Top ten ways to annoy your child’s teachers...

Thursday, August 7, 2008 - Guest Column by Becky
(For all the parents of children in daycare)

Say goodbye, then come back, then good bye, then come back, then do it a couple more times just in case the kid doesn’t miss you enough yet. This way you’ll quickly teach your child never to believe a word you say because you’ll change your mind, and you’ll always keep those teachers on their toes wondering when to step in and help. Make sure you look at the teachers angrily when they don’t get that this is REALLY the last time you will say goodbye.

Come in to school while making a business call, don’t forget to “Shush” the other children as you come in since they are clearly not aware of how their noise is bothering your very important phone call. Become very angry when teachers ask you to take your phone call outside. Remind them of what a very important person you are – you don’t want them to forget.

Please bring your child in the middle of snack time armed with enough junk food (donuts, chips, soda) for six people and sit him down at the snack table and encourage him to eat something in front of all the children having fruit and rice cakes. Make sure to let him know to put the leftovers in his cubby so he can snack in front of others later.

Make sure your child brings a toy from home EVERYDAY even though share day is only on Friday. When the teacher reminds you EVERYDAY that “today is not share day” please make her the bad guy by telling her, ‘well, you take it away then”. This is an excellent way to create a relationship of trust with the teachers.

Please bring your child to school with a loaded diaper, and make sure you don’t have time to change it before you say goodbye. Teachers just adore another opportunity to be close to your child and they are more than happy to change that poopy diaper.

When your child is potty training please come to school up to four times a day and drag a chair into the bathroom along with your child and “encourage” them to poop in a very loud demanding way. Anyone can make a child poop at will just by yelling at them. We are so grateful you can come and do this – it’s very helpful to all the other children trying to go to the bathroom as well.

Please make a list of all the colors of marker/paint./crayon that your child is not allowed to use. We would never want to soil any of your child’s clothes at the PLAY – BASED, NON ACADEMIC preschool that YOU chose for your child. Don’t forget to remind us everyday that your child really doesn’t need to do art because it doesn’t teach them anything.

When the teachers ask you to label everything (especially jackets) they are not serious. They can easily keep track of thirty jackets, only 6 of them are exactly the same, they can figure it out by size. Don’t forget to become VERY upset when your child’s unmarked clothing goes missing, teachers are able to find things much quicker after you have loudly reminded them about the item. Don’t mind that they are busy with children, follow them around and stand over them reminded them of the color until the missing item is found.

Please interrogate each and every teacher upon pick up as to how many bites of food your child ate at lunch. We must make sure they are all on the same page (even those who were on their own lunch break at that time), and are consistently aware of how many bites of each food item all 30 kids in their care ate. This influences what type of Happy Meal to buy your child for dinner so you NEED to know how much lunch they ate.

The best way to annoy your child’s teacher is to go above and beyond the call of a parent by letting them know what they should be doing as far as curriculum and how this play based program isn’t really teaching them anything. You understand that you chose this program (but not because it was play based – because it was three blocks from home and you could always change their curriculum later) You have learned this from your three years as a parent, and your years of college education as an engineer. You are confident that the teacher’s backgrounds in child Development are not sufficient for planning curriculum and they look forward to your daily input of how it should really be done.

After dealing with so many of you in my teaching/directing career, I have come to the conclusion that there should be a required class and test before people are allowed to become parents. As well to do financial wizards, doctors and lawyers it amazes me that you can look down your nose at my lowly job, yet still be such an idiot that you leave the baby in the car alone while you come in to read a book to your child, and ask me who the new teacher is (even though it was printed in the newsletter, an e-mail announcement went out, and was written on the notice board) and she’s been here 4 months!!

Here’s to hoping that your “parent sense” will soon kick in.
-A frustrated child care director/teacher

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Anonymous said...

My favorite post ever, hands down...some of the things I saw from parents while working in daycare...this brought me back.

I have SO many crazy-parents-at-daycare stories. I should write a book, haha.

TC said...


I worked as a 2 year old teacher for 8 years before becoming a nanny.

Everything you say rings true.

My favorite is when you have 5 dirty diapers to change and the parent walks in and waits for you to change their kids diaper. And doesn't mind waiting till you finish the one you just started to take care of their kid.

Or the parent that's too cheap and wont allow you to throw out the very soiled underwear that stinks up your entire classroom for the day..and I'm not talking solid chunks that are easily removed in the toilet.

Or the parent that bring their child in and tells you they threw up all morning but that they gave them peptobismal so they should be fine, then about 20 minutes later the kid throws up all over your lap. THEN the kid gets your entire class of 27 sick along with a few parents. Make sure you tell the director it's the teachers fault for not cleaning well enough.

snarkymama said...

Wow. What a nasty post. Maybe some parent sbehave like this but surely this can not be the norm. Let's make one for nanny bashing and be equal in our hatred for other people, not just well to do doctors and such.

Anonymous said...

Snarky, relax. She never said ALL parents. It's obvious the parents she's referring to are the exception. Now teachers/caregivers aren't allowed vent?

And by the way, there are plenty of threads for nanny bashers just like there are plenty of people who critize nannies..recently, someone inferred that 90 percent of nannies are BAD. The OP of this post didn't even imply that the majority of parents are like this. This was an amusing, light-hearted post. No reason for you to feel personally victimized and defensive.

Anonymous said...
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missj said...

I've worked in many a daycare and preschool, both play-based and academic, and I've seen my share of difficult parents. Luckily, my encounters with them have been few and far between.

The majority of my problems in daycare revolved around the center directors. In pretty much all of the daycares I've worked at, my fellow teachers and I were treated like high school babysitters, not college-educated professionals. We were given conflicting advice and instructions, we were undersupplied and were not compensated for our classroom purchases, and we were expected to take it all with a smile.

I think my "favorite" moment from my preschool tenure was a mom who brought her son in with pink eye. It was extremely obvious, and I told her he couldn't stay, but the mom played dumb and left him before I could speak to the director. Apparently she did speak to the director and claimed that she "had things to do" and would pick him up in a few hours. Of course, I ended up getting pink eye in both eyes and missed 2 days of work. To top it all off, I was chided for telling the mom that she couldn't leave her son with us! That incident occured in the spring, and I ended up leaving that daycare at the end of the summer (I had been there for a year and a half). I left feeling incredibly undervalued, and vowed to never again work in daycare.

Becky and Mike Mooers said...

Thanks for all the great comments, I indeed wrote this as a lighthearted approach and of course I also have AMAZING parents in my program. But, I also have many that need a course in parenting skills.....just something funny to make those of us who've worked in child care laugh...thank you jersey for you're support - you're right nothing nasty was meant and I never mentioned ALL parents, but in my 20+ years of doing this there seems to be a pattern among several!

Nara said...

I worked daycare for a while as an assistant teacher toward the end of high school, and I've never forgotten how some of the parents were eager to attack me because I didn't have the authority of the real teacher. One mother threw a fit because she misheard me comforting her child with, "Don't cry, baby", as, "Don't be a cry-baby", and wouldn't believe me OR HER KID till the teacher stepped in. Another one got upset when she heard me affectionately call her child 'Button' after also calling the class rabbit that. She screamed that I was treating her child like an animal -- I explained that I was treating the animal like a child. (Of course, the rabbit was potty-trained, quiet, and didn't hit other rabbits with blocks, sooo. . . )
I also had one set of parents send their 3 year old daughter to daycare every day in backless platform clogs. Every time I reminded the nanny dropping her off that those shoes were against the rules, she told me that the child picked them and she was supposed to do what the child wanted. A 3 year old still isn't steady on her feet -- who buys them shoes they can't walk in? I guarantee, if she'd fallen off those clogs, I would have been the one in trouble.

Caroline said...

I never worked in a daycare, but as a nanny I spent a lot of time dropping off and picking up my charges and attending story times etc. I never failed to leave shaking my head at some of the things parents did.

This made me smile.

No Longer Anonymous Regular said...

I think this is a great post. I had my two oldest in a play based daycare up until my first went to kindergarten. The director was excellent--she was very strict about not allowing a sick child to stay in daycare (you needed a doctors note to bring in a child with even the slightest rash--and she dismissed a family from the daycare on the spot for pulling the drop and run routine with their sick child), late pickups (there was a late pick-up charge of $20 per child for every 5 minute period after the pick-up time) or difficult/complaining parents. In the 4 years my oldest and 2 years my next was there, three families were asked by the director to leave the daycare. Even though it was no secret she took a hard line, there was a two year waiting list for the daycare.

I also was amazed at how many parents in the parents committee complained about the play based program because it was well known as a play based, not academic based, center. (BTW, I HIGHLY recommend a play based center to anyone looking for daycare--although my oldest was behind my next who went to an academic based pre-school after leaving the daycare on spelling and early reading skills, her social skills and ability to cope with a variety of personalities in a non-confrontational way were far better. Both her kindergarten and first grade teachers called her maturity, interest and attention level, empathy for other children and how calmly she negotiated around some of the more challenging children in the class extraordinary. These skills allowed her to not only catch up and surpass most of her classmates academically by end of first grade but she is a well adjusted popular child who loves school, reading and learning--she even does extra homework just because she likes it.)

LindaLou said...

that was hilarious. great post!

Anonymous said...

We had a parent accuse a caregiver of intentionally ripping an old scab off one of the infants in order to "torture" her...these parents later went on to report the daycare to DYFS, claiming it was done with racist motives and that everyone there hated their little girl because she's (half) black. Everyone loved her, by the way. Awesome baby...cute as a button and always very happy...These parents had been irrational from day fact, before I quit (which was only 2 months after they started there), I was her primary caregiver and they refused to trust anyone else except me, often times attempting to talk about my coworkers with me...Of course, I discouraged that, but they tried...Needless to say, the DYFS "charges" were dropped immediately.

Kate in CO said...

OMGosh......this post cracks me UP!! I have been in Childcare for 25 years......thank God for the normal parents!! I so appreciate your writing was my chuckle for the week!

mom said...

This post and most all of the comments were great.
I am just a SAHM...but I can vouch for having seen parents do a lot of this stuff at the schools!

But OP, you forgot the special kind of parent who believes their child is the most important child of all the children at the school...and in the whole world even....and anything that goes awry in any possible way is somebody else's matter how much clear, uncontrovertable evidence there is to the contrary. Those were always a pleasure to encounter as a mom...and I saw what they put the teachers through!

North Jersey Nanny said...

Hilarious! And soooo true...

But I have to agree with Mom. I used to live next door to the most special, talented, advanced little boy as a child! He liked to terrorize the kids next doors, smack the family dog and curse at his parents. Of course, his neighbors weren't friendly enough, the dog was no good anyway, and well... he doesn't mean it.

I wonder where he is now.

Scary stuff.

Anonymous said...

Ha! I love it! Great post!

DowntoEarth said...

I would like to know what happened to the 3 yr old that bit everyone at daycare including the teachers! The parents tried to blame it on the staff , they said he was doing it for attention there fore it was the staffs fault for neglecting him. lol
He bit my youngest twice and broke the skin and she bled from it and I had to take her to the doctor.
When I heard these parents berating the staff when I was there picking up the youngest , I flat let them have it. If they were doing any parenting at all they would have had this biting thing under control by 3 years old.
This kid was flatass mean! They had told these parents that they needed to find other day care as he had bitten too many children and
even with time outs he would not stop and that parents were going to take their children from the center because of him and they wanted to blame the staff for their
own lack of parenting lol
Kid needed a muzzel.
I hope they never get that kid a dog.!

SunnyDelight said...

dang! what an awesome post. i have always thought that parents should have to go through classes to have children. the DMV at least makes you take a test to drive. this was one of the awesomest posts i have ever seen and so true.

NVMom said...

Sorry, maybe it's just mood but this post strikes me as more sad than funny. Yes, the parents who think their child is the world's greatest are laughable. But those that neglect them and mistreat staff at the same time are just pathetic!!

cfg said...

What a great post! Very clever, OP.

yanuar said...

funny indeed but i'm just kinda disagree with this article as it may affecting some teacher to scare their kid
But i'll take this as a joke

Naomi said...

Bravo Bravo

mom said...

I just have to add that I think most teachers are heroes. They sure don't get paid enough for what they do, so most of them are answering a true calling. Thank you teachers!