Sunday, October 24, 2010

Mean Girls

Amber came home from school crying on Friday.  Junior High is such a hard time for kids.  Everybody is trying to fit in, figure out who they are, and who their friends are.  Some handle this well and others do not. 

Amber is take a class similar to what Home-EC used to be and they have been on the cooking lessons.

Anyway, they were divided up into groups of five and each student is given a role which comes with an assignment.  On Friday Amber was given the assignment of Guest which meant she only had to set the table because she had already had all of the other roles. 

Well a mean girl, told her she had to switch with her because she didn't want to do the job she was assigned.  Amber tried to protest but the girl was persistent and Amber finally caved and ended up doing most of the work with one other girl while the other three sat back and gabbed.

What made it even worse was they told her at the end of the day that the "mean girl" had licked her spoon before setting it.  Amber got mad at them and they tried to play it off as just playing around and having fun.  They also told her they washed it off but Amber was at the sink doing the dishes and they hadn't ever come over to wash anything.

Anyway, as a mom I hugged her and told her how sorry I was.  I told her that I am very good at comforting her but there is nobody that can make her laugh like her dad so we called Dan at work and he helped cheer her up.

My first instinct was to call the parent of the other girl to let them know what their daughter did but then I am not sure if that will make it worse for Amber at school.  Dan and I decided we would talk with the teacher and see how she handles the situation.  Ugh!  It is so frustrating to me that kids are mean.

I wish she would have come to me sooner because I could have helped her better but Friday was their last cooking class.  She said the girls didn't do much of anything the entire cooking series.  I told her that if something like that happens again to 1. tell the teacher 2.  tell the girl firmly NO and then do your role and sit down.  If the other chores don't get done they don't get done and we would back her up when talking to the teacher.  Any other suggestions?

I didn't stick up for myself when I was younger and I am trying to teach my kids to without teaching them to be bullies.  It is tricky.  Since they were little I've tried to teach them to find the kid that needs a friend and invite them into the group.  They haven't been perfect at this but they have done this.

At Savannah's parent-teacher conference the teacher told me that a group of girls were eating lunch in the classroom and there was another child sitting all alone.  Savannah (1st grade) left the group and went and got the other child and brought them into her group.  That makes me so proud and the teacher said it melted her heart.


renee' said...
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renee' said...

Makes me get teared up reading this. Why?!?! do kids do things like this. It's not funny. I'm sure there is a great solution, but I'm not sure, I would think probably just ignoring the girls would put it to an end, unfortunately, they'll probably find someone else to pick on.

But, I do think that kids feel like they have to pick on someone else because they have low self-esteem. So, really it is the girls who are having a problem. I wish we could give all kids a huge dose of self-esteem before entering Junior High. Just let Amber know we think she's awesome and unfortunately not unique in her experience.

Mandy said...

I do not look forward to those days. To think about someone being mean to my baby makes me sad. You are such great parents though and that is the best defense. Katie is SO cute BTW, I just loved her at the fireside. She was patting Eliza on the head, it was cute.

Amy said...

I cried reading this Alisa!! (I blame it partly on being a week past my due date:)) My heart goes out to you and Dan and Amber. As my mom always tells me though kids get over it much faster than us parents. Tell Amber we say Hi. Love, Amy Steele

Vanessa said...

I've been in her shoes, and I think the best response I had back then was being honest with the girls. Amber can tell them how they are making her feel and/or that she thinks they are being mean to her. It doesn't always work, but most of the time, girls that age just don't realize they are being mean and having someone say something can go a long way. I hope things get better for Amber.

Alisa said...

Thanks everyone! I received so many nice emails and comments about this. Thank you all for the advice.

Amber will be fine and has so many friends this is completely unusual for her. It is just frustrating to sit back and watch your kids go through things like this.

Amy! So great to hear from you. Please keep me posted on the baby. I feel your pain - my last was over a week late. They finally had to induce me because there was basically no amniotic fluid left to protect him. Good Luck!