Thursday, October 3, 2013

Kindergarten Roundup

Sure, we're already deep into the first quarter of first grade, but I really dropped the ball on the whole kindergarten thing.

I feel like I owe it to those of you that have been here following along to at least give an overview of what happened. I don't want to get too specific, but I can do better than, y'know, nothing.


So you may have noticed that I loved Playette's teacher last year. I mean lurved. Like, I wanted her to come over and play on the weekends. We could drink wine and play cards. I had it all planned out in my head. We would laugh and laugh and then I'd be all, "Would you like some more Moscato? Go fish! HAHAHAHA!"

Or something like that.

Is that weird?

Anyway. She was a nice lady and we had a good rapport, in case that wasn't clear.


And there's always a but.

My kid. She just wasn't keeping it together in class. Her behavior was slipping into the unfavorable zone.

A meeting was called (which was good - they knew this wasn't how she came to them) and the consensus was that we would try placing Playette in the classroom next door. She would still see all of her friends regularly. She could keep her same locker. Several things would be put in place to ease the transition of a mid-year room switch.

I was sad, y'all. But this wasn't supposed to be about me. So we followed through, as a team, and I waited for the halo to reappear.

I waited a really long time. Too long, really.

I wanted to be patient. I didn't want to nag. I knew that the new teacher had been put in an awkward position.

But I wasn't getting the feedback that I needed.

So, with the help of a friend, I created a daily communication sheet.

And then I waited some more.

In the midst of all of this, more change happened. One aide left...and then another.

It wasn't because of my kid, I swear. Just circumstances. Regular, everyday, unavoidable stuff.

Keep in mind that my kid thrives on routine. Plus, she loved that first aide like her crazy mama loved that first teacher. (I guess we get attached.)

By the time Aide #3 was in place, it was about a month to go before the school year ended.

I'm sighing just thinking back on it.

If there's any advice I can give, it's "Don't wait."

If it doesn't feel right, speak up.

I feel like I failed my kid. Big time.

She was no longer comfortable. She was no longer doing her best. She was meeting the expectation, but the expectation didn't match her ability level.

I screwed up. The time just got away from me. I thought, but I didn't act.

So when the last day came, I was both happy that it was over and sad that she had missed out on so much.

I vowed to do better next year. This year.

I'm still stumbling, but I have hope.

This school thing is just not as easy as I had hoped it would be. At least in the early years. I thought it wouldn't get hard until later. Maybe it's me that's making it harder.

I better buck up before middle school.


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jmh said...

Thanks for posting this. We're almost a month into K here and already I can feel the time just slipping away. It took three weeks just for our school to get Archer a permanent aide (and some days, there were not even subs available, so we've been picking him up in the middle of the day), and then, like you mentioned, unforeseen circumstances -- there was a death in the aide's family -- means that she hasn't been around so far AT ALL this week.

Archer, too, thrives on consistency, and this has been a rough, rough start to his year.

I really appreciate the advice not to wait -- we're trying to be patient, you know, and find that fine line between letting things at least TRY to get settled before bringing down the hammer, but it's tough to know when to step in and be okay with stepping on some toes.

Here's to a great year of first grade for all of you!

krlr said...

In fairness, what magic dust were you going to sprinkle to fix their staffing problems? Also, I believe there was a second child about? Cute little boy? LIttle sleep deprivation? You're doing great.

Lara Frame said...

I remember watching my mom struggle with schools and teachers, especially in the early years. It might be your kid, but communicating with the parents is the TEACHER'S job; their job is to let you know what's going on with your child for the 8 hours a day M-F you entrust their child to them. Don't bring yourself down, don't think you're not doing your job; you're an excellent mother and she is a wonderful young lady because she has excellent role models. And I know I'm not biased :)