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How do I politely discuss shouting (by teacher) in class?

(17 Posts)
PiccalilliSandwiches Wed 18-Nov-15 15:25:46

DS is 5. Has his moments at home but always complemented at school as industrious, well behaved, good listener. He's doing well and learning a lot for which I'm grateful to his teacher, year 1.

But. He's a sensitive soul and gets upset with shouting. His reception teacher was utterly lovely and encouraging and gave him so much confidence. This year he keeps mentioning that his teacher shouts at them all a lot. At him occasionally. Clearly I only have his version of events. Other parents have mentioned she's known for being strict (firm but fair) and their children comment on the shouting too so not just DS.

He had a tick that occurred last year during an anxious period and its returning. He woke last night with a nightmare based around the teacher. I'm concerned and think I have to say something at parents evening next week.

I completely appreciate how hard teachers work and how hard it must be to keep 15 5-6 year olds in check (private so small numbers). She seems helpful and friendly at pick up but we only see her occasionally. Any ideas how I can raise this diplomatically because however I run it in my head it still comes out as "please can you stop shouting". sad

uhoh1973 Wed 18-Nov-15 15:55:03

Say he's enjoying school however he has become anxious about being shouted at? It may be that there are other children in the class that are ahem 'boisterous' and they are elevating the teacher's blood pressure?
Tell her he has had a nightmare about school and he's easily traumatised by shouting? Without directly accusing her of shouting?

Halfapintofgenius Wed 18-Nov-15 16:01:32

I think it is not acceptable if a teacher repeatedly shouts at young children. It shows that she is not able to control the class appropriately in my view, the teacher needs to be made aware of her overbearing manner of speaking and probably needs some training.

My dc had a 'shouty' reception teacher and it was awful. Coming from the lovely, safe and caring pre-school environment, the children were in for a shock with her. She had a very unpleasant and aggressive way of talking with parents too, but thats for another thread sad.

VagueIdeas Wed 18-Nov-15 16:05:18

I remember being a timid, anxious kind of child who was scared witless by teachers shouting. It's unacceptable, especially with such young children.

I'm going to follow this thread with interest because my children aren't at school yet, but I'd love to know how it could be addressed.

TeenAndTween Wed 18-Nov-15 16:52:38

You do need to bear in mind that the teacher may not be shouting.

DD1 used to consider any raised voice as 'shouting'.

There is also a teacher at DD2's school who's accent makes her raised voice sound more like shouting than it would with a different accent. Some children do find her a bit more scary than other teachers, but she has a heart of gold and is very caring and supportive of them.

TeenAndTween Wed 18-Nov-15 16:54:13

I guess I'm saying that 'DS is a bit scared when you raise your voice and has had a couple of bad dreams about it' rather than using the 'shouting' word.

Wolfie2 Wed 18-Nov-15 17:44:54

It's unesserary for teachers to be particularly shouty. Shouting often equals out of control.

I would raise the issue gently and be totally honest. You can add that you appreciate she might have some lovely kids who need firmer boundaries but your son is finding it stressful

Wolfie2 Wed 18-Nov-15 17:46:38

I would use the word shouting but explain that's what your son calls it. I wouldn't beat about the bush as it means there's space for misinterpretation

Wolfie2 Wed 18-Nov-15 17:48:07

It's important to raise the issue with the teacher as you may find in the end you need to flag it with the head

Lauren15 Wed 18-Nov-15 17:54:58

I agree with pp that the teacher may not actually be shouting, just raising her voice, which lots of teachers do. It doesn't necessarily mean she's lost control of the class. However I can understand that it is having a negative effect on your ds and you must tell her. Just explain to her what your ds is saying and your concerns, just as you described here. No decent teacher could feel offended by you raising this. As a TA working in key stage 1, I have to tell you sometimes the behaviour of certain 'boisterous' five and six year olds does require a raised voice.

wallywobbles Wed 18-Nov-15 18:06:44

My kids would often say how they could hear one of the other teachers shouting. Oddly they didn't complain when they were in her class. Possibly because they were relieved they weren't the focus of it.

Ask other kids in other classes and they will be able to tell you.

Geraniumred Wed 18-Nov-15 18:45:33

Please do go in and air your son's concerns. My dd had a shouty reception teacher and was very miserable that year - it did ease off a bit after I went in and had a word.

Believeitornot Wed 18-Nov-15 18:57:28

I would say something tbh! He's having nightmares!?

PiccalilliSandwiches Wed 18-Nov-15 19:14:01

Thanks for all your responses. I think Teenandtween may be right and it's a raised voice rather than shouting. And yes Lauren there were definitely some boisterous souls in his class who are now firmly controlled so some of the parents are happier with the stricter approach, it just doesn't suit DS.

I think I'll try the approach that DS struggles with raised voices and is getting upset. He had a lovely day today he says and so I'm really unsure, but after the nightmare yesterday I think I have to try to raise it. She comes across as a good person and I'm sure will be mortified. Will update next week.

PiccalilliSandwiches Wed 25-Nov-15 18:22:05

Update for anyone interested.

Parents evening today and all is now clear - she's naturally very loud. And strict. Having had a chat I can completely understand that if she raises her voice it could be utterly terrifying for a sensitive 5 year old.

She was very nice though in every other way. I did raise it by saying at the end that I had something difficult to raise and that I fully understood we only had DS version of events but that he was a very sensitive soul and has mentioned several times that he's upset by the loud voices in class. That I understood the need and difficulty of keeping 5 year olds in check, but I felt the need to mention it because he'd been upset and had a nightmare.

All went well and she said she was conscious of having a loud voice and took on board the comments and would try to be careful. It isn't him being shouted at but other kids. Was very impressed that she took it as a reasonable comment and am hopeful things will improve.

I also spoke to DS and explained that everyone has different sounding voices, and that his teacher isn't necessarily cross when her voice is loud.

Will see how we go. Thanks for all your advice.

spiderlight Wed 25-Nov-15 19:34:12

Random thought - have you read Mr Noisy with him? It might put a silly spin on the fact that some people have louder voices than others.

PiccalilliSandwiches Wed 25-Nov-15 19:53:41

Good idea, thanks. Will try that.

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