Mom Begs Daycare Teachers To Stop Making It Obvious That Some Parents Have The Money To Pay For Kids' Extra Activities

Mom calls out daycare teachers for making lower-income kids feel excluded when their parents can't afford expensive extracurriculars.

Abbey Waters

For almost every level of education, there are often opportunities for children to sign up to participate in fun extracurriculars. These activities can be offered as young as preschool or kindergarten, and can be a fun way to give kids new experiences, and sometimes new opportunities to learn and have fun.

However, they often come at a price: a real, financial price, right out of a parent’s pockets.


For some families, the additional cost is easy to meet, but for others, the bills are hard enough to pay on their own. It’s a reality most young kids don’t realize their parents have to deal with, but that doesn’t stop teachers from making them feel punished for it.

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One young mom sent out a powerful message about the unfair exclusion of lower-income kids at school.

Abbey, a Tik Tok user who documents her life as a young mom posted an emotional Tik Tok from her car, asking for the attention of educators who work with young kids.




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“If there is a class or an activity that, you know, is an extracurricular that some parents have paid for…” Abbey said. “Please don’t come in that class and say what you’re gonna go do in front of other kids that don’t get to go.”

She gave an example of a theoretical situation, talking about how if some of the kids’ parents had paid to let them go play with bubbles, the teacher shouldn’t flaunt that activity over the kids whose parents didn’t pay for the activity.


Participation in paid-for activities like the one Abbey mentions doesn’t have anything to do with a child’s behavior, skills, or anything else within their control. The only thing that separates who does or doesn’t participate, is the finances of the parent, something that most toddlers and young kids don’t have any framework to understand yet.

To them, when the educators loudly boast about how much fun the other kids are going to have, the students left behind are just confused and hurt. They don’t understand what they’ve done wrong to be excluded by their teachers and peers, and can feel ashamed for something that isn’t their fault.

Abbey emphasized the effect the unfair situation can have on kids, and how hard it can be for lower-income families to explain it to them. “I shouldn't have to sit there and hold my daughter and tell her that I’m sorry that she doesn’t get to go.”

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That doesn’t mean the events have to be a secret, or that the kids themselves can’t discuss their fun together.

As many of the comments on Abbey’s TikTok explained further, it is very different for a child to talk about how much fun they had at a paid-for extra activity with their other classmates who couldn’t go. In this way, the kids can compare their experiences through frameworks that they both understand at the same age.

It is still possible for kids to exclude each other, or to be mean about some of them missing out on the activities, but it is more important for the conversation to happen between the kids themselves rather than from the grown-ups.

In summary: no child should be publicly shamed for their family not having enough money to join in on extracurricular fun.

“Just be mindful of what you’re saying around these little kids,” Abbey said. “There’s an easier way to go about it. Just simply, you know, call out their names and say: come on, we’re going to the other room.”


Teachers can also use these opportunities to provide less expensive fun for the other kids during this time, too. Watching a movie or playing a game or engaging the kids with some creative discussion can also help lessen the feeling of exclusion.

It is crucial for students to feel like they belong in the classroom, and there are many creative ways for teachers to foster those feelings of belonging in their students, even when they can’t participate in the same activities.

Framing an experience in a child’s mind is the responsibility of teachers. Educators can choose to teach their students that they will be excluded from fun opportunities for reasons they cannot understand, or they can teach them that, even when opportunities are different, there is still a chance to have fun and grow in the community wherever they are.


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Hawthorn Martin is a news and entertainment writer living in Texas. They focus on social justice, pop culture, and human interest stories.