in Discipline - 3 comments (Total votes: 11)
Well I used to get in trouble for reading in class, which was always bull, OR even worse, once a teacher got mad at me for being "too advanced" at math because I could do algebraic equations in my head and so I didn't need to write out my answers. This argument went on for like EVER, and it's followed me forever, but my Dad just wrote a letter telling the teacher that he had taught me short cuts to do the equations so I could actually do them in my head. It wasn't until I sat down in front of her and did 100 problems with out writing them down did she believe me. I actually got in this same fight with my math teacher 3 days ago ironically. But my parents pretty much always took my side the only times when they didn't it was OBVIOUS that I was the one at fault, getting in fights on the playground. I took no one's shit, arguing with my teachers about current events (usually I actually got rewarded by my parents for this), and I was well supported when it came to getting in trouble, the minutia and bullshit that the public school system tries to pull on a lot of kids was deflected and broken down by my parents.
One of the bonuses of fostering or adopting an older kid is the amount of training we get on parenting techniques. Our precious snowflake is saying the *other* kids at his table are distracting him when he's trying to work and so he starts being funny too. He'd be good, he says, if it weren't for the *other* kids.
One of the agency leaders shared a story they did with their kids, and we're going to try, if the email to his teacher didn't do the trick. We'd like to get him moved from his table but if we're unable to do so we'll work with the teacher so we can show up in class, without his knowing we're there and then have him see us while he's mid-behavior.
I was the class clown from Junior High on - and while it taught me great life skills - I also know how mad I'd get when a teacher accused me of someting that I didn't do to be distruptive. As an adult I totally understand that my brand was of a disrupter, if there was something going on, 9 out of 10 times it was me causing it and I needed to own that I had a part in being the person the teacher blamed. Teachers do make mistakes, but because we know our kid is clowning in class and he knows we do not condone disrespect to teachers, he's learning about his image and brand. The life skill we want for him is that he shows up consistently fully engaged everyday. That is his goal.
Me? I'd explain why the action was wrong and how disappointed I'd be if he did actually do it. Then, I'd lay the mom guilt on real thick and tell him how I trust that he wouldn't ever lie to his mother. Depending on what he's accused of, I might deliver the speech with my eyes welling with tears. I think Stanislavski said, Parenting is believing.