Where to Begin?

Tonight was Open House for Kindergarten. We got a questionnaire to fill out before he heads off to Kindergarten on Thursday. It’s a “getting to know you” type thing for the teacher. His favorite color (green), favorite movie (currently Megamind), favorite food (probably pierogies). It also has some questions for the parents.

One made me pause. “What would you like for me to know about your child.

Oh so much, Nice Teacher Lady.

He is the most loving child I know. He doesn’t like to lose. He doesn’t want do wrong and fears disappointing those that he loves. He is fiercely loyal. He is kind. He is bold. He is loud. He is mostly happy. When he seems unhappy, it’s usually because he’s tired or hungry — probably hangry.

He wants to be a Space Ranger, a firefighter and, new to the list, an exterminator like Billy the Exterminator. He doesn’t sit still very well, but he loves to be read to and is learning to love to read. He hates when he can’t figure out what a word says on his own. He can figure it out when you spell S-A-N-T-A.

He makes me snort-laugh my coffee in the mornings. He eats very slowly. He likes to talk over meals. Over stories. Over everything and everyone. Ever. He likes to talk.

He’s very trusting. Too trusting. He believes everyone is good. He will take you at your word. He has not yet grasped sarcasm and if you tell him that aliens will abduct him if he doesn’t eat his peas, he will believe you. Though he has figured out what lying is and will call you on it when you mention aliens abducting him. Not because he doesn’t believe in aliens, but because he believes that aliens are our friends.

He is sensitive. But he is mighty. He doesn’t like to be embarrassed — but who does?

He is new to telling jokes. They don’t make sense and they’re not funny. Just laugh.

He is the reason I wake up in the morning. Quite literally, as he rarely makes it until 7:00 most days. But I mean that in the mommy-heart, sappy-crappy way too. He ushered me into what the world accepts as a definition of motherhood. He baptized me by fire in all the ways of mommyhood and he constantly keeps me on my toes.

He is bright and beautiful and babbling and blunt and bouncy and busy. But he is a blessing.

Open House

And that’s what I would have you know.

Education Parenting

Boys in the Classroom, or, More Specifically, MY Boy in the Classroom

I am in a panic about next fall. Ever the planner, I have been researching our kindergarten options — of which there are few — since this past Spring when all of the registration hoopla for this school year was in high drive. I researched our public school option, the private school (that we cannot afford) and a few e-school/homeschool options.

And then I started to cry.

I am the everyday mother to two little boys. BigBrother will be heading to Kindergarten first in Fall 2011. I call it the Fall of Doom. BigBrother is All Boy plus a little bit of me for good measure. Basically, he’s Male Me. He’s loud. Boisterous. Kind of in-your-face at times. Or, really, most of the time. He’s heavy on the fun. And the volume button. He prefers to learn things hands on. He has problems with waiting his turn to talk. He interrupts people even though we have carefully corrected him time and time again. He likes to pretend he is a super hero, a firefighter, Buzz Lightyear, a pirate and a dog within a ten minute time span. His imagination is wonderful at home. Will it be at school?

UF McCarty Classroom Desk Chairs Chalkboard 3I am petrified of sending him into a sit-down classroom setting. Articles like this one, while shedding light one what I can be doing at home, are scary. When I tell him that throwing a tantrum in public is inappropriate, am I setting him up to feel that it is inappropriate to ask for help when he needs it in school? Will he get bored in English class when the teacher picks books that appeal to girls more than boys? And, really, considering boys are behind their female counterparts at the Kindergarten age, how the heck is my hands-on boy supposed to sit still during class? Sigh.

Then again, are my worries about his performance in class stereotypically setting him up to fail? Sigh again.

Honestly, I get really jealous of people who live in bigger cities when these issues rattle around my brain. I was watching a political ad that talked about one candidate wanting to create “super school districts” by eliminating some of the smaller high schools. The woman-playing-a-mom in the ad asked voters not to remove school choice from the citizens. Living where I am, I want to ask, “What school choice?” Our sons can either attend our public school in our drawn district, the over-priced local (Catholic) private school or be homeschooled. I’d consider the homeschooling option, having been encouraged by Loaralee’s posts, except for the fact that there are no support groups and/or homeschooling communities/organizations/classes in our immediate area. There is rumor of one not listed on that site with whom I disagree on most levels. We have no choice.

I am figuring — hoping — most of this worry is unnecessary. We work with him at home on things like writing, reading and other important skills. He is intelligent. Most likely, he will adapt well. But he is a talker. And he’s a mover. And a shaker. And I absolutely loathe that he will most likely be “broken” of such moving and shaking as soon as he gets into a real school setting.

I know this is all premature. But I had to talk it out. I’m scared. This is one parenting aspect — education — that is so important to me. I don’t want to mess it up before we’ve even gotten started. And so, Moms of Movers and Shakers and Talkers, especially boys but not limited only to male gendered children, do you have advice for me? I need to find peace with decisions before the registration season, which falls too quickly after the holidays and the first of the year to not be talking about it right now.

[As an aside, I’m giving away a $100 Visa gift card again over here. Go!]
[Photo Credit.]