Learning in Action – Flow Charts!

As we settle into the school year, the weeks have flown by. Em is doing well – happy, well-liked by her teachers and the other students, and applying herself in class. Last week was her first parent-teacher conference…

Quarterly Parent/Teacher Conference

Em has earned all As and Bs in her classes.

Reading – Ms. West gave her a B and admonished her to focus on her work and to ignore those kids who talk and goof off during class. “Your quality of work goes down when you let them distract you.”

Writing – Ms. Lamunyon gave her an A and is pleased with her progress. She told me that Em is the “mother” of the class.

Social Studies – Ms. Jerome gave her an A, but reminded her to try and focus less on the intricate details (they are making maps) and more on getting done on time. She let me know that Em had some difficulty working in a group, mainly the other kids were not doing what they needed to do and pulled her down with them, but overall, her work is great and she is very participatory in class.

Science – Ms. Grammer gave her an A and sang her praises. She told me that Em’s class is such a good class and that they are so responsive and open to learning that they have accomplished some extra experiments that the other classes have not.

Math – Mr. Gazaway surprised Em (and me) by stating that Em had strong math skills. He gave her a B in the class and we talked about why Em would feel she isn’t doing well and what we could do about it. His suggestion was the same as mine has always been – keep practicing multiplication and division, nearly everyone has difficulty with it at this age but it is so important that they learn it.

Overall, she is doing fabulous. Her one “cranky” teacher likes her more than Em would probably admit. All of them clearly want the best for her and are devoted to their jobs. Who would have thought it? Here we are, in the ‘hood, with some of the best teachers I’ve ever seen?!

I count myself lucky, yet again, that we are here in this place and this neighborhood.

Flow Chart – It’s For the Dogs!

I love seeing the unexpected benefits of learning. Because, let’s face it, getting info from your kids on what they learned during the day is difficult if not impossible. Short of when she comes home with an experiment, Em’s brain is apparently wiped of all information on the short one block walk home each day.

On Tuesday, a particularly windy day, we had the gates of the dog yard blow open not just once, but TWICE. That evening we put padlocks on all gates. Because I’ll be damned if I’m going to spend two hours circling the neighborhood looking for my dogs again.

Not that we find them, because we didn’t, they finally came home on their own. Em insists that there is a secret, underground doggie nightclub somewhere nearby.

But yesterday (Wednesday) she presented this lovely flow chart. I had a giggle over it, but it is now posted on the wall and will help us determine where the dogs are and whether or not we need to jump in the van to go find them!

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