What are they doing now? Spring 2013! - Mothering Forums

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Old 03-01-2013, 08:28 AM - Thread Starter
 
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It's March 1st and spring will soon be here!  Yay joy.gif

 

So what is everyone up to now?

 

 

I know there are many posts around here about struggles with schools providing the right opportunity for kiddos.  In light of those posts, I am feeling super lucky right now!  I though I'd share the positive experience I had with DS's preschool this morning. 

 

DS is about to turn 4, and I asked if he could be moved to from the preschool to the elementary school for their young kid's K class starting this August.  This is a kindergarten class for kids whose birthday's don't quite make the cutoff for kindergarten, but most will turn 5 in Sept through November.  If kids do well, they are moved on to 1st grade the next year, if not - no big deal, they go on to the regular kindergarten class the next year. DS will be just shy of 4 1/2 when this class starts in August.

 

DS's preschool teacher did not hesitate a moment, and said that she thought it was a great idea.  In fact all the teachers in the school had taken a class on G & T kids and that class recommended moving kids forward to match their cognitive skills even if their motor and social skills would need some time to catch up. 

 

I am so happy to hear that the school has this philosophy.  I think it will suit DS well! 


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Old 03-01-2013, 11:17 AM
 
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Glad to hear about the KG placement, pranava! That sounds very hopeful.

 

We've been through a bit of reassessment in the past month or so with dd10. She used to be the youngest of four unschooled siblings, but in the past couple of years the others have all headed off to high school or college, and then this year my work hours increased a fair bit. So her days went from "beehive of sibling activity" to having to create her own fun a lot of the time, and even though she gets a fair bit of social activity out of the house, she is missing the stimulation of a bunch of gifted older siblings.

 

All of which has led her to begin to wonder about going to school herself. The problem being that the village public K-12 school, which has been quite innovative and flexible in meeting the older kids' needs, has a different administrative and funding formula for the K-6 population and a new principal who is quite strongly opposed to grade-skipping. My dd understood intellectually that the chances of her needs being met would increase dramatically once she was of an age that would allow her to be included in the "high school end" of the school (8th to 12th grades), but still in the past month or so she's become more and more adamant that she can't wait three or four years to go to school.

 

The Spanish (and Math, and Homeschool Liaison) teacher was happy to accept her in his 7th-through-10th-grade Introductory Spanish class during the 2nd semester, so she started taking that and is really enjoying it. Because Spanish isn't offered in the elementary school, and because there was a policy that homeschooled kids could join school kids for particular classes if it was okay with the teacher, the principal never had a chance to raise objections. I met with the teacher a couple of days ago and he said she's easily in the top third of the class and the other students love having her there. So that's going well.

 

(One of the 9th graders in the Spanish class asked my 14yo dd "How old is your sister?" and my 14yo for some reason assumed she was asking about eldest daughter and said "Nineteen." There was a look of incredulity, and then the penny dropped. "No, your younger sister." And dd realized her mistaken assumption and for some reason replied "Oh, she's nineteen too!" So this has become a standing joke at the school. Youngest dd is referred to as being a curiously small 19-year-old, which just puts a nice silly spin on the fact that she's 10 in a classroom with 13- and 14-year-olds. No one seems to mind.)

 

She did 4th grade standardized testing with the school kids over the first two weeks of February, and ended up being included in a number of the regular classroom activities as well as the Valentine's Day Elementary School Dance, and was then invited to be part of the week-long theatre intensive the Grade 4/5/6 class is doing this week. Somewhere in the midst of all this school-inclusion, her desire to attend school full-time next year peaked. She was clear about it: even if they insisted she be placed in an unmodified 5th grade program next year, she was leaning strongly towards attending. She wanted a one- to two-week trial in the classroom this spring to confirm that this was the right choice.

 

I'm so glad I took her seriously and went along with it. We started talking about how it would work, when we could get her that trial period, etc. etc. Because once she began looking realistically at school as a possibility, she found all sorts of reasons why it wasn't so great after all. She made it through half a day of the theatre intensive before telling the teacher that it wasn't really working for her, that it was taking too much time away from the other things she wanted to do with her week, and thanks for offering to include her, but it just wasn't a good fit ... and sorry about the horrible behaviour of the other kids in the class. That was the biggest thing: how frustrated she felt on the teacher's behalf by the group behaviour dynamics. How the kids she quite liked one-on-one turned into this cliquey hierarchical peer-oriented mob in a large group situation. How much time needed to be spent dealing with their troubles. Not that she doesn't have some compassion for the kids who are problematic, but she realized how tough it is to deal with juggling their needs day in and day out.

 

So we're back to Plan A, which involves gradually building a case for radical acceleration beginning at the high school level. And I'm feeling tremendous relief about that. It'll allow her to continue to pursue some of the things that help balance her intellectualism: outdoor sports, gymnastics and violin. She can continue to work through her 8th grade math and science curriculum and study human physiology and learn about philosophy and all the other things she is interested in. And she can continue to hold fast to the healthy social relationships she has with music friends, homeschoolers and with various kids around town without being sucked into the cliquey morass of agemate-based large-group socializing.

 

So, she's thriving in Spanish. She's rocking her 8th grade math curriculum. She scored off the charts in the 4th grade standardized testing. She's performing "Meditation from 'Thaïs'" by Massanet on a recital this weekend. She's put in tons of hours XC and downhill skiing, has moved up to the most advanced non-competitive class in gymnastics (we can't do competitive for logistical reasons), is running every other day and doing a girls' fitness video program religiously four times a week and is getting so strong and fit! And she's feeling really connected to the handful of other local homeschoolers now that she's decided she'll stay amongst their ranks for another couple of years.

 

Things are back in a good space with her.

 

My older kids (14, 16 and 19) are all doing well in their various school programs. Dd14 is on the honour roll after her de facto grade skip (she's still officially registered in 9th as per the principal's insistence, but all her academic courses are 10th grade academic-stream). Ds, torn between his love of Fine & Liberal Arts and his passion for computers, seems to be leaning towards the tech sector lately. He's officially been appointed Student IT Rep at his school, which gives him privileges to do a lot of the day-to-day tech support on the school's computer network, and has given him a pretty bright, fun mentor in the person of the school district's new head of IT. He's decided to do an Independent Directed Study major project for his senior year in computer programming, and is toying with taking on leadership of the Community Computer Gaming Club when the middle-aged current president moves away in June. It will be a huge and multi-faceted job for a teen and will stretch him in plenty of directions. I think oldest dd is doing well at college. She placed fourth in her music school's annual Romantic Concerto Competition (as a freshman!) and is getting more and more paid gigs which are helping pay the bills. She's found a violin she loves which I think we'll have to buy instead of replacing the minivan. She's been playing on a borrowed instrument for the past year and we need to return it soon; her "student violin" that we bought her when she was 13 is no longer anywhere near sufficient for a kid who is now playing at a professional level.

 

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Old 03-01-2013, 08:59 PM
 
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DD#1 (age 16) is doing well in her first semester of college and is adjusting to the changes needed in organization better than I had expected. She does need support (she is on the autism spectrum as well as being gifted) but things are going well enough that she will continue down this path (this semester was an experiment). Her favorite classes are anthropology and art.

 

DD#2 (age 14) is making peace with our big public high school, which she just switched to at  semester. She's worked out her precollege game plan focusing on math and science. She's also trying to figure out how to always have a PE class and culinary course while getting in all the academics that she needs. She would really prefer to not take any English, foreign language or history classes and just rotate between math, the gym, science, a commercial kitchen, and more math. orngtongue.gif

 

Both girls are enjoying the heck out of DD#1 having a drivers license and a car and .......

an ATM card. scared.gif
 


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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Old 03-01-2013, 10:29 PM
 
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Wow, this must be a cultural difference I wasn't aware of. Here kids are lucky to get a driver's license by 17.5, and even then it's a limited license, and it would be an unusual kid who had a car. On the other hand where I live kids pretty much all have ATM cards by age 13 or 14, and many, including mine, get them around age 10 or so. Our banking institutions have ATM cards well set up for kids and we're a very cashless society.

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Old 03-01-2013, 11:53 PM
 
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Wow, this must be a cultural difference I wasn't aware of. Here kids are lucky to get a driver's license by 17.5, and even then it's a limited license, and it would be an unusual kid who had a car. On the other hand where I live kids pretty much all have ATM cards by age 13 or 14, and many, including mine, get them around age 10 or so. Our banking institutions have ATM cards well set up for kids and we're a very cashless society.

Miranda

 

It's pretty regional in the U.S. too. None of my nieces and nephews were driving before 18. High schools in our area no longer provide drivers ed. To get a permit, you have to take a written course privately, pass the test, have the permit a minimum of 6 months, take professional driving courses, drive 50 hours with family and then pass the driving test. Just that process can costs hundreds of dollars. Then, they get their license but they can't drive their friends for a full year (unless they are 25 or older.) They can't drive at night. Insuring my DD with a "good student" discount as a part-time driver will almost double our bill..... let's not talk about what it would be if she had her own car and it is under 15 years old. Factor in gas? Yeah, it's not so common for kids to be driving at 16 and even rarer for kids to have their own cars. Certainly different from when I was growing up.


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Old 03-02-2013, 12:00 AM
 
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it's not so common for kids to be driving at 16 and even rarer for kids to have their own cars. Certainly different from when I was growing up.

 

What about the debit card thing? Are kids usually well into their teens before getting one? That surprised me more than the driving thing.

 

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Old 03-02-2013, 01:00 AM
 
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DD just turned 16 and seems to be at the start of another developmental growth spurt. I really didn't think we'd be seeing this again. She can't read enough. Can't write enough. Her conversation is intense and her need for discussion somewhat frenzied. If I hadn't seen it in her several times before, I'd be worried. She's in her second semester at the community college and quite happy. She opens "Romeo and Juliet" playing Juliet end of the month. She was approached by a small regional theatre to direct a staged reading of "A Midsummer Night's Dream" for their outdoor summer series and she is beside herself. She found a writing partner and they are currently working on a one act play. She's excited for our university tours over spring break and gearing up for the crazy schedule that seems to nail us every spring.

 

DD 12, unfortunately, hasn't been quite so happy. He's been bullied steadily from 3rd grade. We've made a ton of changes and really thought things were getting better but as it turns out, DS was just getting better at hiding it. Last week he was pushed to his limit and punched another child (a notorious bully of many children) in PE. The child's parents were furious but the staff were all clearly on DS's side. I had to keep him home a couple days but they chose not to write him up and so it won't be on his record and he won't be ineligible for band. DS was a total wreck and felt like the very worst person on the planet. He came back to school with a hero's welcome which didn't make him feel better. DS doesn't want to leave his academic classes or the music program. Those teachers have very good control of their classes and the kids in those classes aren't the issue. It's just PE when there are 60 kids spread over 3 fields with only a single teacher to supervise.  So, the school gave us the option of home study for PE and we jumped at it. We're all actually excited about it. We've been looking for the needed motivation to do a more formal exercise program as a family. It was a really rough week in our house but at least ended with the opening of a play, a party with his best buddies and some hope for a better future.


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Old 03-02-2013, 01:19 AM
 
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What about the debit card thing? Are kids usually well into their teens before getting one? That surprised me more than the driving thing.

 

Miranda

 

Honestly, I don't know what is normal. My kids got accounts early because they were working in theatre and making money. It was state law that they have accounts in their own name (though I had to be on the account too for them to have a card.) DD got a card at 10 but didn't start to use it until 13. DS got one at 9 but at 12, has never used it... still prefers to go into the bank to get cash on those rare occasions he's willing to spend it.

 

In your area, do these kids all have their own accounts with cards or are they getting cards attached to their parents account? I guess I don't know many 13-year-olds who have enough money for a debit card. Even on birthdays, "cash" gifts tend to come in form of gift cards.


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Old 03-02-2013, 09:27 AM
 
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The credit union here has lovely accounts for kids (with parent signature) with no service charges. So I'm not sure that you need to have much money to make it worthwhile. My youngest normally has maybe fifty dollars in her account, the result of allowance savings. Sometimes if she's out of town with others for gymnastics and I'll electronically transfer $10 into her account in the morning so she can pay for her meals with her debit card. I think many families do similar things, whether via an allowance arrangement or not, putting money in their kids' accounts for school lunches, field trips, clothes-shopping or whatever so that the kids can manage the actual spending at point of sale. It makes it super easy to see how and where the money was spent, because you can see every purchase online.

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Old 03-02-2013, 10:30 AM
 
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The credit union here has lovely accounts for kids (with parent signature) with no service charges. So I'm not sure that you need to have much money to make it worthwhile. My youngest normally has maybe fifty dollars in her account, the result of allowance savings. Sometimes if she's out of town with others for gymnastics and I'll electronically transfer $10 into her account in the morning so she can pay for her meals with her debit card. I think many families do similar things, whether via an allowance arrangement or not, putting money in their kids' accounts for school lunches, field trips, clothes-shopping or whatever so that the kids can manage the actual spending at point of sale. It makes it super easy to see how and where the money was spent, because you can see every purchase online.

Miranda

 

Our banks offer similar accounts for minors. Mine have free accounts with no minimums and I think that's pretty normal. Most credit unions offer free accounts for children's groups too like Girl Scouts. Some even take deposits weekly from elementary schools... sorta cute watching kids deposit 50 cents lol. The debit card might be rarer in our area now that I think about it though. My kids friends seem to work entirely in cash. My own kids still prefer to deal in cash. They like to pull out what they are willing to spend on an outing so not to risk going over... but then, my kids are remarkably cheap lol. Maybe other kids are using them and I don't know it.

 

I wonder if some of it has to do with ID. Most U.S. kids don't have a valid state issued ID until they drive. You can get a state identification card at any age easy and cheap (my kids have them and it makes life so much easier) but we've not come across other kids with them. Of course, debit cards use pins... 


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Old 03-02-2013, 01:36 PM
 
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DD#2 (age 14) .... would really prefer to ...... just rotate between math, the gym, science, a commercial kitchen, and more math. orngtongue.gif

 

 

Meant to comment on this. I take it she is feeling caught up and more confident about her math skills now? That's fabulous that she has rediscovered her enjoyment of math at the new school!

 

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Old 03-02-2013, 07:44 PM
 
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I'll chime in!

 

DD1 is 3.75.  I haven't really shared much about her in my introduction threads so I'll do that here.  She is not like some of the kids I read of here who are so profoundly gifted, but I think she is pretty amazing.  From birth she was the most awake, aware, zen little baby.  all her physical milestones were early. Walked (ran, haha) at exactly 9mo. Was always very early with all her motor skills and developmental milestones.  Except talking.  She was a SILENT little baby!!  She said a few words, i.e. mama dada, book but rarely used them.  But she very obviously knew exactly what you were saying and could follow complicated instructions. She was always very happy to entertain herself for huge chunks of the day with books and toys.  As soon as she could sit up she would sit with her piles of books for hours.   She was a curious, happy, independent, darling baby and toddler.  She started grilling me on the alphabet around 15 months, constantly bringing me any book with letters in it, pointing to them over and over and over for me to say their names.  Around 18 months she finally started talking....because she wanted to say her alphabet!!   And once she could flip through a book and read out all the letters that was enough, she didn't want to say anything else! lol.gif She finally started talking at around 2.  After her alphabet obsession came numbers.  And then on to many other obsessions.  

 

She is like a bottomless bucket, so thirsty for knowledge that you have to keep pouring it in.  Something will strike her interest and simple answers don't cut it, she will hound you until you have satisfied her. Sometimes I cannot believe the things she processes and understands. Gravity and force and energy and stars...how can a 3 year old understand these things at all? And yet, she does...more than many adults I know.  

 

Current obsessions:  everything space (currently the formation of stars and the aurora borealis/solar storms are hot topics), anatomy (bones, muscles, the circulatory system and lungs in particular), volcanoes, whales,  the periodic table, rocks and crystals, Australia.

 

This week's particular obsession for her has been bacteria and viruses and how they are destroyed by white blood cells.  She saw one little illustration in a Human Body book and suddenly NEEDED TO KNOW ALL ABOUT IT.  She needed me to tell her everything I knew about red and white blood cells and bacteria and asked if I could find her books and videos.... when she was painting today she was painting bacteria being engulfed by white blood cells, along with red blood cells...the kid can spin into serious obsession pretty fast.

 

She isn't reading on her own yet.  She can spell and read a bunch of words though and loves to practice writing.  She can count objects, count verbally,  and read numbers over 100, not sure how high...she has an amazing sense of patterns and geometry, can do some addition, subtraction, division etc, mostly quite simple but she desperately wants to learn more...I think  it isn't something that will come to her through osmosis, but with some practice it will click very quickly for her.  

 

She has always been very, very emotionally mature.  Like...levels of empathy and sympathy far beyond her age.  A real concern for doing the right thing and treating people well.  She follows rules and directions..... I don't have to worry that she will do things she isn't supposed to. Really. It is SO rare.  She is the kindest little heart. She expresses herself so well, makes  interesting, considerate conversation. All of that might sound a little idealized...she has her moments, to be sure...but truly...she is everything you could hope for.  So happy and easy and wonderful.  

 

She also loves creative play, art, music, dancing, knock knock jokes, Thomas the train, swimming... just a happy girl heartbeat.gif

 

We haven't had her tested in any way obviously....but I guess, given all of that ^^^ we are pretty sure she is some level of gifted.  I went into parenting very "la la la, nature walks and gentle stories!" but now I have a child who pores over books about viruses and nebulae and would LOVE it if I spent all day giving her math problems and worksheets.....It has definitely been outside what I thought my comfort zone was...or what I thought young children should be/do.  

 

********

 

So, the issue on my mind right now is that last week I realized all but 2 of her preschool classmates are old enough that they are registered for school in September. I had NO idea.  They all seem so much younger than her.  She has gotten close to two of the kids, who I did know were going on to school/were older than her, and they were the only ones who were on a level she could play and have fun with.  She is such a fun loving and social girl, and really does play well with all ages but of course she wants kids who are closer to her own level you know?

 

My concern is that this means that next year all of the children will be even younger than she is. She goes 2 mornings a week now and I was considering increasing that but now I'm not sure if I will bother.  Preschool is a purely social activity for her  I mean, she doesn't need to learn her colours or numbers, ykwim? She enjoys the games and experiments and play they do, and she loves their teacher...but it definitely won't be filling her social needs.  Right now all of our playdates are with much younger children, most of her good friends are older and started school THIS year so we rarely get to see them....the little friends she made this year will be gone next year.....I just don't know how to find some social interaction for her for next year.  Right now I'm thinking I might try and find some homeschooling events that happen through the week and meet some families with children her age or a bit older who aren't in school? Call ourselves homeschoolers for a year?  I feel like we are most days, with the amount of learning I facilitate!!!

 

I would almost be tempted to start her in school early if it were an option.  But really, I am looking forward to the next year with her at home, it goes so fast.

 

So that is not really a terribly serious concern...I'm sure she will be fine and  thrive...but I just so want her to be happy...and the fact that I'm already worried about her feeling lonely for friends who get her, in PRESCHOOL...well, it just makes me worry about school.  


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Old 03-02-2013, 07:53 PM
 
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DD2 is 16 months and when I first posted a few weeks ago I said how intense she is...well, that is still true!  The past year has been the absolute hardest of my life.  No lie.  Emotionally intense, always unhappy, usually screaming, never sleeping, attached to me like glue...that has been DD2.  BUT!!!  We finally had ENOUGH and put her in her crib in her own room (really, contrary to everything in me, I loved cosleeping but NOBODY WAS SLEEPING) and like magic.....she is a new child.  That sounds dramatic...but it is like I got my baby back...she was a happy, funny little baby for about 4 months then she went CRAZY ANGRY for a year...and now?  She's back!!!  She is sleeping again!  And she is laughing!  And smiling!  And playing!  It is.....nothing short of miraculous.  I could actually cry, it is such a relief.  

 

And you know...all of a sudden?  I see all kinds of little things that she was too busy screaming to do before.  Things that DD1 did.  She is playing independently all day.  Very intently and creatively.  She is obsessing over books and is hounding me to tell her the names of the planets in this one picture of the solar system, over and over and over again.  She said a new word this week... Saturn (Sahzurn),  while pointing to the right one luxlove.gif She was using her spoon to follow along with a complicated drum part in a song we listen to, the other day.  Just little things that remind me SO much of her sister.  So maybe I'll have another one on my hands.  Or maybe not...I'm just thrilled to have my happy funny girl back!

 

She too has always been  ahead physically.  Was climbing stairs at 6 mo, walked at 8mo, climbing playground equipment at 12 mo etc.  always ahead on her dev  milestones, always struck me as smart like her sister, just so busy being unhappy instead of calm 

 

If you have actually read through all of this , thank you Sheepish.gif


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Old 03-03-2013, 09:09 AM
 
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What'snextmom so sorry to hear about your son's experience. Glad there was a good resolution.

DD is going to be 4 in a week! We have been reading The Wizard of Oz in anticipation of going to see the ballet this afternoon. It's been fun sharing it with her. She is still into writing (with spelling mostly dictated) and is very slowly beginning to show a very emerging interest in sounding out words on her own. I'm hoping she doesn't take off with this at least until the fall because they do focus on it a bit for the 4 year olds at her preschool and I have a sense that it will be best if she doesn't have it all figured out already.

I've been wondering if I should keep her at her current preK next year. They have not exactly been very forthcoming with info about what she has been doing (though it is a large class) and it concerns me that everyone there thinks she is shy. (In every other context she is the opposite of that.) But she can't say enough about how much she loves it there and gets upset when I talk about looking at other schools so - I guess she's happy.

My younger DD(16 months) is so much fun! She is a great communicator and is just beginning to combine words. She loves playing with her big sister and it's so cool to see how much they are really able to play together in ways that are mutually satisfying. She love singing songs and is beginning to memorize books. She 'reads along' and likes to 'show off' by anticipating what happens next. She is clearly quite proud of her ability to do this. :-)
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Old 03-03-2013, 08:28 PM
 
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Originally Posted by moominmamma View Post

 

Meant to comment on this. I take it she is feeling caught up and more confident about her math skills now? That's fabulous that she has rediscovered her enjoyment of math at the new school!

 

Miranda

 

I'm surprised you remember!  (Any one wanting to catch up on our change of schools and math drama can read the beginning of the story in this thread http://www.mothering.com/community/t/1367136/back-to-the-drawing-board-update-post-29)

 

The first week at the new school DD#2 was just in shell shock. She knew it would be more academic, but she didn't realize how far behind she was. The second week she really started working -- 2 or 3 hours a night. My DH helped her a lot -- when he was out of town, they studied together via Skype. She met with her teacher multiple times. It took her about 4 weeks of very solid, very hard work, but then she was totally caught up. And now that she is caught up, she catches on to the concepts quicker than most the class and can immediately do more things with them. She LOVES her math teacher and commented that "her brain works just like mine!"  Her teacher is pretty wowed by her too, she's never had a student come in so obviously behind (early grades were all Fs) and pull to the top so fast.

 

And now my DD loves math again love.gif

 

With a good teacher, its just like playing a game for her.

 

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Originally Posted by whatsnextmom View Post

 

It's pretty regional in the U.S. too. None of my nieces and nephews were driving before 18. High schools in our area no longer provide drivers ed. To get a permit, you have to take a written course privately, pass the test, have the permit a minimum of 6 months, take professional driving courses, drive 50 hours with family and then pass the driving test. Just that process can costs hundreds of dollars. Then, they get their license but they can't drive their friends for a full year (unless they are 25 or older.) They can't drive at night. Insuring my DD with a "good student" discount as a part-time driver will almost double our bill..... let's not talk about what it would be if she had her own car and it is under 15 years old. Factor in gas? Yeah, it's not so common for kids to be driving at 16 and even rarer for kids to have their own cars. Certainly different from when I was growing up.

 

It is a regional thing. We live in a very spread out city with poor public transportation. Most of our state is rural (range land is less than a mile from my house!) Kids can get a permit here at 15 1/2 by passing a written test. Getting the permit is no big deal.

 

They have to have the permit for a minimum of 6 months and have at least 30 hours of practice driving in a variety of situations, including at least 10 hours after dark. Then they receive a limited license -- they can only have one teen who is not a sibling in their car at a time. Drivers under 21 who are caught driving with any amount of alcohol, even under the DUI limit, have their licenses revoked until they are 21. I think their licenses are also revoked for any conviction involving illegal drugs. Driving is definitely seen as privilege for people until 21.

 

The public schools here still do drivers ed, but DD wasn't in a public school so we paid for private driving lessons. They were AWESOME and we will pay for the same course for our other DD instead of having her do the one at her school. Completion of the private class got a huge discount on insurance, so much so that it will pay for itself in her first year of driving.  (the class was very expensive, but in the end, worth it)

 

We priced a bunch of different scenarios for insurance. We were surprised to find that it was about the same to either just add her to our existing cars or to get her a very cheap car and not have comprehensive insurance on it. What is most common here is for teens who have their own car to have one that is worth $1,000 to $2,000,  and have minimum insurance on it -- just what is required by law. 

 

We went for a little nicer used car and full coverage. This also coincided with her moving from a private school to community college, so month to month, she is actually costing us less right now. (that's not why we changed her schools, it was just a coincidence that let us get her a little nicer car)

 

The other thing that happened is that I went back to work, so I'm out of the business of driving the kids around during the day. She couldn't have switched to community college AND me started my new job without her driving. It just wouldn't have worked. (DD#2 is taking the bus to school).

 

I really don't know what % of teens here drive at what age or have their own cars -- suburban highschool parking lots are full of students cars, but highschools closer in don't have the space and don't tend to allow kids to drive to school, but tend to have better accessibility through public transportation.

 

We know very few teens with ATM cards, and they are all older teens. Our 14 year old really doesn't have a use for one -- she has a cash based life. It wasn't a big deal to get one for DD#1, and it's a free account. It's associated with our account so it shows up when we log in on line, and any overdrafts would just come out of our account. But it is her own account and she is learning to budget and balance. thumb.gif


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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Old 03-08-2013, 11:00 AM
 
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My almost 14 DS has now completed 9 college courses with straight A's at the local state university. He is also excelling at his Oak Meadow high school courses. Musically, he has been busy with rehearsals and performances. He has soloed with 4 local orchestras this season, one of which is a professional one. He played a full house concert in February and will do another one this month with a good friend pianist. His piano trio played on From the Top. He is excited about an orchestra tour this summer, and then two summer festivals. Next week DS will play in a masterclass for Lynn Harrell--how exciting is this. We will also hear Mr. Harrell perform a contemporary cello concerto with the BSO on Thursday.

 

My 11 year old is in a good place right now. Other than being a bit bored in school, she is really happy, has an amazing social life, and is just joy to have around.

 

My 7.5 year old got tested this winter due to writing and other under-performance issues at school. His overall IQ of 138 puts him in the gifted range (he was off the charts in certain areas and below average in others like block design), and now he is clearly 2E as well, with mild dyslexia, visual perception problems, fine motor control problems and moderate anxiety. We are hoping the school will support the psychologist's recommendations for extra time on tests, letting him use a computer to type (instead of hand-write) and receive counseling and OT services at school.

 

It is great to hear from everyone here!

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Old 03-20-2013, 09:44 AM
 
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DD, 16 y.o. and in 11th grade at a performing arts high school, just finished directing a play at school. It was a little stressful because they lost rehearsal time due to spring break and some poor planning by the school for rehearsal space and scheduling. She says she's happy with the outcome, and I've heard good things, but I think she's quietly a little disappointed. She enjoys directing. She has the organizational ability, drive and people skills for the job. 

 

This summer she will be studying (English and World History) and volunteering in Africa, so she has been preparing by doing some research on her own.  At dinner, the rest of us are routinely entertained with fascinating and fun facts for the day.  

 

The reading and book threads have made me a little nostalgic for those lovely children's books. I'm afraid that we are long past those books now  lol.gif. DD has started a book club with her friends. The first book that they have chosen is On the Road by Jack Kerouac. She is also reading Heart of Darkness for English class. She is trying to choose a post-colonial novel for her final big project of the year. She keeps rejecting all my suggestions of some of my favourite novels, lol. I also urged her to read Things Fall Apart, since it is on the curriculum for her English class in Africa and she will be able to "double dip" by studying it now. She feels it wouldn't be honourable, so she's passing on the chance to lighten her workload a little. Instead, I think she has settled on The Bone People by Keri Hulme. It's a book that I have been meaning to read it for a long time now, so I'm actually looking forward to reading it too and having some good discussions with her about it. 

 

DS, 19 y.o., continues in his second year at university. All goes well with his studies. He also continues to play gigs with his bands. He's played out-of-town venues now including a recent magazine launch party. They are waiting on the first test pressing of their vinyl record. Inspired by DD's international studies trip to Africa this summer, he has started researching a similar trip for next summer (2014).  He just finished reading The Commitments by Roddy Doyle. 

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Old 03-26-2013, 01:02 PM
 
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My 14 year old dd, is enjoying her second semester of Russian at the state U.  She has been highly amused by incidents in class surrounding her age.  The professor announced in class that they were to state their age in Russian, but of course they didn't have to be honest about it.  So, a round of 18, 19, 18, 20, etc until they got to my daughter who said she was 14.  The professor clarified, 'you're trying to say you are 14?', My daughter answered, yes.  So, the professor said, okay does anyone else want to spice it up and say they are something other than 18 or 19?    On the way out a boy asked if she was really 14, and she said, yes she was.  A couple of classes later and a girl asked her, so you didn't really mean you're 14 right?  I went and asked the professor and she said you were 19 or so.  My daughter told her, no she was really 14. LOL  At least she didn't tell her that she was 13 last semester.  She now finds it very funny that her entire class will know she is 14 but her professor still thinks she is 19. 

 

She has been busy creating lots of digital art, working on a webcomic with a friend across the country, working on calculus, physics, linguistics, and latin along with her U class.  She is enjoying a local homeschool art class and volleyball team.  She is preparing to run her first 5K with me in a few weeks, and riding horses to get ready for show season.    She is busy but seems happy.  One of her best girlfriends just qualified for Intel international science fair, so she is excited for her and stoked to get some of her own projects going.  Another friend has talked her into a urban gymnastics/parkour type class, but her friend's mom and I have talked them into waiting until summer for that as it is a bit of a commute.   She is also planning on getting her learner's permit this summer.  I'm not overly thrilled with the idea of her driving, but lots of time for practice before sending her out on her own sounds good. 

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Old 04-04-2013, 10:58 PM
 
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So I don't know how out of the ordinary any of this really is but - enough that I'm not comfortable sharing in real life and I need a place to brag about my 16 month old because she is just amazing me this week.   We were out and she said she had to go poop.  I took her to the toilet but she didn't want anything to do with it (we do a very laid back version of EC but she uses a small potty).  When we got home - at least an hour later - I had her sit on the potty and she went right away.  I kind of think she held it the whole time.  

 

Today, while I was pushing her on a swing at a park she counted to 10.  

 

I was reading a book to her (Bear Snores On) in which a bear gets sad and a mouse cheers him up.  She has started to give kisses at the transition - anticipating that the mouse is about to do the cheering-up.  It's super sweet!  She does this during other books too but it doesn't seem quite as obvious that that is what's happening in this book as in some of the others.

 

Thanks for letting me share.  :-)

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Old 04-05-2013, 06:37 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mom2ponygirl View Post

My 14 year old dd, is enjoying her second semester of Russian at the state U.  She has been highly amused by incidents in class surrounding her age.  The professor announced in class that they were to state their age in Russian, but of course they didn't have to be honest about it.  So, a round of 18, 19, 18, 20, etc until they got to my daughter who said she was 14.  The professor clarified, 'you're trying to say you are 14?', My daughter answered, yes.  So, the professor said, okay does anyone else want to spice it up and say they are something other than 18 or 19?    On the way out a boy asked if she was really 14, and she said, yes she was.  A couple of classes later and a girl asked her, so you didn't really mean you're 14 right?  I went and asked the professor and she said you were 19 or so.  My daughter told her, no she was really 14. LOL  At least she didn't tell her that she was 13 last semester.  She now finds it very funny that her entire class will know she is 14 but her professor still thinks she is 19. 

 

 

My son has had a similar experience in French, the professor asked everyone for his/her age, and everyone was chocked when DS said 13. He acts older and did a small research project on genders in French vs. Spanish, but still...:) Your story made me smile!

 

Best course so far in this respect was an online health course, where no one knew his age and the professor completed him on his maturity. LOL!

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Old 04-08-2013, 08:27 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Just wanted to say how much I enjoy reading about the amazing independent confident teens you all have parented.  I wish my guy could stay litlle forever, but you make me look forward to the amazing adolescent he will become.  Thanks for sharing!


Life is strange and wonderful.  Me read.gif, DP lady.gif, DS (3/09) blahblah.gif , 3 dog2.gif  and 4 cat.gif

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Old 04-08-2013, 11:10 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moominmamma View Post

What about the debit card thing? Are kids usually well into their teens before getting one?

 

Just thought I'd follow up on my own questions, as I recently spent a week and a half in the US. Now I get it: you Americans use cash and credit cards a lot more than we Canadians. In Canada I would say that a significant majority of day-to-day purchases are made with debit cards. Anything more than about $5, especially if made by someone under 40, is likely to be a debit purchase. I think I'm fairly typical as a Canadian consumer: I do a lot of small shopping errands in the course of a week, and yet a $10 bill in my wallet can stay there for several weeks without being needed. People use debit for everything here. Credit cards to an extent too, but mostly debit and much less often cash. That's why the kids get debit cards so young: they really are the default purchasing mode here. In the US we found a lot of places that took CC's but not debit, and saw a lot more people using cash.

 

Miranda


Mountain mama to two great kids and two great grown-ups
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Old 04-20-2013, 04:01 PM
 
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I just want to say a huge THANK YOU to whomever it was who called the Rainbow Fairies a "gateway drug."  I confess, I was a bit nervous about the length of time DD spent reading this stupid series--basically from age 3 to age 4.5--but she is now almost 6 and is voraciously reading Harry Potter.  DH is actually annoyed with her, because they are supposedly reading them together, but every night DD says, "Well, Daddy, I was reading ahead this afternoon..."  :)

 

She is also very nervous about her upcoming birthday, because she thinks it will now be clear to everyone in her first grade that she is a year younger than the rest of them.  I'm trying to encourage her to be nonchalant about it, but I'm not sure that's going to happen.  She's such an anxious kid already...this is really concerning to her lately.  

 

Her birthday party has the theme of "States and Caps."  She has spent weeks preparing for it--we have BINGO (caps on the cards, states in the bowl), Twister (state outlines on each spot), Headbands (except with state cards), blank outline maps, and completely blank maps.  It's primarily a family party, so she'll have plenty of adults to play these games with her.  I think she does know that most first graders don't know this stuff, because when I offered to invite a few school friends, she said, "No."  Wish I could tell her that eventually they'll be interested in this stuff, but honestly, I'm not either!


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Old 04-28-2013, 01:56 PM
 
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TinyMama, your DD sounds lovely! What a great idea for the party- my DS turned 6 yesterday and he would have LOVED to attend States and Capitals party!

 

Yesterday was my DS's 6th birthday. :) He celebrated by going to a K-12 USCF chess tournament, winning every game and getting 1st place, lol. He was the youngest by several years in the "advanced" category (over 500 rating). Here he is with his proud siblings.

 

 

Playing the highest rated player.


Jesus-loving Doula/Birth Photographer Mama to Tor 4/2007, Zion 11/2009, Enoch 11/2011, and Zephyr due 12/13/2013

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