Social and Philosophical Foundations of Education

Pregnancy in the classroom
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Author:  CaseyDavis [ Wed Dec 10, 2008 10:57 am ]
Post subject:  Pregnancy in the classroom

I have completed many observations this semester and have noticed that there seem to be many teenage girls who are pregnant. This has seemed to change a lot since from when I was in high school, and that wasn't that long ago. I was just wondering how would you deal with this in your class? Would you show them more attention or would you simply ignore them all together, because I have seen both sides of the spectrum from teachers.

Author:  Heather Holland Crow [ Wed Dec 10, 2008 6:43 pm ]
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As an elementary teacher, I hope that I will never have a pregnant child in my classroom. (But who knows these days.) However, if I were dealing with that situation, I would talk with that student privately to let her know that I was here for her 100%. I could imagine that it would be a scary time, and if she ever needed anything, I would be there for her. I know the class would probably have lots of questions and concerns, and if I noticed they were asking her lots of questions or teasing her, then I would have a class discussion. This probably stems from the fact that I like everything to be "out in the open." I would let them know that we will treat her with respect (no name calling, etc.). I would rather them ask appropriate questions during that time, (possibly do an anonymous "question box") so they can get accurate answers, rather than gossip and get distorted information. Hopefully, this would keep a lot of problems from occurring.

Author:  Emily Fox [ Wed Dec 10, 2008 7:25 pm ]
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I think Heather's response to this was completely on track. Pregnancy is a scary thing for anyone, but especially a student...that young! I'll be teaching elementary school too so hopefully we won't encounter this as much. However, I do know that it happens...a lot more often than we'd wish or think. I think its great to have a question box in the classroom at all times, for them to ask questions on ANYTHING. I think it's important to create a very open and comfortable atmosphere in the classroom from the get-go and if students know that their teacher wants them to ask questions, cares for them, and is willing to help them find answers, the students will be more apt to use the resource of the question box. It also encourages curiosity and the process of learning.

My response to this didn't really have much to do with pregnancy...but I just second what Heather said...haha

Author:  Maria Parker [ Thu Dec 11, 2008 12:50 am ]
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I am hoping to end up teaching high school, so this is a problem that I will more than likely encounter. I would be respectful, and supportive. As both of you have said, being a pregnant teenager has to be very scary. I wouldn't stand for any of the other students being disrespectful. I would also talk to the pregnant girl privately to ler her know that class will go on as usual, but that she has my support.

Author:  Lloyd Walker [ Thu Dec 11, 2008 9:36 am ]
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I also agree with Heather. It's scary to think that elementary students could face pregnancy, but it most certainly is occurring in middle school. The major concern I have about being completely open is the response from parents. I agree that being open about classroom conditions and concerns is the best policy even if it's a student that is pregnant. My concern is she is still a minor and so are her classmates. My experience has been that many parents take the position that they will provide their children with the information they want their children to have about teen pregnancy. I think that many parents would choose to have the children excluded from a formal discussion led by the teacher. The problem is that many of those same parents then ignore the issue and are willing to let the student facilitate their own learning informally. In most schools and in most classroom, open discussion about pregnancy might be off limits for the teacher. I think it depends on the school and community.

Author:  CaseyDavis [ Thu Dec 11, 2008 6:13 pm ]
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You all have very good points! It is truly scary because I will be teaching high school so I will at some point have to deal with this. Just sometimes, I feel as if the pregnancy could be held high on a pedestal. I would be there for the student, but I believe that I would have private conversations with them about it instead of in front of the whole class. In one class that I could possibly be teaching, Parenting and Child Development, the discussion could be used in a positive light. The subject is hard, everything would just have to layed out correctly before even taking a chance of stepping on anyone's toes.

Author:  Aaron Jones [ Fri Dec 12, 2008 7:53 pm ]
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When I was in high school, pregnancy was a pretty common thing. My school was ranked 4th in the state for # of teen pregnancies to be exact. As a teacher, it is important to encourage them to stay in school and not to drop out. That is the main thing. Other than that, you really just have to treat them the same as everyone else until about the third trimester. Then I believe you should try to make arrangements for them to take end of course exams early or complete work that they will miss while they are having the child. If they need to talk, listen. And do all you can to facilitate them graduating.

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