Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Homework Awesomeness

So Big Kid's new innovative school has a weird grouping system instead of individual grade levels. There are 2 grades mixed together, 40 students divided into 2 rooms, and 2 teachers. Then the kids switch rooms with different groups depending on ability, or something. I don't really even know--I've had at least 4 people explain it to me and it seems confusing, but everyone really loves it. They always stick with the same "family" of kids and have each set of teachers for 2 years.

So far it seemed like they really hadn't been doing much learning. There was a lot of working on social skills and playing, which is actually awesome for Big Kid because he needs to learn that more than anything academic, but it did have me little nervous. Tonight is the first night he came home with a homework folder, every night up until now they have sent books home for him to read (they have an endless supply of beautiful, age-appropriate books right in the classroom and send home 3 different ones each night).

The "other" teacher (who is actually a neighbor of mine--not a suspect in the poop-bomb throwing incident, thankfully) sent home a 3-ring-binder with his homework assignments, which I was relieved to notice were challenging and resembled actual work. Then I noticed that Wednesday's home work is making your bed and Thursday's home work includes GOING TO BED 10 MINUTES EARLY! I'm not even kidding.

Big Kid is Pissed, but Mr. Ashley and I are ready to kiss this woman on the lips. That's just plain fucking awesomeness right there. I don't even care if they spend half their time playing if she's going to get him to clean the house and go to bed early. Damn. I'm nominating her for the local teacher-of-the-year award, not even joking.

Big Kid also came home with a family portrait he drew. Again, I'm wearing the shirt that says "Squeeze me" (and I pretty much abandoned that shirt after it was featured in the Kindergarten family portrait--I'll never live that one down) but this time I'm also holding a hedgehog. Mr. Ashley is wearing a baseball cap and little kid has jeans on. Pretty accurate as a family portrait other than that damn Squeeze Me shirt. I tried to point out to Big Kid that I no longer wear that shirt and he says that it doesn't matter, it's still his favorite. I'm hoping his teacher couldn't read it, his writing is pretty sloppy.

7 comments:

blueshelled said...

Is it a montessori school? I am doing practicum at one and they do it. The kids do really well with it.

Slack said...

Yes, you do need to hook that scanner up! We need to see Big Kid's family portrait.

Jennifer said...

Ok, you may have to actually share where you live so that I can move there. That school sounds totally awesome. I wonder if she could get my kid to sleep in her own bed.

Lin said...

Wow, that's one awesome school!

Southern Mom said...

My son is in the exact same type of classroom- 42 kids, 2 teachers, 2 rooms, "families", etc. This is our first year and I'm totally confused! There must be some research that shows this is an effective way to teach since we don't live near you.

Ashley said...

Yeah, I looked for that research but everyone everywhere seems a bit confused by it. Even the people that work there explain it and then stare at me blankly. The teacher says the kids have more friends, and more stability, while still having the variety of different groups and teachers and being able to work in groups based on ability vs. grade level. All of the parents seem to love it so I guess we'll see.

It's interesting so far!

Ashley said...

Blue, it's not montessori but a lot of the curriculum seems based on similar principles.