is it ok: to tell a kid they’re crap?

adult alone black and white dark
Photo by Kat Jayne on

You’re horrible;

Your work, it sucks.

You can carry that through your childhood

However it is you see fit.

You can heave it upon your shoulders

And let it grind you down

Until you’re drinking and hanging onto life

With fingernails that bleed with pain

And cry all through the night.

I think I’m going to start doing a little ‘is it OK?’ series, because I don’t seem to know what is right and what is wrong. I used to think I did, but as I’ve gotten further into my sobriety I’m actually not so sure. I think it may be because I don’t call people out anymore, but leaving them to their opinions can sometimes make me drop to the floor with shock.

I got told the other day that I was teaching badly because I didn’t shout enough at the students. The teacher said that I need to start telling the students that their work is rubbish and that they are going to do badly in their exams.

Now, I don’t like laziness but I’m also OK with a bit of low level chatter and I don’t like telling people in an aggressive way that their work is rubbish. I feel like I need to be a bit more diplomatic than that.

I may be really naive and the only way I’m going to get through to a Year 10 class is to shout at them, but I was always told that I wasn’t good enough and look at what a mess I’ve become!

I may be completely wrong, but I feel like I want to be nice and it worries me that to get a good report from this woman, I’m going to need to be less nice. Everyone is entitled to their opinion but it is making me feel a little bit sick, thinking about being a bitch.

I’m sure there are some out there that know the science and know that being nice is going to screw up these kids royally, but I’m sticking to my theory that we need a bit more kindness in the world. The last thing we need is more people going through the world thinking that they’re worth nothing because they didn’t understand Romeo and Juliet….

Much Love

Rachel xx

6 thoughts on “is it ok: to tell a kid they’re crap?

  1. Sally

    Wow, this is a powerful post.
    I feel sorry for the teacher who is shouting at the students and is telling them that their work is rubbish.
    Rachel, teaching others is a great privilege.
    A teacher has such a tremendous influence on the lives of others.
    I can feel your conflicted feelings about wanting to get a good report, but I can tell that you are very kind.
    I taught for decades – children and adults.
    Ultimately, teaching and learning occurs best in a kind atmosphere where people respect each other. 🤗

  2. crispina kemp

    I believe kids, and adults, deserve the truth. How do you improve if your think everything’s fine? But at the same time, to tell a kid in class with their mates that they’re crap. No, that’s cruel. One to one, is a much better way. And then not that they’re but that in certain areas they need to improve. With suggestions of how. That’s how I managed my staff when I was at the theatre, and they were mostly students

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.