Saturday, May 30, 2009

Best Laid Plans

The kids have about one week of school left but you would think school ended weeks ago.

Tortuga hasn't had homework in about 3 weeks because he "finishes" it at school, teachers are out for various activities and don't leave homework, or he "forgets" to bring the right thing home because the teacher was to busy to meet for his daily check in at the end of the day. Combine that with talent shows, splash days, field trips, moving up days, track and field days, book fair, there doesn't seem to be anything that is routine about his school days. Thus, his school behaviors (and subsequently home behaviors) have made a downhill nose-dive! Even if all this wasn't bad enough, next week he had the following activities: Today was "packing up day" and "cleaning your desk day." From what I can tell, that's all they did today. Monday will be"read-in" all day with sleeping bags, pillows, blankets, stuffed animals, books, etc. While I appreciate the focus on reading for a kid like mine bringing all that stuff means he gets to check out everyone else's stuff and play because he takes reading VERY seriously. As it is he reminded me he needs to bring all that stuff but forgot to mention the books. When I reminded him he asked incredulously "We HAVE to bring books? What if we don't feel like reading?" I guess he missed the point of a "READ-IN". But he does raise a good question. What if the don't feel like reading? Tuesday they have "board game" day scheduled. All DAY long with a "picnic" of sack lunches outdoors and an extra long recess. Wednesday is "slide show day," complete with birthday celebrations for summer birthdays, ice cream treats from the teacher, and a whole school gathering to "lower the flag." Then it ends. Although who are we kidding? It ended already. The poor kid came home really excited about his experiences with moving up day this week because they got to visit all 6 fifth grade classes and see the teachers "in action." I asked him which class he liked best and he said "Ms. _____" because the kids do work ALL the time. They only have one short recess after lunch but the rest of they time they are working on learning." Music to my ears! She is also the teacher we requested for next year if we don't decide to homeschool.

Corazon hasn't had any real work to do (and doesn't do the little bit she has) in over two weeks due to all kinds of "special" events at school--girls away for competitions, news crews following individual kids at her school for TV specials, goodbye parties from various specialists with ice cream sundaes, trips to Sonic for slushies, and packing up the classroom because it has to do double duty over the last two weeks of school. Teachers are so busy packing up and getting their stuff out of the way it is no wonder they have any time to teach. For a kid who needs consistency this is just awful and of course, RAD behaviors have been most present. Next week they have a book report due on Monday and a pool party all day Friday but otherwise they are scheduled to help pack up the classroom for the other days.

My preschooler has done more work in the midst of all the fun activities than the two others put together.

So what does all of this have to do with "best laid plans"? Well, tonight C. and I mistakenly assumed we could take the whole family out to dinner to celebrate the end of the last full week of school. Pollito had peed on his clothing throughout the day so had gone through the TWO extra changes of clothing he had in his backpack. He was in a lousy mood and taunted his older brother the minute he got in the car. Tortuga had a bad day and had notes from the teacher about his need to remain "in control." Really? So of course, he is mad at himself and gets in the car in the foulest of moods and starts fighting with Pollito. They actually come to blows which doesn't happen ever.

In the meantime, I get an email on my phone announcing that Corazon's teacher has resigned as of today! We just met on Monday to strategize about next year so I know something bad happened. I also know that Corazon isn't going to take it well so we decide to head over to her school to see her at dismissal. Usually on Fridays I don't see her because she only has 30 minutes between school and gymnastics but I wanted to see what state she was in. As we pull into the parking lot I spot her OUTSIDE in the lot running around. Her rule is that she must stay in the building at all times. She doesn't see me but goes back inside. By the time we park and I go inside she is sitting at the table outside the gym just finishing up pouring a soda into her water bottle. I come up behind her and she quickly jumps up to hide the evidence and says "Mom! You scared me." That's code for "I'm busted doing something I shouldn't be doing." I tell her to get her stuff and she shouts/cries "Ms. ____left today." Then she burst into tears. I hug her but then she pulls away to try and hide the soda. I tell her I saw it, know she stole it from the staff pantry at the gym, and have to deal with this incident before anything else. I send her to wait for me and tell her coach she will miss gym today.

Needless to say we had too much to deal with and going out to dinner just didn't seem to be the thing to do anymore. By the time we dealt with everyone's issues I was exhausted. We fed the kids leftovers and sent them off to bed to read an hour early. Then C. and I realized we didn't have anything for us to eat so we ordered Chinese takeout and discussed our options for next week and next year. Do we send them to school to potentially explode or implode? Do we homeschool the two older ones next year?

I guess we won't tell them yet that we are going back to Boston next weekend for a few weeks so they can see their birth families. We don't think that will go over too well right now.

1 comment:

Essie the Accidental Mommy said...

Its like that here too. Especially now that it is warm and green and nice out. I stopped at my kids school and saw about 15 kids in the office, in all corners, sitting and writing. I asked what happened- one word, "Substitute".

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