Warpath Mommy

bus Well, I am on the warpath lately. My current issue – meeting the educational needs of my youngest child.

At the beginning of kindergarten, I waited for our (we totally love her) teacher to notice our son’s academic abilities. Didn’t happen. So, I thought, maybe their evaluations don’t include higher-level material because the kids aren’t supposed to know those things yet.

So, I set a meeting to discuss it.

Prior to the meeting the teacher tested him and at the meeting told me he reads at about a 3rd grade level. And there is no test for math.

“What about the TAG (talented and gifted program)?” I asked. “How does it work?” The answer:  We can work with him in the classroom, but TAG doesn’t begin for our students until the 3rd grade.

Huh.

Our kindergarten teacher is organized and very committed to doing a great job for her students. And she has a lot of kids to teach and is doing her best to meet his needs with the time and resources she has. (I am not knocking her at all. She’s a rock star, and we love her.)

But this kid says and does things with math, logic, language and vocabulary that indicate to my husband and me that there’s a whole lot going on in his mind that we don’t expect to be there yet.

At school, I am seeing signs laziness and a slight increase in behavioral issues that has led me to consider he may need a different type of environment in order to be challenged and get the most out of his education.

There was a really interesting article in The Boston Globe recently called The Poor Neglected Gifted Child that talked about how kids in this category fall through the cracks in public schools. From what I gather, it’s not a new problem, but it’s new to me.

So, I’m concerned.

I’m reading, and I am talking to people. And I am forming opinions…on my warpath.

If anyone has any insights, I’d love to hear what you think.

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3 Responses to Warpath Mommy

  1. Lisa April 4, 2014 at 1:22 pm #

    This is a real problem and the only really good solution is homeschooling. Boredom isn’t lasiness. When something isn’t a challenge doing it loses it’s appeal; how many people really enjoy folding clothes? What’s worse is that the work to them is just busy work. They don’t need the repetition to remember a concept they already have mastered. Learning at home allows the child to dig deeper into a subject at their own pace. TAP programs are wonderful as are advanced placement programs, but they are still institutionalized learning. Children still get held back or pushed forward according to the needs of the group. What’s more, I know that you could do it. It doesn’t surprise me that you have a gifted child. Other than that, have you thought about other educational models such as Montessori? Ireally wish you the best as you make the decision about how to educate him.

  2. Heather April 4, 2014 at 5:31 pm #

    Thanks, Lisa, for your kind words and for sharing your ideas. Homeschooling is not for us. (I’m too impatient and he and I are both so stubborn.)’

    I’m not opposed to institutionalized learning, but the current situation is probably not the best one for this kiddo.

    I made a bunch of appointments to tour different schools and hope that the right path becomes clear along the way.

    Thanks for chiming in with your insights. Hope you and your family are well.
    Hedda
    PS: TAP (I hadda look it up) means Tuition Assistance Program in case anyone else read that and was unfamiliar.

  3. Jennifer Johnsey April 7, 2014 at 6:05 pm #

    I am in the process of deciding to start my son in Kindergarten this fall. He turns 5 on August 21st. Some say I should hold him back but my gut says to send him forward. He is smart and I fear holding him in Pre-K will leave him bored and restless. He needs a challenge as well. So forward we go!

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