Does Your Child Say This: "My Teacher's an Idiot"

by James Lehman, MSW
Does Your Child Say This:  My Teacher's an Idiot

Does Your Child Say This?
"My Teacher's an Idiot"

Almost every kid will eventually have a teacher they don’t like, but that’s not an excuse for them to refuse to follow the rules of the classroom. When you side with your children in this scenario, believe it or not, you are actually undermining your own authority in the process. The bottom line is that it’s a mistake to denigrate authority figures with your children, even if you agree with them. Keep the focus on the matter at hand, and off your child's feelings about their teacher. Read on to see how James Lehman advises you to handle the situation.

“My teacher’s an idiot. I hate her.”

Translation: I don’t like my teacher. Therefore, I don’t have to comply with what she asks me to do.

Ineffective parenting response: “Yeah, she’s really a jerk sometimes. You’ve still got to listen to her, though.”

Effective parenting response: “It doesn’t help to call the teacher names. What can we do to get your work done on time?”

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James Lehman, MSW was a renowned child behavioral therapist who worked with struggling teens and children for three decades. He created the Total Transformation Program to help people parent more effectively. James' foremost goal was to help kids and to "empower parents."


Next to criticizing your spouse in front of your kids, criticizing teachers and other authority figures is the most destructive practice parents engage in. It gives them all they need to justify not doing their homework, defying school rules, smoking marijuana etc, etc. 5 STARS (OULDN'T CLICK)


This 'real life' lesson is a very important one to imprint on a pre-teen simply because, let's face it, the world is full of jerks. It doesn't mean that we can isolate ourselves and not deal with them. It also gives the budding adult the opportunity to learn how they are going deal with situation instead of having a tantrum of internalizing.

Comment By : A. Eagle

We've been dealing with this excuse for 4 years now. Thanks for showing me what I need to do to help my son get through his habit of blaming others to get out of being responsible for his grades.

Comment By : Beth

What about the child not liking school, could comments like this be related to that also?? What do you do when your child hates school?

Comment By : frustratedmom

I think it's important to help your child differentiate between not liking the way someone does things, and the person in question really doing things in a stupid way. Some teachers may actually be idiots, frankly, and we need to know that (with accuracy) in order to properly help our kids assess situations with their own judgement (i.e., not taught to blindly think every teacher is always right--it's just not true) and also to help them figure out smart and respectful ways of dealing with a bad teacher (and doing their homework regardless of the teacher's competence).

Comment By : AndeeBee

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Rating: 2.5/5 (172 votes cast)

Related keywords:

I don't like my teacher, teacher is an idiot, don't like teacher, classroom behavior, management, refusal, refusing to go to school, children, kids, teen

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