Thursday, May 11, 2006

My child is perfect, damn it!

The end of the school year is drawing to a close and my five year old will be entering kindergarten in the fall. I can't believe that she's ready for all day school. Right now, she's in preschool five days a week, two and a half hours each day.

In an effort to communicate with her future kindergarten teacher, the preschool teacher has filled out an evaluation form on Lila. I saw it in the backpack on the way home from school yesterday and practically ran home so I could read it. I pulled it out of the bag and instantly got nervous. I hate these things. If they don't say "Your child is the brightest, most special, beautiful child we have ever bared witness to!" then I get mad.

So I read the report. Can cut with scissors? Yes. Can listen to teacher/stories? Yes. Shows age appropriate self control? Yes. It was mostly fine, she can hit all the right milestones with ease. None the less, I was bugged by several responses the teacher had to some questions. Such as - Can follow a series of three directions? Usually only one or two at a time. Hello??! She's five! My twelve year old can't follow three directions without a written decree from the governor of our fair state! Lila can certainly follow more directions than most of the kids in her class, half of whom need a chew toy and personal tutor to get through the day!

Ok, I may have been harsh in that last statement. Knee jerk reaction, is all. She has great classmates.

Dress independently? Yes, but attention wanders. We often have to remind her to keep moving to finish the task. She's five! This is not military school, the kids don't all move in straight, silent lines to the cubbies and methodically put on their coats. They goof, they laugh. I've been in your classroom at the end of the day, I know how it works. Don't try and fool me, bitch!

Again, harsh. I apologize, she's a lovely teacher. I actually requested her this year.

Physical coordination: Yes on all markers - with an astericked note: Moves slowly with a purpose. So?! She's a thinker, a planner. She likes to be safe and choose wisely. What the hell is a matter with that? Huh?! You wanna take this outside?

Her teacher closed the evaluation with this note:

Lila is a very caring and happy girl. She is also very reserved and sometimes needs to comforted from the adults. She usually speaks very softly but at times can be very silly and animated. She has been a big help with the younger children who don't communicate well. She has a mothering instinct that reaches out to these children. She is very cooperative and helps out in the classroom. Lila's preacademic skills are good, although there are times when I'm not sure she has understood a direction. We will miss Lila very much, but I look forward to seeing her on our way to the playground next year.

Hard to argue with that. That's who she is. She is a quiet, shy girl that takes some time to warm up. But once she does, her infectious laughter will make even the most disgruntled old misers giggle along with her. She has an amazing ability to feel compassion for people. She takes great care of her baby sister and calls her "Dear" and "Sweetheart". She is cautious and afraid of getting hurt, but has become quite adventurous over this year. And yes, I'll admit that I call her Pokey Little Puppy when it comes time to put her shoes and coat on. I know all the things in the evaluation are true of Lila, that's why I'm going to sign it and hand it back in. But I may add one note of my own:

Careful, her momma is a lion and will bite if provoked.


Blogger greekchickie said...

I was having this same conversation with my friend Andy who's a 5th grade teacher. I think schools expect too much unrealistic goals from kids these days. I can see the common sense things being important... but some of this stuff is a bit out of reach.


10:18 AM  
Blogger Jenn said...

I'm just dying to read someone else's evaluation. One mom was telling me that last year her kid's form mentioned that she does a lot of wispering to other girls on the playground! WTF? That went on to the kindergarten teacher too!

10:32 AM  
Anonymous Cindy said...

Oh that giggle, love that giggle, makes me happy for hours after a good giggle with Lile Grace!

1:19 PM  
Blogger Oz said...

I'm not looking forward to getting one of those! I would feel exactly the same way you did! It was a positive "review," but as a mother, I can see how any little nit pick would piss me off!

1:07 PM  
Blogger Erin-erin-bo-berin said...

I'm glad you like your daughter's teacher. My Kindergartener had a rough time last year, with a teacher who sent her to the office for EVERYTHING, VP and Principal who wanted to expell a 5 year old.
I was on the verge of telling the VP (a 55+aged woman) to meet me at the bike racks at 3:15PM!! My husband did something even better: He spoke with the Superintendant personally, who granted my daughter a transfer to another school for first grade.
She has had none of the 'problems' in her school as a first grader!!

6:24 PM  
Blogger Jenn said...

It's hard to be objective when it's your own kid. I guess that's why the teachers write these instead of the parents.

Wow, Erin. That's some strict principal! I'm glad she was able to move to a better school.

9:47 AM  
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4:54 PM  

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