Times Have Changed

I am a child of the 70's and 80's. Things were different back then--some good, some bad. I'm feeling nostalgic because Jimmy came home today with a school "ticket" for misconduct on the playground. It's his second ticket this year, which means he will miss the end of school Swimming Party. I think I'm more upset than he is, but I don't think he realizes exactly what that means. Jimmy is six years old and in first grade. He's mostly a very obedient child, but he does get easily distracted and often chats it up with his friends at school. We are making GREAT efforts to discuss better behavior, promote better behavior, and punish poor behavior. I am certainly not saying my child is perfect--duh! ;) He's also above grade in his reading, math and general academia and loves his teacher dearly. But he's a kid.

I am a "rule follower." I like rules so that I know where I stand. Jimmy follows the rules pretty much but sometimes tries his own thing. It both drives me crazy and yet makes me proud that he's independent.

I guess I'm just sad that "shouting in the school bathroom" and "wrestling on the playground" would exclude him from attending the biggest party of the year. I have not shared my feelings or reactions with Jimmy. I want him to respect authority, and I don't believe in undermining teacher's or administrative's rules. But I'm not sure the punishment fits the crime. Especially since he was asked to put his head on the desk and stay in from an additional activity right after. The second offense is definitely of concern to me as they were asked not to wrestle any more. I think the ticket was warranted.

But I'm just feeling such mixed emotions about this. Disappointed that he isn't following the rules. Understanding because he's in first grade, this is his first year at full day, and he's only six. Frustrated that the standard or ruler for bad behavior is somewhat ranging. I don't know.

I guess that's why I'm feeling nostalgic. I remember a few fights in my day on the playground and at school, and I was frightened seeing other people get hurt. I am THRILLED that they have a "zero tolerance" policy for any kind of physical behavior these days, but at the same time it's sad to me that these little boys that pile on top of each other and call it wrestling can no longer do it on the playground. I get it. I really do. But it's still sad.

Just talking I suppose. Like I said, Jimmy doesn't know how I feel and I will support their decisions but man, I'm so sad for him. :( Good parenting is really hard sometimes.

On a better note, I have one more Garden layout to share with you. This one celebrates all good things "February." I created the text box in PS with a pink background and then layered different fonts in different colors on top of each other. The photos are framed with digital frames. Kind of looks like a 2 pager but isn't. You can see a few more photos of my project here.

* Pearl stickers by Basic Grey
* Stencil Art clear stamp by Hero Arts
* Silver Embossing powder by American Crafts
* Sweet Love Clear Cut Frames by Little Yellow Bicycle
* Sweet Love Clear Stickers by Little Yellow Bicycle
* Sweet Love Fresh Verse Stickers by Little Yellow Bicycle
* Metal Adhesive Sheets by Quickutz
* Houndstooth wooden stamp by Hero Arts
* Authentic Origins Collection pattern paper by Basic Grey
* Stick pins by Maya Road
* Jenni Bowlin Calendar die cut
* Bo Bunny Pink Pattern paper
* Craft Twine

Today I'm volunteering at Jimmy's school. I always enjoy the kids. They are super sweet and so eager to hang out with me. I love that! Thanks for the vent session. I just need to get over it and move on.


  1. I agree with your frustration! Aaron was kicked out of class this week. The teacher said he "flirts" with the girls too much. As she kicked him out of the class, she publicly humiliated him saying, " if you would spend more time studying and less time with the ladies you'd do better in this class!" Funny thing, he was talking to his math partner while working on flash cards and he has the highest grade in the class! The teacher claims otherwise. Not sure how you argue when they are in charge!

  2. I have to agree with you that the punishment seems quite extreme for a 1st grader who is just learning how to stay in school all day! Boys have such a hard time with reigning in their energy, and after sitting still all that time in the classroom they seem to need to let it all out on the playground.

  3. I think I would have a parent teacher meeting.

  4. Oh my I would be so angry! They are small children learning about what is expected. For small issues - the teachers should deal with it, forget about it, go on. The teachers and staff should not be holding something so large and precious above their heads. They don't even realize how far away it is or what is involved. He will only be truly upset that day and then he probably will not associate it directly with the punishment for what he had done months earlier. I think a better way for the school to deal with it is right at the moment with a proper consequence that will mean something. I just think it is so sad to do something like that to such small children. Everyone makes mistakes but they are opportunities to learn and grow, not to be left out of a major event months away.

  5. Jersey Girl Anne3:42 PM

    I so agree with Lisa L. on this issue. My children are all grown now but I had several times where I felt the punishment did not fit the crime and though I didn't let my child know..I went to see the teacher/principal.By the time the year ends your son will not even remember what he did and actually,if your son had to put his head down for punishment then he will be serving twice. When the year ends he is going to feel awful being the only one not allowed to attend for something that happened months ago. Your son is too young for this and I think it needs to be brought to someones attention. I know how you are feeling with this situation. Sometimes life isn't fair when it comes to our children and I know you know that better then many people. :)

  6. Awwww! That stinks! The shouting in the bathroom seems a bit extreme. Definitely talk to the teacher. If they won't budge, I'd see how he acts the rest of the school year and then throw him his own swim party with his friends after school on that day. Hehehehe! ;)

  7. ((HUG)) Jen. I feel your pain. My son is a first grader and even though he is a really good student, he has the gift of GAB. LOL...he DOES get it honestly. hee hee..The beginning of school was very, very hard for him (and me) because 1st grade was definitely more structured and 'school-like' than kindergarden. He needed to sit still and follow the rules and it was difficult for him. When I was a kid my father never looked at my grades, he flipped the report card over and went straight to the conduct to see how I was behaving. It is VERY important to me that my child respect the teacher and follow the rules so I feel your pain. However, I've come to let a lot of stuff go because hey, some teachers give punishment that does NOT fit the crime. And I hate to say it..but he's a boy and there is so much behavior that goes with immaturity and he's only 7 for goodness sake!! Let it go and you'll be better off and so will Jimmy!!! have a great weekend!!

  8. 2 strikes and they are out?? First graders??? Really?????

    I am currently a SAHM, but prior to having my son, I worked in a school for kids with behavior issues, emotionally disturbed children, and children with delays (whether they were speech, developmental,and physical) and children with learning disabilities.

    I wouldn't agree with this tactic with kids in the kind of school I worked in nor do I agree with it in the typical school. Has the teacher sat him down to talk to him about his behavior? Has she talked to YOU at all? Or is she just issuing out these tickets.

    At his age -- using a system like that is not effective. It's way too long term... come the end of the school year he is likely not to remember what he even got in trouble for, and not understand why he is excluded from a group celebration.

    I also don't really (well not in all cases anyway) agree with a negative punishment system -- especially when they are looking at a long term thing, as in the party at the end of the year.

    That age group needs more of a positive reinforcement plan. Instead of the tickets for when they have misbehaved (I'm not meaning misbehaving should be ignored..) they should be earning something - stickers, stars or something on a chart for GOOD behavior... so they can see that doing GOOD can earn things. Then teach them that whether it be in school or at home, or in a job when they are older -- doing a GOOD thing - means extra fun time, or the end of the year party, or a raise.. whatever the case may be.

    I hate to see teachers waste teachable moments like this.

  9. i feel your frustration...i wish i had some brilliant answer to help...but i don't :( i did have one thought though...what if there were a way for him to earn it back? not sure how or what, but that way it wouldn't undermine authority, right?...i dunno...just a thought. sorry. it's a bummer. i'm sure you'll figure something out though! :)


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