Sunday, August 23, 2009

Orientation


Thursday of last week, big E and I hopped in the car for a drive out to the Middle School he will attend. While we've tossed the idea around of homeschooling him, we've kept it open for discussion and he really seems interested in experiencing middle school so we're going to give it a go for now. We both agree that in order to give him everything he needs with education, and life skills, we would need to find a really great homeschool co-op group - so we're still researching homeschool groups and how best to deal with that once we come to a complete decision on how this middle school atmosphere works out...with having had him in public school for going on 7 years - we're trying to figure out how 'unlearning' would go??? Oh man it's tough!! Mainly because he WANTS to be with his peers now!! We do plan to homeschool little J for at least pre-K and Kindergarten and see how things go from there. But, we're trying to respect big E's wishes but yesterday when we pulled into the parking lot at the school I'll admit - I almost wanted to vomit. (too much info?? sorry)

The school is 2 stories high, and looks to be larger then the highschool I attended. Immediately I had a pit in my stomach, thinking of our young man walking the halls of this gigantic place with other kids. I'm not sure why I think it's such a scary place, but society today is NOT what it was when I was a tweenager... it looked like a bit of a fashion show at times as we walked the halls - even among the parents.
His classroom is nice, and small. The program he is in is one that creates a smaller group atmosphere for him, so he'll be in classes most of the day with 6-12 kids only, and parts of the day with much larger groups. He seems really excited, and his teachers seemed like genuinely nice people who are eager to educate our big E. Selfishly I dont like the idea of him being there!! Why am I changing so much these days? Drawing my mind closer to how society really does impress it's ways upon our children, and how in the 'old days' the village was not at all like society today is. Values changed along the way, and what was important then, is not at all important now. Why do two police officers need to be assigned to almost all schools in the district? I'm not a hippie flyin my freak flag over here, but what's wrong with this picture??? Soda machines when you walk in the front door, police cars, and 'lock down' drills for the potential threat of school shootings or worse.

Maybe I need a reality dose, and maybe I am a hippie - who knows. I enjoy relaxed days, where my kids learn by playing or observing or reading. Summer has been filled with learning, more then I thought and big J and I both have started to see that just a few little things we did this summer have stuck with both of our boys for learning.... oh - I'm so lost. I've been battling this for 2 years in my head. What's kept us from stopping public schooling for our oldest is that he suddenly began to WANT to go to school (whereas he used to cry when we went and when he came home) and he began to ENJOY the learning program that is set up for his individual needs. We're giving it 1 semester and then we're going to discuss it with him again...

Lesson I'm learning = An educational system isn't worth a great deal if it teaches young people how to make a living but doesn't teach them how to make a life. ~Author Unknown

3 comments:

Amy said...

Good luck with the transition to middle school!

WackyMummy said...

Wow. That's something I've been thinking about since Evan was born. He's only 3, and I've had him in part-time preschool (2 mornings a week), which was very hard for both of us. It was mostly for him to socialize, b/c we're out in the country and don't know many people here. But the thought of school terrifies me b/c it HAS changed so much. Lock down drills? School shootings? Nothing like that "in my day". I'm very torn about this issue. At least Big E wants to go and enjoys it and has a good time. That's something good.

Kim said...

my son is in his 2nd year of middle school. it is a bit frightening to think of all the things like lockdowns and the need for police in the halls. my daughter is in her 2nd year of high school and amazingly i am not as freaked out about her school. it just has a better "feel" about it i guess.