Friday, September 12, 2008

First Week of School Wrap Up

  • The boys LOVE, love, love, love, love, love school. Any school that can do that for my kids is the right school for us. Seriously... we will milk this for all its worth and keep this going for as long as humanly possible. Two extremely active challenging spirited black boys who LOVE school....... well, all I gotta say is that this school is doing something right. Whatever they're doing, it works for us. So, I try to remember that when I'm feeling deeply conflicted about the fact that they are two of just a handful of black kids in the entire school... and... we're actually considering the possibility of keeping them there (i.e., sending them to a 'private' school) for the long-haul (i.e., beyond age 4. Because the truth is that for us this whole Waldorf School thing really started as an alternative to more traditional daycare/childcare and we didn't anticipate that we might want to keep them there for grade school... etc., etc., etc.). Bottom line: they LOVE school. Love it!
  • Kyle's prayer last night at bedtime: "Dear God, I really love my mommy and I really love my papi and I really love my school. Dear God I love my school so much God! I love my school! I love my classroom and my teacher and my friends at school. And I love it God! And thank you God so much that I can go to my beautiful River Valley Waldorf School. Amen!"
  • Owen's prayer the night before: "Dear God, I really love my whole family and I can't wait to go to school tomorrow! Please help me dream of my family tonight and make tomorrow come quickly so I can go to school! Amen!"
  • Separate classrooms is going shockingly well. I mean, shockingly well. If I had known it would go this smoothly I definitely would not have wasted so much time thinking and planning and strategizing and thinking and thinking and thinking about it all summer long. Who knew?! Apparently, it is a non-issue for Kyle and Owen. This is not how I expected it to go down. Of course, things could change. But my guess is that this will be how it is-- they're just ridiculously well-adjusted with stuff like this. Ridiculously. I don't even know what to make of it. They just roll with it.
  • Despite the problem that there are very few black kids in the school, K & O each have a handful of other non-white kids in their classes. I don't know to what extent they notice or care about this right now... but for me it is very important. I'm also very happy that they have kids in their classes from families with same-sex parents. To them this is all just 'normal' and I'm very grateful to be able to put them in that kind of environment at such a young impressionable age.
  • 1st Day of School -- Kyle's favorite part: "Helping cleaning up my classroom"; Owen's favorite part: "Ring around the rosie"
  • 2nd Day of School -- Kyle's favorite part: "Mixing and grinding the wheat making bread"; Owen's favorite part: "Hickory dickory dock the mouse ran up the clock"
  • 3rd Day of School -- Kyle's favorite part: "Eating the bread we made"; Owen's favorite part: "Making and eating bread"
  • 4th Day of School -- Kyle's favorite part: "Eating oatmeal for snack!"; Owen's favorite part: "Eating oatmeal for snack!"
  • 5th Day of School -- Kyle's favorite part: "Making and eating soup for snack and using a real knife to cut the vegetables!"; Owen's favorite part: "Eating rice with maple syrup on it!"
  • Tuesday there was a huge thunder storm here. I hadn't told either of the boys' teachers about their intense fear of thunder. So I called the school and asked to have the message passed along to the two teachers that K & O are sometimes very intensely afraid of thunder. After school both teachers reported to me that it had been no problem for either of them. On the ride home from school this was part of the conversation---
    O: Mommy, there was a big rain storm at my school today.
    H: Oh! Yes, there was at home too!
    O: I asked my teacher if I could go see my brother. Kyle, I asked my teacher if I could to see you my brother because I was worried I was so worried about my brother getting cracked by big thunder.
    K: Oh. You were worried Owen?
    O: Yes, I was so worried you would get cracked by thunder.
    H: Owen, what did your teacher say?
    O: She said I could see Kyle in just a minute but then she said no it was too late. And I was worrying about my brother.
    K: Then what happened Owen?
    O: I cried. And nobody hugged me. Because nobody knew I cried.
    K: Owen, it is o.k. Because I didn't get cracked by thunder Owen! I wasn't even scared! I didn't get cracked by thunder Owen! Look at me! I'm fine!!!
    O: Oh, yes! I know! So that is why. Now I'm not worried.
  • Driving home from school this afternoon I announced that the first week of school was done and since it was Friday that means no school tomorrow. Kyle exclaimed, "Oh MAN! I want to go to school everyday! I don't like 'S' days anymore. I like school days."

TGIF! Happy 'S' days everyone!


Anonymous said...

Kids that age are really oblivious to color. It is one of the amazing and great thing about early childhood. I've seen it in Head Start classrooms across the country and always leave joyful. Kids play dress up and some girls are daddies and some boys are mommies and color is irrelevant.

Kids at that age also love school, just love it. Things can change but if Waldorf is working then I say stay with Waldorf!

Chatter said...

I loved hearing about their first week at school. We live in a predominately white community and I worry about the effect it will have on Biruk. There was a black man at the hardware store the other day and I wanted to ask him how he felt living in a predominately white area. Is that appropriate? LOL. I just want the best for my son. How do we seek out black role models in these communities??

Your family is absolutely beautiful and I love your insight.

thanks for letting us in :)

mayhem said...

I can just IMAGINE the talking, talking, talking and the measuring of pros and cons regarding education decisions in YOUR household, Heather! :) I bet it's pretty intense!

Tracy said...

I'm so glad that things went well for you and K&O at school. We had similar success here, although we decided to keep my daughters in the same class for Kindergarten. Interestingly we had that same thunderstorm on Tuesday and I have one daughter who is also horribly afraid of thunder and I also called the school to let them know. As it turns out my daughter reported to me that she is only afraid of thunder at home and at school it isn't so bad. Whew.
They have also reported to me that they don't play with each other in school because they can do that at home and they want to hang with some other kids! This makes me feel much more secure already about separating them next year.

Ani said...

i loved reading the school week recap... how wonderful that they BOTH love school.