September 19, 2008

Yellow Card

Camber's kindergarten teacher's discipline system is very simple: if you behave, you get a green card for the day and if you don't, you get a yellow. One can earn a dreaded yellow card by committing any of the following infractions:
* Not listening
* Not cooperating
* Not doing one's work
* Not staying in one's seat

I for one am very glad that I am not in kindergarten because some of these rules are very hard to follow...for some people anyway.

The day that my husband and I knew was coming came earlier than we expected. I knew something was up yesterday when Camber came flying off the school bus and straight into my arms.
"What's wrong?" I asked her.
"I think I know," said Kellen right away.
"Mind your own business," I told him.
"Camber got a yellow card!!!" sang Cortlen.

Camber started to cry.

"It's a good thing that I got a million green cards at preschool today," continued Cortlen.
"Me too," chirped Kellen.
"You don't have green cards at preschool," I reminded the star students, "And I'm not kidding about minding your own business."

I had to wait for the perfect angels--with their zillion green cards between them--to be distracted by a squirrel who was stuck in a storm drain to get the scoop about what happened at school that day. The details are little fuzzy, but from what I can gather, it involved a box of jumbo crayons, some snatching, and two lonely nostrils.

Of course I was not happy about the yellow card, so I made Camber write an apology note to her teacher. I figured that that, plus having to spend the rest of the afternoon being not so tactfully reminded of one's mistake by two heavenly creatures was punishment enough.


likeschocolate said...

School is so hard for these little ones and all the rules. Which some I find rediculous. In my sons class you cannot hug each other. Crazy!

Shosh said...

some teachers are just so mean. they have to give her a "Bad card" for the whole day just because she did one thing wrong? seriously. thats messed up. poor camber. :(

Rachel said...

Whatever happened to just putting a kid in a corner for a few minutes for (truly) bad behavior? Why do they need a neon yellow reminder of their transgression, which was probably so minor they'd have forgotten about it in an hour anyway?

Anonymous said...

It's not so bad. Camber won't remember it in a couple of months, anyway. I've never understood how teachers handle a whole classroom of kids, keep 'em in line, and get them to learn. Camber has a chance to learn from her mistake, which wasn't so bad. She'll recover. Who knows about the poor teacher though!

Kimberly said...

My Oldest Boy has the same type of system in his kindergarten. Of course, he has also received a yellow light, but he didn't seem particularly upset. When he got yellow in preschool (the ONE time it happened), he was an absolute WRECK! She'll be fine. But she WILL remember (as will her brothers).

Anonymous said...

I like our kid's systems at their school better - usually they get a warning mark, two marks means they miss one recess that day to stay in and do extra work, three means they miss two recesses that day, four or more (depending on the teacher) is a call to the parents and possibly a meeting - and all of their teachers that use this system have said in their years of teaching they rarely ever have parent calls and meetings - the kids usually self correct after they miss a couple recesses - everyone hates to miss recess!!! That way the behavios is addressed, the consequence is immediate and stays at school, and everyone moves on. Much less to pay in psychiatrists bills later on. :-)

Karen said...

Oh the dreaded yellow card. Well it was bound to happen, right? One more milestone reached.

Matt and Stephanie said...

My son's kindergarten uses the same system. It cracks me up that everyday when I ask him how school was, he says, "Tyler got a yellow card today," or whoever else got a color-block warning. I'm sure the "novelty" will wear off eventually and they will all do something besides monitor the behavior chart.

Sherry said...

I never got in trouble in Kindergarten, but I'm sure that is because I wasn't in the same class (or even the same school) as my friend, Claire.

But in first grade I had to write my name on the board TWICE! It was awful. And both times, it was because I was talking to Claire. And do you know what, Claire NEVER had to write her name on the board!

Claire and I are still friends, and we were friends through high school, where this pattern of, "Sherry, stop talking. Come move over to this desk," happened repeatedly. And, as usual, Claire did not get in trouble. Killed me!

Unknown said...

What a brilliant idea. I am so using that in this house. Naughty step just doesn't wash with my little girl. She actually puts her self on it. Skips there too

Mamajil said...

Poor baby!!
Don't you just hate yellow cards! :)

Anonymous said...

My son's kindergarten class has a card system too, although it is more complicated and goes through pretty much all the colors of the rainbow. Ryan is very serious about school and is the kind of kid who saves all his behavior problems for home (which people tell me I should be thankful for, but I have to admit that's easier said than done). He comes home every day and tells me which kids had to move their cards and which kids had to stand by the wall at recess, etc. etc. I don't know if he's learning anything except which kids are less inclined to sit still! :)

Jan Russell said...

Were they her nostrils or someone elses? LOL.

I mean, not LOL, I would never laugh about such a serious matter.

Sechakecha said...

At least she felt bad about it... my co-workers friends daughter came home all excited the other day saying, "Mommy!! I finally got a yellow card!!" And was bouncing around like it was the best thing to happen to her, ever.

Carrie said...

My oldest is in 3rd grade this year. Up until this year, he had the whole green, yellow, red system. But this year, if they have an offense, they have to sign "the book". I forget all the guidelines that go with "the book" but it's along the same lines as the color system.
I wish I could remember what the discipline system was when I was their age!