School: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

We had Jack’s school conference last Thursday. It was by far the longest one we’ve had. Let’s start with the good news.

The Good

Jack is brilliant. Seriously. His teacher said he was very smart, we know he’s very smart, and he knows he’s very smart. He’s in Junior Kindergarten. He has been counting past 100 since he was 3. He can now count by 10’s, 100’s, and 1000’s. He has “mastered the binomial and trinomial cubes”. I don’t even know what those are.

He can add and subtract with concrete counters. He’s started multiplication. The teacher said he was the only one who didn’t need to ask for help after she explained it. He’s also started fractions. Apparently, cooking has been very helpful to him in this area.

Of course, he’s known his letters since he was 18 months old, and the sounds since about 2-1/2 or 3. He’s reading by sounding out now. We have Bob books here, and we read with him on days that he’s not in school.

He’s been practicing his writing and getting better. He has a great imagination for stories.

“Jack is a bright child and very quick to retain and use new information appropriately. Very little instruction is needed with Jack in order for him to understand an academic concept and then in turn be able to perform it on his own.”

The Bad

“Jack has the ability to complete his tasks and stay focused but it is extremely difficult for him.” Giving him more freedom to choose his works hasn’t helped. Sometimes, he’ll try to “help” his friends with their work, which often ends up with him messing up their work.

Jack often needs to be reminded to follow directions.

The Ugly

Jack has been hurting his friends. It’s just been this past month, since school started back up in January. We’re hoping that it’s a phase related to the inner conflict he must be feeling about the house being upside down; the fact that he’s getting a baby sister, but he doesn’t know when; and anxiety over starting Kindergarten in the fall.

He was actually sent home from school on Thursday. I spent all day Friday on pins and needles, but he was very good at school that day. He was also good yesterday. The teachers are willing to work with us and help Jack through this difficult period.

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