POLL: School plans for next year?

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-23-2002
POLL: School plans for next year?
8
Mon, 05-20-2013 - 1:54pm

For those of you with kids in school, or entering school ... what will next year hold? New school? New expectations? Enrichment? Accommodations? Do you know what classroom your child will be in? Who the teacher(s) will be?

For those who are homeschooling, do you anticipate making any changes over the next few months? Anything new on the horizon for next year?

My answers below.

Miranda

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

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-26-2013
Tue, 06-04-2013 - 3:16pm

We will continue to homeschool and work around pain.   My son's spinal fusion surgery is next week and he won't be able to do much for a while.  After he recovers he will once again work on studying for CLEP tests.  He would have already tried taking one on history but there were too many distractions and stress with all the medical appointments and sitting for more than 20 minutes was causing pain.  I think the CLEP tests are 90 minutes.  

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-27-2000
Thu, 05-30-2013 - 1:34pm

Congrats to your DD.  Sounds like she's got a wonderful attitude and will make the most of her college experience!

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-27-1998
Tue, 05-28-2013 - 4:04pm

Big changes ahead for my oldest, who just found out she is salutatorian of her class (sorry, had to slip in a brag)--she is headed off to Wellesley College in the fall!  She intends to study "everything I can" the first two years, then will have to declare a major.

DS, a rising junior, will stay at his current high school, a small Christian school where he is thriving. He has decided to drop out of the Math, Science, Technology concentration because he has fallen in love with drama and won't have time to do both. He's also on the Asperger's spectrum so any interest that fosters social and emotional development is fine with us!

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-18-2005
Sun, 05-26-2013 - 7:25pm

Mouse, I'm super jealous of your tiny class size!  Classes here in 1st and 2nd grade run as high as 32 kids.  A small class size like 19 would probably resolve a lot of the issues we have with school.  And that small in 6th, wow!

Gwen

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iVillage Member
Registered: 06-07-2004
Sat, 05-25-2013 - 8:15pm

DS11 (both of them) will be starting grade 6 - their last year of elementary school. They will be staying in the language immersion program in the same class as each other. This year they are in grade 5 in the morning and join the grade 6 in the afternoons, so next year is going to be an adjustment. I declined the G-IPP this year. At least 10 of the 16 in their current class are GT or near to it, and the teacher was handling their differences well. They desperately needed the differentiation in grades 1-3, but the principal at the time put a lot of strange roadblocks to all (GT) differentiation and other unrelated matters. When she was replaced, there was a world of improvement in many areas. When the boys were younger they didn't have the maturity or experience on how to self-differentiate. Now they can, and the programming is suddenly available to them. It makes me wonder how many other kids are denied differentiation in the younger years before they have the ability to meet their own needs and speak up for themselves, and then get offered it when they have learned to meet their own needs.  Also, over half of the 19 kids in their class are either GT or close to it.

The boys are active in Scouting, which challenges them in non-academic ways while celebrating when they want to do projects above-level for badges. They are still taking piano, and loving piano, but struggling with work ethic. One of them is struggling with work ethic all around.


We have made the difficult decision to pull your DD4 from the pre-K and Kindy enrichment track, and put her in her brother's school so she can do the language immersion. Pre-K (enrichment or otherwise) and all K programs that are available to us are all half day. I'm glad for the short day because I think it is going to be a dissapointing year. We also have to shift her out of her very loved daycare to one that is "okay" but will pick up from her school. She is going to be very dissapointed, I think. Her current program is amazing. They average about 3 out-of-school field trips, and a few more in-school field trips every month. She has a huge modern classroom (including 2 level fort) and 10 kids with an aid. She has a box of books at her reading level and lots of individual attention. The kindy will also be Reggio Emilio, but with 25 kids (not enrichment) in room half the size and where I doubt she will have a program to develop her abilities very often. It makes my heart ache, but the change is neccesary for other reasons.

She just started piano lessons last month and is almost through the first book. The teacher seems to have very high expectations of her, likely from having taught her brothers for so long. I cringe each week when I see what she's assigned, but she seems to be able to do it by the end of the week without much fuss.

I have no idea what school is going to look like for DD4 in the long term. She is so very very different from her brothers. I see no indication she might be 2E as they are, and that may be why she seems so very different.

 

I'm sorry for not coming here more, or posting more. I am perpetually frustrated with the inability log in, and the inability to stay logged in long enough to post. :/

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-18-2005
Wed, 05-22-2013 - 4:38pm

We've been trying to get Malachi into an alternative program so that he can have a smaller class size and accommodations for his Asperger's, but no luck getting him a spot so far.  Looks like we're staying in mainstream public school G&T with an aide (30-kid class,sigh).  Here's hoping that next year's teacher is better equipped to handled kids with differences, rather than this year's teacher who freaked out at anything outside the box.

Gwen

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Avatar for turtletime
iVillage Member
Registered: 05-13-1998
Tue, 05-21-2013 - 10:23am

DD 16 will continue with the middle college program. She'll have the same 2 high school teachers for English and History. We were able to get some accomodations in her High school English class this semester that should carry over until next year. She has a lot of freedom next year as to what college classes. It'll all depend on the course schedule.

DS 12 will continue at his middle school. He's on the gifted/honors track and we know will have our favorite teachers for 8th grade (DD had them too.) We've started to home study P.E. and will keep going with that next year. The real question is whether we let him continue with the online math and continue Geometry or if we move him to the "advanced algebra" class which has a fantastic teacher. While it doesn't accelerate the kids further down the math path, it was the most broadening class my eldest ever took and I think DS, who actually LIKES math, would dig on it. There is also part of me that doesn't want to send DS to high school without having sat through a "real" math class. 

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-23-2002
Mon, 05-20-2013 - 2:18pm

Dd19 will be entering her second year of her university violin performance program. Her violin teacher, whose studio is the most sought-after, is semi-retiring and keeping only two of her 17 undergraduate students, one of whom is my daughter. I know it's because dd has proved herself to be exceptionally hard-working: all the students at this school are talented, but dd sets herself apart with her consistent hard work. She's thrilled that she made the cut. She's been bounced around with piecemeal teaching for many years, due to our family's geographic isolation, so I think it's especially important that she have one teacher for three or four solid years, someone she can really delve deep into developing her musicianship with. She's just moved into a tiny postage stamp of an apartment 4 minutes' walk away from school, so that will change her daily life a fair bit. For the past couple of years she's had a 35-minute bus or subway ride to get anywhere.

Ds16 will enter his senior year of high school. I don't think he's going to feel ready to move on to something long-term-goal-directed immediately upon graduation. He hasn't really found his path for the future. He's thinking he may do a two-year program in digitial music production in a nearby small city, and subsequently look at either digital design or computer science degree programs at a university farther away. Next year will be a process of sorting those plans out. At school he'll be the only graduating student who has post-secondary educational aspirations. That means his course work will be mostly individually paced and self-directed with the overseeing of teachers but little direct teaching and little typical classroom experience. In some ways this is a good fit for him: he learns best by immersing himself in something for significant periods of time, rather than by flitting from course to course every hour. But it'll be tough to keep himself on track. Two of the teachers he'll be working with are excellent as mentors; the other three are either unknown at this point (the school district is hiring) or mediocre. We'll see how it all shakes down in the fall.

Dd14 will be heading into 10th grade, though taking all 11th grade academics. She's a well-organized conscientious kid who will do well with the necessary self-structuring. She'll have one other academic student in her "class," whom she's good friends with. I hope they'll keep each other accountable. I'm a little worried about quality of instructional content with most of the learning being on-line and textbook-based throughout her entire high school experience. Students don't get much direct academic teaching from a real person unless they ask for it, and she's not great at asking for help. But I see some improvement in that recently, so I'm hopeful it'll get easier. She'll be staying with most of the same teachers next year so she can build on her gains.

Dd10 will continue unschooling, though she may do math and possibly one other class at school. This past winter she had expressed some interest in attending school, but has come to see that there isn't a good fit for her there. 

So all told, no big changes here.

Miranda

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