This past week, the kids came home with their first report cards and yesterday, I went to meet each of their teachers. All three brought home excellent report cards. I do have to say that I don't agree with the way the report cards are worded, and that it seems to me like pre-written comments that the teachers just cut and paste. Dragon and Fairy had the exact same comments for Drama & Dance for example "name of child communicates for different audiences and purposes with a high degree of effectiveness. Keep up the great work!" I realized that teachers are very busy, but it would be nice to have a bit more personal comments. I remember my report cards when I was little, it was completely personal, maybe a little too much...I always had "talks too much" or "could do better"!
I went by myself to the parent-teacher interviews while Dad stayed home with the kids. I wasn't sure what to expect, I wasn't concerned about their academic performances, having kept track of their progess since their start in October, but I was more curious to hear what the teachers will comment on. I prepared myself to be patient if I heard comments from them about how surprised they were that my children did well in school academically or even socially...
The first teacher I met was Dragon's. She told me how well he was doing, getting along with others. She even shared with me how she had been worried at first that he might get bullied by the other kids since he had never gone to school. I did correct her that he had attended JK and SK. She went through the report card a little bit, and told me about her surprise on his first day, when she had planned a math quiz for the class and decided to give it to him anyway, to see where he was at. He had done perfect on the quiz, and she told me that I had obviously been doing a very good job at home with him. She repeated that compliment a couple more times, assured me that Dragon was doing great, and that there were no concerns for him. I walked out of the first interview with a smile on my face...
The second meeting was with Fairy's teacher. She seemed a bit cold to me at first, but Fairy told me she was nice in the classroom. She told me how well Fairy was adjusting to the class, but that she was a bit too quiet, and not participating enough in oral discussions. On the positive side, she did say that she was doing very well in all subjects (she did get 7 "A" out of 14 marks, the rest were "B") and that she works well without supervision, and is always willing to help others.
She also told me that I had done a really good job at home with her! I thanked her, and I thought we would get back to Fairy's report card, but instead she wanted to know more about homeschooling, where did I get my curriculum from, did I follow the Ontario government recommendations? I didn't get the impression that she was "testing" me, she seemed to be genuinely interested in how it worked! After I explained to her briefly, she told me that it was obvious that I had enjoyed that, and that maybe I should consider going to Teacher's College! She even added that she thought I had missed my calling, but that it was never too late! One major point that I walked away with, besides the compliments (lol), was that grammar and spelling are not covered in school. I was shocked to hear that, I had kept on asking Fairy about it, but thought that maybe she wasn't recognizing it, because maybe it was just built in within her language arts subject. But the teacher told me that no, they don't do it, she agreed with me that it was ridiculous to not cover the basics, but that is what the government has set at this time, and she has to follow it. I told her that we will be doing grammar and spelling at home.
I left that meeting with an even bigger smile on my face, but at the same time, realizing how much I miss homeschooling, and knowing how important afterschooling is, to cover what is lacking in the classroom.
The last meeting was with Princess's teacher, and she started by saying how sweet and wonderful Princess is. She is also adjusting very well, participating, and helping others.
It was nice for me to finally see where my children are spending most of their days. I had been to the school, but not in their classrooms. I am proud of their great start!
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