Family photo 2013

Family photo 2013

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

I don't know how you people do it.

I have a whole new level of respect for school mamas.

We have had one child in school for just over a week and another for 2 days. Already, I am losing my mind. Seriously. Losing it. This is crazy! HOW ON EARTH DO YOU KEEP TRACK OF ALL THE miscellaneous crap junk garbage unnecessarily sacrificed trees papers, notes, etc. that have to be shuffled back and forth from school to home and home to school?

This needs a signature, that needs documentation, this needs practiced, that needs reinforced, every night. These children are in K and first grade! For goodness gracious sakes.

And, homeschoolers don't do homework. ☺

Meadow and Flint really don't seem to get that most of the *stuff* they get at school has to go back to school. I'm finding papers, which are {supposed to be homework} ev.ery.where. Even after multiple attempts at communicating the importance of letting me see what they need to do and making sure they get help with it, because it will need to find its way to their backpack to be RETURNED. I (brilliantly! so I thought...) went ahead and set up a handy dandy, nifty little basket at the kids' computer desk just for these homework items so I could look them over and help ensure that items are being properly dealt with. So far, it's not working all that well.

Then, when they do bring home things and show them to me, like books for instance, they have no idea why they have them or if they need to go back or what they are supposed to do with them. And, well, I don't know either.

(((((ARGH)))))

I was obviously aware they had these same tendencies at home - to not track with what they are told or be able to follow if something is explained to them. But I really, really, really hoped that school would help them learn to learn and retain information. Maybe it still will. It hasn't been long. I think I had my hopes too high. I may have been wishing for (just a little bit of) magic.

Poor kids. This is a challenging learning curve for them. Although we are apart all day and I am certainly able to get some much needed, much appreciated respite, I feel like the after school/before school/homework tension is continuing to set us back when I so hoped school would propel us forward.

Unfortunately, this is about more than just homework. It has not been the best week for me personally. This school experience of ours has served as a reminder to me that no matter how many reinforcements I call in, no matter how much help I am willing to take, these precious Ethiopian children are ultimately my responsibility to teach, to train, to aid and assist and nourish and guide and admonish and correct and parent. To mother. And to this day, that reality is often entirely overwhelming.

Poor trees. It can't be easy making all that paper....
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5 comments:

Erika said...

I don't want to discourage you - in fact I wish I knew you and could call you up with just the right words... I really want you to homeschool all your kids. I'm on the edge of my seat! I'm not judging you - I've read all the comments and see lots that are supporting your decision to send your kids to school. I just think you need one person to say that you should give it another year. Don't hate me... :)

Bonnie said...

As far as homework - tell the teacher that your kids just aren't ready to do it yet and then don't do it. Honestly it will take many weeks for them just to settle into school and if your realtionship is strained by homework that won't help.

As for all the papers - you will find your stride for it.

Carla said...

Amber did the same thing when she first started last year, it took a while for her to understand or remember what the teacher told her to do. I had her teacher's email and would just send her an email asking what she needed or just send a note the next day asking. It is just k and 1st grade after all. I can't begin to tell you how much school helped her understanding of our culture, communication, etc. She is a completely different child from last year, she is very happy. I do think it is because school has given her a better understanding of so many things. It was overwhelming for me too, because I have always home schooled, all the papers, etc. But that will dwindle and you will begin to get in a routine of homework and know what they need to do. I struggled with Amber with homework, so I had my 9 year old son help her and I would check it. It made him feel smart and created more of a bond between them.

This is new and strange, give it time and I think you will see in the long run that it will help in many different areas, especially bonding. I expected too much at first and dealt with guilt, but then when I began to see the positive changes in Amber and the whole family, I let the guilt go. I feel so free from all that and things are beginning to happen naturally now. We have had Amber and Amon here almost three years and I never thought we would get to this place. We are sending Amon to k this year. I wish I could talk to you in person to encourage you, but we live in NC. :-(

Mama D.'s Dozen said...

Ugh!

I've been homeschooling for 20+ years, but have sent a few kids off to school at different times over the years. With a dozen children, I cannot even begin to imagine what life would have been like trying to keep track of all of their "school" stuff. I LOVE homeschooling!

I'm sure that it was a very big decision to put the adopted kids into schools, but hope that they will be able to be home with the rest of the kids before too long. I totally understand ... as there are many days that I wish one of my little African beauties could go to school every day. But, I know that I need to keep her at home with me (no matter how difficult it is some days).

Praying for you, as you work through this school transition.


:) :) :)

Courtney said...

my tips: homework at their ages is NOT required. do what you/they can.

and THROW everything you CAN away!!! as SOON as you see it. if it isn't something that needs to be returned, THROW IT AWAY! (even their papers!)

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