To whom it concerns:
You were charged with educating my child for the last 180 days, and I have to let you know how I feel:
1. Never in my life did I ever think that my child should suffer through many nights of frustration pending from homework. I remember thinking, every time, this is just homework for fourth grade! Why is my child stressing more than the adults in his life? He is supposed to be learning; learning through engagement and intuition. He should be enjoying himself, collaborating with his friends, and exploring problems together to learn.
2. What ever happened to recess, free time, Gym, Music, and Art? To be honest, I know my child can be a “handful”, especially when he gets cooped up in a room all day. His body is growing and he is full of energy that needs to have time to expend itself. I have supported your consequences whenever my child has acted out in class, however, I do believe that some of the blame is due to the fact that he is expected to sit for hours to “learn” without expression.
3. When I say “learn”, I mean to better prepare for testing! As his teacher who sits with him everyday, learns his habits, and understands his strengths and weaknesses, why does he have to be put through such misery? We both know that he struggles with test taking. This is NOT an excuse, but rather a diagnosis. Yet, every week, there is a test. Every month, there is a benchmark test. Every year, there is the State Exam! Wouldn’t the time wasted on all of these tests be put to better use to teach and learn?
4. Speaking of teaching….Science happens to be his love, as you are well aware of. His curiosity and love of learning are a perfect match for the science field. He loved the projects that were sent home and spent hours upon hours working on them. However, Science was only covered for approximately one half of the year, as it was switched out for Social Studies lessons. Being that both Science and Social Studies are crucial to spark curiosity and understanding of learning, it seems foolish for these subjects to be covered only partially throughout the year.
5. Lastly, I believe my children go to school to learn. To learn how to comprehend while reading a book, but more importantly to develop their own opinions about the story based on what they read. To learn their basic math facts of adding, subtracting, multiplying, and dividing, but more importantly to develop the knowledge of when, how, and why they would use math in life. To learn about their town, State, National, and World History, but more importantly to understand why decisions were made, what the outcomes were, and how he can learn from them and utilize it in his life. To learn about the exploration of Science, its chemicals, and its formulas, but more importantly to understand that it has been through curiosity and asking why and how that man continues to advance and provide the ever improving quality of life we have.
With that being said, I want to let you know- AND LET ME BE CLEAR:
I understand that politics are driving education. I understand that testing is mandated by state and national politics. I understand that you are forced to implement standards on students who are not prepared for them. I understand that you did not take play time away from my child. I understand that the focus on the perceived, declining Reading and Mathematics results have forced less focus on Science and Social Studies. I understand that you have less and less input on how to teach our children. I understand that as teachers you have persevered through it all. I understand that Teachers are the backbone to my child’s education, and I definitely understand that “YOU are a POSITIVE INFLUENCE on your students!”
I sincerely say “Thank You!” and appreciate every ounce of effort you give my child! Thank you for staying late, or answering the phone at home to explain the work. Thank you for “finding” time for the students to play, experience art, hear the music, and have some fun. Thank you for teaching, not to the test, but rather by providing meaningful lessons for students to learn from. Thank you for knowing my child and challenging his curiosity with the extra science projects you gave him just for fun! and coming in early for the Science Club you formed. Thank you for passionately believing that every child is more than any data can show. Lastly,
Thank you for caring, Thank you for loving, Thank you for pushing, Thank you for demanding,
Thank you for being an inspiration to my child!
Feel free to Share, Like, or Comment Below!!
5 thoughts on “End of the Year Message: Parent to Teacher (Please Read till the End)”
Thanks for your comment. I agree that it is frustrating on both ends. Power comes in spreading the word……
As a teacher, I understand your thoughts and concerns and completely sympathize with you and your son over the unrealistic expectations placed on students. The last half of your post was gratifying and inspiring, but the first half felt like you were attacking the teacher for the things that are beyond his or her control. Your thoughts would be better directed to the principal or the school board rather than the teacher. We often do not have choices as to when things are taught or even the subject matter. If I was your son’s teacher, this post would devastate me, as I do the best I can with what I have to work with, in terms of the school. I know the system is screwed up and we, as teachers, do what we can to try and make it better for the students while trying to fulfill our obligations, usually a Catch-22 situation. If you’re pleased with all of the extra that your son’s teacher tries to do for him, please take those other concerns to someone who has that deciding power.
Thank you for commenting- My post was written, not to a specific teacher, but rather to voice my concerns of a system that is failing our kids. I am glad to see your response as it is what I intended for it to be. The first half is to get the reader thinking about all of the endless complaints teachers get, with the second half getting the reader to rethink their views on what a teacher brings to the table. This is NOT the fault of the teachers, yet they are the ones who are unfairly at the center of the controversy. As always, Like, Share, and Comment to keep the conversation going!
Good points to ponder!
Mary from A Steadfast Heart and My School Daze (plus)
Thank you! I hope to give every reader something to think about in all my posts!