Thursday, December 05, 2013

A Tale of Two Parent-Teacher Conferences

http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-LUDx0Kbrkyk/TmFM8I-Fv0I/AAAAAAAAAB8/Fy-cnTKNVbU/s320/kid-writing-thank-you-note.jpgYesterday brought parent-teacher conferences for both Aaron and Jada.  Some highlights from these gatherings:

Aaron has really thrived at his new school.  His reading, which was really quite awful just a few weeks before the school year started, is now two quarters ahead of schedule.  Aaron’s teacher also made multiple mentions of his genial spirit and his strong work ethic.  I may have shed a tear or two by the end.

Jada is doing well as well.  A lot more B’s than last year but it’s just the first marking period and most of the B’s were high B’s.  Despite her communication issues, she has thrived in the classroom, not just in formal instructional settings or with friends but in looser situations with all classmates.  I chuckled when she chose as her most recent non-fiction writing topic not zebras (a stunner!) but rather the reality TV show “The Voice.”

For both Aaron and Jada, we’re going to pound on the same two things going forward, now that we are armed with these conversations with their teachers.  First, there’s a big push nowadays on non-fiction reading: too much story-reading, it seems, ill-prepares students for the later years when they have to study geology or the Renaissance.  Second, there’s also a big push on well-organized writing: Jada in particular will ramble on and on, producing a high quantity of content but not benefitting from some initial thinking about how to structure her narrative.

All in all, we’re delighted our kids are doing well in school.  As for me, my Tiger Dad instincts are kicking in and I’m going to redouble my efforts to push them in areas of strength and areas of weakness.  But both of us are very proud of our two.
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