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Help me with what to say to my coteacher

 
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amother




OP
 

Post Fri, Oct 15 2021, 5:43 pm
I have been teaching science for 10 yrs, but this year, I am teaching a new grade. This means I am new to the curriculum in terms of what to teach and how deep to delve into each topic.
The school does not provide any support for me because there is no book and they only have a huge database online which is cheap which is why they provide it.

This year, unlike other years, I have one class with a coteacher and we cant get along.
She doesnt know science well(I saw her explain and solve problems wrong).
She is the special education teacher.

I am fine with her modifying the lesson after I prepare, but she criticizes everything I plan, so then
I tell her "you have great ideas, why dont you plan so I can see your idea in action" or "you can implement your idea and pull a group to the side"

But, she always has excuses and doesnt want to plan, only criticizes. Then, today, she told me she wants to pull students to work with them. I said great, so she said she can only do it if I give her the plan way in advance. I said im new to the curriculum and we both have access to the database, so if she needs it in advance, she can plan ahead. And, every morning, first period is common planning, so she can modify the lesson at that time. Her other coteachers whom I spoke to, don't give her the plan at all.

So, she acts like my supervisor and tells me that "I am here for the students". I said I am here for the students too but dont put more work on me. If you have good ideas or want to "interrupt" during the mini lesson to explain something or ask a clarifying question etc. I am fine with it.

Then, she starts telling me that I should be able to plan in advance bec the database tells us what to teach and she quotes me the general topic. When I asked her what specifics we are teaching in that lesson, she couldnt tell me and said she didnt have time to look it over yet. So, she sees I will have to put in a lot of time to prepare over the weekend but wont admit it.

I need a few lines to tell her so that she gets the message that she needs to take initiative and cant give excuses that because I didnt do xyz, she cant inplement abc....etc.
We are both responsible for the class and its not equitable that I am planning every day and leading but the coach said I should plan(probably because she knows this teacher does not know science(although she didnt say so).

This co teacher is a first year teacher, and we both work great in the classroom meaning that in front of the students, we "get along" or at least, fake the partnership, so the students dont see any friction or any "mommy/daddy" friction. The students see us working together.

I need some lines of what to say and how to convey my feelings in a respectful way and get the message across to her that I am not a pushover(she is not doing this to any other coteachers)
and I need to get the message across to her that she needs to do more to take initiative to implement her ideas.

I cant go to administration for support. I would never want to "tattle" but also, the administration is not fond of me and gave me this class to make it tough for me so that I will leave. I am new to coteaching and did coteaching last year for only a few weeks(before going remote), but I and my coteacher from last year, got along great. I never had any issues with coteachers or getting along with teachers in the past when I was in a coteaching position for a few weeks.

I know some women here are great at communicating, so please share some ways I can communicate and make sure my coteacher is not taking advantage of me.

tia
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amother




Mustard
 

Post Sat, Oct 16 2021, 8:55 pm
Don’t argue with her. Just listen to her and validate. Things like, oh, you really want me to give you the lessons in advance. I’m sorry I can’t do that. I understand that’s what you want. I can’t do it. I’m sorry. You basically want to be a broken record. Be nice but just keep shutting her down. No excuses. Just, I can’t do it. Why not? Because I can’t. I’m sorry you want me to do it. I can’t do it. I’m sorry. Hopefully she’ll get tired of it and stop. If not, you’ll just have to keep going with her. The main thing is to not turn it into a conversation. And not to give her explanations, because that gives her room to argue with you.
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dankbar




 
 
 
 

Post Sat, Oct 16 2021, 9:10 pm
I don't fully understand. You can't have two teachers for same thing at same time. It just doesn't work.

If she is the special ed teacher she can either act as a shadow in the class for the girl who needs help & help her along to do the work or explain what you just taught just for those that don't understand and need help, but quietly, not to disturb your class.

Second option is she pulls the girls that need the help out of the classroom & you give her the material you taught or will teach, and she can then do it one on one, either at same time you are doing it with rest of class or after you taught it in your class already & she just goes over it again.

If you will both be preparing on same topic then it might just be confusing for the kids.
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amother




Opal
 

Post Sat, Oct 16 2021, 9:15 pm
It's very annoying when 2 teachers try to teach at same time, it's like two queens fighting for the throne.

I once had assistant teacher trying to teach Alef bais same time as I was talking to kids. She did it completely wrong & differently than me.

This teacher was demoted to being assistant. Year before she was a teacher but in pre- nursery ( not teaching Alef bais. )Her class didn't open up yet, so in meantime she was given kg assistant job.
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amother




Milk
 

Post Sat, Oct 16 2021, 9:50 pm
any way to divide class to 2 by levels (with or withour the admin) and each of you will fully teach half?

she is first year?

She shouldnt be your supervisor.

you teach what you teach and ignore her "being there for the students".

Ouch

a manupulator
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amother




Cadetblue
 

Post Sat, Oct 16 2021, 10:00 pm
dankbar wrote:
I don't fully understand. You can't have two teachers for same thing at same time. It just doesn't work.

If she is the special ed teacher she can either act as a shadow in the class for the girl who needs help & help her along to do the work or explain what you just taught just for those that don't understand and need help, but quietly, not to disturb your class.

Second option is she pulls the girls that need the help out of the classroom & you give her the material you taught or will teach, and she can then do it one on one, either at same time you are doing it with rest of class or after you taught it in your class already & she just goes over it again.

If you will both be preparing on same topic then it might just be confusing for the kids.

I was a co teacher. It actually is a very nice model if the teachers work well together but can be VERY hard. The general ed teacher preps the lesson. The special ed teachers preps material and modifies the lesson. Both teachers teach different parts of the lesson and you have 2 teachers for small group instruction during class. There are other ways to do it but that worked best for me. We help each other grade papers and the students can really gain from the extra attention. I am relaxed so didn't mind getting the lesson in exact detail the night before but either way always got a quick outline of what to expect for the week so I could prep using the textbook.
Eta a model like this would really help some of our students with special needs who belong in mainstream classrooms. Imagine having a classroom special ed teacher all day to modify material, help manage behavior, reteach and practice what was learned in small groups and, and read test questions to students who are struggling with reading.
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amother




Cadetblue
 

Post Sat, Oct 16 2021, 10:05 pm
amother [ OP ] wrote:
I have been teaching science for 10 yrs, but this year, I am teaching a new grade. This means I am new to the curriculum in terms of what to teach and how deep to delve into each topic.
The school does not provide any support for me because there is no book and they only have a huge database online which is cheap which is why they provide it.

This year, unlike other years, I have one class with a coteacher and we cant get along.
She doesnt know science well(I saw her explain and solve problems wrong).
She is the special education teacher.

I am fine with her modifying the lesson after I prepare, but she criticizes everything I plan, so then
I tell her "you have great ideas, why dont you plan so I can see your idea in action" or "you can implement your idea and pull a group to the side"

But, she always has excuses and doesnt want to plan, only criticizes. Then, today, she told me she wants to pull students to work with them. I said great, so she said she can only do it if I give her the plan way in advance. I said im new to the curriculum and we both have access to the database, so if she needs it in advance, she can plan ahead. And, every morning, first period is common planning, so she can modify the lesson at that time. Her other coteachers whom I spoke to, don't give her the plan at all.

So, she acts like my supervisor and tells me that "I am here for the students". I said I am here for the students too but dont put more work on me. If you have good ideas or want to "interrupt" during the mini lesson to explain something or ask a clarifying question etc. I am fine with it.

Then, she starts telling me that I should be able to plan in advance bec the database tells us what to teach and she quotes me the general topic. When I asked her what specifics we are teaching in that lesson, she couldnt tell me and said she didnt have time to look it over yet. So, she sees I will have to put in a lot of time to prepare over the weekend but wont admit it.

I need a few lines to tell her so that she gets the message that she needs to take initiative and cant give excuses that because I didnt do xyz, she cant inplement abc....etc.
We are both responsible for the class and its not equitable that I am planning every day and leading but the coach said I should plan(probably because she knows this teacher does not know science(although she didnt say so).

This co teacher is a first year teacher, and we both work great in the classroom meaning that in front of the students, we "get along" or at least, fake the partnership, so the students dont see any friction or any "mommy/daddy" friction. The students see us working together.

I need some lines of what to say and how to convey my feelings in a respectful way and get the message across to her that I am not a pushover(she is not doing this to any other coteachers)
and I need to get the message across to her that she needs to do more to take initiative to implement her ideas.

I cant go to administration for support. I would never want to "tattle" but also, the administration is not fond of me and gave me this class to make it tough for me so that I will leave. I am new to coteaching and did coteaching last year for only a few weeks(before going remote), but I and my coteacher from last year, got along great. I never had any issues with coteachers or getting along with teachers in the past when I was in a coteaching position for a few weeks.

I know some women here are great at communicating, so please share some ways I can communicate and make sure my coteacher is not taking advantage of me.

tia


Part of her job is prepping she is not exempt from it. If you're in NYC yes she needs to have the same lesson plan as you but she can probably get away with stapling her modifications to your plan on a seperate sheet. Did your school lay out any guidelines about co teacher responsibilities?
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WhatFor




 
 
 
 

Post Sat, Oct 16 2021, 10:11 pm
amother [ OP ] wrote:
I cant go to administration for support. I would never want to "tattle" but also, the administration is not fond of me and gave me this class to make it tough for me so that I will leave. I am new to coteaching and did coteaching last year for only a few weeks(before going remote), but I and my coteacher from last year, got along great. I never had any issues with coteachers or getting along with teachers in the past when I was in a coteaching position for a few weeks.

I know some women here are great at communicating, so please share some ways I can communicate and make sure my coteacher is not taking advantage of me.

tia


I know this isn't what you asked for, but are there other teaching options where you live? This work environment sounds awful and if they want you to leave they're not going to get nicer. You deserve to be valued and respected in your workplace.

Whatever your solution is to this issue, I'd suggest also looking for better teaching options in the meantime.
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WhatFor




 
 
 
 

Post Sat, Oct 16 2021, 10:18 pm
amother [ Mustard ] wrote:
Don’t argue with her. Just listen to her and validate. Things like, oh, you really want me to give you the lessons in advance. I’m sorry I can’t do that. I understand that’s what you want. I can’t do it. I’m sorry. You basically want to be a broken record. Be nice but just keep shutting her down. No excuses. Just, I can’t do it. Why not? Because I can’t. I’m sorry you want me to do it. I can’t do it. I’m sorry. Hopefully she’ll get tired of it and stop. If not, you’ll just have to keep going with her. The main thing is to not turn it into a conversation. And not to give her explanations, because that gives her room to argue with you.


I used to think this way. If you're a nice person then you assume that being nice to people is the best way to deal with things. It didn't work with certain people and I suspect this coteacher is that kind of person because she's not doing this to the other teachers, she's doing it to OP because she thinks OP is a pushover.

DH actually explained this to me when he saw certain people being rude to me, and his strategy worked. With people like that, don't apologize. You basically just straight up call them out. You can be assertive rather than aggressive, but don't apologize.

I'll admit I don't fully understand the dynamic in the OP and whose responsibility all this actually is. But if it isn't OP's responsibility, then just say that. "I'm not responsible for preparing my course load according to your schedule. You need to figure out your own preparation and I'll do mine. I won't be doing your work for you. " Again, I'm not really sure what's happening here and that that's the best answer. Maybe they are supposed to be collaborating and the coteacher is upset that they aren't? But if she's just being rude and demanding, then that's how I would go about it.
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amother




Apple
 

Post Sat, Oct 16 2021, 10:36 pm
I was a co-teacher many years ago in a small special Ed setting. We passed our plan book back and forth on alternating weeks. We wrote reports together , ran parent conference together and had each other’s back during busy times when we needed extra help.
I’m not sure all of this could happen with this colleague of yours , but why don’t you start off by asking/offering to plan on alternate weeks .
I’d run it by admin first , just in case their idea of each of your job descriptions runs contrary to this.
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dena613




 
 
 
 

Post Sat, Oct 16 2021, 11:02 pm
WhatFor wrote:
I used to think this way. If you're a nice person then you assume that being nice to people is the best way to deal with things. It didn't work with certain people and I suspect this coteacher is that kind of person because she's not doing this to the other teachers, she's doing it to OP because she thinks OP is a pushover.

DH actually explained this to me when he saw certain people being rude to me, and his strategy worked. With people like that, don't apologize. You basically just straight up call them out. You can be assertive rather than aggressive, but don't apologize.

I'll admit I don't fully understand the dynamic in the OP and whose responsibility all this actually is. But if it isn't OP's responsibility, then just say that. "I'm not responsible for preparing my course load according to your schedule. You need to figure out your own preparation and I'll do mine. I won't be doing your work for you. " Again, I'm not really sure what's happening here and that that's the best answer. Maybe they are supposed to be collaborating and the coteacher is upset that they aren't? But if she's just being rude and demanding, then that's how I would go about it.


Yes, don't say, I'm sorry. You did nothing wrong!
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amother




Raspberry
 

Post Sat, Oct 16 2021, 11:38 pm
For co-teaching to be successful, the teachers ideally need to plan together. Is that an option?
It kind of sounds like you are working in a public school. If so, do you have a prep period where you could meet and plan together for the coming week?
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