Wednesday, May 21, 2008
My kids' school is the best
When we were doing school planning for Jake, he was set to start kindergarten at Redding School of the Arts. I knew the founders, and we really liked everything about the school.
Then came the divorce (can I just start calling my life BD & AD?) and transportation issues and afterschool care seemed overwhelming. So they went to Manzanita, and West Redding Preschool for their afterschool care.
Both great schools. Honestly. Jake's kindergarten teacher was amazing. She is an amazing, nurturing woman, and a wonderful teacher. Of course, because it's a public school, they promptly transfered her to 5th grade.
Jake's first grade year went well. His teacher wasn't so warm, but first grade is different, anyway. She learned his personality, and what made him tick, and how he learned, and he did very well.
This year, Jake started 2nd grade, and Emme started kindergarten, and it came to a screeching halt. Jake hated school. His grades were poor. He was bored, and acted up. His math skills seemed to regress. His reading stopped getting better.
Every morning I'd drop Emme off at school and she would cry and cry and cry. And run out of the room to try to follow me. She was learning well, but the funny thing was that often I'd stop into the classroom to help out and the TV would be on. She watched at least 3 half-hour programs a day....in a 5 hour day.
We did our research, and decided on North Woods Discovery School. It's a charter school. There are only 200 kids in k-8. The principal knows them each by name. They have music and art and drama and they focus on science, math, and technology. These kids are amazing.
3 1/2 months later, and Jake is at his grade level for all subjects, and he LOVES school and loves learning. Emme races to her class without a backward glance. They are excited to go to school every day.
Tonight they had an ice cream social at Coldstone. All the proceeds are going to support their music program. The xylophone group played (they want marimbas, but can't afford them yet). They're cleverly called the Mallet Heads.
We had a great evening, eating ice cream, listening to the beat of music from Zimbabwe and Latin America.