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    Joined: Apr 2008
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    I do agree that volunteering really works but what if you don't have time? A friend of mine, pulls kids out every week for advanced math work. That would be tough for me w/ an infant and a preKer. I did offer though but the teacher didn't take me up on it. I"ve been in the classroom about 5-6x to do science w/ the entire kids. Now that things are winding down, I'll probably be in the class another 2-3x before the school year ends. I have to take my toddler with me but thankfully she is well-behaved. On the occasion I have to bring my preKer, that's a bit more stressful for me, but I manage. I had two more lesson plans that I had hoped to get into the classroom to do - one on robotics to illustrate how sound waves travel but I just never had the time to get it together in my head, plan an activity for the kids, and find a sitter for the preker. My toddler won't stay with anyone so I have no choice but to bring her along. I've also been to the all the parties (we at most have 3-4 parents attending out of class of 20kids). I have a good relationship with the teacher b/c of it. For ex: I was the only one informed when testing for the gifted program took place. All the other parents were never informed. But what if you're a working parent? SHould you be penalized for not being able to be in the classroom?

    I know I should have done more in the class but I was really thrown for a loop w/ kid #3 and my DH works 70-80hrs/week so it's all on me.

    I've read over and over that if you want extra for your kid, you need to show the school that you're willing give to ALL the kids - for right or wrong.

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    And, what if, no matter how many times you offer or how hard you try, the teacher rebuffs all attempts to volunteer in the classroom? Case in point: Pud's teacher said "I don't spend as much time with his reading group as I do the others because he doesn't need it as much". Okay, said I, let me come into the classroom and read to the other kids or listen to them read while you work with my child. Nope, no way, completely out of her vision of the world.

    Here's another thought: I wish that I had thought to volunteer in the next grade up toward the end of the school year to get to know those teachers.

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    The other issue is that at the elementary school, the Principal instituted a rule that NO SIBLINGs on school grounds. She said it ruins it for the siblings to be at the school. The PTA got an exception b/c they'd lose most of the PTA if everyone always had to get sitters for younger children. And many of the teachers have a NO parents in the classroom at any time rule except for PTA conference. Fortunately, DS always had a teacher that let parents come in for parties but that is your only exposure to the class.

    My DS got no reading instruction for most of the 2nd grade year, this year. He said his group did only independent reading and then wrote in their reading journal. Well, uh, unless someone is looking over his shoulder, he's not going to write much in a writing journal about a book he may not have had any interest. I really, really wish I would have had the time this year to offer to come in a read w/ the kids and discuss books with them each week but w/a baby, it just wasn't happening. Maybe next year I'll be able to spend more time in the classroom. But at this school, a friend said after 2nd grade, they really cut the cord and parents really aren't wanted in the classroom at any time.

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    Yes kcab, one year I put together the 3'x4' portfolios for the kids to take home their art work from the year in. Most did it at school (especially to get that exposure) but w/ a young toddler at the time, I came in, picked up supplies and brought it home to do. The next year I was on complete bedrest so I physically couldn't do all the stapling and manipulating of such large sheets of paper so I couldn't do that. I did however put together all 700 invitations (gluing papers together) for the art show. The art teacher had previously been doing all this work herself year after year but after her DH said he would no longer help her, she had to enlist parents lol.

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    Originally Posted by Dazed&Confuzed
    Well, uh, unless someone is looking over his shoulder, he's not going to write much in a writing journal about a book he may not have had any interest.


    Yep, same here. Mine also did a couple of "independent" projects, which were all done at home and were basically busywork,

    Okay, I won't complain any more, especially since it is waaayyyy off topic, sorry.

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    Uh yeah, sorry to be so far off topic....how did that happen anyway? blush

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    Meh. That happens in an active conversation sometimes. <shrug> Personally, I think as long as we answer the original question and respect the original poster if s/he wants to haul us back on topic, it's okay to meander a bit. Sometimes really good stuff comes out of tangents, and I would hate to lose that by staying strictly on topic.

    That's just my opinion though...Worth what you paid for it! wink


    Kriston
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    I didn't mean to make anyone feel guilty on the volunteering front. My DS's school is underfunded and has a lower-middle/lower class population. The school hardly has any volunteers and they fawn over anyone who is literate and less needy than the children. LOL. I have only one child and I work only 3 days a week. My situation makes volunteering very easy and very rewarding. My mother tried to volunteer at my school when I was a kid and she was never allowed to. It was against school policy.

    One of the strengths of this board is that different people with different experiences post their stories. I hope that the result in a good resource for people who are needing to make decisions. I would feel bad, though, if I made anyone feel guilty for something that cannot be helped. That is never my intent!

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    Nah. No guilt. smile

    I just think that it's too simple to approach it from the standpoint that schools respond better to advocacy if parents volunteer. As in all things, that works in some schools, and it doesn't in others. Our school happens to be overwhelmed with volunteers. I was only allowed in the classroom twice a month because so many parents were volunteering and the teacher had such limited hours when she accepted help. The jobs she assigned involved keeping the parents out of the classroom as much as possible. (And that's how it was for other parents, too, not just me. I checked with friends. It seems this particular teacher *really* disliked parental involvement!)

    Ya' know, one of the things this forum has taught me is that above all else, stuff varies. Depending on the child, depending on the situation, depending on the school, depending on the teacher...There are simply no hard and fast rules.

    (Of course, that's a hard and fast rule, right? wink )

    Anyway, no guilt. laugh


    Kriston
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    WEll, that's the one thing that I found so shocking when my son entered school after talking to friends all over the country.....schools are all soooo different, sometimes even within a school district!!!!

    Nope, no guilt....just wanted to present the other side a) some schools don't allow parents in and b) some parents aren't able to do it.

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