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New here and new to afterschooling!

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Hello! I am a mom to three and step mom to two. I work full time and my school-agers are in K and 1st.

I kind of accidentally discovered the concept of afterschooling! Last year my now 1st grader was identified as gifted. The letter that was sent home was very to the point--our district is required to identify gifted students but they are not provided with enough funding to accommodate the needs of all the gifted students in the district. I mean really...I could almost hear the frustration in their message! Congrats! You have a gifted child--we will most likely be able to do nothing about it.

At that time we were attending a school outside our home district through open enrollment. I came to learn after a little research, that when it came to any special programs (title 1, TAG) open enrollment kids can only access the programs after all the in-district kids have spots. So it was basically a foregone conclusion that we would not have access to the TAG program.

I have moved my kiddos into our home district--which is rated lower than the former one we were in, but where, when the time comes, she will have access to the TAG program.

Of course TAG doesn't start until 3rd or 4th grade--to allow sufficient time to hammer my bright child into a mediocre mold (whoops, did I let my chagrin show? :)).

I have been less than impressed with both of my kids teachers this year. I have been feeling more and more that if I don't supplement, build on and give my kids a way to work ahead of their classroom work that they will be destine to never excel...the school system seems set on squashing any student who does not fit neatly into the middle.

I started googling "supplementing public education at home" and came across the concept of afterschooling. Wow!! It seems I'm not the only mama not in a position to homeschool full time, but who feels the need to offer more to my kids.

I'm so excited to learn more about how to make this work from some seasoned parents!!

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In my school district, when kids are identified in or out of school as gifted...the school creates an IEP. The IEP has specific wording on a curriculum the child is to be taught. It is one sentence...and very vague to parents. When you look up the exact definition of it...the meaning is no child can be taught anything they have mastered. Once I learned that, I was able to sit down with my principal and teacher and discuss my child's curriculum. They pretty much asked me if I was thinking they would create a "specific" curriculum for my girls...I said yes...they said they dont have time to do that...but by their "wording" on the IEP they are required to do that ....and they had to uphold it.


They dont like to do it as it causes them much more work...but they had to. Im not sure how your county works for these issues but you may look it up on the main school website. I was able to look it up through the county's gifted site. (we are in a large district)


So even though our gifted program doesnt start until 3rd, my dd had a different curriculum from K! It isnt extra work..it is different work.


In the mean time, Glad to see you here. Im sure you will find lots of info to help you kids. You may love to look up some math, reading and writing extras that are fun. Maybe even some logic puzzles. My kids love those.

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Through outside testing, my DD was identified as gifted at age 6, but our state doesn't even define/recognize gifted, let alone fund programming or require IEPs, so afterschooling is our solution for now.


After much frustration at school, I had to help DD embrace the idea that learning takes place in all kinds of ways and places, and school is just one of our resources. She keeps a learning list of things she wants to learn more about, and we do our best to work with her on it. Sometimes it's an outside class, or a museum visit, or arranging for a family member to teach her a skill, but mainly it involves mountains of books from the library. We have also helped her advocate for herself in the classroom, and we work with her teachers.


I did learn to stop asking "What did you learn at school today?" and replace that with the question "What did you work on in school today?"

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Thanks all! I have researched some free curriculum resources and we are diving in Monday!


I can be quite the over-planner, so I'm trying to let go of that and start giving it a shot--we can adjust our focus and or schedule as we move forward!


I'm anxious for our first parent teacher conferences. I will discuss my gifted child's needs then--and I don't anticipate a lot of support. She actively discourages working ahead. I'm trying hard to keep a positive additude with the school. It's not going to help anything if I make assumptions about them not being supportive!

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I'm anxious for our first parent teacher conferences. I will discuss my gifted child's needs then--and I don't anticipate a lot of support. She actively discourages working ahead.


There is a lot you can do that isn't "working ahead." In our afterschooling, we have a strong focus on history and languages, which are topics the school doesn't cover at all in the early years.

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