Friday, March 03, 2006

The cafeteria Lady from down under (no, I don't mean Australian!)

Today I had the best day in my classroom. It is days like today that really remind me what it is about teaching that I am in love with. We had some awesome conversation about poetry, I graded a math assessment where everybody scored either an a or b, and I just feel like the kids in my class really enjoy each other and enjoy learning. That makes me enjoy teaching.

Then we went to lunch.

Now I know that kids in the cafeteria can be loud. But eating is social. My idea for the cafeteria ladies is: DEAL WITH IT! If there are kids being overly boystrous, then fine. Have them sit by themselves. But my entire class was made to eat a "silent lunch" for three days in a row because I was told "my entire class." was overly loud. Yeah right. By the way, this was the case for the entire fourth grade. Yeah right.

Then to make things even worse, if we don't get the kids there the very minute that we are supposed to, the cafeteria ladies get all angry. They don't say anything to us teachers, but they treat our kids like crap and say things like, "can your teacher be on time for anything" or "do they teach you how to read a clock in fourth grade?"

Today was overly annoying and down right angering. I picked up my kids just to hear them all tell me that one of the lunch ladies actually told me kids that their teacher was "hard headed."

Huh? What does that have to do with being on time to lunch? And to make it worse, three of my kids told her that she needed to watch what she says, and never to say that again. The three got into trouble and had to eat an isolated lunch. Another one of my students got in trouble because she was talking during this silent lunch. Well yeah, she was. She accidently spilled her entire chocolate milk on her jeans, and was asking another student to help her.

Ughhh. So that is the situation. I feel like I am SO being tested because the "hard-headed" part of me wants to march in their and tell those ladies they can stick their own foot up their butt. But I know that I shouldn't and this entire week I have been working on controlling my tongue and that entire verse about "what ever is lovely..." Yes, so telling them where they could stick their foot is not exactly lovely, I realize.

I guess I just feel stuck with an administration who doesn't have the time to deal with the cafeteria issues, and parents who are furious that their kid missed recess again. The sad thing is, I don't blame them for being mad. Scott suggested that I just have the kids get their food and then eat in the room. I thought this was a great plan at first, but then I could see the problem with the logistics of it all.

Oh well. What to do. I keep telling myself that giving them a piece of my mind won't help.... I need to just calm down and very politely talk to them... again. Oh well. Thank goodness tomorrow is Saturday!

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