Following the completion of the first 12-weeks of school we went to Juliana’s parent teacher conference last week. My first question – 12-weeks? Does this mean Kindergarten is 1/3 over already? Yes, it does. I had to hold back tears at that point because this year is going by much too quickly.
Spoiler alert – I am going to brag about my child now.
I was prepared to be told that she needs to put more effort into reading because she hates reading at home and I don’t see her reading at the level I think she should. However, we found out that she reads well at school and is testing at the end of the year / 1st grade level already. She will be put into a new reading group with more advanced assignments now and a different category of books to read.
Her assessments for math and writing included more of the same, she already completes many of the tasks that are slated for the end of the year. I asked questions looking for the areas of improvement, but there weren’t any.
Ms W said that Juliana is the child that every teacher wants to clone. She completely follows directions, pays attention to details, and is always eager to participate in class discussions. That last part wasn’t a surprise to me but apparently most Kindergartners are nervous about expressing their ideas in front of the class for the first part of the year. She told us that Juliana is self-confident and a good example to the rest of the class.
Her assignments are often held up for the rest of the class to see as an example of what they should be doing. We looked through project binders that included assigned drawings by each student. As I flipped through them I wasn’t surprised by Juliana’s art work – each picture was uniquely Juliana – detailed, colorful and complete. I was shocked by what I saw on some of the other pages – some were a small step above scribbles. With that as a comparison, I can understand why she is perceived to be ahead. Ms W told us that she used some of Juliana’s drawings as an example to other parents as well.
She had 3 full years of preschool so a lot of what they covered at the beginning of the year is review. Knowledge wise she would have been ready for Kindergarten last year, I don’t think she learned anything new in preschool last year – she wasn’t pushed at all. At age 6 she is emotionally prepared for school – she isn’t afraid to raise her hand, she makes better decisions and she is excited when she learns something new. I hope that this starting point sets the bar for her to continue to stay ahead and makes her want to be that good example.
I asked her why she reads at school but doesn’t like to read at home. She responded by telling me that she has to read at school because she is there to learn. I hope that as her reading skills improve she reads because she loves it not because it is the current task.
Juliana quote: “School is worth something, I just don’t know what is worth.”