Wednesday, September 29, 2010

The "R" word

I know I am always talking about Paige on this blog, but hey, what can I say...she is my world!

She has started middle school and has merged with another elementary school. She has always been a great friend to others and is liked by everyone. She says that school has been great and meeting new people from the other elementary has been exciting, but difficult.

Paige, if you can't tell already, is a VERY STRONG little girl with a huge personality to boot. She is verrry dry, but as funny as they come. People crack up at her and with her, because she is constantly saying things that leave us all in stitches. She is not a cheesy or fake girl. She doesn't care about style (her sissy does, though :), she is not fussy and does not shriek and shrill at all things girly. She is who she is and in her little mind, you can take her or leave her...she just doesn't care.

She has come a loooong way from the days of being a Kindergartener who got teased and picked on because: a. she was Chinese, b. she was adopted, c. she had older parents, d. she had a speech impediment. She hung in there and proved to all of the kids that THEY were lucky to have HER as a friend. By the end of fifth grade, she was being chased by all of the boys, was invited to every party and is a social butterfly!

All of that said, mixing with the new elementary kids has kind of been like starting over, except this time she has a slew of kids who "have her back". She is in a diversified tech. class with this little girl and the story goes like this:

Paige: Sis, K. is my partner in DT. We are working on a module and today she looked at me and out of nowhere called me retarded.
Me: WHAT??? What did you do?
Paige: I looked at her and said, "You did not just say that to me!".
Me: ...and, then what?????
Paige: I told her that if she ever said that again I was going to tell the teacher and tell you to call her mom.
Me: Good for you. Did she react to that?
Paige: No, she said the teacher was retarded and so was I for tattling.
Me: You do what's right, kiddo. Always!
Paige: "Oh, don't you worry. I will! She doesn't have a chance against me or my friends. She can't get away with using that word. My friends overheard her say it and their jaws dropped. We are sooo mad and are not going to take it!"

Now, as a teacher, I do NOT like that word and if I were to hear it, I would call a parent in a heartbeat. As a HUMAN, the word makes me sick...physically sick to my stomach.

The fact that some kids, teens, adults, etc...throw around words like "retard" or "gay" or whatever else really, REALLY bothers me.

I'm going to meet with the teachers next week for conferences. I will be letting her DT teacher know that this happened, but I am not sure how much good it will do.

Any advice, thoughts on what to do??? I cannot sit by and not act on this. I realize that some might say, "Oh, they're just being kids", but I disagree. We HAVE to make a point. It has to stop somewhere. I don't want Paige thinking that she needs to take that from another kid. The little girl is the "queen bee" from the other school and is all about the gossip and apparently stirs up drama. I don't want to be overdramatic, but I am very bothered. Just curious what you would do if you were me or suggestions as to what to tell Paige.


bbmomof2boys said...

heh...I'm sure I'll be coming to you for advice when Little T hits kindergarten next year because of the exact same issue Paige had at her age!

You are in a tough situation. She didn't ask you to say anything so if you do and her teacher says something to that diva it will make things worse for her. Not only that but Paige might get ticked at you. I agree completely with you about the "R" word but I think she handled it fine. Maybe just ask her teacher to keep her on on the situation between the 2 girls. I'd get a feel for her teacher first before I'd say anything though.

:) - let Paige handle it for a bit and watch the situation. There will be bigger battles to fight when she hits highschool!


amazeingteacher said...

i agree with carla on this one. i know it's hard to back off, but paige needs to handle it.

my character was built very strongly as a young girl, preteen, and teenager b/c i was always called names for being fat. my mom taught me how to handle it and i'm better for it. she never intervened...although i'm sure at times she wanted to. she taught me how to ignore it, walk away, choose friends wisely, have my own snappy comeback lines, and the think on my feet when in the midst of controversy.

you don't want to get involved in the drama of middle school girls! everything is a catastrophe to them! ha!!

3 Peanuts said...

I don't know Missy. This is a otugh one. I loathe hearing things like this too!!!!

Will (7th grade) tells me that this is just part of middle school and that he just lets it roll off his back when he hears stuff like this. He is a boy though. As a girl, it would really bother me. I cannot stand how mean kids can be to one another. I do think that Paige handled it perfectly though and I do know that at some point we need to let them handle some of this stuff themselves. That is how they individuate and learn to stand up for themselves. Now, that being said, I think that when continual bullying is involved, parents need to get involved. I know you will do whatever is the right thing Missy. I wish I knew what that was.