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midwestread's Message:

Of COURSE, it's fine to let them see you cry, it was authentic.
Frankly, it was good for them to see that. The other poster was right though, it can only be a one-time thing.

Not that you want to manipulate, but it's not as effective.

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Discussion Review (newest messages first)
TheTrunch 06-01-2018 07:28 PM

I had a seriously entitled classroom full of students who had no empathy. A bunch of me me me me.

So this was in the news and I pulled it up and showed the video to them.

After that I told them about the children from Cuba sailing across the sea and trying to get one foot on the land and how there would be people on the beach with warm towels and food that were cheering them get that one foot on the beach.

Well, I didn't let them see the tears in my eyes. I'm the master of diversion. The most surprising thing of all was that no parent complained about what I had done.

TheTrunch 06-01-2018 07:13 PM

I had Bell's Palsy one year (it since went away) and one of my eyes would randomly water. Anyway, I had a parent who was a freak that complained to the principal that I was crying in class.

Of course he approached me and asked about it and I must have sounded real defensive in my explanation about Bell's Palsy (which was recent and he knew). Still I think the way I overexplain things makes me seem guilty as charged a lot of the time.

So, this principal was really a great guy but was also a little sneaky. I saw him do something a couple of times to make a point. At the VERY next staff meeting, the VERY next day he started talking about some kind of situation and started weeping is a better word. Well, that got everyone's attention and of course, the consensus was that it is a good thing to cry.

I was 99.9 percent sure that little scene was directed at me. It was all I could do not to stand up and say I WAS NOT CRYING!

So there you have it. Either the very best principal I ever knew was fine with crying in front of his staff OR the very best principal I ever knew put on a drama to prove that crying is fine.

MrsWok 06-01-2018 01:41 PM

I have never cried in front of my students. I did have a teacher when I was younger cry, even a few times, I respected her a lot and loved how sensitive and real she was. I think it could be opening up a teacher to vulnerability and some students may prey on that, but I'm not sure. Hopefully it made them realize how serious the situation was.

TeachNFriend 05-31-2018 03:43 AM

I generally try to remain even keel, but a few times my emotions have betrayed me in front of kids

The first time was when I was reading Sadoko and the Thousand Cranes. (Amazing story, highly recommend it). I was reading it out loud and for the first time and the ending got to me. I had to stop reading. I explained to the kids why it made me sad and then I regrouped and kept reading but my voice still cracked through it. I think it made the story that much more powerful for them as listeners.

The second time was when one of my students was moving. We’d formed such a close relationship because he’d looped with me, and he was moving because he was being pulled from his foster home. It was very sudden. We had a tight knit little class that year and we wanted to say goodbye to him properly and somehow my emotions overwhelmed me during our goodbye. The kids started crying too. I told him I was so excited for him because I’d met his new family and they were leaps and bounds better than the one he was being pulled from. (I didn’t add in that last part, those were just my internal thoughts). It really was for the best.

The third time was for a reason similar to yours. I was dealing with a situation where a few of my students had done something that was just plain mean to one of my more vulnerable students. As I was talking to them I was explaining the perspective of the affected student, trying to put us all in his shoes and again, my emotions got away from me in that moment and I teared up. I don’t regret it because I think that kids do need to see how their actions affect those around them. I like to think that they walked away from that conversation a bit more reflective than they came into it.

ElizabethJoy 05-30-2018 07:39 PM

I haven't, but I've definitely come pretty close three or four times.

I remember a teacher crying in front of class once when I was at school, and I didn't lost respect for her or anything like that. It was probably the first time I clearly understood that teachers have emotions too.

CurlieGirl 05-30-2018 07:36 PM

The paliiative care/hospice coordinator called to talk about my dad just as the kids were coming back in ftom recess for math and I had to answer. I put them all on computers with headphones doing math activities and talked for 15 minutes. Then I blew my nose and we played math Jeopardy. Thank God for kids and routines.

Tiamat 05-30-2018 04:38 PM

A beloved member of our staff committed suicide a few years ago. Everybody cried. That was a horrible day.

Otherwise, I don't think so.

Ima Teacher 05-30-2018 10:49 AM

I've cried in front of kids twice. Both had nothing to do with the kids, but with an adult (same one) and I am an angry crier. The kids looked scared.

I cried with one of our kids was killed in a car accident.

I cried when one of kids committed suicide and we had to break the news to the classmates.

Summerwillcom 05-30-2018 10:39 AM

You are right. Some parents really do not know how to be parents and take no control. It can be disheartening and frustrating.
I used to always do a unit w/ M L King, Jr, Harriet Tubman, Rosa Parks, and other historical people many years ago. One yr, out of the clear blue, I found myself tearing up/ choke in the voice... when reading about M L King, Jr. I could not finish reading, but caught myself before I totally lost it. The kids were shocked and looked worried. ( It must have been a nice class.) The next yr, I tried it again and it happened to me all over again. ( Even though I'd done the same thing for yrs before.)
I do not do that unit anymore ( different grade lvl) and am glad I am not responsible for it now. So...yeah, I have come very close to crying in class. Worse than that, I was asked to speak at the end of the yr, in a huge school auditorium. to wrap up the yr ( The kids were moving on to the next school and happened to be a golden group I had looped with for 2 yrs.) I started to talk, my voice cracked, I could feel the tears welling up, and lucky for me, my wonderful teammate grabbed the mic and said what needed to be said. I have never been so sad to see a class move on as that year.
I think we are all human and have emotions. I was raised in the generation of : If you are going to cry, I'll give you something to cry about. It has taken me a lot of yrs, but I am beginning to see that it is OK if something moves me to tears. Mind you, I am not 100% there yet...We do the best we can as teachers and sometimes things are just plain sad.

kerrysgirl 05-30-2018 10:07 AM

even if the admin team and parents think we should be. We're human and have emotions. Kids need to see that their actions have an effect on people. Sometimes, school is the only place where they're going to see it.

That said, I really hope that what's left of your year goes more smoothly and that you get a chance to rejuvenate over the summer. Hugs to you!

amiga13 05-30-2018 07:10 AM

I think itís good or our students to see our emotions occasionally. I think we must model the even keel most of the time, but being human is important.

midwestread 05-30-2018 05:34 AM

Of COURSE, it's fine to let them see you cry, it was authentic.
Frankly, it was good for them to see that. The other poster was right though, it can only be a one-time thing.

Not that you want to manipulate, but it's not as effective.

GreyhoundGirl 05-30-2018 05:11 AM

I have. I think itís goodnfor them to see weíre human with human reactions.

whiteturtle 05-30-2018 02:32 AM

It seems to me that yours was a natural reaction. I hope it was a wake up call for some of your students who have been causing you grief. Hang on, summer is near!

NewCAteacher 05-29-2018 08:23 PM

Donít be upset with yourself. If you were crying in front of them everyday, that would be concerning. Crying at the end of the school year after dealing with a very exhausting group is understandable.

Take care of yourself!

Hard Day 05-29-2018 07:41 PM

I wish I could say it was for something good, but I had a long talk with a class where half of the kids are constantly getting in trouble (some in their classes but mostly at P.E, recess, after school, etc...they are upper elementary by the way).

Anyway, I broke down in tears lecturing them (just to clear up, there was a major incident on Friday that almost led to physical altercations after school, and other incidents before this). I am just tired and frustrated that no amount of lecturing, calling home, contacting the admin, has made little difference this school year.

Some parents don't even seem like they have any control of these children They were pretty surprised to see me get emotional. It didn't last long and the day went on as normal, but still, it is emotionally exhausting dealing with that group of kids. I am just upset at myself for crying. I never do that. It's been a frustrating year with this particular group (but I may add that most of my students in all of my classes have behaved for the most part).

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