So – many of you have already been through this. Some of you may be teachers. Hopefully you can give me some insight.
I can now see one reason to homeschool, but I will NEVER* do it!
I help out in Julia’s first grade class once a week. Normally I help with reading. I have been absolutely shocked by the wide range of abilities in reading. There are a few kids who read at a high level – can read any word, any book pretty much. There are far more kids who still cannot read three letter sight words. Julia’s teacher has a parent come in for reading most every day. I can’t imagine if she didn’t. There is no way she could have any kind of group lesson with the range of ability. I have felt comforted that there are 4 reading groups and parent help. Plus the excellent readers get pulled out twice a week for the talented and gifted program and work on reading comprehension.
Yesterday I was asked to do a pretest on telling time and recognizing/counting money. Once again, I was shocked by the difference in abilities. There were plenty of kids who did not know the names of the various coins, let alone their value. Then, there were about 4-5 kids who knew all the coins, could add them up and could tell all the times. One of them looked so surprised at the worksheet and asked me why one earth were they being tested on this, surely all the kids knew it! I had to tell him that actually, no, they don’t all know it!
So, now I am trying to imagine this next math module. How do you teach the kids who don’t know what a penny is and also teach the kids who can look at 6 quarters and tell you after a few seconds that they add up to $1.50?
*I am a believer in public schools, and like I said before I would never homeschool for many many reasons most of which have to do with the various personalities in my family. I am not against homeschooling, just not for me.
So – where does that leave Julia? She is in the top group of kids and I just don’t know how she isn’t bored out of her mind. On the other hand, she LOVES doing well and I am sure she is thrilled to have such easy work and do so well at it. Some challenges would be good for her though.
She actually doesn’t have homework. She did for about three weeks and then it stopped and I don’t know why. Maybe it is time for homework provided by me….I’m not sure where to start on that but I just don’t know.
I am not the type who is worried about Julia being some great success in life. I don’t care what kind of college she goes to. In fact, I don’t care if she goes to college as long as she is pursuing a career that she can support herself with and that makes her happy.
However, while in school, I still want her to at least have the opportunity to achieve and learn to the level she is able. I just don’t know.
I am hoping that as they go up in grades, perhaps the gulf narrows? I have no clue – maybe some of you can clue me in.