I don’t understand the teacher who complains that his or her students don’t do something that is easy to fix. A good example is the use of the word please.
I can’t tell you how many times over the years I have heard a teacher complain about the lack of manners in their students. But the lack of manners is hardly akin to a learning disability or an emotionally troubled child.
Manners, like many things, are an easy fix.
They simply have to be learned.
With the application of instruction, consistent role modeling, practice, and positive feedback, the use of the word please, for example, is not a difficult behavior to foster and reinforce in a student.
And being that the person who is complaining is a teacher, wouldn’t instruction like this in their wheelhouse anyway?
If a teacher is struggling with a student because he is apathetic, angry, effortless, and three years behind his classmates in terms of learning, I understand the occasional complaint. That's a tough situation. It doesn’t mean that the teacher has given up. Sometimes it’s just healthy to express your frustration.
But to complain about a student who isn’t using the word please or doing something else that is simple to fix (memorizing multiplication tables is another good example) has always seemed a little silly to me.
Perhaps some people are more prone to complaint, but I have always believed in avoiding complaining whenever possible.
No one wants to hear it.
So when it comes to easy fixes, I just do my job and keep my mouth shut.
I also suspect that despite the persistent belief that kids these days don’t have the same level of respect for their elders as previous generations, teachers from two centuries ago were undoubtedly complaining about the same kinds of things.