End of school year vent


Well-Known Member
I just hit "send." Fingers crossed that I wasn't too condescending and that I didn't open a can of worms for nothing.

Sent: Wed, Jun 4, 2014 1:16 pm
Subject: Movie in math

Dear Mr. S, Mrs. L, Mrs. B, Mrs. J and Mr. A:

My son, difficult child, is in Mrs. L's math class. He struggles with math and will be attending summer school. Many of the teachers (in all subjects) have told the students that if they pass the SOLS, they may be excused from taking the final exam. Some of the classes are still conducted as regular classes, and some are winding down for the summer.

Today I received a call from difficult child, who told me that I can pick him up early because he is watching "Ice Age" in math today.
I don't see the connection.
If he is behind on any assignments he should be using this time to catch up.

For future reference (including this week and next, as well as next year), below is a brief list of movies that contain information about math. If you have difficulties with licensing permission, rental, or fees, I would be more than happy to help you out in the future. The students can still be entertained while they at least obtain some information that is mathematically related. I know that difficult child watched a movie about a gambling scam (possibly "21") for a class and he actually learned a lot from it.

This is in no way a strike against Mrs. L. It is commonplace.

Please be mindful that your main goal is education, not entertainment. I realize that I don't know the whole story, and that it's possible the kids were able to choose their own movie as a "reward" for good behavior or good grades, but administrators or teachers should present a pre-approved list of movies and then let the kids choose. The kids will still feel like they're included and entertained. It's a win-win situation.


Terry J



Active Member
Haha....I like it!

Perhaps a little condescending but completely accurate. I agree that movies, like Ice Age, should not be shown during class time, even if it as a reward for good grades or behaviour. That's just the teacher taking a break!

I'd be interested in their response.


Shooting from the Hip
The only time I can see movies that are unrelated to curriculum being shown is after finals, before they leave for the day. For instance, Pat's finals are 8:30 AM to 11:00 AM... He doesn't get out of school till 3 PM.


Well-Known Member
There are lots of movies that are educational as well as entertaining. I think the teacher probably could have found a better choice than Ice Age.


Well-Known Member
Excuse me while I kill my son. :mad-new:

Here is the principal's response:

Good afternoon Mrs. J,

Thank you for the email regarding difficult child and your concerns about his math teacher showing Ice Age during class. I was very concerned and certainly agree that this is not an appropriate movie for a math class. I spoke to Dr. Benzing who said that he did not show Ice Age and has never shown the movie Ice Age. Mrs. B, M’s API, indicated that she observed Dr. B teaching and not showing a movie during that period. Dr. B did say that difficult child is in his last period class on odd days..….today is an odd day.….and he did a test/exam review with his students for about 65 minutes. He said he is not sure why difficult child thought he was going to watch a movie during class because that was not even a discussion in any of his classes.

If you find additional information, please let me know as we all want Chris to have the best education possible.

Best regards,



Well-Known Member

I'm sorry. Been there, done that, still smarts. And it has been years from the last one.


Well-Known Member
So, difficult child said that the movie was shown in World History. Grrr.

Don't worry, I'm not going to email that teacher.

At least I can see some relationship to the topic.

And, difficult child said he was told to review a math homework sheet he'd done the other day. Did he? No. He texted during math today.

He called today to ask if I could pick him up after school. I said no, because I have to drive to another city to drop off 3 paintings for a show and I wouldn't be back in time. Unless he wants to drive ... he said yes. (He really wants the practice and needs the hours behind the wheel.) I said actually, that won't work because we'll end up in rush hour traffic. Plus, the handyman would be here at noon and I wouldn't be ready until after 1:00.
He said no problem, pick me up then.
I asked if he could just leave in the middle of class and he said why not leave now?
I said what time does the movie start? He said now. So I said go ahead and sit there and I'll get there when I can.

NOW he says it was too noisy and he didn't hear what I was saying.

Uh huh.

He has to leave his phone at home for the next three days, including Saturday. And he has to apologize to the principal and the math teacher first thing in the a.m.

I'm going to come up with something else ...
the only good thing about keeping him alive is that if he were dead, I couldn't think up more punishments for him ...


Well-Known Member
Trying again ...
NOW he says it was World History that had the movie.
(Don't worry, I'm not emailing the teacher.)
And he texted all the way through math instead of reviewing.
I asked him what gave him the idea that he could text through math instead of studying?
I don't remember what he said, I was so mad. Good thing husband was there.
So, difficult child has to apologize first thing in the a.m. to the principal and the math teacher.
He cannot take his phone to school for the rest of the week, nor can he have it on Saturday.
I had a glass of wine and an entire bag of Canadian mints ... for dinner. :(


Well-Known Member
Staff member
I have gotten those emails from parents and they usually are not based on correct facts. I guess it would help to do a little checking before sending an email to a teacher next time.


Well-Known Member
I had a few of those "misunderstandings" with my kiddo. I learned after the first egg on my face moment to ask, ask, ask.


Well-Known Member
Staff member
I once got a long angry email from a mother asking why her son needed a cell phone for my math class.

I sent back an email telling her that I didn't know what she was talking about since students don't use their cell phones in my math class. It turned out that her son had been grounded from using his phone so he told his mother that he had to have it to get the assignments for my math class.

Um, no. The assignments were on a website that can be accessed by a computer AND they are written on the whiteboard in the classroom. He didn't need his phone to get the assignments.

His mother and I shared a good laugh when we realized what he was doing and he stayed grounded from his cell phone.


Wiped Out

Well-Known Member
Staff member
Feeling a little guilty here after reading this. I usually don't show any movies. However, next week the last day is a full day due to making up minutes from cold days and I am planning on showing a movie that is not related to the curriculum at all-The Wizard of Oz. So many of my students have not seen it and that last day is going to be a looooong one.


CD Hall of Fame
At the end of the school year all I care about is making sure the IEP for the next year is correct (and I think the school is really going to hate me if they don't already, because it's going to take at least one more case conference for this IEP because I'm not happy) and just flat getting the year over with so I don't have to drag the cave bear out of bed for a few months or deal with school anxiety. Let her watch the Blade trilogy for all I care at this point LOL!


Well-Known Member
I substituted in a chem class yesterday. Exam was over and materials/room ready for cleaning crew. We watched a baseball movie. The teacher is also the baseball coach.


Well-Known Member
Staff member
I never have time to show movies because my curriculum is jammed packed and we are still teaching new material up to the final exam.

However, our AP Calculus teachers show a movie the the last week because the AP tests are usually a week or two before the end of the school year. There is no point trying to do anything new as the kids are emotionally and physically spent by then.

I remember my easy child telling me that she was watching a movie in her Calculus class at the end of the year. I had absolutely no problem with it. The teacher and students worked really hard all year learning college level Calculus. I saw nothing wrong with allowing a little fun downtime at the end of the year. by the way, every student in her class made 4's and 5's on the AP test.

One other thing . . . most of the students have seen the good movies related to math content long before they get to high school. I remember once long ago telling my students that I was going to show them Stand and Deliver. They groaned and said that they had seen it every year in middle school.

I think it really depends on the situation.



Well-Known Member
Wiped Out, that's weird that so many of the students hadn't seen THE WIZARD OF OZ. Sad.

Kathy, that sounds like a great movie. (I just looked it up.)
I'll ask my son if he's seen it.