desprate times…


I’m at my wits end!  I need to vent!  Badly.  It’s 3 weeks into the school year – 3 whole weeks – and these kids in my class still don’t get it – and I can’t figure out why!  Usually by this time we have found our rhythm and are a happy class! Usually it’s just a couple kids that need a little extra guidance – but everyone else is fine.  Not this year.

Just yesterday 3 books in our book area were destroyed – the covers ripped right off – and no one will admit to doing it! (Why did I turn my back for so long?!)  And this after we constantly go over how to treat books and how special they are!

They still can’t walk in a line – if I’m not constantly telling them wherever we go to follow the person in front of them – they simply wander off! If they don’t wander off they bump into things and I have to keep from laughing!  I know that sounds mean – but really – the stunned expression on their face is quite amusing!

And there is no use giving them simple instructions – they don’t seem to understand.  I told one child, “Please go put this book on the brown table for me.”  (We only have one brown table and we use it daily at circle time – it was about 6 feet away and I pointed to it).  The child proceeds to walk in the opposite direction in which I pointed and refused to listen to my redirection.   He walks around the classroom with a lost expression on his face for a few minutes before comming back to inform me we don’t have a brown table!  When I showed him the brown table – he gave me a stunned look as if I must have made it appear out of thin air!

Some can’t even go to the bathroom without being walked through the process (i.e. telling them to wipe, flush, wash hands with soap, dry hands, and throw the paper towel away).

I have never had a class like this!  And they have absolutely no attention span!  They also have a complete lack of respect for adults.  They talk back, tell us no, and laugh in our faces when we correct their behavior! Where did they learn this behavior?!  I certainly hope their teachers from last year didn’t let them act this way!

I need help!  I.AM.DONE.

(deep breath…or two or three)

There.  I feel better now.  I vented.  But seriously it’s not good.  I wrote about my frustrations with the class here – but I would have thought 2 weeks later we wold have had some progress!  We have our good moments – don’t get me wrong.  And it’s not every single child – but it’s about half of them!  And for me – that’s too many!

I will take suggestions!  If anyone has any games or stories to help teach listening and following direction skills – I will be more then happy to hear them!  Also, they don’t know spacial concepts such as in front, behind, over, under, next to, etc.  If anyone has any good ideas for teaching this, it would help as well.  I need to find away to get this class together!  I can’t go through the year like this – and talking to parents or writing notes will only get me so far – any suggestions are welcome!  🙂

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!

5 responses »

  1. Sounds like every class I ever had LOL! I know what you mean about following directions and positional words, that was always a problem for me too. I just started making a series of positional books to go with every theme that I am going to be putting on my website soon. This way I can ensure that I am hitting positional words all year long since it’s one of our state guidelines. I don’t know when I will get a chance to put the books up but I will announce it on my blog when I do.

    Don’t forget about Simon Says for listening, I play it with pictures for 4 year olds because they can’t spontaneously call out body parts or motions. I printed pictures of different body parts and motions and put them on a ring, they flip the cards and call out what they see, like a picture of a head with a hand over it means “tap your head” etc.

    • I can’t wait to see the books you are making – they sound great! I know once we get over the hurdle of listening and following directions – things will go smoother…it just takes time (apparently longer then I’m used to with this class). I totally forgot about Simon Says! your idea sounds good – I’ll have to give it a try! thanks! 🙂

  2. There is something I picked up from the ‘Teaching with Love and Logic” book. I use this mainly at circle time and lining up. Say :’Only my friends who are (insert what you want: hands in lap, standing in line etc.) will get to stay (insert where you are..on the carpet, or go outside). It takes them about a second, LOL, to pull it back together. A big thing that also helps me is modeling. EVERYTHING, over and over. Showing them what I expect sometimes is more meaningful than telling them.

    vanna/tx- I’m also looking forward to your books!!!

    • good suggestions – and ones i already use! 🙂 the frustrating thing is with this class it only works about 70% of the time – but we’re still working on everything!

  3. Makes me nervous for the start of school in two and half weeks for me. Yikes…

    I usually start the year simply and on a small scale. I also show them how to use everything, from paintbrushes to glue bottles, from books to blocks, sandtable to playdough. We show them how to do everything over and over again for the first month. It seems redundent, but it really is so important, and lessons worth learning. I’ve also found that the fewer words used, the better off we are, LOL. My first month of planning is based on getting to know me, my assistant, our classroom, our classmates and our rules. I believe in simplify, simplify, simplify for the first month of school. 🙂

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