It’s an admirable goal that parents want to be kept informed of their child’s academic and behavioral progress. In the “Way-Back Machine” before modern technology (yes, that time did exist ), parents were periodically informed about how their child was doing in school by different means, such as notes being sent home to parents or other ways of communicating.
If there were a big concern, parents were called in to discuss the matter.
Recently, I learned of a whole new way for parents to be informed of their child’s progress. Through an app (www.classdojo.com) on the teacher’s phone, she enters data about a child throughout the day that shows up on the parent’s phone. In real time, the parents are updated whether their child is performing on task, completing his work, getting along with others, that sort of thing. Detailed graphs arrive through the day along with daily and weekly summaries.
I don’t know about you, but looking back on it I shudder to think about my parents getting constant real-time streaming of my minute-to-minute functioning in school. My life would have been an ongoing nightmare of parent over-involvement.
Really, the last thing I needed or wanted was my parents knowing every behavior that I committed throughout the day. Even if I did do the momentary right thing like raise my hand properly or complete a task, did I really need my parents knowing about it? Did I really need them praising me for everything?
I could appreciate the value of knowing about general trends over time, but every hour???? (I could hear my mother calling my father, “Oh, no!!! He is acting bored in science class and not participating. You need to speak to him,” or “He teased someone on line and showed bad citizenship.”) Egad.
I could be wrong (and often am), but It just strikes me as one more example of adult over-steerage in a child’s life – one more example of micromanaging childhood.
Glad I’m not a kid. I would have gotten technologically cattle prodded throughout the day and I don’t think I would have been better off for it.
Dr. Richard Selznick