My 7 year old daughter has had some trouble w/ behavior at school already this year. She and another girl in her class are either "best buds" and acting silly (laughing in class, stepping out of line, looking under the bathroom stalls at each other, lying down in their chairs, etc) or "not friends" ( tattling on each other, being mean, etc) Her teacher calls me often to report on even the smallest deviatons from proper behavior. We have tried everything; punishments, meeting at the school, discussions, role-playing, and everyday I hold my breath wondering how she did at school. It's so frustrating. Neither child is a bad kid, and they are drawn to each other. I need some advice on teaching her to be a leader rather than a follower and setting a good example for her friends. Thanks!!
Have the teacher's separated them? Sounds like they should be on opposite ends of the classroom in corners where they can't have easy eye contact. They can then play during recess, but not act silly in class. Won't solve them goofing off in the halls and/or lunchroom, but those times won't seem as disruptive if they are behaving in the classroom.
Are the children actually being disruptive? Or are they just playing/arguing when they get bored because there's nothing else going on?
If the teacher is calling you over every little step out of what she expects proper behavior for a 7 year old to be, then it sounds like she needs to take another look at her classroom. Does she have unneccessarily high expectations of her students? Or does she lack control over her classroom? Or possibly lacks confidence in her own skills to manage the situation? My 7 year old daughter has a similar relationship with a girl at her school and in the two years they have been together the teacher has never once called me.
Before punishing your daughter, I would suggest taking a closer look at the situation. Like you said, neither child is a bad kid so they shouldn't be treated like they are. Ask your daughter questions about her day and her school work (not associated with this other girl), is she getting bored, is the teacher presenting material in a manner she doesn't understand, is she getting enough time to express her individuality and run off her energy at recess? If everything else is going well, then maybe it's time to meet with the other mom outside of school. A playdate perhaps? Give the girls a chance to be silly without being disruptive to other students. And definitely suggest to the teacher to separate them while in the classroom to keep the flow of the day going.
Life is an adventure, I share every day with my two beautiful children.
I agree with what moonemaiden said. You also need to realize that being a leader or follower is part of your daughter's personality and that is hard to change. I have always been more of a leader and do things on my own without the approval of others. My sister, younger, has always been a follower and needs the approval of her friends/family before she does anything. I go shopping or to a fast food place alone often, my sister would never dream of going by herself (what would people think). I could care less what people think, I guess this is sometimes obvious in my posts. Anyway, I wouldn't worry about trying to get her to be a leader, I'd focus on making sure she is getting the best possible education she can, and speaking up on her behalf if that is not happening.
Loud mom of 2 loud boys ages 10 & 7.
Thank you guys for your input. They have been separated in class, but often find their way to each other like magnets Luckily I've received 3 letters in 3 days about GOOD behavior, so hopefully this will keep up. The teacher has some kind of degree in behavior so I think that's partly why she's so all over everything. It's strange for me because my daughter and I are very different- myself being passive and shy and she, outgoing and popular. I never once got in trouble in elementary school so I'm very sensitive about her gettng in trouble on the 3rd day of school, haha. I like the idea of a playdate outside of school. The girls had a talk to try to figure out why they kept getting in trouble together, and my daughter suggested they help each other stay out of trouble. I think it's a combo of the girls pushing the limits and feeding off each other and the teacher being really on top of everything. It's really so nice to have other moms give their 2 cents so one doesn't feel so alone. Thanks!