It was parents evening last night for my 6- and 4-year old daughters. Seeing as I no longer work Mondays, I was able to go for the first time in a while and had arranged to meet Mel at the school.
About an hour before the first appointment, Mel called me to say that youngest daughter had thrown up and wouldn’t be able to come up the school with us, and would I mind going on my own, taking middle daughter with me.
No problem for me, so I swung by and picked up middle daughter and drove to the school. The first appointment was with Mrs Clifton, youngest daughter’s teacher. We sat down and Mrs Clifton explained that she was pleased with her. Apparently she is very good at counting, and can count up to 14 blocks which is better than most. She also said that she is very, very quiet in the class - something I found hard to believe as she talks non-stop at home, though Mrs Clifton remarked that it’s not unusual for kids to be polar opposites at home compared to when they are at school.
She continued by saying that youngest daughter is always willing to help out when asked, plays nicely, and when I asked if she had any set friends, the teacher said that she hadn’t noticed but that could be as she is quiet (which sounds like a bit of a cop-out answer, but it wasn’t something that I could have pressed on).
The only thing that she can improve on is her speech, which we know, and when I asked what we can do to help, I was told that when doing her ERR (the phonetic sounding of letters - “Ah, Ber, Curly Ker” instead of ABC) by not just making the letter sound, but also by putting a word with it - Ah is for apple, Ber is for ball etc. She says she also writes her name nicely.
Next up was Mrs Labelle, middle daughter’s teacher.
“Oh, I’m supposed to be taking a ten minute break now, but seeing as you’re early, I’ll see you straight away.”
Middle daughter went to step through the classroom door, but was stopped by Mrs Labelle and asked to wait outside.
As she shut the door and intimated for me to sit down, I said that it was never a good sign when a kid’s asked to stand outside.
“No, it’s just that I don’t like the kids hearing what I have to say about them.” She replied.
Fortunately, I had nothing to worry about. I’ve never seen anyone get such high praise. Mrs Labelle said that she excelled at maths, and had a very quick problem-solving brain. She also said that she was quick to take part in discussions, and though she could occasionally talk a little too much, it wasn’t always discouraged as she was also very quick to speak up in class when a lot of kids hold back.
The only downside to anything she could comment on was middle daughter’s unwillingness to expand on things when writing a story. Not that her story-telling is bad - it’s very good, as she was quick to point out, but she knew that she could do a lot better and wants her to reach her potential. When I asked what I could do to help, the teacher admitted that there wasn’t much we could do at home except to keep telling middle daughter that she needed to be more descriptive. Overall though, Mrs Labelle was very happy and very complimentary.
When I asked middle daughter what she thought Mrs Labelle had said, she replied “She would have said that I need to be more descriptive in writing, that I’m very good at Maths and that sometimes I talk too much”.
I hope all parent evenings turn out to be this easy, and I’m a very happy daddy today 🙂