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first day of public school


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Let me just start by saying I know I shouldn't feel this way, but I do. I am such a bad mom and teacher...there I said it. Okay, now on to the nitty-gritty.

 

DS9 is according to age in Year 3 here in Perth. He has visual convergence and was just fitted with special glasses and his reading is absolutely taking off but he is still far behind. The school and teacher know about this and he was put in a classroom that already has an extra teaching assistant who can help him build his speed and fluency while reading. So, his teacher calls me at noon to let me know that he is fitting in beautifully and he is a lovely boy. She also said that his reading is much more advanced than I think it is and he is just about on par with someone who was just starting in Year 3 (so he is a couple terms behind as we are in in Term 4) and that it should improve rapidly. However, his spelling and his handwriting are really below level. I have spent so much time working on his reading that I have let it slide. When I picked him up, she told me that he is obviously extremely intelligent but is still not really able to string together a full sentence. He is able to fully copy a page (which is good) but we need to really work on this. I will say that the style of handwriting is one I have never seen so no wonder he is behind (it is called Victorian modern cursive). They also noted that he is advanced in math and all the "other" subjects. I feel bad that we spent so much time doing the "other" subjects while ignoring the fundamentals.

 

DS7 is also very behind in spelling and writing. His teacher wants to sit with me for about 30min to show me where he should be and asked if giving him extra work to catch up would be a problem. She also says he seems to be behind in math or is just intimidated by it (which he is). She also noted that his reading and comprehension is at an adult level and he is advanced in the "other" subjects (talk about making me feel bad twice). She said it wouldn't be a big issue it is just that he needs to be comfortable with all this before going into Year 3 next year so may have to do alot of supplemental stuff overt eh X-Mas break.

 

DD5 was really worrying me. She has never been able to pick up her ABCs, cannot remember what they look or sound like and calls herself stupid frequently. I reckoned we would have to put her in school because I thought maybe it was just an issue between us and she didn't want to work for me. I forewarned her teacher that she didn't know any of this stuff only to be told when I picked her up that she does know her ABCs, can sound them out, can sound out the beginning letter of CVC words and actually can write all the letters if she has an example to remind her. Yeah, talk about feeling like an idiot (me). They say she is probably a term or 2 behind where the others kids in her class are, but that is just because we have never done anything formal because I didn't want to push the issue. They think she will catch up really quickly and that she is extremely bright.

 

The kids actually loved the school, loved their teachers, made new friends and were (according to their teachers) model/excellent students. The big problem was actually DD3 who was such an emotional wreck all day that I ended up taking her to the mall for lunch and to wander around just to get her out of the house. We stopped at a handmade cosmetic/bath/soap place and the sales clerks were having a great time showing her all the samples when all of a sudden she just dropped into the salesgirl's arms and started weeping her heart out about how hard it all was and how she "neeeeeeeded her brothers and sister." The poor lady was beside herself when I explained it was the first time she had been away from her siblings. I had to bribe DD3 with a strawberry minicino just to get her to calm down. She was so distraught she fell asleep snuggled up to DS9 on the couch at 6pm. I hope tomorrow goes better because I cannot afford to go to the mall every day.

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At least it sounds like the teachers are on top of what your children need, and that they sound nice about it. It's amazing what kids will do for other adults. My dd14 used to complain about the amount and type of work she was doing at home but she is doing twice as much at school and it's more complicated than what she did at home. And she's thriving.

 

I can relate to how you feel about being a teacher. I've felt that for quite a while now and had even come to really dislike homeschooling. Still, I was surprised that dd14 wanted to go to school. She told me she loved me as a mom but she wanted someone else to teach her. :001_huh: I'm still homeschooling ds16 but I'm getting more hands off as his classes get more difficult. He's doing fine but some of this stuff is just really hard for me and I make stupid mistakes every single day that he has to correct with me. I told him helping me is probably helping him too. It's the only thing that makes me feel better about the situation.

 

I'm sorry to hear about your youngest. I doubt this would work every day, but how about having her do something to give to the older ones when they get home from school? Like an art project, or helping you fix something in the kitchen like muffins for after school?

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