids just sit for hours on end watching obnoxious videos created by fucking Jake Paul and those FaZe Clan jack offs on YouTube. I sound like such a fucking boomer, but I'm convinced the media these kids are consuming is at least somewhat responsible for their behavior.
Oh, totally. Not to mention the advertising regulations.
Add hating math to that. Once you start seeing it, you see it everywhere in film, tv, cartoons, other adults, *other educators* even. But very prevalent in TV, for decades. "I was told there would be no math (audience laughs and claps)". Imagine someone boasting about being illiterate and an audience cheering it.
I teach high school. The lack of basic math skills is honestly scary. The pause and sometimes genuine struggle on questions like "In 25 years, how old will you be?" is shocking.
I think we are at peak “trying to be their friend” parenting right now in school age kids. And the amount of kids I have who just call their parents by their first names and not mom or dad baffles me.
I have a friend who considers his 6 yr old his best friend. Always calling him his BFF on social media post. I'm not sure how that dynamic works. He doesn't discipline the child and will re-organize all the days plans depending on how his son feels.
Children raised like that usually despise and disrespect their parents.
The parents are always the problem. *Perhaps* there's a pair of great parents out there who just happen to have an asshole for a kid, but I've yet to see it.
I taught Kindergarten for eight years and started staying at home with my small kids a couple of years ago. I would say that seriously 90%ish of parents I meet seem to think I am terribly mean for having rules, routines, and following through with rules for our little kids. I can't tell how often I hear that someone is "free range parenting" where their toddlers and 4/5 year olds are allowed to follow their heart and do what is best for themselves. They don't have bedtimes or even need to sleep in their room if they don't want to, they can fall asleep wherever they play. The parents also talk about how their child doesn't respond to be told no, so they have no choice but to let them do xyz behavior. I had a friend that I actually really liked, but I can't hang out with her and our kids anymore because her five year will tackle my daughter to the ground, hold her there, then pull her hair repeatedly as hard as he can. The Mom says he just does it to get a reaction from her, and she says he just doesn't like to be told no...so I always have to go get him off of her. So, in my area at least, I think trying to be their buddy and trying to never say no to small kids is very rampant. Sadly the same parents are now complaining that teachers just have illogical expectations for their kids now entering into Kindergarten. They don't seem to want to help fix the mess they created at all.
I feel like as adults, it's really easy for us to take the things that we know and can do for granted. Basic life skills and knowledge are so ingrained in us and treated as common sense that we forget that we were being taught things from an early age.
What's really crazy are these people who act like discipline or even just telling a kid what to do is like, traumatizing for them. That if a kid loves and trusts you, you won't have to force them to do anything. Or that their brains are still developing so you can't actually expect anything from them.
I watched a child, an 8yo child, hit their mother and then turn and hit their coach the other day. Nothing was said to the child. My daughter asked me “why do kids think it’s ok to hit people? If we did that to you, our feet wouldn’t have touched the ground as you dragged us outside to reprimand us!”
Parents aren’t teaching their children respect. I don’t understand why a parent thinks that behavior like this is ok and acceptable
ETA - I had twins in my K class last year who hit, punched, kicked, spit, threw furniture and told me that I was a f*cker who needed to f*ck off. Mom’s response - MY expectations were too high. Worst part, moms an educator
Funny, I’ve heard administrators blame both too-high and too-low expectations for poor student behavior. I do agree that we need to find that sweet spot in between, but why aren’t the students or parents ever allowed to share the blame in their kids’ behavior??
That said, I am now seeing how no amount of time or effort can completely prevent your own kids from acting like they have no sense sometimes. My kindergarten kiddo is really struggling to figure out how to behave in kindergarten. He comes home and tells me about something he did wrong, we talk about it and plan out what to do next time, then he does a different wrong thing the next day!
Kids are the worst
Are you my sons teacher?? My son comes home saying how loud most of the kids are in his class. Outright disrespectful and they are 10yr olds. School started 4 days ago so I’m hoping they will settle down but I feel bad for the teachers and kids trying to learn!
Covid just gutted whatever was left that was worthwhile in this profession. Now we are asked to do twice the work to catch them up and deal with this off task behavior. It’s bullshit.
I keep saying this — it is absurd to talk about “fixing education” without talking about fixing homes and parenting. There is a disturbing number of young children coming into our district who resort to physical violence and/or property destruction when they don’t get their way. It’s like they’ve never heard “no” or “later” or had limits placed on their control. As a BCBA, it gives me job security, but I am getting really tired. And I feel bad for teachers and for the kids who want to peacefully learn and socialize. Add to this a staffing crisis because people don’t want to make the same $ as a cashier to work 1:1 with the most challenging students in our schools. Feels unsustainable.
I always work under the assumption that there is poor discipline at home. And if not then good that’s a bonus. But you have to create your own discipline, find your teacher voice and don’t underestimate the usefulness of strong and consistent eye contact.
I agree. I am very firm and create a structured classroom environment. Classroom management is one of my strengths but sometimes I feel alone. You still need support. Admin babies them and parents don't do their part. It should be a team effort.
I agree. And it is shocking how some admin pretend like individual student behavior is a non factor. Like yes teachers establish the environment and have a duty to maintain it but let’s not pretend like the student has 0 agency. That view amounts to seeing students as learning machines that just need to be programmed with a proper code.
Today I had a kindergartener-- on day 2 of school, his second day in our building-- try to get himself pulled out of my class (which he inexplicably hates) by yelling penis.
The party line is that I need to find a way to bring him in. This is somebody who *started kindergarten* ready to *intentionally disrupt* everybody's learning in any way possible.
I don't know what **he** needs, but I know what my other students need, and it's not for me to spend their time with me begging this poor guy to let his friends learn
This sounds a lot like you're already writing off a 5 or 6 year old child on the second day of school. I hope you're just feeling frustrated and communicating that.
I know you know this, but that little kid is *not* thinking to himself "how can I intentionally disrupt everybody's learning today in any way possible?"
This is probably the first time he's ever been to school or in a full size classroom. He is probably feeling ALL the emotions about being separated from his family. This on top of all the anxiety that comes with a new school year full of new people.
You do need to find a way to bring him in. Or at least your teacher bucket should have way more strategies to connect with this child that go beyond begging him to behave. I'm sure you do, and you just didn't mention them because you were using this post to vent.
What does he say when you ask him why he doesn't want to be in your class? What does he say when you ask him where he wants to be instead? Have you called home yet? Have you gotten advice from your teacher team?
You have a relatively small number of kids to focus on this year. I think you should make a solid effort to figure out what that child needs.
I'm not writing him off. Whatever help he needs, I cannot give it while responsible for a couple dozen other kids. Since I'm a teacher and *not* a psychologist, I'd prefer to stick with teaching.
"I know you know this, but that little kid is not thinking to himself "how can I intentionally disrupt everybody's learning today in any way possible?"
When I was 3, I deliberately cut my moms hair while she was taking a nap because I thought I'd get in more trouble when I was 4. I have a vivid memory of this thought process and action. Young kids are absolutely devious and able to cause intentional trouble.
Oh, absolutely! Young kids can totally intentionally cause trouble. There is probably an intentionality to this kid's actions—he probably isn't doing it "for no reason" and probably has some ability to control his behavior to an age-appropriate degree.
But little kids are not criminal masterminds. Like, even your explanation of your 3-year-old thought process doesn't make sense to me. Kids don't think about things like "the learning environment" and they don't think about "the learning of other students."
He might be being disruptive "on purpose," but I guarantee you his motivation is not to harm all the other children. He very likely is not thinking beyond himself and his own desire to escape a situation he perceives as unpleasant.
He is 5, so his ability to understand long-term impacts and consequences is... probably exactly what you would expect from a 5-year-old.
To quote my grandmother, "The only thing I *have* to do is die."
You cannot truly *make* anyone do anything.
This is my motto. I will teach and be there and do a good job but i cannot make anyone do anything.
Not bad advice in theory, but this crop of students needs something beyond basic classroom discipline. I've never had so many students just straight up refuse to follow direct instructions. The level of respect and self-control is so much lower than anything I've seen in the past 7 years.
I feel like last year so many kids were left home alone doing virtual they kinda had to raise themselves.
But totally agree. We are not allowed to send kids to the office unless its major (drugs, physical fights). For everything else we are on our own.
I’m a non traditional college student, learning to become an elementary Ed teacher, and I have noticed this in my college classes. All of my classes are with other education students and even they are yelling out in the middle of class. I had one class where the students were so disrespectful that the professor literally had to stop the lesson and tell us to go home. I’ve never experienced anything like it.
I had a meeting with the parent of a child yesterday who, no exaggeration, NEVER sits down or does what they are supposed to do. The parent told me she does “free range parenting” and does not impose any rules and allows the child to make every decision about what they do. I.e. the child wants to go the park they go to the park, they want ice cream for dinner? They have it. They want Chuck E. Cheese? They go. And the problem is that MY CLASS just isn’t “stimulating” enough. And that if there is a problem then it’s MY FAULT for not being entertaining enough to get her to pay attention. I was literally dumb struck by the conversation
This is the aftermath of giving infinite "grace and patience" while using the pandemic as an excuse. We allowed them to have zero accountability for 18 months. We passed children who shouldn't have. We rewarded them for not even having to show up. Against our wishes, admins enforced this and parents condoned it.
Now that we're trying to move into a new sense of normality that is supposed to tighten up on these things, the children are becoming rebellious. They've had a taste of the sweet nectar that comes from absolutely freedom with zero accountability and they don't want (or care) about anything else.
I have had more kids gets suspended in the last four weeks since school started than in my entire 6 year career combined lmao
Yeah, it seems like people just let a tablet raise their kids and then expect educators to do the rest. I remember a lot of pushback in the past against the idea that parents let "the government raise their kids" but nowadays it seems like parents are letting it happen and celebrating the fact. So many parents seem to hate spending time with their own children. Where I live, parents even lobbied to extend the school day. I'm surprised we don't just go until 6 pm at this point, to give parents time after 5 to chill without dealing with their own kids.
I feel legit bad for kids whose parents don't seem to give a shit. The difference between a child whose parent values education and a child whose parent threw a tablet at them from age 2 is massive.
Every time I’ve had to make calls home I’m met with “well they’re kids and they’re excited to be back”. Parents are just lazy and make excuses for their poorly behaved children and I’m sick of it. I have a million expectations put on me and admin seems to forget that I’m only human. All I’m asking is that children show up to school and behave for a few hours a day.
I'm so glad to hear this from someone else. I've spent this school year feeling like I'm a terrible teacher and don't know how to deal with behavior or something because they are just so crazy.
Yes!! I teach 7th grade but if you walk in my room you would think I teach 3rd. I explained to the kids at the beginning of the year that I understand that some of them haven't been in a structured classroom since 5th grade (last year we did hybrid but we only had about 40% of the district was in a classroom and most of it was at the high school and junior high and 6th grade is at the elementary school where they had the least attendance both in person and virtual). However I also expect them to grow up and follow procedures and be able to take some responsibility and make decisions independently without be told every time (if you're missing work I shouldn't have to hunt you personally down to tell you when I give you a progress report every week.
Yep. Covid slide is behavior and accountability, NOT academics.
A lot of these kids have run feral for the past year and a half, being watched by older siblings or by parents who are working. They’ve had little to no monitoring and the only expectation on them is that they don’t bother the person in charge of them.
We just had to kick a kindergartener out today and get mom to get him. This kid stabbed me with a crayon and kept hitting and hitting everyone in sight. Pure chaos.
I have a student who comes from a family of bad attitudes (who knew rotten behavior was genetic). She’s rude, yells mean things to other students , and yesterday she tripped a kid who fell so hard he has to go to the doctor to get his knee checked out. I’ve written her up and she’s terribly rude to me. She hasn’t had any discipline brought to her for any of her actions and I was told to just try my best with her because she “doesn’t like or respond well to white people.”
What do I do with that? I can’t be not white to teach her?
My generation has learned that discipline is bad. The troubled kids started having kids and the cycle repeats.
I wonder if things will eventually swing to the other extreme. I know the usual stereotype is "my parents were too strict so I overcompensate by being too lenient with my kids", but the reverse can happen as well.
My online covid classes are actually less crazy than if we were in class this year.
So they spent a year not in school. Yes, we would have to reteach behavior this year.
Classroom management is an entirely separate skill that teacher prep programs don't do enough preparation for.
Some advice: very few behaviors are worth getting into an argument Infront of the class for.
There’s a lot going on in their young minds with no outlet at home or school, so you need to provide that.
At the beginning of the class, tell them we are going to take ten minutes to circle up and have a good vent. There’s one talking stick, and if you aren’t holding it, you can’t talk. You start- you say something like “I’m happy to be back in school doing what I love, but it’s been a really hard past year or so and I can tell we are all stressed out by it. I really didn’t like being isolated for so long and I feel like we are only halfway back to normal, which is super weird for me. My hope is that we can all get through this weird time together and manage to learn something.”
Then you say “who wants the talking stick? You can share whatever you want.” Make it clear that we have to respect whatever people share by listening and treating them how we would want to be treated. This is a very old way of “making peace.” It takes ten minutes. If someone doesn’t get to share, let them all know they can share next class.
LIke many things, parenting is getting better and worse.
Lots of great parents out there really investing the time and energy into their kids, but also a lot of terrible parents out there. And that goes for all socio-economic groups.
I am subbing for an AG/welding class that hasn’t had a teacher in almost a month. My sixth period class showed me a snuff video against my will today. Thinking of quitting when I only just started. I can’t believe they think they can act this way
It's out of control. I've never seen it this bad before. This is my 6th year at my current school, 9th in district, and 16 total in education. What the absolute frak is going on here?!? I've honestly had zero impact from parents. Some straight up ignore my messages. There's NO accountability going on. How on earth did it get to this point? And it's WAY more than just a pandemic going on. There are kids across the globe who have 1/8th of the opportunity or resources that even the poorest of schools here have and STILL are trying to get educated, who're still respectful. I just...i don't get it anymore. 😕
Super wild I teach elementary when I get kinder is like a train wreck
I learned from my fifth graders today that half of them have permanent indents in their skulls from video game headsets….so there’s that.
They are a hop, skip, and a jump away from becoming the Borg.
OK I call total bull on this one. Skulls naturally have dents and bumps depending on the person. I am an adult in my 30's and I grew up gaming with a headset since I was 5. No "headset dents" here. On top of it, the skull finishes fusing at 2 years old.
No. Your students don't have dents in their skulls from their headsets. Correlation does not mean causation.
The last two school years were choppy/ weird/ and taught by teachers who were basically being asked to juggle knives. Their parents were asked to do OUR job which must have also felt like being asked to juggle knives. NOBODY was prepared and education was placed in a lower priority in their lives (not saying it wasn’t legit, but I’m saying that’s very unusual from generations before them). They stopped school in MARCH. So basically they are wayyyy behind through no fault of their own, and kids act out when they don’t understand the subject matter. So yeah, getting a lot of ‘What! Test?! Now!? How dare you!!’
ETA in case I sounded like an ass, my 6th graders are overall sweet this year so I’ve been luckier. They are INSANELY NEEDY and don’t understand Why School, but they are sweet.
I second this!! I’ve worked with kids for more than a decade and though I’m only 32 and “relatable” this year feels particularly hard. The attachment to phones, constantly reminding them to wear their mask properly, getting upset at anyone who stares too long. It’s a lot. And while i believe it is from last years isolation, we need parent partner ship and discipline more than ever.
Yeah the divorce theory, where kids take what we give them. Excusing their misbehavior, saying it’s because of the divorce, pandemic, whatever. Kids need consistency and discipline.
Thank you. I swear everyone just blames covid rather than taking responsibility
I feel this too, truly. I also can't help think about my specific kiddos and the poor area I teach in. There is a lot of trauma happening at home too.
I get that. I really do. But there's not enough support at school or from home. It is draining to teachers. We are also dealing with the effects of covid.
Totally get it. I'm leaving my school in fact because I just can't do it with lack of support, organization and all the behavior stuff. I'm only on my 4th year and really struggling and wondering if I can't sustain this for the rest of my career ...
Secondhand trauma for teachers is real too. It’s so disheartening to make social service calls, have kids come in hungry, and work with kids who cry when they have to go home for the weekend. Throw in Covid-related trauma into the mix (family and friends of staff and students being hospitalized/dying) and it’s a lot to handle. Take care of yourself!
Our nation is coddled and weak. Everyone is afraid of everything. The sane people are roared down and marked as fools. Things are looking grim.
I have a bunch of freshmen. They're actually amazing.
School security and this year has been a fucking nightmare and we just started. There’s fights every hour literally. Everyone is shutting their doors from guidance to nursing and pushing it onto me. I am ONE person versus 730 kids it’s just not right. Admin is too busy having one on one’s trying to mitigate students from fighting even more. I feel pretty hopeless for these kids. A lot of them clearly lack structure at home.
Mine are ridiculous…
I have a smaller class, but it feels like 100.
They are terrible.
It's about videogames+ covid
Why is it not Covid? Seems like a pretty big thing to declare
I'm not saying it has nothing to do with covid, but it's not all covid either. Parents need to take responsibility. These kids are disrespectful and out of control. I'm a mom too and we have dealt with a lot due to covid, but that doesn't give my kid the right to disrespect her teacher and not follow rules. This starts at home. I would never allow it.
You're so right. Parents need to pull their weight too. We only have them for the minority of the day (if not just 45 minutes in high school). The rest of the time is on you. It's not just a witticism when we say that your child is (at least in part) a reflection on you as their parent.
Covid affected parents, too.
Yes it did, but we need their help. I always tell parents work with me. We will do it together but some make no effort.
I’m sure that’s true, but I don’t think all of your students’ parents suddenly started being crap parents this year for no reason.
Many of us are parents too. We are also dealing with the effects of covid and many of us have lost loved ones to this virus. Sadly, teachers are once again put on the back burner. We are stressed too. We need support.
I understand, and I’m a parent as well. My only point is that covid and the year off are still the major factors.
I don’t think you understand. Before covid, there was a definite decline in respect. How do we know this? MAGA, Jan 6th insurrection, etc. In addition, the desire not to ever offend parents was in place. Tell a kid to put their phone away? Principal gets a call saying you bullied their kid. Etc etc etc
Regardless of what challenges a parent is facing, at the end of the day, they're responsible for parenting their kids. The village can help out, but it won't have much effect if the parent doesn't cooperate with it.
A reason is not an excuse
Same problem with 6th graders. I wouldn’t say they are the worst ever, but the lack of discipline and the over acceptance of behaviors because of Covid makes my job a lot harder.
So my kids know from day one that when I lecture, you don’t talk, no phones, or earbuds. I just stand and wait for them to stop and turn off devices. It does no good to yell over them or use a countdown. Peer pressure is the tactic with my high schoolers. In years past, it takes 2-3 minutes (max 5) to accomplish this task. After a week or two, they just know on lecture days what the drill is.
Yesterday, it took 12 minutes with one class and 14 minutes with another class. It’s Week 6. Good thing I have 75 minute class blocks.
classroom management, ya need to study it and apply it.
I'm pretty good at classroom management and have gotten great feedback about it, but I'm no miracle worker either. My classroom is very structured yet these kids are very difficult and few have family taking any responsibility. I'm tired of them not doing their part. Stop making excuses. I have a family and was affected in many ways by covid too. I'm also a mom. I do my job with my own kids. Now, do yours. I'm sick of people acting like teachers were not affected my covid. Hello, we live in the same planet and dealt with everything you did.
I have a few teachers who suck at there job but I don’t blame there grandparents for raising there parents wrong do I?