Saturday, June 8, 2013

First Grade Reflection

School wrapped up for Kenny this past week.  He's been on summer break for two days now, and starts camp up on Monday, which is good because I take on another teaching assignment on Monday. 

I have to say, the kiddo had a good year.  Ended up with all "E"s (for excellent, not the alternative to an "F") and is reading above grade level.  He happily repeats that last point to try and get out of reading if he thinks he has better things to do.  He's seen an exceptional amount of growth academically and developmentally this year, with a lot of thanks going to the amount of support he has had from his amazing teachers and others who have worked with him.  I can teach biology, and Dwight can do history, but there's no way that the two of us could handle teaching reading and the social skills that Kenny has mastered this year.  It's just not our forte.  It's this ability to supplement my own failings, and my recognition of those failings, that make me so grateful for our school and neighborhood. 

I know it's cliche, but it takes a village to raise a child.  It takes a village to do a lot of things well.  No person can be everything that is needed or has all the necessary skills for complex tasks, and raising and educating a child is most definitely a complex task.  Also a complex task- juggling two adults with jobs and studies with a school schedule straight out of the nineteenth century.  So for the summer, I'm just as thankful for the Kent Parks and Recreation for their dedication to providing programming over the summer (and surround care during the school year) that make the summer break so much more enjoyable for our family.

I know, I know, we wouldn't have to rely on others if one of us would stay home.  But that's not what works for us, and really, who can afford to do that today?  Not us, that's for sure.  Kudos to those of you who can, you're stronger than I am.  We could use family, except we don't have extended family near us, and our families have their own lives to live.  Dwight and I have moved on from our home towns, as have our parents and siblings; "leaving the nest" wasn't really necessary for us since the nest left, too.  At this point, like many people today, we rely on our community more than our family, because we have dispersed families and a close knit community. 

As time passes, people grow and change.  The little boy that entered first grade last August is not the same child that's sitting and reading on the couch right now.  The society we are now is not the same as it was when public school first became an option.  We have to adjust to those changes culturally the same as I have to adjust to new parenting demands for my child, hopefully by improving and doing our best to fulfill new needs.

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