Friday, November 23, 2007

Progress Report

First Semester:

Jamie** has really made an effort to control unnecessary and inappropriate talking, and I am really pleased with the results. He has improved so much in that area since September. He is pleasant and fun to work with most of the time now.

Jamie is exceptionally bright and is a good student; however, lately he has become rather careless in math. He is working neither as fast nor as accurately as he used to. I know Jamie is a strong math student and I would like to see him return to the excellent-quality work that he is capable of producing.

I am having fun with Jamie in class and especially enjoy his "grown-up" sense of humor.

Sincerely, /s/ Jeanne Smith

Second Semester:

Jamie has made strong progress in all areas of his school work this year. *He is now capable of doing excellent printing when he wants to take the time, but usually his papers are not as neat as they could be. However, he is very creative, and would guess that expressing his ideas is just much more important to him than worrying about a tidy product. (And I agree! But I hope that he'll decide to work just a bit more on neatness in 2nd. grade.)

James has been great fun this year! He is a neat child!

Sincerely, J. Smith

* On the reverse, next to "Uses good letter form" she writes "can*"

** As I was known in first grade. Thanks, mom and dad.

What gets me about these are they describe an outgoing (ok, disruptive), engaging child who was able to easily interact with his peers. So what happened? What brought me to this point today where I am socially awkward, really poor at interacting, and almost completely unable to carry on a two-sided conversation with someone?

Since I like me, I'm going to put all the blame on the school. Instead of identifying my difficulties and working on a positive solution to re-channel them, they instead bribed/punished it out of me to the extreme the opposite direction.

Lori suggests that we can probably expect some of the same kinds of notes and conferences coming home -- though the letter from the district sent to my parents in fifth grade outlining steps that I, my parents, and my teachers must make, now that's a little scary and I must ask my parents for more details (there is also a weekly journal from gifted class where I write that gifted class is punishment and then the journal entries abruptly stop). I only hope that if Rachel does take after me, that we are able (maybe by receiving these momentos now and studying them) can prevent her from the same path. Because she is incredibly engaging and active -- and a little bossy. I've encouraged her at every opportunity to interact with people of all ages, pushed her a little perhaps, because I didn't want her to end up like me. Perhaps this is a push she doesn't need.
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