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 #41 of 60
2/21/09 at 7:16pm
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.
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.
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.?
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.
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?
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.
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.
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...