Today all three of our children had parent teacher conferences. As an old vet to this mom thing, I know what it's all about, and a few things go through my mind each time these conferences come around.
1)Yay, I can't wait to hear how well my child is doing!
2)Remember to react supportive if I hear anything not so great.
3)Do we REALLY need to have a parent teacher conference for a three year old?? ;)
While I absolutely LOVE to hear wonderful thing's about my children, I simply cannot see any reason for having a meeting for my preschooler. I know how she is in class. I see it. Quiet, reads a lot, scribbles completely outside the lines every time she colors, enjoys hands on activities and so on. A simple phone call would save us all a lot of time to be honest. Of course I would never NOT attend a conference, I want my kids to see I support them no matter what, at every age. I just don't think the conferences are too vital at the age of 3. But hey....we went!
Katie was up first. As soon as we get into her classroom, she runs to the library corner. Totally Katie. She has been a bookworm since she was born, and I must say.....I am proud of that. Seeing her make up stories to each page, or even try to remember how the real story goes, just makes me smile. Her teacher had nothing but great things to say about our little Katie. Only thing her teacher wants, is to see Katie talk more while in class. Really? MY child....MY Katie is QUIET???? Who woulda thunk! HA! If you know my child....you know just how full of personality this little firecracker is. So, all good thing's, all smiles for this mama. 1 down, 2 to go!
Onto Laura! I went with her and knew I'd her wonderful thing's from her teacher. Laura has always been a fast learner, she is eager to go to school to learn anything NEW. She eats it all up and isn't satisfied until she finds something that is actually HARD for her to learn. We haven't found that thing yet. So, her teacher immediately dives into how great of a student Laura is. Why is it, that when we hear good thing's about our kids, we get emotional? Please tell me its not only me, or I might be a little embarrassed! ;) Laura sat quietly, complete with a smile. She knew she would hear great thing's, and she was right. Her teacher went on about how Laura is the example in her class. She always says "wow everyone Laura is doing exactly what she is supposed to be doing, lets follow along!" "Laura you are such a great helper" "Laura you solved that problem like a big girl!". As a mother that makes me feel completely wonderful. Laura knows everything she is supposed to, and more. I knew this. She comes home and says "we learn the same stuff everyday". She is bored. The teacher has figured this out, so they will be giving her advanced stuff to work with so she can continue to learn. Hearing that melted my heart. It melted Laura's too. She had the biggest grin while we were there. So again, I left with a big ol' smile! 2 down, 1 to go!
Now it's Nicholas' turn. He is the more difficult one, it comes with age I think. He is also a boy, so my opinion is he isn't as excited to go to school as a five year old girl. Understandable. I will never understand though, how a 12 year old can receive D's in the sixth grade. It's unacceptable in my home. Truthfully, I'm not even ok with c's, but I am accepting them for his sake. I knew how the conference would go....I check on his grades online every Monday and speak with his teachers on a regular basis. So, I stayed home with the three little's, while Nick got to attend with Nicholas. He is starting to goof off less and less which is great! He is a sweet boy, kind to anyone that crosses him (except for mama the "bad guy" sometimes lol), his grades however are not reflecting how smart I know he is. I told him that, and I hope he thinks about that. I want him to actually put forth effort and see that big A or B on his papers and FEEL proud. We asked him how he felt about his grades. How he felt when he saw those D's......he said "crappy". Typical tween lol. I was glad to hear that instead of "I don't know". It means he knows those aren't great or even good grades, and we made a new game plan for him to get these grades up to where they belong. I feel for him, but I also feel angry to see grades like he has. Have I failed as his mother? Where am I going wrong?? I have spent hours and hours, days, weeks, months, years.....helping him with homework, studying, lectures on how important grades are. I have given him the tools he needs to be a successful student, he needs to take the lead now and get it done.
So, while we had smiles and sighs today, I feel good. I have prepared all of my children to go to school and learn. They are all good children, that are more different than I thought was possible. They all learn, feel and think differently. It's just amazing to me that my 3 older kids are in school, learning and becoming their own people.
These parent teacher conferences get to be very different from how they begin in preschool. But one thing remains.......the amazing feeling a mother feels to hear good things about all of her children.