Getting the Right Teacher Next Year?

Updated on May 08, 2011
A.S. asks from Eugene, OR
11 answers

There are kids/moms that get the best teacher year after year. You are supposed to not be able to pick your teacher. Rules are rules, being a rule follower, I thought they were for everyone. I knew you can write a letter if you think there could be a problem. Not having a problem child, I have never written a letter. Going into 4th grade I finally figured these moms write letters every year no matter how small of a problem it might be. Does it seem like kids at your schools keep getting the best teachers too? Have you ever written a letter? Did it work? What do you say to get your child with the best teachers or at least not with worst?

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answers from Portland on

You don't have write a letter just verbally request that teacher. However every kid can't go in the good teachers class
This years teacher will send a balanced mix of high students, low and behavior problems to each class's. That way no one class winds up with all the behavior problems or all high kids.

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answers from Redding on

Well, I don't know how you define who the "best" teachers are.

Little story.....
My son went to his kindergarten orientation. LOVED the teacher that was there that day. Why wouldn't he? She was sweet, soft spoken, very affectionate and loving. He had his heart set on her being his teacher.
He wasn't thrilled when he found out he would not be in her class.
It wasn't a matter of who my son "wanted".....he was put in the other class because he had experience in daycare and being around other children, he already knew the alphabet and primary concepts that many of the other children hadn't been exposed to.
The teacher he so loved was the teacher who took the children who needed the most help getting started out. For what it's worth, my son is now a sophomore in high school and to this day, he says that the teacher he got for kindergarten was his favorite teacher of all. She was more structured and kept the kids focused although she played her guitar for them every day and was very affectionate as well. He actually got the "best" teacher for HIM. He thrived in her class. Thankfully, it wasn't a matter of who he "wanted".
He melted the first teacher's heart and she always had a hug for him and let him know it's not that she didn't want him.
There's more to class assignments that you'd think. I can safely say that having many friends who are teachers.
Teaching styles are as varied as there are learning styles.
What works for one child might not work for another.

Like I asked earlier, how are you defining who the "best" teachers are?

Best wishes.

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answers from Chicago on

As a teacher, I will say that if you are worried about your child being put with a poor fit, write a letter. Focus more on what your child needs, not trying to get a specific teacher. Does your child need someone who is strict, nurturing, structured, calming, or higher energy? Write a letter describing the type of teacher your child would be successful with, and cross your fingers that it works. My building has the same policy - don't request specific teachers but tell us your needs. Usually, though, they will grant specific requests. Although, I do know that this year a parent requested me (I had her son a few years ago), but I did not have her child this year. The best you can do is write the letter and wait for the fall.

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answers from Eugene on

I went to the second grade teacher and saw why my daughter who loved school hated going. We were told there wasn't another teacher. 4J lets you change schools. Try to get your child a really good teacher there are so many mediocre ones in every school no matter how hard the district tries to hire good ones. We are not paying our teachers enough money to keep many who go into private industry due to the near poverty rate Americans force their teachers to live at.
No CEO in Europe is allowed to gouge money at the rate our CEO's do. And to get such huge tax breaks so that we have no money to pay our public employees.
And, not one EU country pays their teacher less than a living wage the way we do.
We want the best for our future but cheaping our teachers is no way to get it.

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answers from Austin on

I our elementary schools, no one reads those letters, they are placed in a folder still sealed in your child's files,.

The teachers literally spend days sitting down and discussing each students, strengths and weaknesses. Also the best personality to match that child for homeroom. Then the child is placed in most academic level classes based on their abilities and learning level for language arts and math. Yes, even in 2nd grade, they switch classes for these 2 subjects.

There atre no "best teachers" they are teachers that are all diffrerent and their classesa re made up to match and even out the pol;ulation of learning levels.

I learned a long time ago to trust the teachers. I was very concerned about a certain teacher. After our daughter left that school I asked her who her favorite teacher was.. She told me, "I had a lot of favorite teachers, but the teacher I learned the most from was, Mrs. F..." Yes, she is the teacher that most parents try to get their children out of her class, because she is tough and pretty no nonsense.. But she is obviously is an excellent teacher, just not great around parents.

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answers from Hartford on

Okay... this is how you have to work it. You need to write a letter stating some concerns about your child's needs and how she learns best and you'd like to simply make some suggestions for the type of teacher you would like her to have for her 4th grade year. If you have a specific teacher or teachers in mind and they have specific skills that you believe are important and apparent, then that's what you put in the letter.

So for example I have a special needs child with a PPT (Planning and Placement Team) and an IEP (Individualized Education Plan as a result of working on the PPT with teachers, principal, therapists, social worker, school psychologist, etc) and I still can't request a specific teacher. However, I can request each year for a teacher with a special education background, a gentle demeanor, and has had experience with children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. I can also require that she be placed in a classroom that has a paraprofessional in it full time (which is most important if I can't get her a teacher with a SpeEd background).

Request the qualities you want. The rest will fall into place, but if you don't get the specific teacher you have in mind it will still work out.

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answers from Daytona Beach on

We are unable to write letters requesting certain teachers. We are however, allowed to write a letter stating what type of teaching style would work best for your child. And the school does the best it can to match it up.

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answers from Charlotte on


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answers from Pittsburgh on

Laurie A--I know what you're saying is what is "supposed" to happen--but we all know it doesn't always work out quite the way it was intended.
I'm glad you asked this question, as it has been on my mind as well.

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answers from Cleveland on

What you truly want to do is fit your child's personality to the teacher's personality. That way you are not requesting a certain teacher but the type of teacher that your child will benefit from. When you write your letter, state some of your child's personality characteristics, both positive and negative, then relay the type of teacher that you feel they would learn best from.

For example, my child is sensitive and artistic, a visual and kinesthetic type of learner. My child learns best from a teacher that uses many visual and kinesthetic learning activities in a structured environment with lots of routines. My child loves hands-on activities, especially art and technology. My child does not do well with a teacher that is overly structured or strict, and does not get along well with "x" child. My child does get along with "a", "b," and "c."

With both my kids, they were so opposite of each other that I'd hope for the one teacher that I would not want for the other, just due to personalities. Good luck!

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answers from Erie on

I am so like you. my kids are just in first. i'm wondering this too. I certainly don't want to be a trouble maker, or have them get my letter year after year and think here we go again. but I know there ARE mom's out there that do this and turn up smelling like roses. I'll be interested to hear your responses.

1 mom found this helpful
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