Friday, January 19, 2007

Newsflash!

This just in...

Today was Caitlin's turn at presenting her material for "Shining Star". Last Friday she was given a large, yellow construction paper star that she was supposed to write/draw on and discuss the following things:

Me: A picture of Caitlin, right in the middle.

My family: dad, me, mom (taped on photo of the 3 of us from Max's b-day - taken by Linda. Thanks Linda!)

My favorite food: spagety and maet balls, samin
My favorite thing to do: read books
My favorite color: pink, blue, black, prple, brown, orange
  • Of note: She crossed off the extra ones when I complained that she was just copying others and that she's never previously mentioned liking those colors. Now I'm thinking I should have just left it alone, but at the same time it points out, yet again, the amount of conformity that goes on in kindergarten. I sat in on a couple other Shining Star presentations and noted that the girls all seem to write down all the colors of the rainbow and then the other kids follow suit. Same for food. Amazing how often "spaghetti and meatballs" shows up and may or may not be true. Caitlin, actually, doesn't like it. This time I just mentioned salmon in passing (which she's cruh-AAAzy about) and she added on "samin" in pink crayon.
A funny thing that happened to me: I went back word on my sled.
  • Of note: During our sledding trial, we spun around backwards on the sled. Much fun!
Parents are invited to come and observe the presentation and generally stick around for lunch. At lunchtime, kids with parents sit in the special tables right in the middle of the room and are only allowed to choose one friend to sit with them, in addition to their parents.

Caitlin chose The Angry Young Man.

To say that we were stunned would be putting it mildly. As Eric mentioned, kids don't tend to hold grudges for very long and their alliances are mercurial. Who knows why she chose him, but she did, so we all sat together and had a nice little lunch. I've watched what the teachers have been doing and it appears to be working. Caitlin hasn't come home complaining about him at all for a few weeks now. Winter break seemed to also have helped the situation. I've observed the teachers all paying close attention to him, sitting next to him during "mat time", or whatever they call the organized sitting together on the floor periods. Whenever they leave the room, he is in front, holding the teacher's hand. Clearly this has the physical effect of knowing where he is at all times and knowing that he's not whacking little Jane/Johnny, but it also has the benefit of direct attention, of which he really appears to be in need. Sitting at table with us, he was fine - he was nice to Caitlin and everything.

So! There you have it. My shining star is winning the hearts of the masses: during the Q&A period of her presentation, she took Sebastien's question (Of course!), and is making friends with the AYM. Wow.

She's some kid!

1 comment:

cindy said...

"Mat" time is usually called "Circle Time". It's done after the kids come in for the morning (and some times after lunch too), during which they go over: the season, weather, day of the week (and months), colors, shapes, numbers etc. Some teachers do a "fill-in-the-blank" morning message that the kids get to help fill in that is related to what they are being taught. Then they will read a book and sing some songs.
Basically it's relaxed/fun learning.
-Cindy

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