Last night I got the call I had been hoping to get all summer; a spot opened up for Maisey at the charter school. I thought all along it would be an easy choice to make when the time came. After I got off the phone with the principle I just started crying. This is what I thought we wanted all along, but she LOVES her other teacher, and has already made friends (her friend Ryan gave her a flower on the play ground yesterday!). It also didn't help that Shaun is in Vegas this week for work. I was just really torn on what to do. So we decided to give it a try today. I bought some uniforms a few weeks ago just in case we got in, so I pulled those out and we tried them on. Maisey HATED them! She kept saying "these aren't stylish, these look like Daddy's work clothes, these make me look like a boy." But then my friend sent me a picture of her daughter in her uniform then Maisey was ok with them. In the morning, we had the same drama again, but we made it out the door.
Here she is in her uniform! You can tell she's nervous because she didn't even pose.
This was a forced pose!
I went to drop her off this morning and it was a whirlwind. All of the students were arriving at the same time and all needed help on remembering what to do so I felt really rushed and with out a lot of direction. Maisey's new teacher, Ms. Dunlap showed Maisey where her desk was and gave her a workbook type packet to start working on and then rang the bell telling all parents it was time to leave. She started crying a little bit and I felt really bad for her.
I walked out of the room and saw my two friends and just lost it. It was very structured and not as welcoming and friendly and fun as the other school. I was so afraid that Maisey wouldn't enjoy herself. I went in and met with the principle for a little bit and she gave me a little more general whole-school info. I left and pretty much cried all morning, and tried to pull myself together in time to pick her up. When I picked her up she didn't have much to say. She told me that she was very hungry and that she sat in her desk for a long time. I met with her teacher for a few minutes, but Gage was all over the place and being very defiant so I didn't get a lot out of it. But she called me a few minutes ago and talked through things with me, which helped a little bit.
I think the thing I am most concerned about is if the charter school is too structured. In my opinion, Kindergarten should include a circle time where you talk about the calendar and maybe read a story or two (I remember doing this up through 2nd grade) and maybe sing a few songs. I'm not saying that it should all be fun and games, but when you are assigned your own desk and just handed a packet to get started on and that is your first impression of the school, I had a hard time with it. The charter school only has 1/2 day kindergarten, so I know they try to fit as much academics in as possible, but kids can learn through manipulatives and games and stories. I guess it's just a completely different attitude toward learning than what I am used to.
We are going to give it a shot for the rest of the week, by then Shaun will be home and we will be able to make a decision as to what is best for her. The hard part is we can't just think about Kindergarten. We have to think about what is best for her over the next few years as well as what is best for Gage. It is hard to get into the school and now we have our foot in the door so we don't want to waste a good opportunity. Ahhhhhhh. . . what to do!!
It's funny how you want something so bad, then when you get it you're not even sure that's what you want anymore.
Regardless, I've got some pretty cute school kids!