Oh my gosh, it’s a parent-teacher meeting. I forgot they were a thing; Two years online meant I avoided relating to them, but now they’re back with a bang.
My wife was on the fourth day of World Book Day costume design and development for the middle child, I would be the one who had to waddle to hear the teacher tell me my oldest son was doing well. any.
I had a poor record in parent-teacher meetings – arriving late, leaving early, talking to only half of the teachers I intended, and not recording anything they told me. If someone were to score my performance on them, I would rate it as a negative C for sure – a poorly planned effort, badly executed by someone who lacked focus and dedication.
I’m not wild about school. I don’t hate it as much as some people, but it’s nice to be out. Coming in again just makes me nervous, especially for parent-teacher meetings because they’re held in my favorite part of the school – the sports hall. But it had to be done, and with my list of teachers and some vague instructions from my son about who I should talk to, I moved on.
My experience with teachers at these events generally falls into three categories. First, the teacher wants your child to try his or her best but not fail Association of Dead Poets syndrome and therefore do not want to spend more than five minutes talking to you.
Then there are the teachers who may not be entirely sure who your child is, so they just talk about the class, the subject, the weather, anything really. They also don’t want to have to talk for too long in case they don’t know who your child is.
Then there are teachers who, for one reason or another, don’t get along with your child. It wasn’t said, but it was always pretty obvious when they talked longer than the others. It doesn’t mean they’re a bad teacher, but it can mean your child won’t particularly enjoy the class and the teacher won’t enjoy teaching them. It happens, and that’s life. I had teachers that I didn’t get along with when I was in school. But you know what, you’ve grown and matured and I’m happy to report that having met a few of these teachers since then, I still absolutely despise them and I’m pretty sure they hate me too. So it’s not just in my head.
The general theme of the evening was that my son, although only started middle school last September, chose to just phone him. Almost all teachers share the same message with me: it has a brain, but refuses to use it. .
The challenge now is to figure out how to force him to apply himself. The first step is to schedule his time on PC and/or phone. Actually, that’s the only step. Everything else will follow because as much as I love the digital age, it takes its toll. I find myself in a constant state of distraction, constantly staring at my phone, looking for things that occupy my mind, jumping from app to app instead of engaging in the here and now. So are my kids now.
My son’s English teacher made a simple plea – help him read more books. He used to read a lot, but now he has TikTok, and reading seems like a chore. It’s hard to judge him because so am I – I have piles of books on my nightstand, dusty as I scroll through Twitter.
When I was his age, books were my TikTok, Twitter, Netflix and everything else. So the upcoming plan is to cut off the snake’s head – no phone, no screen, just pen, paper and a certain amount of time.
All students have had a weird couple of years with online learning and the state of fear we all live in, and my son went from there to starting middle school, so it’s going to be great. there is always an adjustment period. But this is the new, the new normal. It’s time to leave virtual and go back to real life, and let him learn hard lessons about the value of hard work.
https://www.independent.ie/life/family/parenting/i-never-perform-well-at-parent-teacher-meetings-if-it-were-graded-id-get-a-solid-c-minus-41425858.html I never performed well in parent-teacher meetings. If it’s classified, I’ll get a C-minus