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lines as punishment.

(10 Posts)
pinkyponky Tue 13-Oct-09 12:26:39

Hi there I have name changed for this one. grin

Last week my in my yr6 dc's PE lesson the children were being unruly generally not listening etc. The head was called and the upshot was he gave 3/4 of the class 4 sides of A4 of lines as well as missing golden time and a general dressing down.

My problem is that although I agree that the misbehviour should be punished I'm unsure that a punishment that takes up two lunch times, a morning break and golden time is really proportionate to the crime when children who attack/hurt other children miss one lunch time, write an apology letter and draw a picture.
Yes they should listen to their teacher but all this punishment has done is made my dc resent and despise the head.

egypt Tue 13-Oct-09 12:38:32

It's stupid beyond words.

Why would you want your pupils to see writing as a punishment anyway? Kind of short-sighted isn't it.

Seeline Tue 13-Oct-09 12:48:59

I'd be more concerned by the fact the class teacher couldn't manage the behaviour on their own and had to resort to calling the Head for support. What are lessons normally like?

overmydeadbody Tue 13-Oct-09 12:51:43

Actually I don;t think it's such a bad punishment for a whole class to have to do.

Egypt it is not writing that is the punishment, it is the repetative boring thing about writing lines. It is a discipline. It might make the class monitor their behaviour better next time.

jobhuntersrus Tue 13-Oct-09 12:53:32

Sounds way OTT to me. I'd be very cross.

pinkyponky Tue 13-Oct-09 14:08:24

They are a notoriously "hard" class. One that all teachers dread to get! They behaved well last year but have a new to the school teacher and I think that some of the boy are testing the limits IYSWIM. They are trying to nip the behaviour in the bud. It seems in this case the head took some pruning shears to the bud.

I agree that it's just boring and repetitive to write lines. It might well make them monitor their behaviour better next time but I think one lunch time missed would have been enough to get the point across.

Writing lines does seem to penalise the less bright / slower / more careful / dyslexic / dyspraxic / etc. members of the class more than the brighter / quicker members. At Y6 age I could have knocked off 4 sides of A4 just writing the same thing pretty quickly but my sister, for example, would have taken a lot longer to do it. So it always seems a bit crap to me unless you take the time to individualise it.

And if the school is going to use lines as a form of punishment it should do it consistently. If generally not listening attracts four sides of A4 then attacking another child should attract at least the same, while if the punishment for attacking other children is to write an apology letter and draw a picture then writing a letter of apology to the teacher whose class was disrupted would seem a perfectly reasonable punishment for unruliness. Children pick up on inconsistency and unfairness very quickly.

Also, it may not intentionally be about the writing, but it ends up that way. There are screeds and screeds written (ha!) about the problem of motivating school age children, particularly boys, to write fluently and coherently without having to be browbeaten into it. Chances of persuading a 10yo boy to write anything fluently for pleasure, or of convincing him that it's possible to write anything for pleasure must be significantly reduced if he's just been forced to spend hours writing four sides of incredibly dull lines.

Also also (I'm on a roll here) lines are so ultimately pointless. It doesn't achieve anything except wasting paper. There are plenty of constructive punishments or discipline aids (not in a SolidGoldBrass sense) that could be used -- picking up rubbish, or thinking of and writing a list of twenty reasons why messing around in class is bad, or any number of other things.

jobhuntersrus Tue 13-Oct-09 14:27:29

Agree, having to write a page of A4 on why their behaviour was unacceptable in one lunch break would be enough.

Wandaaa Tue 13-Oct-09 20:38:48

Being given 'lines' is what I looked forward to the most when I started Middle school, but I was gutted that the school didn't also give out detentions. I think I watched too much Grange Hill grin

pinkyponky Wed 14-Oct-09 11:35:50

Thank you MN people.

It transpires that the teacher was shocked at the harshness of the punishment but had to follow it through as it was the head who set the punishment.

Thank you Professor Layton, critical thinking is the key to success! You articulated what I was feeling.

I've told dc to take it on the chin so to speak. It's hard though as this is the latest thing in a long line of unfair (not just me being paranoid, blinkered to dc's behaviour or pfb!) things the head has said or done to dc or their class.

grin at Wandaaa. Weirdowink

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