Drop it, address it with the parent and child or the studio? — The Bump
Pre-School

Drop it, address it with the parent and child or the studio?

Tonight the twins were in tae kwon do, Alex hanging out in the "kids area" where they leave shoes sitting at a table with her ipad.  A toddler came in and was watching her, so she opened a younger program and let her play with it.  AN older kid came for class saw the girls and took the ipad from them and started watching something on it.  DD didn't come and get me because we told her she is never to leave it.  She told him it was still the girl's turn and he ignored her.  I came back to check on her and the boy had it.  She didn't seem distressed, but I told her to get the ipad and come sit with me.  She asked for it and he shoulder checked her and said "hold on."  I said "Young man, give her her ipad now, please" and he growled "hold on! then closed and kind of slammed it on the table toward her.

I am beyond ticked.  My gut is to hunt him down and address him and his parent and tell them if he touches my daughter or her property again there's going to be a problem.  But then I thought maybe allow the studio know so they can address it with the older kids.  That feels like a tattle tale, but then in a studio that focuses on courtesy and respect, they should be able to address it.  How would you handle it?

I've addressed it with DD and bullying, and getting help vs. tattling (she thought because she is a gold belt and he is a green belt that she had to take it.).  I do not want her to be a doormat and in the future I hope she will seek help.  But even as I type this I'm wondering where the line is between fighting her battles and standing up for her. 

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Re: Drop it, address it with the parent and child or the studio?

  •  
    If I was upset enough to address it (and I'm pretty sure I would be- ugh!), I think I'd explain it to the studio/instructor- mostly because jerk kids often come from jerk parents, and while I'm not a fan of the former- I really, really dislike dealing with the latter.

    I do agree that in a place that encourages respect and boundaries and polite behavior- it's also likely that the instructor will nip that so that it doesn't happen again. Sorry that happened!
     
    Thanks, and that's the truth about where they learn it!  I'm definitely going to address it- he downloaded a game that is completely inappropriate for my kids, too.  Glad I checked.  Holy crap am I really ticked now!

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  • Sorry that you had to deal with that. I think speaking to the studio and the parent is justified. I really would want to hear from another parent that my child was being a jerk.
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  • I would speak to the parents because, in my opinion, they are more responsible for the child's behavior than the studio is. The studio can have rules, but they can't force people to follow them. His behavior was inappropriate, but not bad enough that I would report it to the studio. If he hit her or something, then I might report it to the studio. 

    I don't agree that the parents are always to blame. I have seen great parents who have kids who act up despite the parents' best efforts to teach them otherwise. I would give the parents the benefit of the doubt and assume they would want to know what their child did so they can take the appropriate actions. 


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  • meg1974 said:
    I would speak to the parents because, in my opinion, they are more responsible for the child's behavior than the studio is. The studio can have rules, but they can't force people to follow them. His behavior was inappropriate, but not bad enough that I would report it to the studio. If he hit her or something, then I might report it to the studio. 

    I don't agree that the parents are always to blame. I have seen great parents who have kids who act up despite the parents' best efforts to teach them otherwise. I would give the parents the benefit of the doubt and assume they would want to know what their child did so they can take the appropriate actions. 

    I agree with you to a point about parents.  I can typically walk through a store with all of them, they go everywhere with me -the vet, shopping, whatever  and they are almost always good, but I have for sure had a tantrum or brawl on occasion and must have looked like an inept boob.  It is impossible to encapsulate a parent's values in a moment.  But I think bullying is a pattern. 

    I disagree with the magnitude of the episode. If some dude at the gym twice my size took my phone out of my hands, downloaded porn watched it, refused to give it back, shoved me with his shoulder when I tried to retrieve it as I was told, and then slapped it down when an authority stepped in, I'd feel violated.   

    This child did that (not porn, but a somewhat violent game) to my daughter.  I then did teach her how to handle that situation in the future (and it was a much needed discussion with all three of  them) but frankly if kids can't take their shoes off and put their gear on or sit at the table designated for kids without being bullied, then I think it is a studio problem.  And I think more so because in tae kwon do, even the student creed, recited at the beginning and close  of class is a vow to respect others and not aggravate to achieve selfish ends, etc... maybe I'm an idealist, but I think the Masters would want to know if kids aren't honoring their vows in the studio. But more importantly I want my daughter to know that she is a valuable person and while she is not entitled to privileges, it is a basic right that she should be able to expect to not be bullied. And in the most guttural sense- the turd is going to know that he will not put his hands on my daughter or her property again. 

    Wow.  apparently I've been itching to get that all out- lol!

     

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  • groovygrlgroovygrl member
    edited August 2013
    I agree that esp with martial arts, telling the studio would actually be appropriate- I wouldn't rat out said child or make it about 'him' but tell them what happened and that it seems like it would be a really good lesson for class for both sides- discouraging kids from treating other kids/things like that and encouraging the others to stand up for themselves. My kids' karate class is doing a big segment on bullying right now & they role play every week with different scenarios.

    Honestly I think it is easy to say that the parents are probably these terrible parents etc but come on, many kids  act out when their parents aren't around. And everyone says "I'd want to know if my kid did that" but I would also bet that a lot of people on here and everywhere would also think the other parent was exaggerating or overreacting and their kid's story would be different, so I'm not sure if seeking out the parent a week later is really appropriate- at the time maybe but after the fact seems odd to me.   If the parent weren't around (which is sounds like was not the case), I actually would have approached that situation differently and instead of ordering him to give it back to her and leaving it at that, I would have firmly asked him to please give it back and when he slammed it on the table or whatever, you can get down on his level and look him in the eye and asked (not in a nasty accusing way) why he pushed her, who the ipad belongs to, how he would feel if she took something he really liked and then slammed it on the table and reiteratedsome lessons from the TKD class about it if I knew any. (turn taking, sharing, respect etc).  I wouldn't force someone else's kid to apologize or put them down or anything but I think if he is enrolled in a program like that, he probably does have parents who are interested in him having structure and focus and better behaviors...and who knows, maybe they've enrolled him in it because of behavioral concerns. Just my .02.  I guess some parents would get all touchy about someone else 'scolding' their kid but if it were done in more of a discussion way it isn't really scolding, it is just talking (and also modeling talking it out for your own kid).  Plus a parent who complains about that can't really say much since they were apparently not around watching for whatever reason.  At my daycare, I don't mind AT ALL if other parents intervene w/ my kid's behavior in an appropriate way and I have no problem interacting with the other kids either and asking them to give something back or remember to take turns/share/not push etc. 
  • I almost always agree with Auntie and seek her advice but just because parents of kids with issues might seek out martial arts certainly does not mean that is the majority of a good martial arts studio. I taught martial arts in college at a studio in my hometown and that was definitely not the case.

    As for dealing with it, my first instinct is why is your child bringing electronics like an iPad to a martial arts studio? It seems counter productive to try to instill all that martial arts has to offer and yet let a kid walk around with an iPad there. If it were me I just would be annoyed at me for allowing it. But I would talk to the master and let them handle it instead of talking to parents because all the kids can learn and not single out one.
    Jen - Mom to two December 12 babies Nathaniel 12/12/06 and Addison 12/12/08
  • I didn't read replies, but my husband and I own 2 taekwondo schools and are certified instructors. I would IMMEDIATELY  address it with the instructor. That is NOT okay. Had that happened in a school I was in that boy would be thinking twice about ever EVER doing something like that again. If he is a student I would have taken his belt, and he would be punished in class, and he would also have consequences at home that we would discuss with the parents. It isn't being a tattle tale.  You are helping reinforce behavior that is getting taught at the school. 
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  • I wouldn't address the parents, let the instructor handle it. That's what they are there for. The last thing you want is to get some parents worked up. If it comes from the instructor they can be there to moderate the situation. I think you are asking for trouble by confronting parents that you don't know on something where their kid was being an a hole. Parents tend to be protective, so they may take where you are coming from the wrong way and it could turn bad. 
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  • LOL- lots of great insight.  I appreciate the long and thoughtful responses. 

     

    Yes, auntie, I called him a turd, but in my defense, I prefaced that it was guttural.  The mama-lion.  I would never speak that way about another person in front of my kids or to another human about someone else's child they knew... if any of that makes sense.  And you're right.  I don't know the boy's situation.  You are always a sound voice of reason around here.

    And littlejen- yes- she would have been in class but she had a severe break, just had 3 pins removed and can't participate.  There is a table in the back for kids to play/ read, do whatever.  The seating area is for parents is very crowded and they want siblings to stay in the play area. It's never been a problem. Kids often have tablets or phones back there, and frankly, before the twins enrolled, I was very touched by how the older students treated them when they played back there.  The ipad is presented only during fun activities that she can't do for awhile. 

    And thank you for every response.  I have decided to skip confronting the parent.  Lots of good points here, and frankly, I am delusional if I think I can make him suddenly not be a bully by telling him not to touch my daughter.   I don't need to invite that excitement into my already dramatic temperament.  But we leave in 20 minutes for class and I will address the issue with the Instructor. 

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  • Hey Fred, the boy is between 8 and 12.  My kids go to the 4-7 class.  The next class is 8-12- which he was getting ready for.  I am certain that he knew it wasn't his and that he used his size to intimidate my daughter and toddler she was playing with.   Thanks for taking up for me.

    I will have to talk to DH about the pin.  It is a second hand 1st generation he got for next to nothing from a colleague.  He should definitely give her a pin for that. 

    I spoke to the main instructor, and told her the sequence and that I was upset- not about the device so much as how she was treated. SHe pulled out the attendance card from that day and pulled out the student's individual card that it might have been, thanked me and said she'd address it. 

    Between venting here, having the talk about standing up for yourself and when to get help with the kids, and handing the problem over to the director, I feel a lot better- I have removed that from list of things to waste thought on.  I will likely have her sit in the parent seating area with me for the remainder of her healing time and give her ear buds then be relieved when the doctor releases her back to physical activity in November. 

    Thanks, all!

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  • I didn't read replies, but my husband and I own 2 taekwondo schools and are certified instructors. I would IMMEDIATELY  address it with the instructor. That is NOT okay. Had that happened in a school I was in that boy would be thinking twice about ever EVER doing something like that again. If he is a student I would have taken his belt, and he would be punished in class, and he would also have consequences at home that we would discuss with the parents. It isn't being a tattle tale.  You are helping reinforce behavior that is getting taught at the school. 
    Thanks for the thought from your side of the studio.  It sounds like you run a tight ship- I love it!
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  • I'm so glad it's "done" for you! And FWIW,  "jerk" was not the word I originally wrote in my first post. Turd is practically a pet name. :-p

    LOL- thanks!  Turdbird is a term of endearment in my house so I thought I was tame!
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  • Sorry that I forgot she had a cast! Glad you talked to an instructor.
    Jen - Mom to two December 12 babies Nathaniel 12/12/06 and Addison 12/12/08
  • Lurker popping in... Oh dear we must be terrible parents. DS is very affectionately called "turdhead." And never have I thought to use "turd" for someone I am ticked off at. Lol
  • I still think the parents should be notified - if not by you, at least you could ask the studio to do it if you don't want to draw attention to yourself. The studio can address it all they want, but I really don't think his behavior will change in the long run if the parents aren't involved. You could save another kid from being bullied. 


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  • Honestly if he likes martial arts then he will likely take this very serious if it is addressed properly. Hopefully they do a good job.
    Jen - Mom to two December 12 babies Nathaniel 12/12/06 and Addison 12/12/08
  • Yeah, I hope so.  I know as a kid I was very kind, well-mannered and well behaved, but I had my total jerk moments on occasion. And I always got away with it.  Had I been busted, I'd have been mortified, and terrified of what went down when my parents found out!  Every single one of them was when I was out of  the watchful eye of my parents. 

    I have no doubt that it will be addressed.  And I hope it makes a difference for the studio and him personally.  I just hope I have the strength to not stink-eye the kid whenever I see him!  I have let go of my angst, but we'll see how I do when I see him.

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  • I'm glad you addressed it with the studio. My brother is a karate instructor and behavior in the dojo and outside the dojo are absolutely a critical component to martial arts. In the 4-6 y/o class they've been known to make a kid sit on the bench and observe class for using martial arts outside of class or other behavior not in line with the studio's mission. They do want to hear about poor behavior and address it.

    There are definitely quite a few special needs students in his school and they work one and one with them and especially hard. While they are understanding about the needs of a child who is not typically developing bullying would not be tolerated, especially inside the dojo, which is supposed to be a safe space.

    He would bring this up with the parents and discuss what they collectively need to do to ensure it doesn't happen again, whether it's that the child can't be at the dojo unaccompanied or at a time other than his class or whether they will not address it specifically the first time. 

    I hope this is addressed and she doesn't go through that again!
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  •  

    fredalina said:
    I thought of you tonight @LoveEeyore. Char is in a mixed age/mixed belts TKD class and most of the kids there are very respectful to her, but one little boy about 8 but big like a 10 year old is not very nice. Tonight he told her he was going to put her dog in the oven and eat it. "Turd" is the nicest thing I could think to call him after that lol.
    Oh man!  How did she handle it? I see my twins not getting that it is a threat and laughing and saying they were going to put an elephant in the oven and eat it.  I see Alex trying to reason with him that he doesn't know where she lives, and then freaking out.
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  • Where do kids come up with some of the things they say? And I mean kids in general. Mine, too. :-/
  • I would address with the studio because MA is also about teaching discipline, respect and control. These lesson can go beyond the physical element.
    Mommy of two girls: DD1 4/14/9 DD2 4/15/11
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  • fredalina said:
    I heard her yell "I'm FOUR!" which must have been in response to calling her a baby or whatever. (DH and I were watching from the loft). After they could get up, Char told the master and he pulled the guy over and I heard him say "That's sick" and "she's just a little kid." He said more but that's all I heard. We told her to try to sit by someone else and not talk to him. She's not supposed to talk at all but I know that's not likely right now. It was an improvement she sat the whole time she was supposed to.
    AW- how proud are you that she was such a good little self-advocate??  I hope my guys can pick that up.
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  • I love you.  I knew that was some kind of ninja-code for what I really wanted to say!!  Hope your turd simmers down.   I think ours has!
    If you really want to be happy, no one can stop you.

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