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cafeteria duty


Senior Member
I am a wreck over cafeteria duty. This is my first year with this duty and I have just been put in charge because I'm the only teacher in there who is there all five days. My principal wants the kids to have consistency. They have a card system. If the class receives a red card, they owe 5 minutes of silence on Friday and do not get to participate in trivia. To many of them, that's no big deal. If the whole room is loud, we have them sit in silence with their heads down. Sounds harsh, I know but sometimes it's the only sanity we get. Then there's the potty brigade. Since they are so young (K-2) if they see a friend go to the bathroom, they automatically want to go as well. All of this is driving me crazy!! Does anyone have any ideas to implement that will keep kids relatively quiet during lunch and stop this bathroom nonsense? I am so worried that a parent is going to call and complain that their child has done nothing wrong and is being made to sit in silence at lunch, even if it is only for 5-10 minutes. HELP!!!!!


Senior Member
At my school the classes eat by grade level and they all have the same routine. The teacher on duty will raise their hand and the kids know it is time to be quiet. She may do this just to quiet them down or if they are to rowdy it may be for the last 5 minutes before being excused for recess. If a child is still talking then they know if she touched them on their shoulder then they are not to get up when the rows are excused and that person has to stay in for extra time, this way it is only the talkers punished. Also if they have to go to the bathroom, it is known that they give an extra 5 minutes of recess time (this cut down on unnecessary trips, quick). If a student really needs the bathroom then they wont mind giving up 5 min and if they are not going when they should, then they may use their bathroom breaks more wisely.

In my class, they earn play money to purchase items and if a student needs to use the restroom after we have had a break then they get a $5 fine. This cut down on the running to the bathroom and the legitimate students don't mind paying the fee.

Good luck.


quiet time

After I've strolled the room and made appropriate comments on their "wonderful lunches" (nutritious, tasty, etc) I set my timer for 5 minutes and we only talk if there is an emergency. The kids know this is to give them time to eat their "growing foods" and they can talk to their friends in only 5 minutes. And its usually dismissal about 5 minutes after that.


Full Member
Just curious

I'm just wondering if you get paid extra for having to do this every day or does it relieve you from something else (recess or bus duty, maybe)? At my school we each have to take one day a week and I hate doing just that much! I'd much rather be outside for recess or almost anything!!

Student Y

People who give to much cafeteria duty...

Cafeteria duty should be the only,duty that students should do. I try not to give cafe duty to students. If they do not comply, then teachers should not take students rights of freedom of choice, judgement, and speech. If the act the student commited is small, such as talking to friends during reading period, they number of cafeteria duties should be minimum. Most teachers are biased against students they don't know, usually giving a long period of Cafeteria Duty.(aka, the kiss as* teacher with favourite students) To me, as a teacher, Cafe duty makes the student hate you more, and they feel more compelled to fight for their rights. The only reason cafe duty happens is because the Teacher who assigned it is unfair, or the school can't afford a janitor. The student will feel down, being embarassed in front of their freinds, and fell more hatred toward that specific teacher. In the end, cafeteria duty does not give "discipline" to the student but makes them resent and amkes the teacher more unpopular. There was one case in which a student refused to do cafe duty because he did not commit the act. They had him suspended for failing to comly with procedures, and failure to say the truth. All people are equal, and we as teachers should treat students with equality. In other words, GET RID OF CAFETERIA DUTY!