Just curious, how many parents would expect a scrapbook from their child's teacher?
Post ReplyPost New TopicPosted 1/29/2013 by dpolkadots in NSBR Board
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dpolkadots
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Posted: 1/29/2013 7:54:46 PM
So today my class (along with the rest of the school) went on a field trip. While we were on the field trip i was chewed out by my principal because I was not taking pictures for the scrapbook I'm "required" to make for each of my students. I was informed by said principal that I would have some very upset parents if I did not make one. I hadn't bothered to take pictures because I hadn't been in class at all the first semester due to pregnancy complications and maternity leave. Now I have a baby and there is no possible way for me to finish a scrapbook before the end of the year (not to mention the fact I wasn't there for half of the school year). Money is tight due to me not working for several months so I can't really afford to buy supplies (nor do I feel like I should have to). Sorry for the long post but I'm REALLY aggravated about this. What's your opinion?


ETA: Here's some answers to questions I've gotten. I am NOT union unfortunately. It is a private school and each of my 4th graders (yes 4th graders, not preschoolers or Kindergarteners, which I would understand a little more) have photo releases on file. We currently do not have a school website although one is in the works. I do not live in a state where we are required to keep portfolios of each child even though I do keep such records. My principal is intending this to be a book about special events and activities, not work samples. No where is this listed on my contract or list of duties (I have double and triple checked) Even though I know my time would be much better spent on other things like oh say LESSON PLANNING, I do not want my class to be the only kids in the school without some type of memory book item. I have decided that I am just going to put a slideshow together with captions and burn a copy for each student. I appreciate all the suggestions and thank whoever suggested it. I think that is a GREAT suggestion. Luckily, I have FABULOUS parents and I'm sure this will be more than OK with them. I will be having a conversation with the Principal regarding the lack of notice among other things.

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Posted: 1/29/2013 7:57:16 PM
I have never heard of parents expecting a scrapbook from a teacher. How can this be expected of you by the principal if you have never heard anything about it before now? Is this the norm in your school? What grade is this?

I don't expect it at all. But if for some reason, this is something that has always been done at this school, in this grade, then it doesn't matter what the peas expect.

Is this your first year at this school?


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Captain K
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Posted: 1/29/2013 7:57:33 PM
That is totally crazy. I can't imagine any parent would expect that. It would be *nice* if you took some photos and put them on a private sharing site where parents could download them, but even that surely can't be expected.

Are you sure you understand your principal's expectations clearly? Was there some sort of initiative to document classroom activities put in place while you were out on leave?

If it is something your principal wants you to do, I'd take some snapshots and upload them to one of those photobook places, like Shutterfly, where you just drag and drop them into a book. It will even do it automatically for you, you don't even have to place the photos. Then I would give the link to purchase their own copies to parents. You could ask your principal if that would be in line with what he or she was expecting. I do think you should have a very nice clarifying conversation though.

Define 'chewed out.'

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Posted: 1/29/2013 7:59:53 PM
Wow, I never would expect a scrapbook from my kids' teachers! I don't think it's a teacher's responsibility to provide a scrapbook OR pictures from the school year. Pictures are cool when shared but totally not necessary. Your principal is being ridiculous.


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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:01:52 PM
I would never expect that from the average teacher.

myshelly
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:01:56 PM
At my childrens' school the teachers make a scrapbook for each child every year.

The requirements are a cover page, and one page with at least one photo per month, preferably more. It should also include artwork, handprints, and representative work. This is a private preschool-3rd grade two day a week school.






IleneTell
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:02:21 PM
what?! Tat sounds really crazy. Never in my life would it even occur to me to expect something like that. Is this some sort of fancy private school and this is what is promised to the parents when they enroll their kids?



KatieBPea
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:04:09 PM
When one of my daughters was in kindergarten, the teacher and aide in her class took pictures throughout the year, in the classroom and on field trips. The aide's husband compiled them into a digital slideshow and each child received a DVD at the end of the year.

That being said, this was the only thing of this nature that my kids ever received from a teacher in their combined eighteen years of schooling to date. I considered it to be a lovely gift of their time and energy, and was very appreciative, but I never in a million years expect something like that from my child's teacher.

I don't know if you are in a public or private school and if this sort of thing is typically expected, but as a parent, I would be more concerned about the quality of teaching than making my child a scrapbook.


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obsidian
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:05:43 PM
Preschools have to do it here it's called a learning profile. But it's just a scrapbook so parents know their three a and 4 year olds actually did something.


Kate-pea
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:06:15 PM
That's insane.

Having a single "class scrapbook" is not unreasonable IF (and only if!) that was made clear from the beginning of the year.

Giving every student a scrapbook is cray-cray.

The Shutterfly drag-n-drop book is a great idea if you have to do that. Maybe you cold put it together and parents could order a copy directly from Shutterfly if they wanted one.

If you lack pictures from the beginning of the year, could you ask parents to email some to you? Or if your school has a PR department, maybe they could send you a few from your grade.

Donna in GA
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:07:19 PM
That is just stupid! I would never expect a teacher to spend her valuable time doing that. I would rather the time be spent preparing for interesting lessons and activities.

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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:08:01 PM
I'm with another poster-go digital. you can do 1 photobook on Snapfish or Shutterfly and let the parents buy it themselves.

Or better yet, let the principal make the scrapbook since he has so much time on his hands.


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dpolkadots
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:08:09 PM
I would like to add that this is not my first year at the school but it is the Principal's first year. This principal is also a parent at the school so I think this is more like something she expects as a parent and not something the other parents expect.I was not informed of this "requirement" beforehand. By chewed out I mean "scolded in front of parents" and a stern asking of "where is your camera? You should be taking pictures!" I like the idea of the Shutterfly album and it would be easy enough to put together. I had planned on the students making memory books by writing about their favorite memories, things they currently like etc. but the whole pictures in a scrapbook thing really irritates me especially since I'm expected to foot the bill.

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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:08:47 PM
I would not expect one.

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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:09:58 PM
Is this a private school? Is this in your job description? Is still think it's totally insane.



Captain K
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:10:10 PM

By chewed out I mean "scolded in front of parents" and a stern asking of "where is your camera? You should be taking pictures!" I like the idea of the Shutterfly album and it would be easy enough to put together. I had planned on the students making memory books by writing about their favorite memories, things they currently like etc. but the whole pictures in a scrapbook thing really irritates me especially since I'm expected to foot the bill.


That is definetely not right. Are you unionized?

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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:10:28 PM
That's just plain ridiculous. I expect my child's teacher to teach, not make me art projects.

When I was teaching, I did take a lot of pictures- and I made sure to pass them on to the parents throughout the year. They were appreciative- but no one ever expected it.

ETA- If that was something I was being forced to do, I'd take the Becky Higgins Project Life route. You can do it with minimal supplies and the pages are kid created. You add a picture a month- but it's a writing/drawing assignment for the kids.

It turns into sort of a portfolio for the year- and they're adorable. She has free downloads for the pages, then you just slip them into page protectors.

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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:10:55 PM
I've had kids in various schools for 16 years and only one teacher made a photo book at the end of the year for every student in her class. it was pretty awesome, I must say.

But, that being said, I have never had any expectation of a scrapbook of any kind from a teacher.



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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:11:51 PM
Never expected one, but when DD was in Kindergarten/1st grade, the kids made their own scrapbook of the year. It was really cute. I think we still have it somewhere in storage.


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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:12:04 PM
My dd and ds's K teacher did scrapbooks for each student BUT she asked for volunteers and they were VERY basic pages. This lady was a hoarder of classroom supplies so they were made very cheap.

My children has not had a teacher since that has done one and I would never expect one either.

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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:15:12 PM
I do make a mini-scrapbook for each of my kids. The day it is EXPECTED is the day I stop.

I do it because I enjoy it. I have LOTS of extra supplies and I print pictures for free throughout the year (Shutterfly deals). Not every teacher has the ability, time or the desire to do this.

Not to meantion all those other little things you have to do...like lesson-planning, assessing, parent communication, TEACHING.

Your principal is CRAZY! And has whacked priorities.

Having said that...I've found a blog is an excellent way of sharing pictures with parents. Then I upload all of the pictures to Shutterfly, and THEY can print and scrapbook the ones they want.

But your principal is still crazy.

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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:15:27 PM
Sounds like by doing that so unprofessionally in front of parents, she was trying to win them over. And it put you in a bad position.

It doesn't have to be expensive or terribly time consuming for you. In fact, I wonder if you can ask a room mom who likes photography/projects to help with the task since it's obvious you have no photos from the first half of the year.

But before I do this, I would speak with the other teachers in my grade and ask what the expectations are, how they were made know an what their plan is. It will let you know if she just pulled this out of her ass on the trip or if it was developed while you were away and no one properly informed you.


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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:16:38 PM
Depends on what you mean by 'scrapbook'. If you mean a scrapbooking album full of photos stuck on pretty paper with embellishments, then no I do not expect that.

At my kids' school we get a 'reporting journal', which is basically an example of their work throughout the year. The teacher pastes several pieces of the kids' work into a scrapbook (ie. a notebook type thing with blank pages, not an album). The teacher also includes any photos they may have taken throughout the year at various excursions. The photos are only printed on A4 paper, not photo paper or anything fancy. The teacher is not out of pocket for anything. We buy the books, the school supplies the paper for photocopying.

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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:16:59 PM
I just made a scrapbook for my DS's 4th grade teacher who left on maternity leave. I made a page for each kid with pics and a handwritten note to her from them. Then 4 or 5 ages with random candids.

But I've never had a teacher made 25 albums. That's just nuts!!!





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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:19:09 PM

But before I do this, I would speak with the other teachers in my grade and ask what the expectations are, how they were made know an what their plan is. It will let you know if she just pulled this out of her ass on the trip or if it was developed while you were away and no one properly informed you.


While I agree with asking other teachers what their plans are and if they're aware of a standard to provide a scrapbook, be VERY VERY careful how you do this. Just ask questions, do not offer opinions or show any bias. Don't tell them how the principal sprung it on you. Don't let the other teacher take it down into gossip or complaining. What you say WILL get back to the principal at some point. Keep it factual, not commentary, when talking to other teachers.

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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:22:07 PM
I wouldn't expect a scrapbook from my child's teacher.

When my dd was in Kindergarten, one of the dads put together a dvd of pictures he & other parents took & gave them to all of the parents.
When she was in 1st grade, her teacher did indeed make a scrapbook for each of the children. I was totally surprised and thought it was very sweet of her to take the time to do. She has very good time management skills but I'd still have figured she would have to do this on her own time which is not necessary. Now that my dd is in 2nd grade, I have no expectations other than that her teacher do her job and she's doing a really good job.



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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:26:17 PM

be VERY VERY careful how you do this. Just ask questions, do not offer opinions or show any bias. Don't tell them how the principal sprung it on you. Don't let the other teacher take it down into gossip or complaining. What you say WILL get back to the principal at some point. Keep it factual, not commentary, when talking to other teachers


Exactly.


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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:31:35 PM
I must admit that my oldest son had the greatest K teacher EVER and I was pretty spoiled, just didn't know it. Then when DS #2 came through and his teacher didn't even take a single picture even when I sent my own camera I was a little shocked. Now as a teacher myself I realize that 1) we are not made of money, 2) we do not get an extra 10 hours in our day to devote to our students, and 3) it's hard to take pictures when you have 10 parents who sent cameras and 20 students running everywhere.

I would take the pictures and then send a flyer home asking for parents to help with the scrapbooks!


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chocluver
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:37:06 PM
1)Who provides the camera for you to take the pictures?
2)Who watches all the students while you are taking all the pictures?
3)If a picture does not turn out, can you move all the children back to the same spot they were just in so you can do a retake?

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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:37:25 PM
I would absolutely not do a scrapbook for the parents just because your principle says it's "required." I would ask to see the contract that states a scrapbook is required. If it's not in your union contract, tell the principle NO and if he/she gives additional grief about it, file a grievance with your union. That's why you pay union dues, make them earn it.


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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:46:18 PM
Weird. I honestly feel like I would be a little weirded out by a teacher making a scrapbook for just my kid (and all the other kids in the class).

Who is supposed to pay for this? And who has the time? Maybe I'm just not understanding what all it involves...



obsidian
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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:49:52 PM
With DD's and DS's profile/scrapbook. The school buys a document folder shoves in a few drawings and paintings.Gets the parent to fill in a family history form to go into it.

The teacher prints out a few A4 low quality photos with a little writing on it. They say things like today you went on a field trip and saw X.

3-1-13 you showed great improvement in your handwriting. With a sample page beside it.

Around 4-10 actual photos per year like a previous poster said one a month.

And they use the schools camera too.

One school bound the scrap book the other just handed over the folder at graduation. The folders better. But DD has mislaid her kindergarten graduation certificate.

They suck up a lot of time so field trips where teachers can just drag drop and print a generic page are a god send.

If the school offers this option should be footing the entire bill.

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Posted: 1/29/2013 8:56:32 PM
A teachers job is in the classroom, educating our children. They spend enough time preparing lesson plans, staying late, and doing extra curricular activities for our children. They don't need to spend time preparing a scrapbook for the children. Invite the parents to participate and make one up for the children.
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Posted: 1/29/2013 9:02:11 PM
My kids public elementary school does something like that.

Each year on the supply list is an art book. 11x17 I think. Throughout the year the school takes pics of doing things, special activities, science, assembly, etc. then the kids put it in the book. Each reporting period it shows stuff they have worked on, then at end off year it comes home.

I don't think it costs the teachers anything. It's done in class.


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Posted: 1/29/2013 9:09:26 PM
I have seen two things happen with classroom scrapbooks...

1) A room parent who is into the hobby will make a scrapbook for the teacher as an end of year gift.

OR

2) The teacher makes a SINGLE copy of a book...often on Shutterfly...and has it done before the end of school so the kids can look at it. Then the teacher keeps it in her classroom and sometimes the students come visit to look at it (say at a lunch/recess time).

I have never seen a teacher make a book for EACH child...and I think it's nuts to expect such an undertaking, even online. The time, the expense...our teachers are not paid enough to add that to lesson planning, grading, testing, conferencing, training, meeting and oh yeah...teaching.


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Posted: 1/29/2013 9:11:55 PM
I would never, ever expect a scrapbook from my child's teacher. I did get a photo album type thing from my son's preschool (I think), but the class was capped at 15.

Does the school pay for it? And if so, wouldn't that money be better spent somewhere else? I'd get the rubric for this project and then maybe call the union rep.



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Posted: 1/29/2013 9:22:47 PM
I would never ever expect a scrapbook from my child's teacher. I've been teaching for over 20 years and have never made a scrapbook for any of my classes.

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Posted: 1/29/2013 9:35:44 PM
I wouldn't expect a teacher to do that.
Is this the first you heard of it? If so, did you ask why?


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Posted: 1/29/2013 9:42:22 PM
I have never made a scrapbook for my students and wouldn't know where I would find the time. One year for a kindergarten graduation gift I used wordle to make a word cloud with the students name really big. I had every one else's name in the cloud and some phrases about fun things like painted with our feet, went to the farm, rode a horse. Then I pasted it on to a word document and put a few pictures around it, printed in color and laminated it.
Didn't take long and wasn't required. However I do not have children at home to take care of as well.
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Posted: 1/29/2013 9:46:13 PM
Confidentiality??? One year I made a video of the stills from our year. Loved by all, except the parent who has a very secret professional position (of which I was unaware.) I won't ever send a collection of photos again.
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Posted: 1/29/2013 9:59:07 PM
My kids teacher will tweet photos from field trips/events on post them on the school website. They make us sign permission with the registration package so that she knows she has approval from parents to do this. I love being able to see these photos and really appreciate that she takes the time to do it but, I certainly don't expect it. Nor would I expect a scrapbook. (Although it could be a good fundraiser for the PTA to set up!)

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Posted: 1/29/2013 10:19:56 PM
Is this requirement in your job description?

I'd be talking to a union rep if I were you and if it were an option. Sounds like you either misunderstood what you were being told, or your new principal is on a power trip. Either way, it's probably best to clear this up ASAP.

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Posted: 1/29/2013 10:26:20 PM

Confidentiality??? One year I made a video of the stills from our year. Loved by all, except the parent who has a very secret professional position (of which I was unaware.) I won't ever send a collection of photos again.
Parents should have signed a consent form at the beginning of the year or a denial of consent form. There are certain populations who can't/don't want to have their child's picture taken. I know our students in foster homes cannot have their picture taken, some custody disputes also require us not to photograph and I have one parent who will not sign consent so that student also does not get photos taken (although the mom freaked out when every other ornament had the child's picture and hers had a drawing by the child instead).


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Posted: 1/29/2013 10:31:18 PM
I've never even heard of a teacher making a scrapbook of any kind, be it handmade or a Shutterfly-type. And my dd went to private pre-school and kindergarten, as well as an elementary school in a fairly well-off small town.

I'd be asking for written proof of this requirement.

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Posted: 1/30/2013 1:35:29 AM
I wouldn't expect one, but I was pleasantly surprised when my son's Headstart teacher made them one his 1st year(he got a CD with pictures the next year- different teacher). It wasn't a fancy one. Just pictures printed and put on colored paper. The first page has an acrostic out of his name and a picture, there are some poems and stuff spread throughout. It also has some of his drawings and such. The pictures are nice because they show what he was working on- not just pictures of his class, but pictures of him doing things that were big milestones for him. It's pretty sweet, and I don't think it cost the teacher anything but her time, but she also has assistant teachers to help out, too.

I wouldn't expect his Kindergarten teacher to do something like that, but I would love it to pieces if it was done.


Kris
Mom to Kyrie(11), Isaiah(9), and Jayden(6)
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Princess Pea
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Posted: 1/30/2013 6:25:22 AM
Scrapbooks for students are huge time suckers. I do a digital slideshow of our first grade....around 600 pictures.....set to music and all of that. I make a copy for each parent. They love it!


Melissa

Wife, Mommy, and First Grade Teacher

"Do what you can, with what you have, where you are."
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***Jen***
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Posted: 1/30/2013 6:30:43 AM
I've heard of that around here. Only from a preschool that is taught at a high school though. (Students "teach" the preschoolers as part of their classes.) It's a big hit around here for some parents.


***Jen***

Pridemom
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Posted: 1/30/2013 6:40:01 AM
Does your school have a website with password protected pages for each teacher? I would do a "Miss X's Class Notes" and post photos there each week.




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Sierramoon
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Posted: 1/30/2013 6:41:09 AM
I only expect my children's teachers to teach well and grade fairly. One of my daughters teachers gave each child a music slideshow and that was a nice surprise. I in no way expect that though.




*~*"Life's candy and the sun's a ball of butter..."*~*



Juliettie
DesPEArate Housewife

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August 2003
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Posted: 1/30/2013 6:51:56 AM
Crazy!

I have a preschooler and a 3rd grader and I want those teachers focusing on TEACHING, improving their methods...if they happen to have some extra time and/or money, I'd hope they'd use it for their classroom, for materials, for cool extras to actually help the kids. Oy.

That said, I'd create a Shutterfly album and invite others to add to it (I think you can still do this). If not, ask parents to email you photos now. I did our preschool yearbook last year (I was making a photobook for my son, anyway, photographing his own work and preschool time and I just modified it to make a whole-class yearbook too) and this is what I did. It was EXPENSIVE, though. I would never pay for it myself! I think each book was around $10 after I'd waited for a 40% off sale.

Two questions I'd ask the principal:
1. What's the budget for the yearbook and how do you request funds?
2. Can she provide the photo releases for all the students in your class? If you are expected to have been taking photos, there should be signed releases from all. If not, you may be off the hook, anyway!

Nieka


Dave Barry on Christmas...
"In the old days, it was not called the Holiday Season; the Christians called it 'Christmas' and went to church; the Jews called it 'Hanukka' and went to synagogue; the atheists went to parties and drank. People passing each other on the street would say 'Merry Christmas!' or 'Happy Hanukka!' or (to the atheists) 'Look out for the wall!'"
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