Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Pour Your Heart Out

Shell over at Things I Can't Say hosts Pour Your Heart Out.  It's a place where you can say anything with out ridicule or judgment.  And it's one year old today!

So here's mine:
I talked about the troubles Turbo had last year in school.  He had a, well I'll just say it, a lousy teacher.  She should have retired years ago.  Turbo is an active kid and he had difficulty settling into the demands of first grade.  And the demands of his teacher.  Things got so bad that she would send home daily notes about his behavior.  Nick was worried about this, wondering if Turbo had something we needed to deal with, but I had seen at pick up time that there were other kids in the class who got notes too.  If Turbo had been the only one, I would have been more concerned for him, but since there were other kids getting notes as well, I decided that the teacher was to blame as much as the kids. 
And these notes were not official write ups about behavior--if they had been we would have had to talk to the principal and take action.  No, these notes were all about how Turbo did not meet the teacher's standard for behavior.  They really did not get along.  And as I was picking up something for Turbo at the end of the year, I ran into his first grade teacher--she asked what we had planned for the summer and I told her he would be home and we would be doing normal summer things--she said to me, "I wish you luck with him"  meaning Turbo.  I really didn't know how to respond to that.  Although later I got all kinds of offended.  I can deal with my son just fine, and I don't need your wishes for luck.
Fast forward to this year.  Turbo started out behind in reading.  He has been getting extra help in reading since last year.  But he has a wonderful second grade teacher--she is interested in all her students, but seems to enjoy the energy and fun that the boys bring to her class.  Turbo has really blossomed under her guidance.  We had a meeting with the reading coordinator, Turbo's teacher, and the principal last week.  Turbo has reached the benchmarks and is borderline to step back into regular reading with supplemental help.  He'll stay where he is but he's doing so much better than last year.  And if he stays on track, next year will be a good one too.
I have to admit that at the beginning of the year, when I went to pick him up, it broke my heart a bit when he came out of the class and said,"Guess what mom!  I don't have a note to give you!"  I had to tell him that the notes were just for last year and that teacher.  He got a whole clean slate this year.
Good teachers make all the difference.  We are planning on sending a short letter to Turbo's teacher at the end of the year thanking her for all she has done for Turbo.  Now we can only hope that next years teacher is as good.


  1. I'm so glad Turbo has a good teacher this year. A horrible teacher can make for a miserable experience, both for the child and the parents. Both my Midgets had the same awful teacher in 4th grade and it was a nightmare, both times.

  2. Oh gosh that first teacher sounds awful. So glad his teacher this year is wonderful.

  3. My son (aka Thor) had a teacher like that in kindergarten. She would send home a book that she would write all his offenses in. It made me so mad. The assistant teacher and his afternoon teacher were always saying positive things about him and dealt with him fine.

    We did discover that he has a mild case of Aspergers but every teacher since then has never had any problem with making accommodations for his need to have things a certain way.

    I admit, I took some satisfaction in that the year after he was in her class, she lost her job.

  4. What makes it really maddening is that Turbo was held back most likely BECAUSE of this teacher. Funny how the problems seem to work themselves out when another influence is brought in. As for her comment about wishing you luck, I'm sure she's targeted another class of boys in her sights and decided not to go to any lengths to help them either. So sad.
    But good for Turbo that he's out of harm's way.

  5. What a different the right teacher can make! So glad to hear that he is having a better year!

  6. a good teacher truly DOES make all the difference!

  7. I'm so glad he's having a better school year this year. Teachers make such a huge difference.

    My youngest son has ADHD and school is difficult for him. Last year he also had a teacher who should have retired a few years ago. She literally sent home notes saying that he ran around too much AT RECESS. Hello??? First of all, don't all kids do that? Second, it's better for him to do that and get his energy out than disrupt class! Ugh! His teacher this year is a little bit quirky, but we like her.

  8. Isn't it sad how one person can have such a effect on our children. I have ALWAYS been a snob about teachers with my kids. I started when my son was in kindergarten. I was the room mom twice a week so I got in good with the teacher. Took notes on teachers in grades higher and by the end of the year I always had a "request" for my childs teacher for the following year.

    Also asking the teachers you like who would best fit your child worked too. They know what is really going on when you can't. So glad you have someone who cares about your son!

  9. Wooooooooow. I cannot believe a teacher would say 'I wish you luck with him'.

    My mom was a teacher, and I would go to her class a lot. It was funny to see how certain classes would be really loud in another teacher's room, but get to her room and be silent. I guess other teachers either didn't care or didn't know how to control them. I really think that if the teacher doesn't think her student's are living up to her behavior standards, then she is doing something wrong. It's her job as a teacher to figure out how to get the kids to behave as she would like.

  10. Its amazing how the right (or wrong) teacher can really make or break a kids school year

  11. So glad he had a better teacher this year. Some people really should not be in teaching, unfortunately teachers don't get paid nearly enough so people that might do it don't because they don't get paid nearly enough.

  12. A great teacher is a wonderful thing. It is wonderful that you are going to let her know that, I imagine that she will cherish that letter! & YAY Turbo!!! :)

  13. The part about Turbo coming out and saying he didn't have a note brought tears to my eyes. what a sweet little boy. I can only imagine what you went through last year! Good teachers do make a difference!

  14. Yay for Turbo!!! I agree that a good teacher makes all the difference. We've really been fortunate where we are now, and we haven't run into a bad teacher yet, but I know that streak is not going to last forever. I pray that it doesn't happesn soon, though.


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