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How would you handle this? - Page 3

post #41 of 60
good luck, at the least, you could ask to be notified immediatley if he misses a recess so you can adjust the afterschool schedule at home to make up for it. Do you have any waldorf schools nearby?
post #42 of 60
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Belia View Post
This. From reading the thread it's clear that there are several unanswered questions about exactly what happened and why. Just talk to the teacher with the intention of gathering more info, and go from there. Do more listening than talking, especially at the beginning.

Assume the best..... that the teacher has pure intentions and, worse case, this was an unavoidable one-time-thing OR simple miscommunication / misunderstanding. Act accordingly only if it becomes clear something more deliberate is going on.

Assume the best.
Thank God,for weekends!

This is where we are at! Thank you!
post #43 of 60
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by CarrieMF View Post
these games HELP kids read. We just finished a sight word blitz at our school. We use games to help REINFORCE sight words. Most help is needed in Grade 1 & 2 so we work with those kids more.

Right now you have 1 side of the story. For all you know this was something that ALL the kids were doing, they ran over & did it with your son over recess to get it over with. It may have been part of testing for report cards too.

It has happened ONCE, I"d ask at conferences for clarification about why it happened.

I'd also be more open to him having help with his reading. You may feel that going once a month may not help, but it may help him more than you think. It certainly wouldn't hurt him to go once a month. It may end up that he needs to go more often than once a month too.
Oh,ITA, that games are great learning tools, but not every dc learns the same, and my ds has never liked any kind of board/memory game.

When we get his spelling list and sight words for the week, I give him a "pre-test", to see what he already knows. He's always gotten 100% on his spelling tests-as in-every single test on Friday. If there is a word he misspelled or a sight word that he didn't know that Monday, he learns them by reciting them while bouncing a ball or jump roping. By Thanksgiving, he had his spelling words and sight words down pat by Wednesdays.

Thanks!
post #44 of 60
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PrincessDoll View Post
I am halfway through the thread but wanted to ask this while I continue reading.

Where exactly is he behind in reading? Was your son's teacher specific? Phonics, comprehension, vocabulary, etc? Also, did she mention if there was any way to get help before or after school? Or could he miss P.E. or miss recess on the days he is scheduled to have P.E.?
Good question!

Due to a combo of lack of interest in learning to read, AND vision problems(he wears glasses and sees a pediatric eye doctor), his eye doctor knew that we hsed, and said to put off reading lessons as long as I was comfortable. When he had his checkup last spring(Mid-April, I beleive), the eye doc gave us the green light for proceeding with phonics and being in front of the computer. So...he was really only learning his letters and sounds this past summer. His teacher hasn't said exactly where he is behind in reading compared to the class, but I could say where. It'sbeen in phonics-he just hasn't had the drill,drill,drill the other dc have had. His comprehension and vocabulary are ahead of many his peers-I just know this, as he is head to head with our 4th grader. Our family is big on reading aloud, and whenever I would read something like one of the Boxcar Children books, there were many times, when he would get the story before she did. When I hsed him,he would listen to books on CD that were for kids 8-10 and up-usually classics. I would ask him to retell a chapter, and he could easily, with greater detail than either of my older dc-he's always been very detailed oriented.

I'll ask the teacher the other questions...

Thanks!
post #45 of 60
I'm not that big on pushing reading too young AND I'm state certified teacher trained solely by a public university to teach in public schools (in other words, I was trained to believe that early reading is a good thing). I am not convinced that pushing a child to read at a young age who is resistant to it will produce desirable results. This whole "behind" talk at first grade is alarming to me....behind what? A system that is creating elementary school burnout in our kids? Thanks, but no thanks, I don't put much stock into that. It's not the teacher's fault, she is required to enforce the state mandated curriculum.

Sorry to go off on a tangent there. In respect to this situation, I hesitate to comment on the situation without knowing some of these simple answers. How is the teacher gauging he is behind...did she administer some sort of diagnostic exam or is she making this observation by comparing your son to other students in her classroom. Also, saying he's behind in reading is not helpful as reading encompasses several different learning skills.

Why is your son not interested in reading?
post #46 of 60


I was trained to be a teacher that thinks it is never too early!

But my personal philosphy is that to improve our education we should look at the countries where it works, and they start reading later than we do. It's sort of like teaching potty learning to a 9 month old. Earlier just means more issues. (Unless the child really wants to learn of course).
post #47 of 60
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by wifeandmom View Post
Ok, I've sat here and considered different ways of asking this without sounding snarky because that is NOT my intent in any way whatsoever. So here goes.

Is it possible that your assurances to help him in the area of reading aren't all that reassuring to the teacher due to the fact that you have been the one responsible for teaching him to read all along? Perhaps she is thinking that if your help was going to be sufficient, he wouldn't have come to 1st grade behind to begin with?

>>>>It is possible. I believe my interest and responsibilities in his education are extremely high. When first speaking with the *principal* about our dc going to this school, her words, were along the line of, so what if he can't read-that's what we do in first grade-teach the students to read!<<<<<

>>>I *highly* doubt this teacher questions my ability to teach my own dc. This is a small school, and it is no secret, that my other two children, are *very* ahead of their peers-so much so, that the principal asked us to consider skipping a grade for our oldest-now in sixth grade-hsed preschool-fifth grade. LOTS of families who hs start and stop for many, many reasons-for our family it was due to many factors-but certainly not because I wasn't capable of hsing my soon to be 1st grader. I don't think your question was "snarky", rather coming from a place of knowing nothing about homeschooling. That is my opinion when answering you.<<<


My guess is her reply to this would be that she HAS come to you with her concerns. Not once, but twice. Both times you have refused whatever help was offered, saying instead that you would help him at home.

>>>Actually not. It was us that came to her the first two meetings. Then again along with regular conferences. Yes, we refused help, if you read my pps, I explain why.<<<

Yet here we are almost 3/4 of the way through the school year, and he is still, at least according to the school, behind in reading.

>>>>It may be the teacher's opinion, that he is still behind, but most importantly, he has made amazing progress in such a short time.<<<<<



All that said, if he is truly reading "Nate the Great" with age appropriate fluency levels and comprehension, my biggest question would be what level they expect him to be reading at right now. I'd want to know where the average reader in his class is in relation to where he is. I'd want to know how many words per minute he's reading and how many words he's missing. I'd want to know what his scores are for re-telling the story, answering questions about what he's read, predicting what the story will be about, what comes next, etc.

Basically, I'd want a very detailed picture of where he is currently, where the average student in his class is currently, and how far apart the two are.

>>>>Yes, he is "truly" reading Nate The Great. And we want to know the answers to your many other questions,too. My opinion, is that he isn't as fluent as most in his class.<<<<

I would most assuredly not "tear into her" (or however you put it in your OP) in any way whatsoever about this recess issue. I would assume, until proven otherwise, that she has your child's best interests at heart. And if I felt the school did NOT have my child's best interests at heart, they wouldn't be going there any longer.

>>>Yeah, thank God, for weekends! This thread has helped us to gather info, so we are better able to ask specific questions. I am under stress, and like I said in my second post, I really wouldn't "rip into her." It'snot my way of communicating-usually.<<<<

The fact that this one missed recess issue made you and your DH so angry tells me that meeting with the teacher is something both of you probably need to be very careful with so as not to allow emotions overtake the meeting and ruin any chance of an agreeable resolution.

>>>>I couldn't agree more!<<<<

Honestly, if it were my child that was behind in reading, I'd be incredibly UNhappy that they had 3 recesses per day if one of those, or even two of those, could be given up for individual reading instruction time.
>>>>Ah,well, this is where we disagree. This is first grade, not middle school or high school. Our priorities, are that he is ENJOYING school, and enjoying learning itself. He is highly creative and highly athletic-these are things that come natural to him, and aspects of him, that we highly value. There are no red flags,what so ever, that he has any learning disability or hearing problem. He is under the care of an excellent eye doctor. He is a dc, that needs to move and be out in the fresh air,many times a day....these factors bring out his best in every area. I have no concerns, that he will thrive in school and in life. The fact that he comes from two college educated parents,lives in a very enriching home,visits the library at least once a week, reads everyday, along with being read to,leads me to believe that he will be more than fine.<<<<
post #48 of 60
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by PrincessDoll View Post
I'm not that big on pushing reading too young AND I'm state certified teacher trained solely by a public university to teach in public schools (in other words, I was trained to believe that early reading is a good thing). I am not convinced that pushing a child to read at a young age who is resistant to it will produce desirable results. This whole "behind" talk at first grade is alarming to me....behind what? A system that is creating elementary school burnout in our kids? Thanks, but no thanks, I don't put much stock into that. It's not the teacher's fault, she is required to enforce the state mandated curriculum.

Sorry to go off on a tangent there. In respect to this situation, I hesitate to comment on the situation without knowing some of these simple answers. How is the teacher gauging he is behind...did she administer some sort of diagnostic exam or is she making this observation by comparing your son to other students in her classroom. Also, saying he's behind in reading is not helpful as reading encompasses several different learning skills.

Why is your son not interested in reading?
Our ds IS interested in learning to read,NOW. But, when he was 5 and 6 yo,he wasn't. He was interested in being read to, and would sit for very long strectches while listening to books on CD. He is 7 now, and reads everything he can-signs, cereal box, newspaper, magazines,baseball cards,books,etc...
post #49 of 60
Blessed Mommy-

I just wanted to say that I appreciate how open you have been to the different questions, suggestions, and perspectives that others have given you on this topic. It is so easy in the coldness to cyberspace to take things personally or get offended or defensive, especially when strangers are discussing YOUR kid. I really admire your willingness to keep slogging through our collective opinions.
post #50 of 60
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Belia View Post
Blessed Mommy-

I just wanted to say that I appreciate how open you have been to the different questions, suggestions, and perspectives that others have given you on this topic. It is so easy in the coldness to cyberspace to take things personally or get offended or defensive, especially when strangers are discussing YOUR kid. I really admire your willingness to keep slogging through our collective opinions.
Aww,thanks!

Honestly, it has been challenging at times. I do see, that the thread kinda turned into me explaining/defending the hows/whys of ds's reading ability. My OP, was asking how others would handle a situation with a teacher doing something, that we the parents requested not happen. I feel like I spilled our guts.

All in all, this thread has been very helpful to us! Sometimes people questioning me,makes me step back and look at the many different povs,therefore, helping us to check w/i, and taking in ALL of the comments and questions....enables us to proceed with a much clearer mind.

Again,thanks!
post #51 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bunnyflakes View Post
I think that from the first meeting on you seemed very unwilling to work with the school on anything by "demanding" that he never, ever miss recess. You are taking away the teacher's right and ability to handle her own classroom, which is looked down on.

...is this a joke... ???
post #52 of 60
Blessed Mommy: You and your DH expressed yourselves very clearly about not revoking your son's recess for academic reasons. Twice. If that was something the teacher could not accommodate or control, she should have informed you. Twice. Or at the very least (assuming this instance was out of her hands, which we don't know yet) she should have contacted you immediately upon it occurring.

This isn't about reading or anything academic whatsoever: its about your rights as a parent being trampled on. You had the right idea to being with: rip away!

And as this wasn't a punishment (although a child will see it as such regardless), it most certainly WAS something that could have waited a day or until they contacted you about their intentions to disregard your twice-stated directive. I see zero excuse for this, and I would be quite concerned (and none too pleased) that my twice emphasized instructions about what does or doesn't happen to my child were blatantly ignored by persons I'm expected to trust with the responsibility of caring for and educating my child. Not to mention *paying*.

That said, I wouldn't go in with my metaphorical guns blazing until I knew exactly what transpired and what knowledge or role the teacher played in it.

I cannot wait to hear what you find out!
post #53 of 60
I have to admit I'm sitting here reading this thread in a bit of a state of shock. WHEN the heck did it become perfectly okie-dokie to take away a child's recess, especially for school work??? I can guarantee you in complete seriousness that if any single employee at my last place of business (union shop) had been told they needed to skip a scheduled break to catch up some work there would have been hell to pay. Children are typically higher energy and have shorter attention spans, and should be allowed MORE time than an adult, yet so many people think that's the appropriate way to "catch up". Wow, I have to say this whole perspective has me completely befuddled and I honestly can't say that I would *ever* see that as an allright alternative.

K.
post #54 of 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by blessed mommy View Post
Our ds IS interested in learning to read,NOW. But, when he was 5 and 6 yo,he wasn't. He was interested in being read to, and would sit for very long strectches while listening to books on CD. He is 7 now, and reads everything he can-signs, cereal box, newspaper, magazines,baseball cards,books,etc...
He sounds like he is developing at perfectly normal levels outside of this crazy state mandated curriculum that issues edicts across the board regardless of the fact that normal children develop at normal rates that vary from reading as early as 4 and as late as 7. It is also common for boys to start reading later than girls. Curiously, how many boys are in your son's class? Waldorf schools are schools that don't encourage reading until 1st grade and even though the children in these schools are "behind" their peers in mainstream education, by 4th grade, that gap is closed so completely and the children who were not pushed to read earlier than he/she was ready do not suffer from 'elementary school burnout' and want to read whatever they can. This is my worry about putting my son in insitutional schooling for 1st grade (I'm homeschooling him for now).

I hope I didn't digress too much for you. In answer to your question about how to handle the teacher, I still stand by my earlier position about questioning her in order to understand what exactly she is trying to convey, trying to get to the root of it all and find ways that your desires for your child to have his recess while meeting his needs for extra reading help can both be satisfied.
post #55 of 60
Thread Starter 
Fadedgirl and Sunshine, thanks for your support and input!

PrincessDoll,

I forgot to answer you about Waldorf schools around here. Nope-only Montessori schools.
I am very familiar with Waldorf,Montessori,and Charlotte Mason, and interestingly, ds just lost his first tooth this last fall. So, according to Rudolph Stieners's philosophy, ds is right on target with his reading explosion that we are witnessing.

Dh sent an email to ds's teacher last night-and because of an inservice, our conference was rescheduled to next week.

I'll give ya'll an update, when I have one.

Thanks!
post #56 of 60
I cannot wait that long!! :
post #57 of 60
Thread Starter 

Update.....

Here is my humble update!

We met with ds's teacher today. Let me just say, that those of you who were saying to just get more info....were spot on.

It turns out, that ds DID miss out on recess that day-but only five minutes of it. I'm sure to ds, it probably felt longer, but it was only five minutes.

Oddly, the teacher had explained, that he had been going to reading enrichment for six weeks(a total of six times). She said she had it in her notes, that we were in support of ds getting extra help, if need be-which is true-IF it was consistent help. What she failed to understand, was that we wanted to be kept up to date, on whether or not she felt he needed the extra reading help. (Very odd to us, that ds never mentioned it before, but it must not have been big enough news-until it cut into his recess time.) The day he missed out on some recess, was actually the last day he was going for extra help-she didn't feel like he needed anymore help,but wanted to send him up with the other dc, to get his folder and booklets-she said it was a one time deal of it cutting into his recess(the RS's schedule was messed up that day..). She was very apologetic about not keeping us informed-she said it was an oversight on her behalf, and it wouldn't happen again. Dh and I were impressed with her kindness and professionalism.

As an aside, ds's teacher said that ds has made such huge improvements since winter break, and his last reading test showed he was in the upper 1/3 of his class.

So, an exageration,an oversight.....no big deal.Everything is fine.

Thanks for all of your feedback!!
post #58 of 60
Congratulations to him on his progress. Sounds like he's doing well.

Glad you didn't go in with your metaphorical guns blazing.
post #59 of 60
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MattBronsil View Post
Congratulations to him on his progress. Sounds like he's doing well.

Glad you didn't go in with your metaphorical guns blazing.
Hey, thanks! You and me both....I guess one of my new years resolutions is "sinking in!":
post #60 of 60
Thanks for the update. I usually think 9 out 10 times, getting more information before forming a conclusive opinion on the sitution would diffuse so many unneccessary brawls both on a small scale level between friends and on a larger scale model between countries. Nonviolent communication at it's finest....lol
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