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cafeteria mayhem

22 years 9 months ago #62880 by Delene
Replied by Delene on topic RE: cafeteria mayhem
Carolyn in regards to whether there was something you can do to bring the noise down, you can. Often luch rooms have bare or hard walls, this along with hard floors makes for a lot of sound. It isn't that the children are loud, it is that their voices ECHO. Consider adding things that absorb sound rather than reflecting it. Research information on what is used in Music rooms. Items such as quilts, wall rugs, table cloths and skirts, and even cork bulletin boards all play a great part in absorbing sound. Another thing to consider is the arrangement of the tables. If all students are facing each other, then the noise in in two basic directions, if the monitors are on those sides the noise seems more. If you can arrange the room so that the tables are facing all four directions by varied L, T or V shapes, or by sectioning off the room where each sections tables face a different way, then you will find that the noise distribution is a little more pleasing. Last but not least, if your cafeteria has windows, consider opening them even a small crack will make a difference. Like our science teachers keep telling us, sound travels in waves. If we can find a way to let those waves flow out or get absorbed, we can distill the ECHO.

Good Luck
Delene
22 years 9 months ago #62879 by plw
Replied by plw on topic RE: cafeteria mayhem
I worked several years in different elementary schools in our district. It is such a difficult time for everyone. Some of the things that we did were. Flick the lights to let the children know they are being too loud. Understand they don't even realize it they are talking loudly to be heard. Remind them they may speak to the people next to them. Anyone further away you would have to raise your voice. The students were allowed to buy ice cream or snacks by table during the lunch time. Not until your table was quiet. They were dismissed by behavior also. The table that had cleaned up and were quiet and ready to go was dismissed first. You were never dismissed until quiet and ready. We would sometimes use a microphone and read books while they ate. We also had music some days. The principal was always on hand for help and during very rowdy periods would come in and read for days until they understood they must behave. It made me sad to leave because the children really missed me. They currently have screamers and lights out aides. My children have continued to higher grade levels.
22 years 10 months ago #62878 by GaWahinechildrenSa
Replied by GaWahinechildrenSa on topic RE: cafeteria mayhem
All of the screaming and yelling will stop if a parent brings a video camera and tapes one session of lunch. After you have the tape made, set up an appointment with the principal, discuss your issues, and show the tape. If you see no changes take the tape to the Superintendent. Pictures are worth a thousand words!
22 years 10 months ago #62877 by Patti Trombly
Replied by Patti Trombly on topic RE: cafeteria mayhem
Where is the Principal and Asst Principal during lunch? Our Asst Principal is always present during the lunch, he has a portable microphone and if the kids get a little to loud or unruley he lets them know to quiet down, of course he's been there for quite awhile and many of the unruley ones he knows by name. He also reserves a table for the extra unruley or loud students and they get to eat lunch under his watchful eye. But for the most part just by telling the room to quiet down over the microphone so there's no yelling required seems to do the trick.
22 years 10 months ago #62876 by Carolyn
Replied by Carolyn on topic RE: cafeteria mayhem
Our school has the same cafeteria issues as every else. The children feel like they are always being yelled at and the monitors say the children can be disrepectful. We're going to try Lunchstaff's suggestion, which was the honor table. I wanted to know if anyone has any ideas on what can actually be done to the room to make the noise level seem less.
23 years 1 week ago #62875 by Patti Trombly
Replied by Patti Trombly on topic RE: cafeteria mayhem
Have any of the mom's who are fortunate enough to have the time to visit the school at lunch time ever thought of becoming a lunch mom? Perhaps if you could get a few other parents who are also concerned you could do it on a part-time basis and see both sides of the coin. Lunch mom's are very hard to come by in our school. We have 313 students and on most days 2 MAYBE 3 lunch moms to supervise lunch and recess hour...I have seen some really absurd behavior from normally well mannered kids at lunch...even my own (but of course when I'm there he has a big glowing halo floating over his straight A head)...sometimes he doesn't know I'm there until it is too late..........
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