I wanted to thank you all for the kind words on the Jacob situation. It isn't the end of the world, but it is very frustrating to me. Like anyone else, I just want what is best for my child and I am finding it all a little eye opening because I always figured he would just do what everyone else does and do well. I am still not convinced he won't do well if we continue on the beaten path. I agree with those of you who said that he had a few months to mature and also that the teacher is judging him a little early having been only in school three months. Where it gets sticky, though, and this is why the teacher brought it to my attention so early, is that if I want him to continue to go to the private school next year, I need to enroll him in early February or he will lose his spot. Also, if I want to look at other private schools and find one that may better suit his needs, same thing. Soooooo.......I need to get busy. My immediate plan is to spend a morning observing him in the classroom. I want to see how he relates with the other kids and how he works with the teacher. I am inclined to think that boredom is a big issue on his end because all they do for the three hours he is there each day is work.....work, work, work, and then on Wednesdays go to chapel. There are no crafts, no playtime, no fun centers in the room. It's not like the kindergarten you and I went to. Jacob is all about art and writing and making up stories at this point and he gets no opportunity at all in school to do this. All he does is print letters, add numbers, and read flashcards.......stuff he has been doing for over a year now. I am highly trained in observing children and documenting their needs and weaknesses....I did it for years when I was a special education teacher. I am just wondering how objective I can be with my own child. Michelle asked about an IEP and an aide for him. That might work in the public school, but private schools do not have access to those kinds of services, at least this one does not. I also don't know if I am ready for him to go through all the testing that is involved with obtaining an IEP at this age. When I did this for a living I found kids who were tested before the end of first grade were sometimes misdiagnosed and labeled unfairly for the three years they were required to keep the IEP and in many cases judged by their papers instead of their abilities. Some teachers just couldn't look past the label and that was sad, but true. Now, that doesn't mean that next year, if we go the public school route, that I wouldn't go for it then, I just think three months into school may be a little extreme, at least for my kid, another reason I want to see what he's doing in class....it may be a big eye opener to me. Also, I am not against retention at the grade school level and from previous experience with other school kids, kindergarten is usually the best time to do it (if not before). If he were having academic issues it would be my first approach, but he doesn't and I cannot even imagine how odd it would be for him to sit in a classroom again learning the same things he has learned the past two years. It would be like watching reruns over and over.......I imagine his behavior issues would only get worse at that point. I think, academically, that homeschooling is the way to go. I have been "homeschooling" him for years and he has learned well from me and I know he would continue to make progress cognitively, I just don't know how it would affect him from the social aspect. I mean, it won't be like I will be keeping him under lock and key for the next two years, but it won't be what he is used to and, right now, he really, really likes the cameraderie that school time brings. I don't know how he would like it if I took him out for such a long time; he really does like the structure of school. I also wonder if I would have the stamina to be up all night with a new baby and be the best teacher I can be for Jacob. So, decisions need to be made, the sooner the better. I am sure whichever path we choose we will find a way to make a good situation out of it. I am also sure that whatever we do I will second guess it every step of the way. Parenting ain't all it's cracked up to be sometimes....gee thanks to all of you who tricked me by making it look so easy.
All my life I thought I'd be the perfect mother. I even majored in it. I aced all the child development classes I took toward my degree in, wait for it, Early Childhood Development and Elementary Education.
And then they were born. First Jacob, who is 8, then Adam, who is 4, and our biggest surprise, Elizabeth who is 2.
As much as I really wanted to be, I am finding out I am no June Cleaver. For starters, The Beav never had a baby sister.