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What the teacher says vs What the teacher really means

Posted Oct 25 2009 11:02pm 1 Comment
It's lazy Sunday. I got nothing but a few unfinished blog posts....so I thought I'd re-post an oldie but goodie....

What the teacher says vs What the teacher really means:

I went in for a parent-teacher conference a few months ago with Cole and Bella's preschool teacher and I listened to her use words like "spirited" and "natural-born leader" to describe my kids. While most parents would be beaming with pride to hear their children described by those words, I know better.

Back in the day, I used to be a preschool teacher and I also used words like "spirited" and "natural-born leader" to describe some of the kids in my class when I spoke with their parents. I liked to put a positive spin on things....to, well, lighten the blow. No parent wants to hear a teacher come right out and say, "Johnny is bossy and talks too much. None of the kids in the class like him and, come to think of it, neither do I". I just prayed that the parents would be able to read between the lines.

To be helpful, I thought I'd compile a list: "What the teacher says" versus "What the teacher really means".

What the teacher says: Johnny is very spirited.
What the teacher really means: Your kid is stubborn, non-compliant, cries at the drop of a hat and has the temperament of....um, a lion in captivity...and that's putting it mildly.

What the teacher says: Susie is a natural-born leader.
What the teacher really means: Your kid is bossy, pushy and overly opinionated.

What the teacher says: Johnny is very artistic.
What the teacher really means: Your kid is drawing pictures of skulls dripping with blood and it's really freaking me out.

What the teacher says: Susie likes to say what's on her mind.
What the teacher really means: Your kid is missing a sensitivity chip.

What the teacher says: Susie is a social butterfly.
What the teacher really means: Your kid never shuts her trap.

What the teacher says: Johnny enjoys his alone time.
What the teacher really means: Does the word "sociopath" mean anything to you?

What the teacher says: Susie really challenges me to be a better teacher.
What the teacher really means: Your kid makes me wanna drive off a cliff at the end of each school day.

What the teacher says: Johnny has boundless energy.
What the teacher really means: Your kid can't sit still for a minute. He kind of reminds of the Tazmanian Devil......on crack.

What the teacher says: When encouraged, Johnny seems to succeed well.
What the teacher really means: What the hell are you saying to your kid at home to make his self-esteem so low?

What the teacher says: Susie is always so organized.
What the teacher really means: Your kid is a type-A control freak.

What the teacher says: Johnny is such an easygoing child.
What the teacher really means: He's the laziest kid I've ever met. Pretty much have to light a fire under his ass to get him moving and shaking.

What the teacher says: Susie has a wonderful imagination.
What the teacher really means: Your kid lies her ass off. She could be the next James Frey.


What the teacher says: Johnny loves to share with his friends.
What the teacher really means: Thanks to your kid and his frequently snotty nose, most of the kids have been out sick this month.
Comments (1)
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Well, no wonder our schools are failing...our teachers lack the skill and tactic to communicate with straight-forward sincerity. 
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