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Getting parents to leave on the first day
Old 08-27-2006, 01:47 PM
 
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I don't mind if parents (moms) stick around for 10-15 minutes or so on the first day of school, but what can I do to tactfully ask them to leave after that? Some seem to want to stick around all day! I read something somewhere about having the kids do something - like turn and wave good bye and say something, but I can't remember what it was.

Any ideas?


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Maybe give them work to do?
Old 08-27-2006, 02:13 PM
 
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I, too, have had parents who seemed to want to stay a bit too long. Knowing they just want to get a feel for 'the new teacher' and to make sure their 'baby' is okay, I told them to feel free to stay for a while, but I don't offer them a place to sit. They remain standing. Then, I go about my business just completely ignoring them.

If they still stay, I can ask them if they would like to work as volunteers in the school. If so, I can let them know where the 'parent volunteer room' is and tell them to go sign up, there.

One time, I recall asking a mother if she would mind helping me out with some work. (This meant I had to think quickly and come up with something for her to do that might be a bit tedious or 'not fun'. I seem to recall that I asked the parent to take a note to the office to check on the names of students who hadn't shown up, yet. This wasn't really a necessary task, but I guess it was such a menial job that the office secretary called my room to let me know the parent asked her to inform me that she would be leaving. )

Frankly, you just never know what will work, so, as I said earlier, you have to be able to think quickly, size up the situation and see what works with the parent. You might end up with a very helpful room mom! (On second thought... maybe not... )

Hope you come up with a suitable plan! Good luck!
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Parents leaving
Old 08-27-2006, 02:17 PM
 
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When the children are all settled in their seats I tell the parents that this is a "Kodak moment" and they are all welcome to take a picture of their child. The majority of them do that and then leave. I also take the children on a tour of the school (I teach K and they're all new) and this usually loses the rest of them.

If there are some that just won't budge, it's perfectly all right to say "thank you for making sure Johnny is settled, he'll adjust to school much more quickly if you say good-bye now".
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Parents
Old 08-27-2006, 02:19 PM
 
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Our students line up outside on the first day. The parents can take pictures and say goodbye there, but they don't come into the building with the kids. Maybe the principal can walk around and "encourage" the parents to leave.
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Good-bye
Old 08-27-2006, 02:32 PM
 
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I teach 3rd, so this is not a problem, but my friend who teaches K always invites the parents to stay until she reads the story "The Kissing Hand", then tells them it's time to go. This year,though, she had the opposite problem--nobody stayed!!!


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Good idea about "The Kissing Hand" but...
Old 08-27-2006, 03:06 PM
 
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In my case, I teach 4th grade! I had about 5 parents just standing to the side of the room watching what we did for the first 15 minutes. I welcomed them to stand there, but, as I said before, I didn't offer them a seat. After we 'ignored them' while I went on with 'work as usual', they each left a few at a time. It was okay. I didn't really mind.

I just gave it a positive spin and thanked them for stopping by and complimented them for taking the time to be a part of their child's education.
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I teach second
Old 08-27-2006, 03:28 PM
 
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I'm anticipating several to show up. I'm the New Teacher at the school. They will want to check me out. I don't have enough chairs, so maybe they'll not linger.
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Old 08-27-2006, 03:37 PM
 
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Our principal encourages the parents to leave. After everyone is settled in the classroom, we have an assembly - greeting, positive message, etc. At the end of the assembly the principal says something like, "Thank you, parents for coming today. We know your children will have a great first day of school. We'll see you this afternoon."
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First Day
Old 08-27-2006, 03:45 PM
 
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I welcome the parents into the room and they help their children unpack their items. I wait until about 10 minutes after the siren and then I get all the children to get up and kiss their parents goodbye and tell them they are sorry they can't go home with them and help them with the housework. It causes a laugh but everyone goes. Never had a problem in 20 + years. Parents just like to feel their child is secure.
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A wave goodbye
Old 08-27-2006, 03:51 PM
 
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I teach 2nd and I usually have a handful of parents stick around for just a little bit. I meet the kids outside on the first day and then walk them straight into the classroom. I encourage them to find their seat and begin working on either the coloring page or word seach at their seat. Moms will typically come in and want to take some snapshots (which, like you, I don't mind....for a few minutes anyway). Once all the kids are working and settled, I'll just say "Okay, it's time to wave bye to mom and we'll see them at noon." Then we all wave and say bye together. That usually gets the parents out of the room....and mingling in the hallway. YIKES! It's a tough situation being it is the first day and making impressions, etc....

I think you just have to be kind hearted about it and go with the flow. Good luck this year, I think we all kind worry about that!


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MrsG... Yup! They'll want to stay!
Old 08-27-2006, 04:01 PM
 
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Quote:
I'm the New Teacher at the school. They will want to check me out.
You're absolutely right! When I was new to my school, I had many parents just hanging around. Good thing to expect this. In my own case, I didn't realize what was happening until after I thought back on it the during the week. I was soooo nervous that I had forgotten to consider that moms would want to hang around to watch the 'new teacher' in action!

Although I like the idea of reading aloud The Kissing Hand, as suggested previously, this might be a good time to read aloud First Day Jitters since you can show both the kids and their parents that EVERYONE is nervous on that first day! It sure worked for me, this year, on our first day!

At any rate, as I said before, at least you're thinking about it so that it doesn't take you by surprise. Good to be thinking ahead and being prepared!!
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Old 08-27-2006, 04:08 PM
 
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First Day Jitters is already in my plans!
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Our Principal solved this for us!
Old 08-27-2006, 04:27 PM
 
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This has been a common problem for years-particularly in the lower grades. Last year, our new principal curbed the problem quickly.

He waited until about 10 minutes after school began and then made an announcement asking all parents to come to the forum for an overview of what is projected for the new school year. He has coffee and cookies, and he made a short presentation about some of the highlights of the new year. This worked! EVERY parent left the classrooms......some went to the forum and others went home....but they left the classrooms! It was a nice way to make the parents feel welcome, but also have a positive exit out of the classroom.

Would this work for you, too? JKB
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Old 08-27-2006, 04:46 PM
 
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Well, I don't know what the norm is for the school since I am new (the headmaster is also new). I hope to find out more this Wednesday, the first faculty meeting.
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Principal Makes Announcement
Old 08-27-2006, 06:15 PM
 
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Our principal makes an announcement after about 10 min. She thanks the parent for coming and then says something about needing to establish classroom routines. (She has an eloquent way of saying it.) She's done this for the past couple of years now, and it seems to work. It is especially helpful for our PK classes who this year began accepting 3 yr. olds. YIKES! This year they made the announcement again on the third day. I guess a parent was having a difficult time letting go. After the first week parents are no longer allowed to escort children to the classroom. Our principal or vice principal is at the door to take the PK child from mom and escort them to class.
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Old 08-27-2006, 06:19 PM
 
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Those of you who have principals to help you with this problem are very lucky indeed!
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Shooing parents out
Old 08-28-2006, 07:10 AM
 
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Luckily, we have a slated time for the parents to be in the rooms - the first 1/2 hour. I go over questions, as well as give a little overview of the year, then at 9:00, the principal announces over the intercom that all parents should come to the Lecture Hall for a light breakfast, and to hear about the PTO activities for the year. I then excuse the parents, and we get started on our day.
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Sign
Old 08-28-2006, 12:35 PM
 
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All the teachers at my school have sign that was made by the office & laminated that says something to the affect that to help you child have a good day say your goodbyes at the door. I'm at home and don't remember how it is exactly worded. Last year, I had a mom who would still come in everyday and get her son unpacked and situated. I tried to say something but she just ignored so when she came in I just keep working with others and she left. This may be the reason that child still has problems with lack of self-control and is impulsive.
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Put them to work!
Old 08-29-2006, 06:45 PM
 
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If all the nice ways to ask them to leave or suggest it don't work.... I have always been able to get parents to leave by putting them to work. It doesn't matter how many bulletin board letters you have but send them off to make more. I hand them construction paper in 2 colors and send them to the library to laminate them and cut out sets of alphabet letters with the die-cut machine. I tell them the librarian can help them learn to work the machine. You could always use extra letters!
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