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I Overheard a Student...
Old 10-19-2018, 12:08 PM
 
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...talking negatively about me in the hall today to her friend. She said, "I wish I had (insert other teacher's name here) instead of "her", and she went on to talk about how much better the other class is (my colleague ends up with the higher achieving students across the board, it seems). I know we aren't supposed to take this stuff personally, but it's really hard and it hurts, because this is my second year with this high school student (I teach a world language, levels one and two). I have twelve total years of teaching experience, but my first ten were at the elementary level. My colleague across the hall teaches the same language, but she's far more experienced/advanced, having traveled the world with plenty of resources, and she's a little more strict (my patience and kindness have backfired on me, big time). She teaches a level two class as well, but she also teaches the advanced conversational and travel courses. I urge students who excel and wish to continue with the language to sign up for her classes, but I never anticipated being compared to her and basically insulted by a teenager. I guess I'm naive?! The student doesn't know I overheard her conversation, and I don't know if I should mention anything to anyone, or just work through the emotions and let it go. I've been dealing with Chronic Lyme Disease for over a year as well, and that affects my energy level and sometimes my performance (but not every day). My medical struggles aren't something I can disclose to students, but I made my administration aware at the beginning of this year (just as an honest explanation, in case something serious comes up with my health at school) What would you do in this situation? Has anyone else had this happen?


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Old 10-19-2018, 02:09 PM
 
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I know that it's easier said than done, but in the end it isn't worth it to let a comment made by a teen get to you. Whenever I'm feeling the way you are, I remind myself of this quote:

Someone else's opinion of you is none of your business. -Rachel Hollis
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Old 10-19-2018, 02:31 PM
 
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She's a teenager so chances are it very well could have nothing to do with you. It could have been because her friend is in that class. I think we tend to make things about us when, in reality, it had nothing to do with us at all. Let it go (easier said than done, I know).
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Old 10-19-2018, 02:43 PM
 
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She'd be saying the same thing if she had the other teacher. Try not to let it get to you.
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Old 10-19-2018, 03:46 PM
 
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Just know that teenage students say this about every single one of their teachers. Itís not fun but itís a great segue into teaching abou other peoplesí feelings. At th end of the year I always do this day where I just sort of pull back the curtain and give them life advice. Might be a good time to talk about the time you overheard ďa studentĒ say hurtful things about you and how important it is to know what youíre saying and where because your silly comment might hurt someone.


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thick skin
Old 10-20-2018, 08:09 AM
 
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I heard it all before and they just roll off my back now. I know that I can't please everyone and it was rude. Of course you weren't meant to hear it. At least now you know. I would rather have something said in honesty than not being fortright.

I wonder what would've happened if you approached the student right there and then and say in a jokingly manner, "So, the cat's out of the bag...".

Last edited by Mikhail; 10-20-2018 at 08:54 AM..
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Don't take it to heart
Old 10-20-2018, 12:43 PM
 
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Elementary kids usually love the teacher they had before. This yr, I have really seen the light on this due to a recent change.
My old kids have been saying how they want to come back to my class. The teacher they have now is a good 1. She expects a lot. They are a year older and capable.
The kids I got this year all loved last years teacher..lol and would probably say they'd love to go back too. I heard 1 and am sure there are others I have not heard.
The grass is always greener...looking back. The girl who said that in HS is probably not much different than elem kids who say those things.
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Old 10-20-2018, 01:06 PM
 
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I think this happens to just about everyone who teaches high school. If you look at ratings on ratemyteacher or ratemyprofessor, they seem to be all over the place. There are some teachers who get nothing but positive or negative ratings, but most teachers (and college professors) seem to get a mixture. It's impossible to please everybody.

I spent only a small portion of my career as a regular teacher in a high school, but I have done a lot of high school subbing. From my limited experience, I've noticed that many high school students love to complain about teachers to anyone who will listen.

I first learned this lesson as a young high school teacher. During my second week, another teacher in my department told me that students had approached him with complaints about me. There was nothing serious, just a lot of griping. Several weeks later, many of these same students shared their complaints about this other teacher with me, and he had been there for a long time!

I've often subbed for a high school social studies teacher who appears to have it together. She's a nice person, she leaves excellent plans, and she seems to be very organized. For some reason, though, many of her students don't like her. She doesn't seem to have a lot of charisma, and she's not one of those dynamic "cool" teachers. Whenever I've heard negative cracks (with zero substance) about her from students, I've immediately squelched them. Perhaps she knows what's being said, but I haven't said a word.

Just do the best teaching that you can and ignore the whiners.
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Kids' opinions are
Old 10-21-2018, 07:45 AM
 
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Completely uninformed nonsense. Disregard them completely.

Usually, they say the kind of stuff you describe because the teacher they're comparing you to lets kids do whatever they want, gives everybody As, and has low academic standards (not necessarily saying that's the case here).
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