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Anybody really, really unhappy that your kid is in ps?


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We had our teacher conference today, and I'm just so . . . sad. The things the teacher thinks my dd needs to work on (like writing multiple sentences/paragraphs in a journal - yep, this is 1st grade) are really not that important to me at this point. And she is so inarticulate about everything - what she observes, what is going on, what dd could do to improve. This has been an easy year academically, but a tough year emotionally for dd, and I really have no clue what to do to help her at this point. I just want to bring her home. . . so bad! It makes me so sad that I can't give her what I'm giving her sister right now. I just want to cry.

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I am sorry Rose. Just want to send hugs (can't find the little symbol on iPad).

Hopefully things change and you will be able to keep her home.

I know how you feel. My younger boy is finding it a torture to sit through school that long. I was told he rolls his eyes a lot and is often talking to himself (playing) in the middle of the class. I just can't help him this year.

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We had our teacher conference today, and I'm just so . . . sad. The things the teacher thinks my dd needs to work on (like writing multiple sentences/paragraphs in a journal - yep, this is 1st grade) are really not that important to me at this point. And she is so inarticulate about everything - what she observes, what is going on, what dd could do to improve. This has been an easy year academically, but a tough year emotionally for dd, and I really have no clue what to do to help her at this point. I just want to bring her home. . . so bad! It makes me so sad that I can't give her what I'm giving her sister right now. I just want to cry.

 

 

That is just NUTS. No way could my (advanced and gifted) kids have done this in 1st grade, especially the boy! I'm sorry. I hope something else works out for you.

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. The things the teacher thinks my dd needs to work on (like writing multiple sentences/paragraphs in a journal - yep, this is 1st grade) are really not that important to me at this point.

 

That is a silly expectation for first grade. My boys are not expected to do that until end of 3rd grade. Same with all the other school districts near my home. For 1st grade the schools expected a single paragraph with a few sentences and "creative" spellings.

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I am not really unhappy that my children are in PS, but I am very unhappy that a perfect stranger gets to work with my children all day long!

 

My twin boys love their teacher and I am amazed to see that she instills a love for creative writing in them. They will come home, sit at the kitchen table, and start writing stories with accompanying pictures during their free time!

 

What I AM unhappy with is that she is not allowed to accel them in reading, and both are complaining about the same "boring book" that they have to read every day for one week...

 

All in all I would LOVE to teach them all at home. That's why I'm so unhappy with sending them off to public school every day!

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We had our teacher conference today, and I'm just so . . . sad. The things the teacher thinks my dd needs to work on (like writing multiple sentences/paragraphs in a journal - yep, this is 1st grade) are really not that important to me at this point. And she is so inarticulate about everything - what she observes, what is going on, what dd could do to improve. This has been an easy year academically, but a tough year emotionally for dd, and I really have no clue what to do to help her at this point. I just want to bring her home. . . so bad! It makes me so sad that I can't give her what I'm giving her sister right now. I just want to cry.

 

The writing thing is part of some federal mandate. Some states give a little free thinking to the teachers with certain ages and have them draw out the thought/idea/story and then write about it.

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The writing thing is part of some federal mandate. Some states give a little free thinking to the teachers with certain ages and have them draw out the thought/idea/story and then write about it.

 

It's a lot. My kid wrote 3 paragraph essay on monkes by the end of the first grade. It was an increadibly well-written little story. I was really happy with the industructor last year and I thought their approach on writing worked just fine. Well, it was fine with my older kid, who I now realize, just happens to be a good writer. He reads well, spells well, writes well. He would have done fine in any class. Not so with my younger, who is a good reader reader as well, but the poor thing freezes up when he is asked to write. He is soooo scared to be wrong. He won't use a word if he isn't 100% sure he knows how to spell. My heart aches for him, really. I don't think this is a good approach for him. He is now in 1st grade. The kid just turned six a month and a half ago and he is being asked to write a paragraph. It's nuts.

I was also told that writing requirements have to do with state standards and that in the fourth grade it will be much, much worse (I am not sure I want to know). However, from what I have been observing, there isn't that much writing happening in the middle school. Odd, just odd.

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I hate that my kid goes to PS. But there are no other options right now for my family as some of the things that I hoped for never worked out. So, we supplement heavily and keep DS challenged by afterschooling. It takes a lot of effort, time and money on our part as well as some sacrifices in working hours to get it done that I am worried about how long we can keep afterschooling at the rate at which we are doing now.

We had parent-teacher conference last week - the goal was for my son to write 3 sentences (and the teacher would make him do advanced sentences as my son is accelerated .e.g. "The big brown horse jumped over the tall fence" rather than "The horse jumped high" - this is her example) and make him reason out math answers (e.g. make him explain how he figured out that there were 2 cows when all he could see in the barn are 8 cow's feet - again, her example). This is not how I imagined his education would proceed, and my son only pays attention to his teacher occasionally because he loses interest in the classwork frequently (I know because I volunteer in the classroom frequently and observe him). But, the school district just follows the curriculum set by the district and observes state standards and there is no funding for gifted kids and the teacher is doing her best despite the high student-teacher ratio. And apparently this is the best she can do for my kid under the restrictions she is under.

Makes me more determined than ever to afterschool. We are also looking for afterschool enrichment classes down the road which might be a lot cheaper than private schooling.

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It is an unrealistic expectation for 1st grade.

Why can't you homeschool her too if you already have her sister home?

 

I was very unhappy when my kids were in public middle school (elementary was fine), until it got to be so bad that I pulled them out, even though I had no idea how that could possibly work.

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My son is in PS 1st grade and they have the same writing expectation. Surprisingly, my formerly writing averse son loooooves the creative writing, and I am told he does it without complaint. He adores his teacher, so I think that helps. His kindergarten teacher was not so great, and it's amazing what a difference a great teacher makes.

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It is an unrealistic expectation for 1st grade.

Why can't you homeschool her too if you already have her sister home?

 

I was very unhappy when my kids were in public middle school (elementary was fine), until it got to be so bad that I pulled them out, even though I had no idea how that could possibly work.

 

 

Don't think I don't ask myself this every day . . . the thing is, I work part-time as a consultant. My 10 yo is mature enough to come out in the field with me, or even to meetings, and sit quietly and do her work while I have on my professional hat. My 6 yo is not. I also am fine with my 10 yo being home alone for brief periods - an hour or two - if I have a meeting that she absolutely can't attend, but I don't feel like the two of them could stay home alone together safely and sanely. Yet. Maybe next year.

 

And I can't not work at all - we wouldn't be able to pay our mortgage. I've already shaved my work hours down to the bare minimum, maybe too bare, as it is.

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Don't think I don't ask myself this every day . . . the thing is, I work part-time as a consultant. My 10 yo is mature enough to come out in the field with me, or even to meetings, and sit quietly and do her work while I have on my professional hat. My 6 yo is not. I also am fine with my 10 yo being home alone for brief periods - an hour or two - if I have a meeting that she absolutely can't attend, but I don't feel like the two of them could stay home alone together safely and sanely. Yet. Maybe next year.

 

 

I understand completely. I work, too, and had to bring my kids to work with me, but they were 10+ years old when we started, so it was feasible. I don't think I could have done that with a six year old.

Can you find somebody to stay with them for some periods during the day? A friend of mine who is a college instructor had to pull her 6 y/o son out of school and is attempting to homeschool while working. She bridges times when he can not be in her office or when she has to teach by hiring people to babysit/ tutor him.

I hope the situation gets better for you; it must be very hard.

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I hate that my kid goes to PS. But there are no other options right now for my family as some of the things that I hoped for never worked out. So, we supplement heavily and keep DS challenged by afterschooling. It takes a lot of effort, time and money on our part as well as some sacrifices in working hours to get it done that I am worried about how long we can keep afterschooling at the rate at which we are doing now.

We had parent-teacher conference last week - the goal was for my son to write 3 sentences (and the teacher would make him do advanced sentences as my son is accelerated .e.g. "The big brown horse jumped over the tall fence" rather than "The horse jumped high" - this is her example) and make him reason out math answers (e.g. make him explain how he figured out that there were 2 cows when all he could see in the barn are 8 cow's feet - again, her example). This is not how I imagined his education would proceed, and my son only pays attention to his teacher occasionally because he loses interest in the classwork frequently (I know because I volunteer in the classroom frequently and observe him). But, the school district just follows the curriculum set by the district and observes state standards and there is no funding for gifted kids and the teacher is doing her best despite the high student-teacher ratio. And apparently this is the best she can do for my kid under the restrictions she is under.

Makes me more determined than ever to afterschool. We are also looking for afterschool enrichment classes down the road which might be a lot cheaper than private schooling.

 

 

This is exactly the kind of feedback we got - which is just crazy! Mo loves to write, and she writes all the time - little stories, or sentences, or she asks me for dictation even. She is a great writer for a six year old! But because her sentences are "simple" - i.e. she doesn't throw in a ton of extra adjectives and adverbs - she is somehow not meeting the first grade benchmark. I am so enraged. Ironically, I had to teach my 4th grader to *stop* writing like this - all the padding, just to make a certain length - when I brought her home from p.s.

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I understand completely. I work, too, and had to bring my kids to work with me, but they were 10+ years old when we started, so it was feasible. I don't think I could have done that with a six year old.

Can you find somebody to stay with them for some periods during the day? A friend of mine who is a college instructor had to pull her 6 y/o son out of school and is attempting to homeschool while working. She bridges times when he can not be in her office or when she has to teach by hiring people to babysit/ tutor him.

I hope the situation gets better for you; it must be very hard.

 

 

I am going to look into this, for sure. Although if I pay for a sitter, I will have to work more hours . . . but maybe that is a better solution, in the short term, than keeping her in ps and building up a list of things I feel like I will have to re-teach or un-teach eventually. Don't even get me started on the "funny phonics" and the Dolch sight word lists . . . or the Houghton Mifflin spiral-math . . . ugh, who am I kidding, I am never again going to be a good public school mommy, homeschooling dd10 has opened my eyes too much to ever look back.

 

Anyway, thanks for the support, guys. I just felt sad and in need of hugs last night, now I'm determined to figure out how to change things.

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It's a tough one. I'm so unhappy for my 5th grader. She just got a very difficult bunch of kids to be stuck with all day long. A few of them have been held back more than once. So they are older than her and struggle academically. DD is my one over achiever, she is a straight A student. She runs circles around the other kids and they don't even know how to interact with her. I really worry this will negatively impact her long term, emotionally or in how she views herself. It would cost a small fortune to send her to a better school. There is the option of applying to a PS gifted program, and of course, going back to HSing.

 

(This isn't a brag btw... all my other kids are slackers.)

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First of all :grouphug: to all of you.

 

We put our DS in PS for a couple of reasons, mainly to do with DH's views about the whole thing. However I am so unhappy with my boy's PS. My boy complains they don't do science (the love of his life).

 

DS told me that during rainy days last week they were made to paint into the "rainy days painting notebooks" and watched a Sponge Bob Square Pants video. :eek: We used to do work on bad weather days. They send DS home with reading books quick are frankly dumb and I think in general they are not interested in challenging anyone. While I think a certain amount of discipline is good I don't believe in trying to fit a square peg into a round hole. Whatever happened to respecting a person's individuality? Last parent/teacher meeting was all about how DS needs to learn to "stop standing out" because they other children "will pick on that". :blink:

 

Oooh, I forgot to say that there is a group of mums at the gate that ignore me, to the extent they won't return a hello. They persist to look "through me" and they all compete in the wardrobe department. Ah, the joys of school runs....

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Don't even get me started on the "funny phonics" and the Dolch sight word lists . . . or the Houghton Mifflin spiral-math . . . ugh, who am I kidding, I am never again going to be a good public school mommy, homeschooling dd10 has opened my eyes too much to ever look back.

 

What in the world is funny phonics?

I'd love to hear more about all this stuff, if you or someone else can stand sharing it. I'm always curious what goes on in public schools.

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What in the world is funny phonics?

I'd love to hear more about all this stuff, if you or someone else can stand sharing it. I'm always curious what goes on in public schools.

 

 

Oh, I shamelessly stole "funny phonics" from Denise Eide of Logic of English. I have always been troubled by the way reading was taught in the public schools, without being able to put my finger on exactly what was wrong, and when I watched one of Denise's talks describing how phonics is often (sort of) taught at ps, I went "Eureka! This is what has always bugged me!" By funny phonics, she meant giving kids "rules" that don't apply in many (or most) cases, and then telling them that all the countercases are exceptions. Stuff like the "rule" "When two vowels go walking the first one does the talking" but "bread" is an exception.

 

In addition to these pseudo-rules & exceptions, my dd's school uses the Dolch sight word list - 300+ words they are supposed to have memorized and be able to "read" by the end of 2nd grade. They don't teach the kids to sound these out, even though many of them are easy to sound out - they teach them as sight words. They do an incoherent combination of sort-of phonics teaching plus sight words/whole language teaching. It is incoherent at best.

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I am going to look into this, for sure. Although if I pay for a sitter, I will have to work more hours . . . but maybe that is a better solution, in the short term, than keeping her in ps and building up a list of things I feel like I will have to re-teach or un-teach eventually. Don't even get me started on the "funny phonics" and the Dolch sight word lists . . . or the Houghton Mifflin spiral-math . . . ugh, who am I kidding, I am never again going to be a good public school mommy, homeschooling dd10 has opened my eyes too much to ever look back.

 

Anyway, thanks for the support, guys. I just felt sad and in need of hugs last night, now I'm determined to figure out how to change things.

 

could you find another hs family nearby who really schools at ome much of the time, and you could drop younger off on short notice when needed. You would pay less, too. Or you could find a 13 yo who homeschools who could watch her for less money than an adullt. A friends daughter does this about 10 hours a week and makes about 50 dollars.

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could you find another hs family nearby who really schools at ome much of the time, and you could drop younger off on short notice when needed. You would pay less, too. Or you could find a 13 yo who homeschools who could watch her for less money than an adullt. A friends daughter does this about 10 hours a week and makes about 50 dollars.

 

Now that is a brilliant idea . . . we just recently met a homeschooling family with 3 teenage daughters. I never even thought about seeing if one of them would be available during the day!! Thank you for suggesting that!

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Now that is a brilliant idea . . . we just recently met a homeschooling family with 3 teenage daughters. I never even thought about seeing if one of them would be available during the day!! Thank you for suggesting that!

 

You are welcome! And a lot of time, their schedule is more independent and flexible, amd the mom sees it as an opportunity to learn time management skills. Best of luck! Please keep us posted! I work part time also, and occasionally have to bring my two into work. The hardest part is when and if they begin to bicker. I am like "So. Not. professional!!" :D

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:grouphug: I hope you find a solution that allows you to bring her home. I totally understand the frustration with PS. I was frustrated with PS from DD's first day of first grade (K was ok) on. I pulled her in 4th and NOW I'm paying for waiting that long by remediating phonics/reading and actual learning/work skills. She was spoon fed "how to pass the tests" for so long that it is an uphill battle. I get so frustrated with myself that I didn't think to homeschool sooner as I've always been a SAHW/M.

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When I was pg with my #4, we borrowed a very mature HS teen to watch the kids so that DH could come into my ultrasounds without the kids crawling all over us & making a ton of noise. It was AWESOME. I wish we still had that opportunity as I could have used another hand when traveling & taking part in my brother's wedding cross-country this spring. (There just aren't that many people in my community that HS high school, YET.)

 

:grouphug: Hope you find something that works for you. (Some HS parents around here are open to swapping child watching duties. You watch their kids so they can go on a date. They watch yours for you sometimes. Yours would be more during the daytime, but if the teen doesn't work out, this is a no $ alternative.

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Sigh ... yes. I have been nurturing my Homeschool Fantasy for years now, but I have to work. And my DS has to go to before- and after-school care, so we don't even get the hours between school and dinner to afterschool. Right now we get 15-20 minutes two mornings a week. :crying: All I can do is tell myself it's better than nothing.

 

Sniffle.

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What I wouldn't give to be home with my kids. My 9 year old ds needs to be home. His PDD-NOS is sticking out more the older he gets, and being in a classroom is torture for him. Until I meet my rich future second husband, though, I will have to work and send the kiddos to school.

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I wouldn't say I'm really, really unhappy, but I'm dissatisfied with my son's public school experience. I don't think public school is a good fit for DS for a variety of reasons. Many of them center around his dyslexia and that apparently inability of the public school to do much about it, but I'm also bothered by the abundance of seatwork beginning even in kindergarten, the lack of physical activity (20 minutes of recess every day and the littlest thing can make them stay inside), and the huge classes that make it hard for the teacher to give individual attention to anyone.

 

All that said, DS, amazingly, really likes school overall this year. Thanks to two hours of tutoring a week with Barton Reading and Spelling after school, he's beginning to get the mechanics of reading. He likes Math this year even though it's hard for him, and starting in January he'll be getting an hour of tutoring with a math program for dyslexics at the same place where he's going for Barton tutoring. The school has an amazing art teacher who does her best to get arts integrated into other parts of school day. The school is 1/2 mile from our home and several of the teachers live in the neighborhood. We love the community aspect and love running into people from school all over the place. Yes, we could get involved in a coop if we pulled him out and we already know a couple of homeschool families, but it wouldn't be the same.

 

When it comes down to it, though, the reason we aren't homeschooling is because DH is the son of two retired public school teachers and he just can't reconcile himself to the idea of DS going anywhere but the local public school. He says he sees my point of view but thinks there are enough good things about public school in general and DS's school in particular that he doesn't want to give those things up. He's seemed to be on the verge of letting us try homeschooling a few times, and I have potential curriculum all picked out, but something always happens to sway him back to his point of view (this fall, it was a very positive teacher conference). I've actually been staying away from this and other homeschooling forums for the past couple months and trying to make the best of DS's school experience, but the approach of the end of the semester (and, therefore, potentially good time to make a change) has reignited the flame of my desire to homeschool.

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But because her sentences are "simple" - i.e. she doesn't throw in a ton of extra adjectives and adverbs - she is somehow not meeting the first grade benchmark. I am so enraged. Ironically, I had to teach my 4th grader to *stop* writing like this - all the padding, just to make a certain length - when I brought her home from p.s.

 

I had couple of my friends over last night for some tea and we got talking about parent-teacher conferences. We live in a small town where everybody knows everybody... Would you be surprised if I tell you that the majority of parents were told precisely this? Everybody was worried, until we all figured out we were being told the same thing (I was also told my younger boy needed to use more "describing words"). You would think by now whoever writes those standards would have figured out that maybe the standards aren't meeting the children and not the children "not meeting standards".

 

On the other hand, my older boy was using 10 adjectives with one noun last year. "Big, angry, hairy, hungry, mean and dirty animal....." He was praised for it. sigh.

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Dd was visibly upset again when I picked her up today - Why? the teacher yelled at her. Why? she doesn't know (or can't/won't say). She says she wants to come home. This has become an at least once weekly occurrence. She says she is scared of her teacher.

 

Then I asked her if she would rather be homeschooled or go back to her old school (a nearby public school she went to for K). She said she'd rather go back to her old school.

 

This does give me pause; is it a problem that she just wants to get away from her current situation, rather than actively wanting to be homeschooled? My older daughter really, really wanted/s to homeschool. Mo didn't want to homeschool until she started having a hard time with her teacher.

 

I feel like I have 3 choices right now: 1) to try and help her cope with her current situation through the end of this year (the second grade teacher is awesome, and/or homeschooling next year might be easier with my work situation, b/c both girls will be older); 2) to bring her home and homeschool her, even though I'm not convinced that she actively wants to homeschool (as opposed to escaping from her current classroom), and I worry she will miss friends, or 3) try to get her back into her old school (which has a great 1st grade teacher, but a bad 2nd grade teacher, making homeschooling a necessity next year).

 

What would you do?

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I would let her stay home until the second grade. This way she doesn't have to be in that classroom and she can figure out if she likes being homeschooled. She can always go back to the second grade next year if you decide she is better off at school.

I would only consider the third option if I knew for sure she (and you) would be happy home next year.

Did you talk to the teacher? Just curious how she is viewing the situation.

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Dd was visibly upset again when I picked her up today - Why? the teacher yelled at her. Why? she doesn't know (or can't/won't say). She says she wants to come home. This has become an at least once weekly occurrence. She says she is scared of her teacher.

 

Then I asked her if she would rather be homeschooled or go back to her old school (a nearby public school she went to for K). She said she'd rather go back to her old school.

 

This does give me pause; is it a problem that she just wants to get away from her current situation, rather than actively wanting to be homeschooled? My older daughter really, really wanted/s to homeschool. Mo didn't want to homeschool until she started having a hard time with her teacher.

 

I feel like I have 3 choices right now: 1) to try and help her cope with her current situation through the end of this year (the second grade teacher is awesome, and/or homeschooling next year might be easier with my work situation, b/c both girls will be older); 2) to bring her home and homeschool her, even though I'm not convinced that she actively wants to homeschool (as opposed to escaping from her current classroom), and I worry she will miss friends, or 3) try to get her back into her old school (which has a great 1st grade teacher, but a bad 2nd grade teacher, making homeschooling a necessity next year).

 

What would you do?

 

I wouldnt make a decision based entirely on her feelings. Yes, I would definitely take her feelings into accountt, but at her age, DH and I** would be the ones to decide what would be best for her, academically. What do think is best for her, academically?

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I wouldnt make a decision based entirely on her feelings. Yes, I would definitely take her feelings into accountt, but at her age, DH and I** would be the ones to decide what would be best for her, academically. What do think is best for her, academically?

 

 

Well, see, that's the thing . . . academically homeschooling would be great, but academics isn't my primary concern in 1st grade. Later, yes! We pulled dd10 from ps for academic reasons. But school is *so* great for Mo socially - it gives her a chance to shine, to be her own person, to make friends *not* under her sister's shadow. This is my hesitation, she is making such good friends and developing relationships with really sweet girls in her class, learning how to navigate getting along with other people. I would have a really hard time providing her with all this if she were homeschooled.

 

arggghhh, this is so tough! It was a much easier decision in dd10's case, ironically, even though homeschooling was a whole new thing.

 

DH and I talked a long time last night, and we decided that the next step is to make an appt. with the principal, sit down with her, and lay it all out, and ask for her advice . . . then listen. We'll go forward from there.

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Oh, I shamelessly stole "funny phonics" from Denise Eide of Logic of English. I have always been troubled by the way reading was taught in the public schools, without being able to put my finger on exactly what was wrong, and when I watched one of Denise's talks describing how phonics is often (sort of) taught at ps, I went "Eureka! This is what has always bugged me!" By funny phonics, she meant giving kids "rules" that don't apply in many (or most) cases, and then telling them that all the countercases are exceptions. Stuff like the "rule" "When two vowels go walking the first one does the talking" but "bread" is an exception.

 

In addition to these pseudo-rules & exceptions, my dd's school uses the Dolch sight word list - 300+ words they are supposed to have memorized and be able to "read" by the end of 2nd grade. They don't teach the kids to sound these out, even though many of them are easy to sound out - they teach them as sight words. They do an incoherent combination of sort-of phonics teaching plus sight words/whole language teaching. It is incoherent at best.

 

 

I have a close friend whose dd is in ps and she showed me the book of the words she is supposed to learn. I looked into a bit and found it is something that was created on a random teacher's blog for K sight words and that my dd could easily sound out almost all of them. I am baffled by this approach.

 

I am so sorry that you have to send your baby. I would be very distraught if I had to do the same. Hoping you can find a solution soon! Maybe barter with another local hs mom?

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Well, I had an excellent meeting with the principal yesterday. She took the situation (Mo being scared of her teacher) very seriously, and is going to work with us in finding a solution, which may involve the teacher modifying her style/behavior with Mo, or may result in Mo being offered a spot in a different class. I don't know what we will decide, but I really appreciated that the principal took the situation very seriously and is committed to trying to help us improve it.

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Yes, I am unhappy, particularly because my youngest didn't get in all the years of HSing before being sent to PS. It's very frustrating to me to see him come home with spelling words he could spell two years ago, and zero classics, history and geography.

 

That said, he does not hate it and is happy to get high marks on his work. We afterschool handwriting, geography, history but not in a rigorous way.

 

My older kids I don't mind so much because for them going to high school was a choice--they made it, they could unmake it if the annoying/stupid parts outweighed the good for them. So far they've chosen to stay in school, roll their eyes at the stupid stuff and focus on what they enjoy. And their grades reflect that, but the oldest got a good scholarship for college anyway and I am sure that our many years of homeschooling are what's helping her to succeed there.

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Well, I had an excellent meeting with the principal yesterday. She took the situation (Mo being scared of her teacher) very seriously, and is going to work with us in finding a solution, which may involve the teacher modifying her style/behavior with Mo, or may result in Mo being offered a spot in a different class. I don't know what we will decide, but I really appreciated that the principal took the situation very seriously and is committed to trying to help us improve it.

 

I am glad that this went well for you and that the principal listened.

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