I find making the best decisions for my kids is a daily challenge as a single parent. When I look at how the world is evolving I feel it is my job to provide the necessary opportunities for them to be successful. Last year I elected to send both to the Catholic school where my DD attended for Kindergarten. My DD was very unhappy with the teacher, kids, and class. I thought as time went by the environment would change. Although I was extremely diligent with communicating my thoughts on what works best with my child the classroom never changed. I was really disappointed to learn that more parents voiced their concern and to no avail. My emails to the principal and vice-principal were redirected back with the suggestion to have a conference with the teacher. During one of our conferences, I expressed my concern for her creating a good kid vs. bad kid environment and how it made my child feel. She sat there and acknowledged what I said and assured me she was not aware of how my child felt. Well you would think the behavior was improved, no it was business as usual. She had no clue on encouraging students!
For this school year I decided to research a traditional public school outside of the city limits. I was not expecting nirvana however I figured if it was free plus additional educational resources than I would give it a try. When I informed the other school that we were not returning I remember the vice principal saying “oh well maybe my DD can finally get the help she needs”. I was a bit appalled with the comment as she never once said best of luck to the kids. By help she meant support for DD’s reading which was less than average at this school. Yes, I am fortunate to have a school that provides learning support for DD’s reading and math. The school district’s focus to provide the means to success for all students. I know with new experiences we have to embrace change. A new teacher and EVERYDAY MATHEMATICS is my challenge for the year. When it comes to academics I have realized I am totally old school. What happened to good old fashioned math? I am trying really hard to see the benefit of teaching these new concepts of mathematics. I will keep you posted. What happened to old school mathematics. One of my favorite childhood authors was Judy Blume and I am clearly having a Dear God, it’s me Alanda moments. I survived 5 years of college but 2nd grade is draining my energy. Just wondering if Generation X parents should receive a case of their favorite wine when this year concludes????? Just a thought??? Parenting 101, right??? There is no library large enough to hold the books for this JOB!
My teen is experiencing the wonderful world of adolescence at the MIDDLE SCHOOL!!! He now has to deal with locker combinations, changing classes, homework assignments and EXPECTATIONS! This is the age of defining who you are and selecting a peer group. I know my teen is struggling with where to fit in within the walls of his new school. He tried the soccer team and I must admit he tried but after a few weeks of practice and games, it was enough. I finally realized this school year my teen is fully conscious of being an African American male in America. When we lived in our Chester county suburb he was always the only brown child in his class and it was a topic of conversation among his peers. Yet I never saw the emotional side of how he felt until now. A few weeks ago he said “I wish I was white because white people never see racism”. It is amazing how within a matter of years and puberty the world has taken on a new perspective. I am really trying to be positive and realistic at the same time. It is a double edged sword while you want to share the “real world” you also want to shield your kids from the harshness in the world. The news in the past few months has forced me to have “real” conversations with my male child on behavior in public, in school, socializing with peers, discussion on alcohol and drugs, expectations for this year and beyond. I will say again and again parenting is nothing my parents could ever have prepared me for…. It requires a lot of faith and a major support network!!!!!!!