Do you think this is fair? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 84 Old 01-10-2007, 08:38 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Do you think that kids who are having a birthday party should hand-out their invitations in the classroom?

My daughter is currently in the 6th grade, and even though she has a summer b-day, I would never think to give only the "select" few an invitation during class time.

As far as I remember, our school policy has been that unless you invite the entire class, the invitations have to be mailed, hand delivered and so forth.
Of course, not all parents abide by this rule!:

I personally feel this is very rude and insensitive on the parent's part.
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#2 of 84 Old 01-10-2007, 08:44 PM
 
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Can't see why it's a big problem. Happened all the time when I was in school. If you aren't in that person's clique, you shouldn't be expecting an invitation, right?
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#3 of 84 Old 01-10-2007, 08:44 PM
 
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It's not fair, but it's life.

I was uninvited to a friends birthday party in 5th grade because my chicken pox scars were ugly.
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#4 of 84 Old 01-10-2007, 08:49 PM
 
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NO-I don't think it's fair at all and I am totally against it. Invite the entire class or mail out the invites. This is such a preventable way of unneccessarily hurting someones feelings. It is absolutely avoidable. I would talk to the teacher about it and perhaps the principal if nothing is done.
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#5 of 84 Old 01-10-2007, 08:54 PM
 
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i don't see it as that much of a problem. i didn't realize how strongly other parents (eh hem, OP ) felt about it. i do this with my ds ~~ when there are invitations to be handed out, it's NOT for the entire class (get real!!)... only to a select few. and i don't think mailing is realistic because come on, how are you going to get all the other kids' mailing addresses??
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#6 of 84 Old 01-10-2007, 09:02 PM
 
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I have sent invitation with my dc #1 to school, which were intended for a few kids in his class. I specifically told him to give them to his friends discretly and before or after school (not during class), so as to not make a big production and potentially hurt someone's feelings. I don't have family's addresses.

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#7 of 84 Old 01-10-2007, 09:12 PM
 
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Perhaps it isn't really "fair", but I don't remember ever having my feelings hurt because I wasn't invited to someone's birthday party. Especially not for some kid in my class who was far removed from my own little group of friends.
Now, if, say, my dd had ten friends in her class and I only allowed her to invite five, then I think it would be totally unfair for her to hand out the invites in class. You can have a lot of hurt feelings that escalate into very messy situations that way.
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#8 of 84 Old 01-10-2007, 09:17 PM
 
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Most decent public schools do not allow this. A directory is published so you can send invites to a child's home. No need to cause hurt feelings at school.
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#9 of 84 Old 01-10-2007, 09:28 PM
 
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The elementary school and preschools that my kids have attended don't allow invitations to be distributed at school unless you're inviting either the entire class, or everyone of the same gender as the birthday child.

I think it's a good rule.
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#10 of 84 Old 01-10-2007, 09:31 PM
 
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I'm sorry, but I think 12 year olds should be able to deal with the fact that not everyone is going to get invited to every party. I really don't see anything wrong with handing out invites in a classroom unless it's interfering with lesson time. The girls at my daughter's dance studio hand out party invitations all the time--same thing, really, as they are certainly not inviting every girl in every one of their classes to every party.
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#11 of 84 Old 01-10-2007, 10:24 PM
 
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I'd never even heard of the "invite everyone" rule until I came here, and I don't agree with it. I don't even agree with it for little kids, and I certainly don't agree with it for 12-year-olds.

I'm also not sure how it's supposed to prevent hurt feelings, either. Is there also a "don't talk about the party on school grounds" rule?

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#12 of 84 Old 01-10-2007, 11:02 PM
 
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It's rude.
It's bad manners.

By the way, adults do it all the time. I can't believe how these people talk about their BBQs or their girls-nights-outs in front of others on a regular basis. Presumedly "nice" and "socially well-adjusted" people have insider-conversations, excluding whomever else is in attendance and doesn't know the absent parties under discussion, etc.

It's also impolite to eat in front of others unless we have enough to share with everyone. I'm not talking about brown-bag lunch meetings at work. I'm talking about eating in class.

I was always taught not to discuss plans in front of anyone who wasn't included. I saw my parents model this too.

My dad says that a truly classy person makes other people feel comfortable. Good manners are not to be taken lightly. I know I can work on my own and need reminders and improvement too.

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#13 of 84 Old 01-10-2007, 11:23 PM
 
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I am firmly in the "It's rude" camp.
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#14 of 84 Old 01-11-2007, 12:04 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ombra*luna View Post
The elementary school and preschools that my kids have attended don't allow invitations to be distributed at school unless you're inviting either the entire class, or everyone of the same gender as the birthday child.

I think it's a good rule.
Sure for elementary kids but 6th grade is middle school. They don't even have a "class" any more. It wasn't a big deal to me when I was in middle school to be aware that other people who I wasn't friends with had parties.
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#15 of 84 Old 01-11-2007, 12:38 AM
 
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Preteens are usually pulling away from their parents and clinging more to their peers. This is the time when they care most about fitting in, about getting the invite to that party, joining the club. I don't think it's fair for the invites to be handed out in class. I think if a child brings the invites to school and discreetly hands them out throughout the day as she meets her friends, say between classes or in the bathroom, at lockers, etc., that is fine...but I don't think handing them out in class, in front of everyone, so everyone sees who is and isn't invited, is very fair.

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#16 of 84 Old 01-11-2007, 01:08 AM
 
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The rule at our school is everyone in the class or everyone of the gender. My daughter handed out invitations for her party to all the girls in her 4th grade class b/c she wanted a girl's only party this year.

My crew have been to two elementary schools and we have never had directories before.

As far as middle school goes.....I don't see the problem. I wouldn't see why someone would be expected to invite kids they don't 'hang out' with to a party.

My daughter wanted to exclude a couple of the girls in her class b/c they are mean to her or don't play with her ever. I told no. I also told her the girls probably wouldn't even come if they don't play with her typically anyway. She gave invites to all eight girls.

IMO the discrete idea doesn't really work either b/c the kids who got the invitations will probably ask others if they are going to the party.

Rebecca wife of Megan...moms to six crazy kiddos! Seth (15), Madison (13), Zachary (12), Trevor (12), Alex (10), and Nicholas (9)
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#17 of 84 Old 01-11-2007, 01:56 AM
 
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I agree it's rude. I think some people are misunderstanding your post-- you are not asking if everyone has to be invited --just if you are only inviting some girls from a class, you should give them invitations privately, not in class. This is just basic manners. If I give a party and invite some of my friends from work, I NEVER invite them in front of people at work I'm not inviting. If I have a bunch of friends over for a party and a few of us want to get together for something else a few weeks later, we don't bring it up in front of people we're not inviting. Why would we teach our kids any different? This is basic courtesy.

And anyone on these boards has internet access so looking up addresses should be no problem. A sixth grader could do it, and as far as I can tell, kids love getting real postal mail if it's interesting. What's so hard about mailing them if you are preparing an invitation?
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#18 of 84 Old 01-11-2007, 01:59 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teastaigh View Post
It's rude.
It's bad manners.

By the way, adults do it all the time. I can't believe how these people talk about their BBQs or their girls-nights-outs in front of others on a regular basis. Presumedly "nice" and "socially well-adjusted" people have insider-conversations, excluding whomever else is in attendance and doesn't know the absent parties under discussion, etc.
So, in order to discuss an outing, everyone should have to do a head count, to confirm that everyone currently present was in attendance at the outing? What about at work - say in a lunch room? If someone is sitting at a table having lunch, can a group at the next table talk about going out for drinks after work the week before, or is that rude?

I've never heard anyone suggest that this is rude before. I'm boggled. Honestly - a lot of my local MDC moms have known each other for several years, and if they held their conversation to what us "newbies" know about, they'd hardly be able to talk. Following that rule, I doubt they'd have expanded their group to include us at all...and I wouldn't blame them.

If the whole idea is to make others feel comfortable, then you need to know what others are comfortable with. If people never talked about anything they did when I wasn't around, I'd know they were holding back...and that would make me more uncomfortable than hearing about their outings.

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#19 of 84 Old 01-11-2007, 02:06 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shanagirl View Post
I agree it's rude. I think some people are misunderstanding your post-- you are not asking if everyone has to be invited --just if you are only inviting some girls from a class, you should give them invitations privately, not in class. This is just basic manners. If I give a party and invite some of my friends from work, I NEVER invite them in front of people at work I'm not inviting. If I have a bunch of friends over for a party and a few of us want to get together for something else a few weeks later, we don't bring it up in front of people we're not inviting. Why would we teach our kids any different? This is basic courtesy.
I'd feel absolutely weird if someone at work invited me to a party or something...just weird. As for someone else being invited in front of me - why not? If I have co-workers who go out for lunch together and leave work together and are obviously friends as well as co-workers, why would I expect to be invited to social events with them? I also can't imagine how awful I'd have felt getting an invitation to a party from someone who wasn't my friend, just because I happened to be in their class.

Quote:
And anyone on these boards has internet access so looking up addresses should be no problem. A sixth grader could do it, and as far as I can tell, kids love getting real postal mail if it's interesting. What's so hard about mailing them if you are preparing an invitation?
What if you're not on these boards, and don't have internet access? What if you can't afford postage? What if you're so broke that you're not sure you're even going to be able to have the party until it's too late to use the mail? (Yes - I have been in this situation.) We're not talking about rules that only apply to people with PCs and internet access.

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#20 of 84 Old 01-11-2007, 02:10 AM
 
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I would never send my kids to school with invites for only a few kids. They would get mailed or delivered after school hours.

Wife to a wonderful dh and mom to four beautiful kiddos, dd (3/04):, ds1 (1/06), ds2 (10/08), and ds3 (7/10)
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#21 of 84 Old 01-11-2007, 02:33 AM
 
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When I went to school, kids would hand out invitations on the breaks to the kids they were friends with. It never seemed to lead to anyone feeling left out, but it did sometimes go in the other direction a bit. I remember 'having to' invite a very unpleasant girl to a birthday party because the girl she was best friends with was coming. No one actually told me to invite her but it seemed rude to me not to. Well, she came over and b*tched and moaned about everything and was not invited the next year. So, if anything, I'd say in most cases that I'm aware of it led to unwanted INclusion instead of feeling excluded. I was invited to a lot of birthday parties I didn't really even want to go to myself.

That said, I think it's fine for kids to invite friends to birthday parties at school. I think of it as an opportunity to learn discretion and diplomacy. I know I learned to not hand out invitations in front of kids who weren't invited, as well as decline invitations without hurting anyone's feelings.

I'd give kids some credit there, they usually don't want to hurt other kids' feelings. I'm not generally in favour of banning something because it could potentially upset someone.
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#22 of 84 Old 01-11-2007, 02:35 AM
 
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Our school doesn't hand out directories. The thought of someone having to get that together every single year for 700+ kids, plus the expense, is just mind-boggling.

I don't know if I would use the term "fair" in answer to the OP's question. Life isn't fair, and kids know that waaaay before 6th grade. But I'd say that perhaps some parents have been about lax in helping their children learn the politest way to handle invites. I'd encourage my child to hand them out before school if possible, but I'd be truly surprised if my 6th grader's feelings were hurt because he didn't get an invitation passed out during class time. Most likely the reason he's not getting invited is that the kid isn't his friend anyway, kwim?

My dd, who's in the 2nd grade, talked about the birthday party of one of the girls in her class that she didn't get invited to and seemed to not have an issue with invites being passed out. The girl having the party wasn't a friend, so dd didn't mind at all.

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#23 of 84 Old 01-11-2007, 11:17 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by philomom View Post
Most decent public schools do not allow this. A directory is published so you can send invites to a child's home. No need to cause hurt feelings at school.
Our school does publish a directory each and every year. By the way, that is a good point!
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#24 of 84 Old 01-11-2007, 11:24 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by wasabi View Post
Sure for elementary kids but 6th grade is middle school. They don't even have a "class" any more. It wasn't a big deal to me when I was in middle school to be aware that other people who I wasn't friends with had parties.
Sorry, I failed to mention, here, where we live, 6th grade is still housed in the elementary schools...7th and 8th grade is middle school for us.
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#25 of 84 Old 01-11-2007, 11:35 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shanagirl View Post
I agree it's rude. I think some people are misunderstanding your post-- you are not asking if everyone has to be invited --just if you are only inviting some girls from a class, you should give them invitations privately, not in class. This is just basic manners. If I give a party and invite some of my friends from work, I NEVER invite them in front of people at work I'm not inviting. If I have a bunch of friends over for a party and a few of us want to get together for something else a few weeks later, we don't bring it up in front of people we're not inviting. Why would we teach our kids any different? This is basic courtesy.

And anyone on these boards has internet access so looking up addresses should be no problem. A sixth grader could do it, and as far as I can tell, kids love getting real postal mail if it's interesting. What's so hard about mailing them if you are preparing an invitation?
Thank you Shanagirl, that is my point!
You listed some great examples of common courtesy in general!! I agree 100%.
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#26 of 84 Old 01-11-2007, 11:41 AM
 
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I think the "elementary school rules" of either not giving out invites in class, or inviting the whole class (or all the boys or all the girls) should apply to all grades in elementary school. In middle and high school, it's not JUST that the children are older- there's unstructured time between classes to hand out stuff without obviously excluding somebody. In a tiny private school where the setup is more like an elementary school, even at the high school level, I think the same rules should also apply.

Yes, kids will talk about who's invited and who's going and somebody's feelings could get hurt even if the invites are mailed out. But that's still not an excuse to hand out the invitations in a way that's blatently rude to those not invited.

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#27 of 84 Old 01-11-2007, 03:05 PM
 
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But that's still not an excuse to hand out the invitations in a way that's blatently rude to those not invited.
I guess that's why I'm not with the majority on this one. I don't see anything rude about inviting one's friends to one's birthday party, and not inviting people who aren't your friends.

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#28 of 84 Old 01-11-2007, 03:09 PM
 
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When DS was in school I sent them to school in a bag and asked the teacher to put them in their respective cubbies. The kids didn't even see them until they were home and unpacking their backpack. Of course DS was in K and 1st grade so the classroom dynamics may be different.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Momtoatweenandteen View Post
Do you think that kids who are having a birthday party should hand-out their invitations in the classroom?

My daughter is currently in the 6th grade, and even though she has a summer b-day, I would never think to give only the "select" few an invitation during class time.

As far as I remember, our school policy has been that unless you invite the entire class, the invitations have to be mailed, hand delivered and so forth.
Of course, not all parents abide by this rule!:

I personally feel this is very rude and insensitive on the parent's part.
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#29 of 84 Old 01-11-2007, 03:47 PM
 
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fair is a place with cotton candy and rides it ain't life

I guess I take opportunities like this to be a learning experience. I can't shelter my children from the unfairness of life but can help them deal with it
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#30 of 84 Old 01-11-2007, 06:01 PM
 
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It's not about "fair," though...it's about being polite.

I didn't hand out invitations to my wedding at work, because not everyone was invited. They were mailed. If I had a party, I'd email the invitations, or make a phone call.

Why WOULDN'T you make a minimal effort to avoid hurt feelings?

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