Brutally Honest Kid Care
Every mom or dad wants to be the best parent they can be, but as one educator reveals, "Many parents think that they're parenting better than they actually are." Four moms learn the honest truth when they listen from behind a two-way mirror as a group of teachers vent their frustrations and pet peeves about parenting behavior. "The parents are not trying to do anything intentionally to make this any harder, sometimes they just don't realize [it]," explains one of the teachers to Rachael. "They have a great idea, but sometimes you just need to tweak it and work together so we're all kind of on the same page."
Check out a few of the behaviors below that these teachers say need a bit of tweaking, and then let us know what you think! If you're a teacher who has more to add or a parent who wants to share you're side of the story, click here to continue the discussion on our message boards!
The teachers stress that bringing your child to school on time is important for everyone involved. "Arriving late with your child not only takes away from the group, but also takes away from their child."
Picking up your child while talking on a cell phone
A big pet peeve for these teachers is when a child is excited to tell their mom or dad all about their day, and then the parent arrives chatting on a cell phone. "It's showing the child that there's not really a vested interest ... it just doesn't show respect for what the child's done that day."
Choosing inappropriate attire
Parents sometimes don't understand that classroom projects -- like finger-painting or arts and crafts -- can often get messy. "If you're dressed in these fancy clothes that grandma bought you and [the parents] tell them, 'Don't get dirty, don't get stained,' they're not going to want to participate." The goal, the educators say, is to "dress for mess."
Bringing toys from home
In general, the teachers say they are fine with parents allowing their child to bring a special toy if it's going to help with the transition from home to school. But if another child takes their toy and doesn't give it back -- or breaks it -- problems can occur. "It causes a lot of animosity -- between the parents, between the children -- and a lot of angst in the classroom."
Varying your routine and lingering
The educators agree that it is important for parents to establish a routine and follow it every day -- including kissing their kids and then leaving. "When they linger too long it gives the children mixed messages: 'Maybe mommy's going to stay?'" As one teacher puts it, "The shorter the goodbye, the shorter the cry."
The pop-in visit
A lot of schools have open-door policies, but these teachers prefer some advance notice rather than the surprise visit. "If they call and say, 'OK, I just want to check in on my child,' we don't turn them away. Of course you can check on your child (though it might not be the best thing for the child)."
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