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Loveandmercy Loveandmercy is offline
 
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Are children meaner now?
Old 02-18-2020, 02:33 PM
 
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Hi Everyone,
I have taught for 13 years. What is going on? I watch my expectations.
I understand I am there (and am getting paid) to be THEIR teacher, they are not there to entertain me or to fill needs etc. But this the level of disrespect I am experiencing is unprecedented. Other teachers at my school are commenting that kids seem to be way more disregulated and disrespectful. Their communication skills are so delayed. I don't get what is happening. They look at me like zombies. Are they still in a virtual reality? Is anyone else seeing this? I know it is important to stay positive. And I will still do my best to bring that into my classroom. I am respectful to the children but they can be very disrespectful.
Thanks!


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Disrespectful
Old 02-18-2020, 03:05 PM
 
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I definitely think the things say kids say and do to adults has declined.

However, I actually feel that kids today seem nicer to each other (in a lot of ways) then they were when I was kid, especially when it comes to students with differences: physical, cognitive, etc. Granted, there obviously is a increase in cyber bullying, but when I watch the acceptance level and the level of respect inclusion all of my students have had towards kids with Downs Syndrome, Autism, etc. I'm impressed with how well they were treated. I frequently remembered those kids being excluded, picked on, etc.
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Old 02-18-2020, 03:11 PM
 
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I don't consider disrespect to be "mean" to me. I agree with pp - I think kids are nicer to each other than my generation (60-70's). Holy cow. We did some down right mean things to each other and we didn't cry about it. We got revenge or got over it. I don't think we dwelled on it as much, and I think we used "being mean" to figure out how to work with others and to get things done. We were problem solvers. But I know my own kids would be big bawl babies if their cousins talked to them the way my cousins and I talked to each other. We loved each other though, and would have taken up for each other in a heart beat!

Kids do not have the same boundaries as the "children will not speak until spoken to" generation. I do think that brings a lot of disrespect because they grow up getting attention before they even know they need it. Their needs are catered to above all else, and parents' needs are put on the back burner. They get what they want, before they knew they needed it, and better than anyone else's. Creates a child who doesn't understand that adults have worth and knowledge and should be treated as such.
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Disrespectful students...
Old 02-18-2020, 04:18 PM
 
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I definitely think students are more disrespectful. I think the age of screens allows a degree of self-centeredness and they also see and hear many things on YouTube, the TV, and the movies or videos that are age inappropriate.

Also, many parents are busy trying to be friends with their kids. Instead of creating clear boundaries and expectations at home with reasonable consequences, many of these kids are allowed to whine or cry their way into what they want.

As for communication, I blame technology for a big part of that. I had students who not only showed no interest in listening to me during a lesson, but didn't listen well to each other, either. My last two classes were especially rude. I was very happy to retire and leave that part of teaching behind.
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Old 02-18-2020, 04:20 PM
 
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I think students are a lot nicer than when I grew up. Last year I had a severe special needs student in my classroom. I was shocked at how well my class looked after him.

I think a lot of what we see as mean and disrespect is what they see from their parents or other adults. People are crazy and kids just follow their example.


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A change
Old 02-18-2020, 04:35 PM
 
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Iíve seen a big change in student behavior during the last few years. Some are meaner, some are more disrespectful, but it seems the majority of them are very disconnected to reality and what is going on around them.

Itís very much a self- centered bubble where their needs have always been put first.
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I too think the disrespect
Old 02-18-2020, 04:41 PM
 
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and meanness is a fairly direct reflection on the parents/environment. I teach HS students right now. Even the "good" kids seem to have a sense of entitlement and/or "Me First." So when coupled with any meanness or disrespect, it can be unbearable.

I have one or two who go beyond ME First into total self-centeredness (as in Me only-who cares about you.) I have one who has a Princess complex so bad that I have to watch or she takes advantage of the others. "Bring me a pencil, carry my backpack, give me change for a soda..." She is little and cute and they are the kind of super nice guys (who will probably never get the hot chic) so they chase after her and do her bidding. I actually have to have discussions with them about NOT being too nice...

The respect/disrespect shown to me varies by day and mood.
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Old 02-18-2020, 06:38 PM
 
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They may be more accepting of each other and differences but they seem to be way less accepting of any authority. The things they've said to me and my coworkers would have gotten the life slapped out of me by my mama at that age. I wish I knew how to teach empathy because they don't seem to believe adults have feelings too.
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Old 02-18-2020, 08:56 PM
 
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Kids are people, and sure they can be mean no matter wear they are.
I taught full time for twenty years,and now I'm subbing.
If there's a class with the wrong combination of students, look out. I've worked in poor areas and the students were great. I've also worked in
high affluent areas, and the students were extremely obnoxious. An upscale environment doesn't always influencing great behavior.
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Disrespect
Old 02-18-2020, 10:09 PM
 
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I've taught for 27 years and respect towards authority is optional now and they are entitled beyond belief. The fact they are nicer to each other is overshadowed by their lack of respect to the adults. It is clear that education is now run by the students and the parents.


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Old 02-19-2020, 02:31 AM
 
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I should have clarified. I have students who brag about throwing rocks at cars. Stealing things from cafeteria. Vandalizing classroom and bathroom. Laughing in my face when I talk to them.
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Old 02-19-2020, 02:34 AM
 
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So Done, this is what I am experiencing. I would have been kicked out of my house if I had said anything like what is said to me. Some children believe they are on the same level as an adult. I get it that we want them to be forthright, confident, assertive. Yes, I wholeheartedly agree with all of that. But some kids take it to another level, where they simply disrespect adults to their faces. They believe they are smarter. It is strange.
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Old 02-19-2020, 02:36 AM
 
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I work in the green leafy suburbs. Private school. Difficult combination of kids this year. Very entitled. Oooooooh...I did not attend private school as a child.
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change in kids
Old 02-19-2020, 04:40 AM
 
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Great points here!

I totally agree that while today's kids are more accepting of each other's differences, they're far less respectful of adults.

Several posters hit it on the head that it's probably because their worlds at home revolve around them. - They feel like they're always the most important people in the room.

I also agree that technology is a big reason for the change in communication skills. Kids and parents aren't having as many real conversations as they did in the past, and kids are used to a lot of "flash" to get their attention.

I think busy schedules are another reason. Kids don't have the amount of time they used to for social play where they talk to each other either.
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Old 02-19-2020, 10:20 AM
 
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It boggles my mind that one day can be terrible with a group of rude students, and then work at the same school with the same grade level in another class that's terrific. It makes you wonder what happened to that particular group? Anyway, it doesn't matter who you are, where you're from, and what you look like. If a class wants to give you trouble, they will do it. Sub or full timer, it doesn't matter. I've experienced unruly classes whereby you can't even get through attendance without noises or remarks. You know then it's going to be a long day.
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Old 02-19-2020, 05:33 PM
 
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Absolutely, loveandmercy! I had a kid yesterday look me dead in the eye and "flip me off" using his index finger instead of middle finger. And then claim it didn't count because he didn't use the "bad finger".
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Old 02-21-2020, 06:28 AM
 
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From the perspective of 30 years in the classroom, I don't think that kids are meaner now but they absolutely ARE more disrespectful to teachers and they absolutely DO have miniscule attention spans.

I think there are two main reasons for this. One has been a shift in how teachers are viewed. This has been driven, in part, by teachers and public schools being used as political footballs. There's the constant rhetoric about how American schools perform poorly compared to other countries, public schools are hotbeds of liberal indoctrination, teachers are people who can't compete in the corporate world, student behavior is deteriorating because of taking prayer and the pledge of allegiance out of public schools....and the list goes on. When kids hear this sort of teacher-bashing at home, of course they don't respect teachers. To me, it seems that this has been going on for about 20 years, but it has gotten much worse with the rise of social media.

The other reason is today's addiction to technology. Some students come from homes where there's little social interaction. When parents come home from work, Mom immediately becomes immersed in social media and Dad plays video games. Kids do the same. They may have been given "electronic pacifiers" (various smartphone apps and games) to keep them busy since they were toddlers. Schools can't combat this. In fact, they are judged pretty harshly if they don't jump on the technology bandwagon and, all too often, "technology time" becomes parking students with the myriad of "learning games" that involve a small amount of learning with huge rewards. This doesn't help their communication skills or their ability to focus.

Don't get me wrong; I'm a fan of Google Classroom and have seen plenty of ways that technology enhances learning, but IMHO, not all schools use good judgment in how technology is used.

Oh, and don't get me started on entitlement. I subbed at a high school yesterday. I rarely sub anymore but this was in my certification. I had the unmitigated gall to take note of the the 11 students (out of 26) who arrived late because they needed to use the bathroom. (These were juniors and seniors.) I didn't even report them to the office as tardy because, when it's that many, you know that they are probably allowed to do this. I just left their names for their regular teacher to deal with later. OMG! You'd have sworn I had violated their civil rights. One of them walked out class, went to Mommy (who was, evidently a teacher or school employee) and I received a phone call from Mommy demanding an explanation. I truly can't imagine what it's like to be the regular teacher there dealing with that.
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Old 02-21-2020, 01:41 PM
 
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THank you for the response, Tori's58. I feel the same as you do. The thing about how parents often do not respect us - yes. And the lack of communication due to tech/social media. I believe in future years we will regard this as a form of neglect. Some kids are badly stunted in terms of being able to communicate. I could label the children who were probably given screens at age 2. They are dull. They expect things immediately.
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