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Old 10-16-2012, 08:59 AM   #21
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Re: Public School Frustrations

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Do you all see my dilemma though? If I work with him at home, he will just get further and further ahead of school. I can't see that as helping either. If he was able to actually do some more challenging work AT school, that would make more sense to me.
Yeah, I see the dilemma. Not only would that put him further ahead and he would end up more bored, but it would be a total drag to be at school several hours a day and then have to do more at home too. He needs some free time. Since the school is that small, I'm going to assume she's the only 2nd grade teacher. Could he be tested for grade level and move into the 3 grade room? Would your DH be okay with the idea of a practice year of HS or something? What does he think about your son not being challenged? How does he (DH) feel about the school overall? What would he/you think of switching schools?

I will say I do agree with isabelsmommy that if it was just spelling it wouldn't be a huge deal, but it sounds like he's not being challenged across the board. I also agree that it's not what you want, so you probably just aren't going to be happy with it. It's hard when we think we know best and can't do it for whatever reason.

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Old 10-16-2012, 09:30 AM   #22
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Have you tried selling your dh the idea of doing something like k12. Its a public school, but you do it from home and are able to work ahead based on your child

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Old 10-16-2012, 11:00 AM   #23
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Re: Public School Frustrations

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Originally Posted by jen_batten View Post
Yeah, I see the dilemma. Not only would that put him further ahead and he would end up more bored, but it would be a total drag to be at school several hours a day and then have to do more at home too. He needs some free time. Since the school is that small, I'm going to assume she's the only 2nd grade teacher. Could he be tested for grade level and move into the 3 grade room? Would your DH be okay with the idea of a practice year of HS or something? What does he think about your son not being challenged? How does he (DH) feel about the school overall? What would he/you think of switching schools?

I will say I do agree with isabelsmommy that if it was just spelling it wouldn't be a huge deal, but it sounds like he's not being challenged across the board. I also agree that it's not what you want, so you probably just aren't going to be happy with it. It's hard when we think we know best and can't do it for whatever reason.
Actually, there are 4 Grade 2 classes, plus the split Grade 1/2 class!

I am going to talk to DH again and see if we can figure something out.
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Old 10-16-2012, 11:01 AM   #24
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Re: Public School Frustrations

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Have you tried selling your dh the idea of doing something like k12. Its a public school, but you do it from home and are able to work ahead based on your child

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I don't think that is available in Canada.
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Old 10-16-2012, 11:03 AM   #25
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Re: Public School Frustrations

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I think spelling tests on the whole are pointless so personally I wouldn't care at all.
I would, however, keep an eye out for the whole language arts curriculum. Are the other assignments seeming appropriate? The writing assignments and books they are reading - do those seem at Grade 2 level?

I think the reality is, you are never going to be happy because this isn't what you want.

I really want to be a SAHM but DH doesn't agree. Everytime there is an issue I see the solution as me staying home. But since that isn't going to happen, I have to find a new way to make the current situation work. That is what you need to do unless you can convince your DH otherwise.

Whether he is challenged more at school or you do it at home, he may well get farther ahead. But you know, he might not. The kid who is struggling now, may well end up being the best student in Grade 6 and your son may struggle then.
The other assignments are also just way too easy at this point.

And I think you hit the nail on the head when you said that I will probably never be content with the situation. I'm trying to figure out what I can do so that I can be more at ease.
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Old 10-16-2012, 05:31 PM   #26
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Re: Public School Frustrations

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Originally Posted by delicatefade View Post
Do you all see my dilemma though? If I work with him at home, he will just get further and further ahead of school. I can't see that as helping either. If he was able to actually do some more challenging work AT school, that would make more sense to me.
I think that is the catch 22 for teachers...they have to try to keep all of the kids 'at grade level' and so they challenge them where they can, but ultimately the kids are kept 'at grade level'. I think that her response we true and heartfelt - that with 20 something kids she is doing her best to challenge every child where she can. If he's not getting in trouble that's a good thing - I would focus on praising him for that - maybe that's an area he is learning at right now? I hope that comes out right?
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Old 10-16-2012, 05:39 PM   #27
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Re: Public School Frustrations

It is really hard for teachers, having to cater to all the learning levels. A few of my best friends are teachers, and I hear this a lot. That and they hate having to "teach tests," meaning they have to teach the material that's on standardized tests, so the students will pass and the school will get more money. They're not allowed a lot of freedom in what they teach.
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Old 10-16-2012, 05:45 PM   #28
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Re: Public School Frustrations

Just a thought for persuading your husband. My dad's take on socialization and home schooling is that kids don't need to learn to deal with other kids. They need to learn to deal with and be adults.
He isn't saying kids shouldn't be kids. He's saying that what is a kid going to learn from another kid? More childish stuff. Kids that are home schooled are surround by more adults than kids (depending on how many siblings they have) and that helps them when they go get jobs or go to college. Who is their boss or teacher? An adult.
Also, I hate the argument that kids need to learn to deal with bullies? why, why, why??? Yes, there are kid bullies that grow up to be adult bullies. But as an adult, you are emotional capable of handling a bully. Especially if you didn't have one kicking your butt everyday when you were a kid. It's a stupid argument. No offense to your husband. I know a lot of people think this way.
As far as the teachers note, it didn't sound dismissive to me. What I took away from it was that she feel he is being challenged, even if the spelling words themselves are easy. He is learning how to use them, practicing writing, etc. She did offer to give him bonus words. It seems she is trying to satisfy you. If it's not enough, let her know at the meeting. Just my 2 cents.
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Old 10-16-2012, 11:34 PM   #29
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Re: Public School Frustrations

I just noticed you are in Canada.
It sounds like a big school so you must be in a city. What about other schools with other programs? He's probably too late for early Fr Imm (I know you can start in Gr1 but I don't think Gr 2) but late Imm starts in gr 6, Mandarin Immersion, a fine arts school, Montessori etc... your district must have similar programs.
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Old 10-17-2012, 12:03 AM   #30
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Re: Public School Frustrations

Warning: this is just a bunch of rambling because I need to go to bed and don't have time to put it into a nicely thought out post.

I understand what you are saying, and it sounds like you understand the demands of the teacher.

DH and I teach in a K-8 school with 11 students, so we basically differentiate for each student. It is VERY time intensive. Even making a separate spelling list takes time (and entering the words into spellingcity.com,assigning students tasks on spellingcity.com, etc.). It makes more sense to spend time differentiating math or reading than spelling IMO. My second graders range from a pre-K reading level to a 4th grade reading level. For some, spelling the word "that" is a challenge, while for others they were able to do it in kindergarten. I don't give each student a different spelling list even though there are only 4 students. Part of the problem is that I know certain parents will not go over the spelling words with their child, so I need to spend time working with the spelling words in class. If I did that with 4 separate lists, it would take away time that could be used for reading, writing, or math.

Even though you are highly involved in your child's education, many other parents are not. This creates an even wider gap between the students. The problem is the teacher needs to try to keep the lower level and on-level students from falling behind. It takes a lot of work. Unfortunately it leaves the advanced students with nothing to do. Luckily my school is small I can challenge the advanced students, but they definitely do not get as much attention as my below level students. Some things I do for them are give them advanced leveled readers, have them play geography games on the iPad (we have to spend about 5 hours of the day on math, reading, and writing because of all the grades we teach, so unfortunately we don't always get to social studies and science...usually one or the other).

I'm thinking of homeschooling my DD next year because I'm taking a year off with the new baby due in April. One of the reasons is that my DD will be quite a bit ahead of the other kindergartner next year, and I have no idea who the district is going to get to replace me next year (I'm really just a para-professional, but I do have a teaching license). I know that I will be concerned with what she is learning in school, so I either need to make her lesson plans (it will be DH's responsibility anyway, so I could just do it) or I could homeschool her.
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