Brag about dd's first high school experience

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-23-2002
Brag about dd's first high school experience
12
Thu, 03-14-2013 - 4:09pm

My youngest dd, who turned 10 recently, has been taking introductory Spanish at the local high school* this semester. I had no doubt about her ability to cope intellectually, but I was interested to see how easily she would be able to navigate the organizational and social end of things. I've let her really "own" this first experience away from homeschooling, partly because I know that's what she wants but also because I figure if she's taking a high school course she should be taking a high school level of responsibility for that stuff. So I've resisted all temptation to ask her about homework or studying, or to assist her in any way other than expressing enthusiasm for anything she chooses to share. 

Just got her first-term report. She earned an A, and her teacher wrote:

"She has seamlessly joined the class and has taken a lead role in a recent group project. She has great enthusiasm and participation in the class and she picks up new vocabulary very easily."

And you know, while I'm impressed with my kid, I think I'm at least as happy about the attitude of the other kids in her group. They haven't been dismissive or condescending concerning her penchant for group leadership. She's navigated it with some grace, explaining that it's natural for her to have lots of interest and energy in the project since she just has the one course at school -- and they've accepted that and been grateful for her work.

She would like to take Math 9 at school next fall, and her integration in Spanish is certainly building a strong case for that. The other positive news is that the principal of the last 3 years, the one who is so adamantly anti-grade-skip, is leaving at the end of this year. With luck we'll end up with someone more open-minded.

* I should qualify "high school" by saying that because this is an extremely small rural public K-12 school the high school electives (like Spanish) include any 7th and 8th graders who are interested in taking them as well. So dd isn't in a class with only 15+-year-olds ... a couple of the other students are 12 or 13.

Miranda

Miranda
in rural BC, Canada
mom to three great kids and one great grown-up
unschooler, violist, runner, doc 

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Avatar for turtletime
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-13-1998

Great! So glad to hear it's going well for her. Of course, I'm not surprised!                                                  

What's nice about a new principal coming in... even if they aren't a fan of acceleration, it's already set-up and working. In our experience, new administrators have enough on their plate. They don't want to mess with what is already accepted and working.

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-13-1999

Here's what I really love about this:  she has already taken leadership of the group!   I'm not only impressed, I'm tickled that she's had such a good experience doing so with the older kids.  I can almost picture her infectious enthusiasm.

I hope that the new principal is a better fit for this community and for your dd.  

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-23-2002

Yeah, me too... that the older kids are fine with her, that's the most amazing part. Though she told me yesterday that the 14-year-old in her project group keeps saying "You know you really suck when you're getting your a** kicked by a 10-year-old." But, she says "He says everything sucks and he thinks he's stupid at everything. It's not just about me." 

Miranda

Miranda
in rural BC, Canada
mom to three great kids and one great grown-up
unschooler, violist, runner, doc 

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-18-2005

Glad it's going well.  Sounds like you have a really unique school in terms of its ability to accommodate differentiation.  (Our local high school is so crowded that it operates in staggered triple sessions.)

Gwen

http://i218.photobucket.com/albums/cc248/gwennyc/b6yfcl.png<A href="http://s218.photobucket

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-17-2004

WAHOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Happy Dance over here!  This is FANTASTIC news!

Karen

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-07-2004
Great Job for her! I like that she sees the bigger picture about his attitude and doesn't take it personally. It sounds like she has a great attitude. :)
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-23-2002

Flexibility (where we can find it) is probably the only resource this school has going for it. It has five high school teachers, the entire science department is one less-than-expert teacher who teaches general science one term and then either chemistry or biology the other -- no physics, there's no music, no fitness equipment, no fluent second-language teachers, almost no extra-curriculars. And one of our major stumbling blocks has been that unless we can pull off some really radical acceleration, dd10 would need to spend the next three years in the same classroom, covering grades 5, 6 and 7, same teacher, same multi-grade cross-curricular teaching challenges, differentiation already maxed out dealing with behavioral and learning problems. High school works so much better for my kids, if we can only get them there. But offerings are extremely limited. 

Just wanted to point out that the flexibility we sometimes enjoy is a necessity due to extremely limited resources and offerings.

Miranda

Miranda
in rural BC, Canada
mom to three great kids and one great grown-up
unschooler, violist, runner, doc 

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-27-2000

Thanks so much for posting this.  It's just the nicest news!  So lovely to hear how well the transition is going.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-27-2000

Thanks so much for posting this.  It's just the nicest news!  So lovely to hear how well the transition is going.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-16-2001
Wed, 03-20-2013 - 10:04am

Glad to hear it is going well.  Hope the new principal is open to meeting your youngest at her level. 

How are the others doing?

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