When it comes to having a great school year, an awesome teacher is at the centre of a successful semester. While parents are busy trying to get their kids ready for a new grade, teachers are just as busy preparing lesson plans and decorating classrooms.
Having good, open communication is paramount for students and their educators, but it’s also important for parents and teachers as well.
So, we decided to poll some teachers to find out what they really wish parents knew…but may not say to their face. Here’s what they told us.
1. Label er’thing
We find stuff everywhere, and when we ask we always get “not mine.” We could build an entire school made up of all the princess and Batman shoes left over at the end of the year.
2. Teachers don’t equal parents
We are your child’s educator, not their parent. Please do not ask us to tell your child to go to bed early or be nice to their sibling. We have our own kids we have to tell that to.
3. Kids kan kook
Let your child have some say in making their lunch or snack. They’ll complain less to us about their food if they helped make it or pick it out.
4. Pack a backup outfit
Even if your child has been potty trained for a while, please send a change of clothes. Accidents, bathroom and other, do happen.
5. No stupid questions
There is no such thing as a stupid question, but that doesn’t mean we have all the answers.
6. We’re, like, teachers
We know you worry that your child can’t do certain things, but they will learn. That’s kinda, like, our job.
7. Don’t cry for me, kindergarten
We can deal with the tears. Most times, students stop crying within minutes of being in the classroom. Do not come back in to check if they are okay. It usually adds up to more crying from the student and/or us.
8. Kids smell fear
Fake it til you make it. When kids see fear and uncertainty in their parents eyes, it makes the transition from summer to school much harder.
9. We’re not elephants
We will forget names, assignments, and possibly where we left our car in the parking lot. It happens.
10. Speling is harde
We will also, at some point during the year, spell something wrong. Please don’t hold it against use. We mean, us.
11. It’s only cute if it works
We get that onesie outfits are cute, but if your child can’t get out of it on their own, please don’t send them to school in it.
12. Downtime is a real thing
We have lives too. If we give you our email or phone number, please keep that in mind. If you’re watching Game of Thrones on Sunday night, we probably are too.
13. We don’t have favourites
All kids are wonderful and challenging and inevitably exhausting.
14. It’s time to get unplugged
Try to unplug your kids from their iPads, iPhones, TV screens, etc. a few days before school. It’ll make the technology withdrawal easier for all of us.
15. Not the sparkly one!
We have our own special pens and pencils. Please keep your hands off.
16. Giving bad news sucks
Whether it’s to kids or parents or both, we hate delivering bad news. If we do deliver bad news, please keep in mind it’s coming from a place of care and concern.
17. We may have bought a new first day outfit
Kids shouldn’t get to have all the fun.
18. We have bad days too
We just have an audience of 30 kids watching us when it happens.
19. Our backpacks match the bags under our eyes
If we look like we didn’t sleep last night, it’s because we didn’t. Please don’t point this out to us.
20. Naps are life
We nap the entire first few weeks of school. It is exhausting.
21. Homework stresses us out, too
If you complain to us there’s too much homework, there are three more parents complaining there isn’t enough. We’re trying to find a middle ground.
22. Align your goals
Ask your kids what they want out of the school year. Their goals may be different from yours.
23. Save your money
Please don’t send your child to school with a backpack full of expensive school supplies. There’s a good chance we won’t use them, they’ll get lost, or someone will get a fancy pencil stuck in their hand. It happens more than you think.
24. Kindness > grammar lessons
Teaching kindness is more important that teaching math equations, but we try to do both.
25. Rumour has it
Please get to know us before jumping to conclusions. The school rumour mill is as real, and as vicious, for teachers as it is for students.
26. We aren’t miracle workers
If we give homework, please help your child with it. There’s a *chance* they may not have heard every single thing we said, and need help.
27. We all want to have an easy first week, okay?
That being said, we probably won’t give too much homework the first week. Please see point 20 regarding naps.
28. Yes, we get summers off
We do get summers off, but we’ve also been preparing for the school year for most of the summer. So, easy on the ‘summers off’ jokes.
29. We’re on team #LetsDoThis
There’s no ‘i’ in team but there is an ‘i’ in child, so let’s work together. Yes, that was cheesy, but we’re surrounded by children all day, so it works.
30. No nuts are safe nuts
Peanut allergies are real. We’re not making them up. We love peanut butter. We miss peanut butter. Just please don’t let your child bring it to school.
31. Elmer’s glue is great moisturizer*
Don’t be concerned if we look like we’re 16. We’ve likely been doing this for a while.
32. We’re nervous too
*Not even remotely true. Please don’t use glue for moisturizer.