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Thursday, November 5, 2009

Kindergarten Survival

Thank you for all your amazing two cents. Hopefully, with all your advice Princess will look more relaxed in next year's school picture! Many of you have asked about her teacher. Her and her teacher have not clicked. I do not think that the teacher is rude or improper. However, she is stressed. Here in Hawaii they just cut over two weeks of class time from the school schedule to balance the budget. Teachers are scrambling to make up for the lost class time and still reach their goals. Here in Hawaii kindergarten is the new first grade. By the end of this semester Princess is expected to be able to start reading, identify her letters, several words and numbers. The tricky part is they determine her knowledge with a test. It is not enough that she knows it or demonstrates proficiency in class. She must be able to regurgitate the answers within a set time limit on command. It is additional stress for the students and the teachers. Time that used to be devoted to bonding, playing and nurturing a love of knowledge is now filled with letter drills and worksheets. My main fear is that she loses her love of learning. She used to sit for book after book. She devoured literature and science. Like most children her life was an endless question. All the worksheets in the world are not a substitute for play. A passion for learning is spun from laughter and adventure. I am struggling to help my imaginative fairy princess thrive in an environment that has little room left for magic.

If you are struggling with the same issue or what the whole scoop please stalk my comment box on This Post . It is full of wonderful advice from some of my favorite bloggy friends. Feel free to link up and ask for some two cents of your very own or share some.
Today is the day for...

Cheaper Than Therapy


noexcuses said...

In "Baby Boom", Diane Keaton is at the park with her little princess and overhears some other moms talking about getting into the "right" preschool so they can get into the private "Day" school so they can get into the "college prep" high school so the kids can attend an Ivy League College. It's not worth the wrinkles and gray hair to stress about it!

Most teachers are pressured to teach to the standardized tests. They work the kids over to the point of exhaustion so the school and/or school district can report high numbers. It's the same here.

I have four kids. NONE of them have ever scored high on the timed tests. It not how much the child knows, but how fast the child can spit it out. Kids will still get into college, and still graduate and still be one of the millions of graduates looking for a job.

I wish that we could go back to school as a total learning experience (mentally, physically and emotionally). There might not be so many hiding in bell towers with rifles! One can never go back, but we can learn from history.

DiPaola Momma said...

Oh sweetie it's much the same here in Maryland. And has been since #2 (now in 5th grade) was in kinder. No longer is bonding an issue or any sort of priority. I think that is a fail on the part of schools. However that said I think testing for skills is just well STUPID! I was a wretched test taker, still am.. but I'm no slouch.. it says so on my DEGREE! As to the pic thing.. ONLY my 16 year old ever took a picture that didn't look like a bio shot for the Spanish Inquisitions! Besides YOU take better pics anyway!!! Sorry I've been out of the comment box for so long. MWUAH!

♥Jacqueline said...

That's unfortunate that the children have to suffer in this economy too. I hope things get better!

Snarky Belle said...

I'm sorry my "Two Cents" comment was so long. Really, it was toooo long. I just get very passionate about children in schools, and how they are treated. It saddens me that so many are losing their love of learning, especially at the hands of educators. Thinking of you and your precious Princess.

Summer said...

I completely understand what you are saying... such a shame

Keeslermom said...

This is one of the reasons we homeschool. Kids need less stress!

Our school picture are in our uniforms, our PJs!

Shan G said...

Oh poor thing. And yeah, I'm pretty pissed off that Kindergartners will have HOMEWORK!! When did that happen? And when did kids stop being allowed to be kids?

Hopefully it will get better. But why is she so afraid to disappoint or make her teacher mad? That is just not right.

Mrs4444 said...

"A passion for learning is spun from laughter and adventure. I am struggling to help my imaginative fairy princess thrive in an environment that has little room left for magic."

Beautifully said, my friend. I'm sorry you're in a position to say it. :(