Brought to You by the Letter “G”

Monday nights are homework nights in this house.  Daniel’s class has a letter of the week and on Monday, the dreaded piece of paper comes home.  In addition to everything else we are juggling, we have to have Daniel think of things that start with that letter, find pictures, have him cut them out and then glue them on the sheet. And on Tuesdays, each child presents his or her homework. Are you tired? I know I am.

The first time the assignment came home, it was a surprise and I groaned because I was solo parenting while Jimmy was on a business trip and had to tackle “A” in addition to making dinner, eating, getting out clothes, teeth brushing, stories, etc. in about 90 minutes.  I admit that I located, cut out and glued the pictures myself, making sure Daniel could identify them the next day in class.  The next day I confessed to his teacher that I had done the assignment because I have flashbacks to my 6th grade science fair project and the beautiful display my mother created and hearing classmates AND their parents comment how I had obviously had help.  I didn’t want to be “that mom” already.

Over the last few weeks, we’ve managed to hit our stride on Monday nights.  Once we confirm that we have homework this week, we start asking Daniel to think of things that start with that letter.  Then we find pictures and print them.  Daniel cuts them out (and does a great job by the way; his skill with scissors has improved immensely since he started school; also our cutting skills are roughly equivalent) and writes his name on the paper (a skill which has also improved dramatically).  I glue them on for now only because sometimes the pictures need to be trimmed to fit.  It’s a team effort, but I truly feel the final result reflects Daniel.

I also never imagined we’d have homework in Pre-K.  And I could write an entire other post on how I need a calendar to keep up with Daniel’s various activities and deadlines for school: field trips, buddies, parties, parent career month, weekly newsletters, behavior reports, etc. Oh my! I consider us doing well if we remember which uniform he is supposed to wear that day as well as whether he needs a full lunch or morning snack only because we paid for hot lunch. Does it only get worse from here?

Daniel is learning a lot, and that’s the important thing.  I just wish school had come with a huge binder and calendar for me to keep up!

This week was the letter “G” 🙂

Yes, that lower right image is a picture of God. Appropriate, right?

Yes, that lower right image is a picture of God. Appropriate, right?

Routine Change

Ready to go!

Ready to go!

This week has been L-O-N-G, primarily because we had a major change in our daily routine this week.  Daniel said goodbye to his classmates at day care last Friday and started Pre-K at a small Catholic school on Wednesday.  We had toured the school in late spring in order to decide if we liked it for Kindergarten in 2014. During the tour, the principal told us that they still had spaces available in their Pre-K class and that attending Pre-K guaranteed a spot in Kindergarten.  We hadn’t planned on Pre-K at this school since Daniel’s day care incorporates Pre-K lessons into the two classrooms for the 4-year-olds (and it’s not like he hadn’t been learning anything in the younger classes).  We really liked the school, though, and Jimmy had attended it through 8th grade, so we decided to go ahead and give Pre-K a try.

We had a lot to do to get ready for the first day, including buying a new full-size backpack, a new lunch box and uniforms.  Uniforms.  Yeah. The school has a strict policy on what is worn when.  Shorts and a short-sleeved shirt for the 1st and 4th 9 weeks.  Pants and a short- or long-sleeved polo for the 2nd and 3rd nine weeks.  There is also a specific uniform for PE.  There are also new routines to learn.  Daniel’s Pre-K teacher requires the parents to provide a fruit or veggie snack for the mornings along with lunch. Since the Pre-K kids are low on the totem pole, they eat lunch at 10:45, so I’m packing less food for lunch than I did for day care, especially since they eat snack at 9.  Whew!

The biggest change in our routine has been the morning routine. School starts at 8, and we can walk them to their class at 7:40.  We need to leave the house at 7 to make sure we can make it in time because traffic can be difficult.  I wake up Daniel at 6:15 so he can eat, get dressed in his uniform (soooo cute!) and play while I finish getting dressed.  That means that I get up at 5-ish to make sure I’m finished washing my face, brushing teeth, putting on make-up and putting in my contacts by the time I need to wake up Daniel. That makes for very busy mornings! You might wonder what the big deal is; after all, don’t I seem to be awake and active on Twitter at that time anyway?  It turns out there is a huge difference between being awake and lounging in my cozy bed and having to be up and active at 5!

Daniel and I are wiped in the evenings.  He’s been asleep by 8, and I’m trying to get to bed no later than 10. I am really looking forward to being able to sleep until the late hour of 7 AM tomorrow!  I’m sure it will get better next week as we adjust, and maybe we won’t have to get up as early once we feel confident about what morning traffic will be like.

Daniel seems to like his new school so far.  He really likes his teachers, and I like that his class is small.  Since I’m getting to work so much earlier, I can leave earlier, and it is such a nice change to be home by 5:30 instead of after 6 like it had been.   His school is close to where Jimmy and I work, and we like knowing we can be there in 10 minutes.

So far, so good! I’ll have more to say about his new school next week.

Other Items of (Possible) Interest