Thursday, October 2, 2014

Kindergarten... Update #1

October 1, 2014 
1 Grading Period Down... 5 to go

Last Friday marked the end of grading period one in our school district. This seems a little odd to me since we have only been in school for 5 weeks and usually grading periods are at least 6 weeks long but it ended nonetheless. Unfortunately, our district is still tweaking our Kindergarten report card so I did not receive an official report card but I was able to talk to Natalie's teacher, Mrs. C, about her academic, social and emotional development. At the end of this talk my emotions ranged from being impressed, not surprised and relieved... just to name a few.

Natalie and Mrs. C the 1st day she got back from Maternity leave!

She told me that Natalie is doing a fantastic job in recognizing her letters not only visually but aurally as well. She can also orally speak and say the letter itself as well as the sound each letter makes. I was able to see the checklist that Mrs. C used to test the child's academic knowledge. Natalie passed off all of her CAPITAL and lowercase letters except lowercase q visually and all of the letters aurally. Mrs. C told me that this was very advanced for not only a kindergarten student but especially a very young 5 year old kindergarten student. Mrs. C also said that Natalie was 1 of only a handful of students that can read all of this month's sight words as well as spell some of these sight words when prompted. We have been working with Natalie on letters and sight word reading for nearly 2 years so this was not surprising to me but I loved hearing how well my little one is doing. Mrs. C and I discussed testing Natalie for GT when the opportunity arise later in the school year. This made me smile from ear to ear! 

In math Natalie is able to recognize numbers 1-20 and can count all the way to 90 (this was the 2nd/3rd week of school so she can count well past that now) and 100 is the goal kindergarten teachers aim for. Mrs. C said that Natalie continuously wants to learn more and is "always on the edge of her seat" during class. I love this because I was not always like that during my school years!

Natalie is such a little social butterfly and always has been but Mrs. C reminded me how well she is with all the students in her class and other kindergartners in the building. Mrs. C says she is the leader of her table and when she finishes her own work she will travel around her table asking others if they need help. I see her throughout the day and once a week in actual music class and I see this trait a lot too. Just last Monday when her and her classmates came to my class, she was helping a friend hold the xylophone mallets properly.

Super Hero Fun Run 2014- I was able to watch Natalie lead her classmates in a huddle!
It was amazing how she just took charge and did it! 

She really is a GREAT leader in her class!

The look on her face is PRICELESS!

I feel as if some of the kids in this school, and her class especially, do not behave the way I would like for my own kids to behave but Natalie has shown that she really can see a difference in right and wrong and has made excellent choices in choosing who to play with and who to be friends with. I am very proud of her in this aspect and I will continued to help her grow in this category because being a public school teacher I can tell that the overall behavior of ALL of our kids in declining at an unbelievable pace. The lack of respect for adults and authority is sometimes non-existent but not with Natalie. In fact, the custodian just told me this week, "Your daughter has more respect for me than most of the teachers in this building". My response was "Yep, that's MY girl". I am so proud of her!

Natalie has been doing so well behaving in her class and she has stayed on "GREEN" (The best behavior color on the Kindergarten color wheel. Think GREEN=GOOD TO GO) the ENTIRE time. Each week we have been rewarding her for a full week of greens  with small tokens of appreciation but this weekend she will receive her LARGE reward for having GREENS the entire grading period which is a trip to Chuck-E-Cheese. 

Showing off her September Behavior chart FULL of GREENS
I am SO PROUD of her!

Reward day at Chuck E Cheese's for having ALL GREENS!

Reward Day- September 27, 2014

More Reward Day!

Natalie has yet to come home and say "So-and-so made fun of me" or "So-and-so told me she wasn't my friend". In fact, Natalie seems to be friends with all of the girls and boys in her class. A new student arrived in Natalie's class last week and Natalie immediately took her on and showed her around. She really does have the heart of GOLD and I could not be more proud of her. 

As the weeks have progressed and Mrs. C has returned from maternity leave I have seen SO MUCH growth in not only Natalie but most of the 17 other kids in her class. Some of the students who were struggling just to make it an hour without a complete meltdown are like brand new students. Everyone told me that Mrs. C was amazing and some king of "Super Teacher" and they were right. I am VERY IMPRESSED! Of course, there are still some issues and behavior problems but that is going to be the case in ANY kindergarten class no matter the location, clientele or district. I think once I personally realized that then the year started to look up. Plus the massive amount of praying that was taking place for this school year and Natalie herself. 

My little SUPERHERO ready for the Hero Fun Run!

Ninja Turtle Day!

I've been on my knees daily for this issue and I can see God's hand reaching down to touch both Natalie and I as we continue through this life changing year. I thank God for His faithfulness! Thanks to everyone who has been so nice and checked on both Natalie and I as well as prayed for our family and this situation. God is in control and He will take care of us; and you too, if you let Him! I don't ever say this lightly but it has proven to be true yet again.. .

God is good... ALL the time! 

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