Thursday, August 12, 2010

Someone Should Write a BOOK!

OK, so in all honesty, someone probably has. I just NEVER in my life thought I would need a book to direct me in the art of having a Kindergartner. Jackson, in my opinion, has attended some of the BEST schools in Phoenix. SERIOUSLY! He has gone to school with the grandchild of a Vice President (how many people can say that?). He is only 5! He ADORES going to school, and is a sponge! He enjoys all the playing AND learning that goes on. SO, I thought, new school, no big deal. We are ALL struggling a bit around here.

1. THERE SHOULD BE SOME SORT OF NEW PARENT ORIENTATION! Anyone who reads this that MAY OR MAY NOT run a school, should know that new parents NEED DIRECTION. I think new parents are like children, give me the tools to succeed, and I will succeed. If you give me nothing, I will be a HUGE FAILURE, and you will have to spend your time reprimanding me because I don't have a Visitor's Badge on. I took the time to sign in, no one gave me a Visitor's Badge, how would I know I need one? NOW, I have wasted your time, and I feel like an idiot. It is a LOSE-LOSE situation. The playground aide, should not have to be the one to reassure me that he will be fine if I drop him off, he will make it to class ok, it will all be ok! SERIOUSLY, the playground aide!

2. DROP OFF/PICK UP CHAOS should come with some sort of training period. Having my child stand on a fence waiting for me to pick him up maybe 400 other students, K-6, in the one hundred degree temperature, is enough to make me park my car a mile away, walk to the school with Tyler in tow, whining and crying along the way for some reason or another, get Jackson, and walk BACK to my car with TWO kids. It is a complete disaster, and it makes me cry thinking about it.

3. NAP TIME-you can say what you will about my almost six year old still taking a nap, but the kid needs a nap. By the time he gets home, just about anything can set him into a complete meltdown, the amount of tears that have been shed in this house this week is INSANE!

4. I am so thankful I HAVE A PSYCHOLOGY degree because I am constantly having to play the role of counselor or use reverse psychology to make Kindergarten seem like it is the most AMAZING THING ever. Even if I am not sure I believe it myself. It breaks my heart to see him cry about his other friends not being in the class, but he has already made some other friends, who share the ONE COMMON INTEREST: MARIO! One of them has a Mario backpack, the other has the same Mario lunchbox as Jackson-it is really a match made in heaven!

5. There is so much stuff I still don't understand. I am HOPEFUL that the curriculum night next week will provide me the MUCH NEEDED information I DESERVE as a parent of a 5 year old! Suddenly this 5 year old doesn't seem quite so big, and I am struggling with this more than I thought! I am no expert, and I am VERY hopeful that it will be so much better for anyone else who is going through it, BUT I just want to be the voice that says, "You are NOT alone!" I know some of you start next week or the following week, and I just want you to know that if you need someone to cry to because you feel a little overwhelmed, it is NORMAL, and you are NOT alone!


Brad said...

I can feel your pain and love for your child in your words. Hang in there! Transitions suck for all of us. You won't even be worried about this in 6 months. Also, change is a good thing for kids IMO. It teaches them how to adapt and overcome. Sounds like he's already starting to by making new friends. One day at a time. Good luck.

Kris and Jen said...

I too feel your pain and was a Kindergarten teacher for 7 YEARS! LOL! When Lauren started I was LOST and angry about the lack of communication and guidance provided. Every school is so different and that is the reason I gave parents so much information on the meet the teacher day. It might have been overwhelming for them but I wanted them to have all the information they needed. We too have to wait for curriculum night at my childrens school and frankly that is just too long. We need the pertinant information about the school ASAP and they would save themselves so much time and frustration if they would just give us a very clear, very specific welcome packet before school starts. Okay off my soapbox but I wanted to tell you I understand, agree and relate and as someone who has lived through WILL get better! As curriculum night comes you will get answers, less people will come an hour early to pick up their kid, and when it is not 150 degrees outside. I promise:)

Laurie said...

Reading your post brought back so many feelings and memories of sending Adia off to kdg. I swear it isn't until they have been in school a couple years that you learn the ropes as a parent. I remember feeling like I didn't know what my bounds were with the teacher. I didn't even know what I should call her! Could we be on a first name basis or did I have to call her Mrs. So and so like the kids?! I realize now that I could have been in the classroom so much more but I just didn't know what the heck I was doing.

My one bit of advice is to develop an "email relationship" with the teacher. Email is so casual and you can ask all the questions you want and then the teacher knows you, your name and associates you with your child. After that, it makes volunteering in the classroom much easier or if you have a random question you won't feel so wierd emailing her. Also for those chance encounters at parent pickup or at the playground then she'll know who you are when she sees you with your child.

Anyways, I know it's kind of a wierd way to do it, but since I'm on the shy side that has worked wonders for me in getting on the inside loop of what is going on in the classroom.

Also, all our teachers have always been more than willing to meet after school if there is a concern or question or whatever. Just call or email ahead of time to make an appt. with her.

It does get easier as they settle into a routine but oh its so hard to send them off away from your protection isn't it?! Ruby said some boys were picking on her at recess and I just wanted to cry! So we say boys are dumb except for daddy! :) Hang in there, and you should write that book!

and PS the front desk girls can totally be sooo snobby! What's up with that?!