Monday, August 12, 2013

5 Ways to Scare Your Child's Teacher

School starts next week around here & instead of showing you my happy dance (kidding...sort of...) I thought I'd share some back to school fun.

5 things that will scare your child's teacher

Any teacher worth her salt will wait until she meets your little darling and spends a little QT (quality time) with her before making a judgement (i.e. Is this child going to make my job delightful this year OR am I going to count the days until winter break?), but here are a couple of things you can do to scare the snot out of her before that time comes:

1. Sending the "checking in" or "heads up" email

Oh, yeah. If you feel the need to email/reach out to the teacher ahead of time, you'll likely make it onto the "potential high-maintance" list. It's potential because your teacher doesn't really know you yet so she likely doesn't want to label you but at the same time, it's a little high-maintance. Do you really need to touch base ahead of time? Can't it wait until the teacher can get a little more perspective on your child? I prefer the sneak attack email after the school year starts. You know, give her time to adjust to your kiddo & then spring your concerns on her. It's the polite thing to do ;)

2. On orientation day, your child enters the classroom like he owns the joint

There's no bigger red flag for a teacher than when a child enters his classroom for the 1st time and acts like he's in charge. Most children are at least slightly intimidated by a new classroom and a new teacher, especially if it's a new school experience (i.e. a preschooler or kindergartner). I'm all for confidence, but if your kiddo enters the room & takes charge, I know she's going to present some type of a challenge for me early on. Hopefully, it's one that's quickly nipped.

3. AND you let your toddler destroy the classroom on orientation day

Ok, no one should have to explain this one to you. Control your kids. Your new teacher has better things to do than to pick up after siblings.

4. You show up on the 1st day of school, unannounced

Your child's teacher would love to get to know you better & hear your concerns for the school year. The 1st day of school isn't the day for this. This poor teacher is likely trying to meet the needs & concerns of the 20+ kids that just entered her classroom for the 1st time. She has no time today to pay proper attention to you. Do yourself a favor: call her ahead of time & set up a time for you to stop in. Both of you will feel better about this approach. Think about it like this: would you like your biggest critic to show up at your house, unannounced, while you're trying to pack your 2.5 kids for vacation? That's what the 1st day of school is like, but about 20x louder & there are 25 kids that want your attention. It's a wee bit stressful, give your teacher some space to sort it out. She'll make time for you, promise :)

5. AND you bring a gift...

I love a good Pinterest gift as much as the next mom, but if you show up on the 1st day with a gift your child's teacher is going to wonder why. Why do you need to bring gift? Are you apologizing in advance for something? Gifts are always appreciated but 1st day of school gifts aren't necessary. If you feel the need to do something, bring your child's teacher a cup of coffee or something caffeinated. Or something chocolate. Or get involved with PTO and help with the back to school luncheon. Or just send a gift- you don't have to listen to me. 

The good news? Teachers don't really scare easily. Chances are good that they've seen it or heard it before. I'm just trying to help you make a good 1st impression. It's up to you & your little darling to make it stick ;)
Here's to a successful school year! 

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