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Get An Idea of Your Own
Old 12-20-2019, 02:53 PM
 
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Sorry - this will be long but I need to vent it out and let it go so it doesn't bother me all vacation.

I teach in a very small, rural school district. There are 2-3 teachers in our elementary department (we are a dept. of 6) are total b!tches. They would walk right by you and look the other way rather than helping you up if you needed it. Just not very nice people. I have taught there for 7 years. Each Christmas I give my students a blanket as a gift. I have pictures of each class with their blankets hanging in my room. Last year the B!tch in the grade below me gave her students the EXACT same thing for Christmas. WTH!! One of the other members of the B!tch squad made a comment on how rude that was of her to do that. Guess What....they both gave the EXACT same blankets to their students this year. Both teachers teach grades below me.

I feel that was incredibly rude and down right hurtful to me. I had a good idea, was implementing it consistently and got wonderful comments from students and parents about the thoughtful gift. This is the same tradition I have had since I became a teacher and have pictures of my other classes from former school. They both know this.

It looks like I am in search of a new tradition. This sucks!


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Old 12-20-2019, 03:04 PM
 
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Absolutely do NOT go looking for a new tradition. Keep giving the blanket. Itís your tradition. Donít cave to their rudeness. Iím so sorry they did that to you.
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Old 12-20-2019, 03:06 PM
 
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Say to them that this is your longstanding tradition and you would really like to keep it. Help them brainstorm some other ideas that can be THEIR tradition for their grade.

It sounds like you're pretty unhappy with this group, and this is just the icing on the cake, so to speak.
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Old 12-20-2019, 03:29 PM
 
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Thanks for the responses.

I did go to them after school and told them how my feelings were hurt. The second year giver did attempt a lame apology, the new participate tried to tell me that it was no big deal because kids could use a new blanket every year. That may be true, however this was my thing and you ruined it. BTW...they both made big, showy spectacles afterschool with the parents about the blankets.

My students this year were unimpressed with their gifts because "We got this last year" and "My blanket last year had footballs on it" or "I got my favorite color last year" i am going to have to do something new or I wll continue to be upset about it year after year.

Small school so only one teacher per grade level so it's not like i will only repeat the gift for some.

Thanks for letting me know that it's ok to let this bother me.
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Gift
Old 12-20-2019, 03:44 PM
 
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I would be upset also. Why donít you do gloves and boggin next year. That would be something they would like and use also.


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Old 12-20-2019, 04:19 PM
 
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I'm sorry. That was rude of your unimaginative coworkers and I'm sorry you had to hear these comments from your students.
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If it is a small school
Old 12-20-2019, 04:36 PM
 
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Isn't your P aware that you have done this tradition for years and couldn't he/she have a nice talk with them and encourage them to find something else and honor your tradition?

The more I read here, the more I appreciate my former P!
My fellow teacher in first grade was very artistic and it was before Teachers pay teachers and the ability to make things on a computer. After school a mom came in and read her the riot act. She had activities her son did in my friends class and the exact same things that her son did in private local K. She wouldn't even let her explain. She ended by saying I am going to the P right now and let him know how much you use other people's creative work. Within minutes she returned with the P who marched the mom around the hall displays and the classroom and even pulled things from the teacher's storage. He showed the mom that the K teacher used all of her son's teacher's original work and then he stood there while he listened to the mom give the teacher a sincere apology.

This is how real administers handle things.
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Old 12-20-2019, 08:09 PM
 
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I would talk to your P about it. Hopefully they will tell the other two to knock it off.
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Old 12-20-2019, 08:23 PM
 
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That's a real low-life move. I can't believe they have the nerve to do it.

What would your P do if you talked to him about it? Mine is a wimp, so would tell me to handle things...

Maybe we can help you brainstorm a new tradition!
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Old 12-20-2019, 10:12 PM
 
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That is very rude. I agree that you should keep your tradition. A kid can never have too many blankets. What a wonderful gift!


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I think you're taking this too hard.
Old 12-20-2019, 11:15 PM
 
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It's a blanket. You can't call dibs on a being the only person on the planet ever to gift a child a blanket. I hope you can get some perspective about this and let it go.
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Old 12-21-2019, 03:56 AM
 
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Sorry that happened to you, and it looks like it was done out of spite. I would keep doing it year after year because that would send the message that their actions did not bother you. Otherwise they're just going to turn around and do the same thing if you choose to do something different next year. I'm going to PM you with an additional unique project that you might like to do with you class.
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Old 12-21-2019, 04:57 AM
 
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Quote:
It's a blanket. You can't call dibs on a being the only person on the planet ever to gift a child a blanket. I hope you can get some perspective about this and let it go.
Excuse me!

I don't think I made any comment about calling an entire planet of 'dibs' on blankets. Seriously? I am upset because a couple of a55h0!e people ruined what was a long-standing classroom tradition in my classroom. What I started and did with my students year after year is no longer special because now they have had the same experience the year before. What kid wants the same gift 2, now 3, years in a row? I think what they did was a low blow to undermine another teachers and take what I created. That is my perspective.

And I will let it go and come up with a different idea but I can guarantee you this teacher will take it over in a year or two. That is her MO. She has proven it by doing the same art projects I do, she reads the same read alouds so I need to change every year. I also found out that last year she took her students on the same end of the year field trip that I have done every year for 7 years.

Last edited by all41; 12-21-2019 at 05:17 AM..
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Old 12-21-2019, 05:15 AM
 
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Thank you for the great idea LazyLake! I responded to you in a PM.

Thanks to all of you for your kind support. This job is hard in so may ways. It doesn't make it any easier when your fellow teachers intentionally behave in a manner that is not nice. We often share our struggles of how difficult it is working with students and parents who drain our emotions, please do not do this to the people who are rowing the same boat you are.

Be nice and support each other out there.

Merry Christmas
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Old 12-21-2019, 05:55 AM
 
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I can see why you're hurt. I used to be the teacher years ago who made the milk carton gingerbread houses. Then soon the grade below me started so I also heard "we did this last year" so it was no big deal to the kids. I did switch up traditions and they love the new one.

Sorry this happened to you. I am very surprised hear some recommend you go to P to have him/her resolve this. No way in my building would that happen, seems kinda juvenile and unprofessional to me. And no way would I go to the staff members: they'd probably spin and make you look bad.

You'll come up with something equally unique and special!
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Awful!
Old 12-21-2019, 06:15 AM
 
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I am sorry your coworkers are so nasty and rude. What they did was wrong and it is completely understandable why you are upset. People like that should not be in education.

I have had similar experiences with unique projects and activities. Fortunately, our administration stepped in and the thief was forced to stop using many of the stolen items. I think it depends on the quality and character of your principal whether you ask for their help or not.
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Old 12-21-2019, 06:16 AM
 
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I agree it was a crappy thing for them to do. I also was surprised that some teachers advise taking this to the principal. Itís not petty to you at all, but I think it would be annoying for admin to have to deal with this. I think youíll have to deal with these mean girls on your own.

What a sweet and generous teacher you are, though. My tradition is giving a pencil and a candy cane. Period. (Cheapskate here!)
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Old 12-21-2019, 06:40 AM
 
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So rude! Did you say anything to the teacher? I would have. In my experience, the mean teachers need to be told what they did is wrong. They donít get it. It is sad that she could not think of an idea on her own and had to steal yours. I would still give the blankets and type a letter to go with it stating your yearly tradition is to give a blanket to your students.
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Old 12-21-2019, 06:41 AM
 
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I totally get it and would have been ticked, too.
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Old 12-21-2019, 07:26 AM
 
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I would be upset too. I've had the teacher in the grade below me steal some of my art ideas, and it meant I couldn't do them anymore.

You're right, a blanket is an unusual idea and the other teachers really did steal it. I like the new idea of mittens or gloves. You could tuck in a candy cane and it would be a great and useful gift and could possibly cost you less money than blankets.

Now you know you're up against a group of competitive teachers. From now on, I would try to keep classroom traditions pretty quiet so those ideas can't be stolen as well.
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Iím sorry
Old 12-21-2019, 07:50 AM
 
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That really stinks. What if you had the kids design their own blanket? Maybe you can incorporate it into different lessons (math determining the sizes, Ss determining what culture means and how it can influence what we like/ want on our blankets, science what materials go into making a blanket, ela maybe a story on it or maybe they record their journey on it?). That always stinks when that happens especially if they do not plan on stopping
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First,
Old 12-21-2019, 08:26 AM
 
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what a nice, generous and thoughtful gift for your students. I feel badly for you and their actions are thoughtless.

The actions of the colleagues below you speaks volumes about their character. I donít understand their line of thinking.

My advice:
I wouldnít report it to the principal.
I feel that I would most likely think of a different gift to give your students next year. I think I would get upset every year when Christmas came around, as you mentioned, and have to listen to the comments from your students about their blankets from previous years.

If your colleagues were TRUE team players, they would get together and talk about doing something different so that the students would receive a different gift from all three of you. They should include you in the conversation and acknowledge that the blanket idea is yours. After all, you started that tradition first.

I hope my comments help you in some way.
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Old 12-21-2019, 08:42 AM
 
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At one school I have worked at we had a discussion about read alouds at different grade levels so teachers could avoid using the same books and students would be exposed to a larger variety of books (and teachers could hold on to favorites).

I think it would be a good topic at a staff meeting. Teachers (or grade level teams) should be able to have traditions that students look forward to as they reach different grade levels and teachers should put in the effort to create their own, unique ideas - not just do what the teacher down the hall is doing. Taking the time to look at this from the whole school perspective and come up with a school wide plan would be great and prevent a lot of hurt feelings.

I also think you are completely justified to be upset and the poster that mentioned the idea of not calling dibs on blankets is rude and is probably one of your colleagues. And, as a parent, I truly believe that kids can have too many blankets.
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Old 12-21-2019, 08:45 AM
 
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I think we have all had this happen in some manner or other at schools. I know I did with a book I read to classes that we used heavily for ELA. A 1st grade teacher decided because her oldest had enjoyed the book so much that she would start reading it with her own class. I actually went to talk to her (diplomatically) and shared books that were much more developmentally appropriate and not used by me, and she stopped it. But we shouldn't have to do that.
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Old 12-21-2019, 08:48 AM
 
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When my students would tell me "We heard that book last year", I would tell them that books can be revisited many times. It's just like some of their toys, you don't play with a toy only one time, you can play with a toy more than once, experience it in a different way, and enjoy it very much. (It's the same with the movies and tv shows they watch more than once
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Old 12-21-2019, 09:04 AM
 
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This isn't a matter of dibs. It is a matter of respect. Your colleagues were disrespectful to you!
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Old 12-21-2019, 09:56 AM
 
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Quote:
This isn't a matter of dibs. It is a matter of respect. Your colleagues were disrespectful to you!
This is so true. It’s not as if they had no clue that for many years you have been giving your students blankets at Christmas. They didn’t care how you would feel. They certainly have no shame. Sorry this happened. I hope you come up with a great idea for next year.
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Old 12-21-2019, 10:42 AM
 
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I teach K. One year I spent a long time making cookbooks with my students for Mother's Day. After I sent them home I found out a first grade teacher had made them for years. I had no idea and I felt really bad when I found out.

No one "owns" a certain gift, classroom activity, etc. but if we know it's a tradition in another grade level we should respect that and do something else.
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I must be a meanie...
Old 12-21-2019, 01:09 PM
 
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I don't give my kids any gift. I quit years ago. I think it was nasty of the other teachers copying your idea though. I used to get so annoyed when a lower grade lvl teacher would copy my art projects...making me have to go find other ones.
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Old 12-21-2019, 02:04 PM
 
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Thank you everyone for helping me feel better. I appreciate you and your understanding. If this situation involved just the gift, the blanket itself, it would be easier to let go, however my tradition goes much deeper. I didn't share everything as I was so hurt yesterday.

This tradition begins in November with the start of a read aloud and ends at Christmas with a movie showing of the book after we finish reading it. The main character has a blanket that really resonates with the students. This won't be an easy event to redesign. The blankets have a meaning, they are not just a simple, material item. That is what hurts the most. Those teachers knew this.

I do want to apologize for my actions in my original posts. I called people names in a public place. My feelings were/are hurt but that doesn't make my rudeness acceptable. I'm sorry if I offended anyone with my choice of language.

Last edited by all41; 12-22-2019 at 05:12 AM..
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Old 12-21-2019, 07:25 PM
 
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...who would suggest that you tell the principal all about it, starting with your book and movie and progressing to the blanket at Christmas, and ending with how long you've been doing this and how special and meaningful it has always been to you and to your students. It is, as a previous poster said, very disrespectful to you that the other teachers would steal (yes, it's stealing!) your wonderful idea and wonderful lesson for your kids. If you explain the whole sequence, I think any principal worth his/her salt would let the other teachers know to pick another project besides a blanket.
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Old 12-22-2019, 07:40 AM
 
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You have every right to be angry. That is a very petty act by those teachers. I have worked with teachers like that. It sucks. I hope you find a new tradition and they don't copy you again.
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Old 12-22-2019, 11:43 AM
 
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I would not allow these rude teachers to cause you to change a meaningful activity that is a tradition for you. You sound like a very creative teacher so I would just alter it a bit so that it remains special to you and them.

I had a similar experience where a friend copied an activity that I did with my classes for years. A parent had suggested the activity to me. Parents signed up to come at lunchtime to read to a small group of students while they ate lunch in the classroom. It was nice because children heard a new story, had a parent read to them, and students received special attention. She even changed the name to something really silly. I had not thought about this in a while but it makes me mad to think about it. They should have enough pride in themselves to come up with their own ideas.

I always wanted my students to remember something different and special about being in my class so I understand how you feel. You might want to put the year and your initials at the bottom of any written activities that you create so that you maintain ownership of your ideas even if they copy it.
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Old 12-23-2019, 04:42 AM
 
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I have been teaching for 20 years so this has happened to me in the past. I understand how upset you are. One of the things that upset me was the student's reaction.

My students this year were unimpressed with their gifts because "We got this last year" and "My blanket last year had footballs on it" or "I got my favorite color last year" i am going to have to do something new or I wll continue to be upset about it year after year.


This I would use as a teachable moment on gratitude. I find what your students said was more rude. I was raised when someone gives you something you should not complain and always say thank you.

I hope you find peace with the situation.
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Old 12-25-2019, 04:18 PM
 
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Change it up, please make sure and tell each one that you had to change the tradition and that you would appreciate it if they donít copy the next gift. Make it very clear that this new gift will be your new tradition.
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Some thoughts
Old 12-27-2019, 12:23 PM
 
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Imitation is a form of flattery. Take it as this. If they know they have upset you they win.

2 blankets are better than none. Just add some notable details to yours. Kids remember all sorts of little details.

Teach embroidery 9r rudimentary stitching and have your kids personalize the blanket from you.

I would get mad then get even by not letting anyone take the wind out of my sails. Never stoop to anyone's level.

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Some thoughts
Old 12-27-2019, 02:12 PM
 
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Imitation is a form of flattery. Take it as this. If they know they have upset you they win.

2 blankets are better than none. Just add some notable details to yours. Kids remember all sorts of little details.

Teach embroidery 9r rudimentary stitching and have your kids personalize the blanket from you.

I would get mad then get even by not letting anyone take the wind out of my sails. Never stoop to anyone's level.

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Let it go
Old 12-30-2019, 08:27 AM
 
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Seriously. I'm really concerned you are so angry about this, and even more concerned that so many colleagues here are urging you on in this matter. It's a BLANKET.
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Seriously. I'm really concerned
Old 01-14-2020, 10:03 AM
 
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Emily 26, if you are on this board, it would appear you are a teacher. That concerns me based on your responses here. If you have read the whole thread, you would understand why it is more "than just a blanket." This is about much more than a BLANKET. It is about respecting colleagues and not infringing on teaching ideas, materials, books, etc. purposefully.
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