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MiddleMan 09-06-2019 03:23 PM

It took everything in my body
This was my first week of school. I had such a good week with my group of 5th graders, no problem with them at all, there's 40 of them though, that's fine. Totally. One thing that annoyed me for the whole week was a comment new P (she just became principal this year) made on Wednesday. "You should not spend the first day of School going over procedures and ice breakers, they should be learned over the course of the year." I was sitting so confused, like, we didn't have books yet, were we supposed to bust into the classroom with our army clothes and get ready for war? Doing this on the first day will not kill anybody, I don't even know their names yet, let us breathe. But anyways, honestly other then that, I love my kids and they are very funny and nice, very different from any class I've had before. That's who I'm here for anyways. :rolleyes:

heart4kids 09-06-2019 03:35 PM

Your P sounds crazy.
Either that or she hasn't taught long. 40 kids. WOW!

mooba1 09-06-2019 04:51 PM

Has anyone checked your new P to see if she has two neurons and a working synapse? Yeesh.

Even setting aside the fact that youíve got FORTY kids (how is that even allowed, much less where do you put all those big 5th graders) not spending the first few days going over procedures would be insanity. Youíve got to have compliance before you can teach, and the kids need to know the boundaries and expectations.

Enjoy the kids, and build relationships with them. Sounds as though youíre already off to a good start on that front.

NJ Teacher 09-06-2019 04:53 PM

One of my best principals was just the opposite. She told us that we should take the first few weeks of school to get to know our students and cement the rules and routines for the classroom community. I hate when administrators dictate what we should be doing with our students when many have no clue. And 40 kids, I just can't imagine that type of workload.

sisterwoman 09-06-2019 06:58 PM

You might want to let her know that every other principal in the country is telling their teachers the opposite of what she said. It sounds like you are off to a good start with your students. Close the door and do what you know to be best practices. Sounds like your principal has a lot to learn.

iloveglitter2 09-06-2019 07:26 PM

I had an admin that got onto me for teaching routines. She said they should have learned routines in Kindergarten or First grade ( I had third that year). She said I should jump into full curriculum by second day.

That school is now on an improvement list...I wonder why? :)

Hang in there and when you can get a new school!

twinmom95 09-07-2019 02:14 AM


I had an admin that got onto me for teaching routines. She said they should have learned routines in Kindergarten or First grade ( I had third that year).
Not only do we all spend the first week or two practicing and teaching routines because that's what anyone with half a brain would do in an elementary school, every class has 3, 30-minute lessons done by our specials teachers the first two days of school reviewing all the playground rules and how to use the equipment safely, how to walk in the halls and on the stairs and use the bathroom correctly, and also goes over all the cafeteria rules and how to get your lunch and clean up. We use interactive modeling for all of that.

We are also reminded to review these continually throughout the year, especially after coming back from breaks.

Your principal has a lot to learn!

Room_916 09-07-2019 02:55 AM

Routines Must Be Taught
I teach Middle and High School students. I teach routines. Granted, I donít spend a lot of time on routines; however, I have to go over them. Every teacher has different routines and I donít expect my students to read my mind. For example, the moment they walk into my room they are supposed to put their phones in the phone holder. I have to teach this routine on day one.

Lilbitkm 09-07-2019 04:44 AM

We have an instructional coach at our school who has said the same thing in the past. She said routines should be focused on for an hour of the first day and that’s it.

She also said kids in the older grades, 2-5, should already know all the routines. Not real life. Plus, not all teachers run all things the same way.

She also swore that we could have elementary aged students packed up, classroom cleaned, and ready to go home all in under 3 minutes.

I can’t even tell you how many eyes rolled when all of this was said.

And, she had to go back into the classroom to teacher last year.... let’s just say her classroom management was certainly not outstanding.

anna 09-07-2019 07:29 AM

When a teacher can't manage the job,he/she has three ways to move: up ,sideways or out. Very often the ones that move sideways or up do not have any business advising those who can teach and stay on the job. Your princ sounds very inexperienced and uninformed.

kahluablast 09-07-2019 08:08 AM

40 kids is madness. I can't even imagine.

I wonder if some of this is semantics? I hear teachers all the time saying they just do procedures and routines for the first couple of weeks. I can't imagine just doing that. I have always done procedures and routines within the confines of activities that allow me to get to know kids, learn where they are academically, preassess subjects, and etc. I even start introducing new material within the first week as I am teaching routines and procedures. I would never get my job done if I didn't!

When I hear only do routines and procedures in my mind I see a teacher doing mindless or make up work in order to show where to turn in papers, how to sharpen pencils, how to line up... But in order to teach these procedures, you are doing work, right? Not just taking blank papers and turning them in. So, isn't that doing curriculum review or assessing students?

GHVFAN 09-07-2019 11:31 AM

40 Fifth graders
Dare I assume that this is a total of two classes?

Countingdown 09-07-2019 09:09 PM

In the real world employees get days or weeks of training. A boss doesnít just throw them out there and say work. My sister in law was going back to a job that she had done for years after being gone for a year. She spent the first week in training. Why do we give adults a chance to learn routines but we canít give children the same opportunity.

EarthMonkey 09-07-2019 10:33 PM

The principal sounds like she has never actually taught a class in her life. It also sounds like she has never done a job in her life since she thinks no one needs any training. Yikes!

GraceKrispy 09-08-2019 12:30 PM


One thing that annoyed me for the whole week was a comment new P (she just became principal this year) made on Wednesday. "You should not spend the first day of School going over procedures and ice breakers, they should be learned over the course of the year."
Um, is she principal dancer? principal in an orchestra? Surely someone with classroom experience would NEVER say such a thing!! :confused::confused:

Oh, wait, was she one of those "promoted to Principal because was ineffective in the classroom" hires? :rolleyes:

40 kids is intense. I've never had that many. That's a lot of writing grading LOL (I could never be a language arts teacher- SO. Much. Grading. Writing is so time intensive)

stephenPE 09-08-2019 01:10 PM

My wife encountered a new one this year. Lady AP. Her and the para that has been there for decades were being told how to do car pick up. Lunch duty. Gave an older volunteer a hard time. The older lady had enough. Started discussing it. Now the AP has her feelings hurt and my wife and the other lady were called in to discuss it. They held their ground and we wait to see what happens.

1totravel 09-09-2019 06:44 PM

California sets very high class sizes, and even they don't allow 40 in a fifth grade classroom. Have you checked your district and state mandates on max number of kids? Even though they are awesome, it's a lot harder to meet their individual needs with that many!

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