Back To School!


Well, summer is officially over – school starts tomorrow!  I could be like everyone else and say “where did the summer go?”, but for me, it actually didn’t go as fast as I would have thought.  We were so busy; though it was good-busy; not like so-much-work-to-do-busy.  But much fun was had and I enjoyed every minute!  Last week was spent at school open houses and orientations, as well as a training event at our church to allow us to volunteer with our church’s student ministries.  That was an interesting evening – it began with us volunteers breaking off into groups of about 15 and making lines.  We were given a spoon tied to a string which was wound around a “spool” ie, an empty tube of toilet paper.  The first person in the line (me) was to put the spoon down their shirt and pants and give it to the next person who was supposed to put it up their pants and shirt, then to the next person who was supposed to put it down the shirt and pants, effectively “threading” the line of people together.  Kind of strange, I thought, but what’s going to happen once we’re all “wearing” the string???  It was a little scary, but luckily, the threading was the entire ice-breaking activity, and the rest of the evening was pleasantly spent listening to a guest speaker while munching on all kinds of orange snacks (orange was the theme for the evening – I never really thought about how many party snacks are orange before!).

Today we had so many activities and volunteering planned for church that we were on the go from 8:30 in the morning until about 3:30 in the afternoon.  Busy, but it was time well-spent, especially since we finished up the day with Kidstuff (a cute show with a wonderful message for the kids) and then a carnival with LOTS of treats and fun for the kids; they had a blast.  Good thing too – we need to get settled down early tonight in order to get our oldest to school by 7:30 in the morning!!!  She is starting middle school, and yes, to those of you who have asked – she will be switching classes, kind of like the “block” style they had when I was in middle school.  My daughter has a homeroom, but then she switches for language arts and math and perhaps other subjects as well.  And they do gym class strangely – there are 4 classes: gym, music, technology (typing, etc.), and art, and they take one of these 4 classes every day for 9 weeks and then switch to another.  That sounds pretty cool to me!  I would have LOVED it if I only had to worry about gym for 9 weeks of the year!  But, being in middle school also means that she has to change for gym class, poor thing – I remember that aspect of middle school making a lot of kids really nervous.  And at orientation last week, the principal gave us parents a talk about making sure we wash the gym clothes – the kids are getting to “that age”, she said, which prompted me to whisper to my friend nearby, “I’m not ready!”  But my daughter IS ready for middle school, and she seems to be making her way from tween to teen in no time –  UGH!  Poor thing got her first pimple just in time for the first day of middle school, but she doesn’t seem to mind too much, so we’re not making it a big deal.  It’s not like we’re publishing it on the internet for the entire world to read or anything…  But what are moms for?  She can thank me when she’s older and finds this through some sort of google search or something.

Our second oldest is starting Kindergarten.  This is our “difficult” child; our strong-willed one.  Samantha has a mind of her own, and some of the things she says leave us in stitches – others leave us shaking our heads, but we’ll stick to the positives here.  It seems that Samantha has the same Kindergarten  teacher that her sister had a few years ago, and my husband and I are chuckling to ourselves about the unintentional “joke” we’re about to play on our local school system.  We are wondering how many years it will take for word to spread amongst the teachers in town about how much of a…  well, difference there is  between Samantha and her big sister…  No need to go off about it here, like I said, we need to call it an early night, but it will suffice to say that any teacher of Taylor’s who gets Samantha 4 years later will probably be surprised 🙂

I was going to write about the younger two as well, but it’s bedtime already and this post is long enough – that’s what I get for not blogging regularly, I guess, an über-post!

13 thoughts on “Back To School!”

  1. Hmm… I seem to remember 4 siblings who had a similar experience throughout their years spent gracing the halls of the E-town Local School system. I remember at least one teacher asking number three if he was going to be like number one or two. Now a few of them are being graced by the offspring of the original four…. three of the four, anyway 😀 I don’t know who to feel sorrier for: the students or teachers.

  2. Hope it is clear and sunny tomorrow morning. And no traces of the terrible f word and we all know to which word I am referring.

  3. No trace of fog!!! Everything went smoothly, so I hear anyway – sweet hubby did everything (including the dreaded wmart trip) while I was asleep. He said he was bored after the baby woke him up at 4 in the morning! UGH! And yes, middle school starts at 4th grade.

  4. I really have to shake my head at the decision your district made to put 4th and 5th graders through the middle school experience. I suppose one positive note is that they are getting out of the way a new school system *before* they start going through…other changes. There are some who say even 6th grade is too young, but having been in such a system (being probably the youngest in my class to boot!) and having no negative feelings about it, I don’t necessarily agree on that one, but I know 6th grade elementary has its benefits too.

    7:30 start time for T is going to be tough, but from her perspective she has some extra time in the afternoon! 🙂

  5. We shall see – I think she will do well. The good news is that the grades are very separated in the building, and the buses are also separated by grades. I think the experience will do a nice job preparing her for high school.

  6. Separating the grades is definitely a good thing- young adolescents of 7th and 8th grades should be nowhere near 4th and 5th whether it be on the bus or in school.

  7. Interesting debate. Our our junior high school housed 6th-8th but the 6th grade was on the other side of the building. The new school now holds 6th-12th grade. I believe jr. and sr. high are on different floors.

  8. I don’t know that I would classify it as a debate… I think the bottom line is that kids are different in different places. Because I was a resident of both types of places (urban and rural), I can totally see Derek’s concern with the mixing of the grades – I would NOT approve of the concept given the class sizes and the fact that the urban kids mature MUCH earlier. In the rural area, the class sizes are much smaller, the mentality is different among many parents (many have more time for their kids and aren’t as consumed by work), and the staff can make it work. Some places around here have K-12 schools and they work just fine!

  9. One of my deputy’s wives starts her first year at Bryan MS as the new social worker…(I’m not sure if that’s her new title or not).

    I remember being so excited about getting to switch rooms for classes….however it wasn’t until 7th grade.

    I think it’s great that Samantha is unique. My family was the same way, but in the other order. My oldest brothers were the ones that maybe proved to be a bit more of a challenge….so by the time I came along, the teachers were ready….however, much to their delight, I was the perfect student….a blessing, I’m sure SOMEONE would say….(Ok, it’s getting deep in here and I only have flip flops on….)

    I pray Samantha keeps her spunk!

  10. I should back off a bit and say that there are schools around here as well that have such mixes. One school in Des Plaines for example is K-8. They are not separated in any way. Well, there is a “middle school hall” and an “elementary hall,” but 4th and 5th grades are in the so-called “middle school hall,” all specials teachers (art, gym, music) teach K-12, and other resources such as the LMC are shared. They seem to do fine as well.

    Another school I know is actually two buildings joined in the last decade or so. K-6 and middle school are separated, but share resources as well. In short, as L says it can work in at least some cases.

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