I’m very frustrated right now!  I just got home from a staff meeting where the law was laid down about how we have to do things in our classrooms no matter what – we were informed failure to comply means our position will be terminated!  The law was laid down by our director’s boss.   Okay, that’s understandable – but I’m having a hard time accepting what they are asking of us.  We were told that next school year we will have to do worksheets on a daily basis.  No if, ands, or buts about it – do it or be out of a job.  End of story.  Don’t like it – leave.  I can’t leave – I need my job.  But knowing what I do about child development and developmentally appropriate practice – I don’t know if I can do what they’re asking.  Well, I know I could do it – but it would be hard to look myself in the mirror everyday.  I’m stuck between a rock and a hard place.  I have to come up with a way to do paperwork without doing worksheets.  How do I accomplish that?!

We were also told we had to do letter of the week next year.  I don’t like letter of the week.  I hate it – always have…it makes no sense to me.  My children (for the most part) learn all their letters without letter of the week.  I just don’t see the point of changing my entire teaching style (when I’ve been allowed to teach this way already) to “comply with what parents expect”.  I get it – the parents are our clients – why can’t we just take the time to educate them?  Why do the children have to suffer because of their ignorance?  I don’t know what to do.  I need a job – so I have to comply.  I just need to find a way to make everyone happy in a developmentally appropriate way.  I just wish I knew why they were being so stubborn about this!  I know I was being singled out here – and so did everyone else.  I am the only teacher that does not currently do these two things – but my children still learn.  They are still ready for kindergarten.  What’s the big deal here people?!

I feel sick – and I’m in panic mode right now.  And I’m venting – but I’m done for now.  Any ideas would be helpful.  Really.  But please, don’t suggest going to talk to the people in charge.  I’ve done that – and lost the battle…I need a new strategy now….


About deepbluetide

I am a pre-kindergarten teacher at a private christian school. I work mornings with 4 year olds (most of whom enter my class in July still being 3 - they're babies!) and then in the afternoon work "daycare" - which is basically my own class combined with 5 year old children. One things for sure - it's never dull! I had no idea growing up I would be teaching pre-k today! It took me totally off guard - but in the end I wouldn't change a thing! I have worked with children whose age range is 6 weeks through 12 years. In the end I have decided that my current age group is my favorite! And in case you were wondering - all names mentioned are changed to protect the identities of those involved. Enjoy!

9 responses »

  1. That stinks, I’m sorry that the people in charge know nothing about DAP, that’s the worst! Maybe you could get away with lumping all the worksheets into “morning work” time. Have the first 30 minutes of class each day dedicated to worksheets, get it all out of the way, and then move on to the REAL teaching 🙂 I don’t know if it will work or not, just a thought. Please keep us posted on your blog, this will make a good series for readers 🙂

  2. That is really a shame that you have to totally change your teaching style to please people that don’t really know the ABC’s of learning. It’s also sad that others can’t see that our technique actually works. Do you really have to do 30 minutes of worksheet time? Our Pre-K class makes alphabet books and number books with manipulative type worksheets, but it takes about 10-15 minutes tops. We also try to make sure they do more than just color and write. For example they might add stickers with pictures of the starting letter sound, along with writing the letter. Or glue down the correct number of “such and such” and write the number. Good luck to you. It’s not easy.

    • They don’t put a time limit on how long we have to do worksheets…vannatx was just using 30 mins as an example. I’m thinking about doing something similar as you…I don’t want my children just sitting and tracing! Too repetitive and boring and not at all engaging – they can do more!

  3. They didn’t say you had to do the letters in alphabetical order. Something I have done is to choose my theme and then bring in the letter that naturally coincides with it. If you are doing weather, talk about U for umbrella, C for cloud, etc. If you are doing colors talk about R for red, etc. A suggestion.

    • our letter of the week is actually in alphabetical order…i just didn’t say that in my post…good idea you had though!

  4. I guess I would do the letter of the week as the worksheets then. **sigh** I can understand your frustration. Start with A and work your way to Z. I don’t think it “needs” to coincide with your lesson. If it is A week, you could think of “a” snacks, find the letter Aa around the room.

    Or you can take your theme and find letters that match. Dd for dinosaurs, Ff for fall, etc… Just keep track of the letters you use. Coordinate your worksheets to match the “letter of the week.”

    Hope that helps!

  5. An idea for math that I do (because we have to do worksheets for the same reasons). I make them…example..I have the number 2 we talk about with items from class during circle time, then I make a worksheet with a bee they can color and ask them to draw 2 flowers for the bees. Or have a worksheet with circles with a number besides each one and that is how many chips they need to add to the “cookies”. For letters I’ll have a large upper case and lower upper case of one letter they can color. Then they’ll look through magazines to fine pictures that begin with that letter’s sound, or they can draw them.

  6. have no suggestions but what a bummer ! Education of young children is hard for people to understand .Do they read and see the research.

  7. This is just a comment. No suggestions. Just venting as well.

    I don’t know if you still write on this blog. And I know you would never say where you work. But, I want to work there!!!! Our schools are doing away with worksheets (which was the only thing I found that works well to teach my students.) Stations only work well for a few minutes and under supervision. But they expect us to meet with small groups and leave the others “working” in stations for 20 minutes. With no supervision, they just end up playing after a while . (This is for kinder on up, though.)

    Same thing — jobs on the line if we don’t comply. It makes me cringe.

    As a teacher who cares, you find a way to make children learn. I was always happy to design worksheets for three levels (beginning, intermediate, high). That way what they were working on was purposeful, tailored, and provided proof of mastery/completion. But no. All the big wigs want is compliance.

    I understand how you feel. It’s just ironic your plight is the opposite of mine…

    I hope you got it figured out. Best wishes.

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