Monday, January 28, 2008

You'll Have to Forgive Me...This is a First.

So, being that this is Cody's first year in kindergarten, I have tried to be very calm, rational, and level-headed when it comes to his education. I am, after all, an educator by trade, and I really don't want to put a label on my forehead that screams "I'M A TEACHER," because that would just not be good. His sweet teacher has things U.C. (that would be under control), and I know she's very competent handling my son's education. Therefore, I have kept a VERY low profile at his school, volunteering whenever my help is needed, and trying to be as unobtrusive as possible. I scour his papers when they come home, I pay close attention to the report cards and listen intently at conferences, and I have never had a reason to worry about anything.

Fast forward to this afternoon. The phone rings and I see on caller ID that it's the school. Cody is already home at this point, so I see no need to panic. Upon answering, I discover it's his teacher calling. She begins asking me if I've ever heard of a program that is designed to help kids with their fine motor skills. Yes, I had heard of it, but it didn't hit me until a few minutes into the conversation that she was recommending my son for it. I started to feel a bit panicked. My fears are worsening when she tells me only a few kids are going to be a part of this program. He's one of the four.

When I asked her why, she said that he needs some extra help on his fine motor skills...specifically cutting, coloring, and writing. On his report card, this is something he is "progressing" toward, but not "mastering." This is how they grade in kindergarten. It's all about mastery.

Long story short, I've decided to go ahead and place him in this program. It's one day a week for thirty minutes. It's supposed to help him and we're going to try it for nine weeks to see how it goes.

But there's a part of me...the teacher and mother part...that worries that something might be wrong. In every other area, he's doing "fantastic" and "fabulous" (these are his teacher's words). I know for sure that he's not the only one struggling in this area, but I know you moms out there understand what I'm feeling. I honestly think he just would rather be doing other things that don't require him to sit still for too long and focus on a task like this. I don't think he's incapable, by any stretch. Perhaps it's just a boy thing?

I know some of you are teachers out there, many of you moms of boys. I'd love your input.


Just T said...

aww Happi, don't worry too much! Both my kids had trouble with motoring skills. At my kids school, they have a program called "fun club". The kids don't know it's anything "special", hence the name of the program. They do things to help with balance, catching balls etc. Just to help those who have difficulties in those areas.
But I can totally relate though, being told that your child needs help. My daughter, I wasn't so worried because she's very dainty and not very co-ordinated. But for some reason, when they mentioned my son's motoring skills whilst still in kindy, I started thinking my son wasn't normal lol
But it is a normal thing and I am sure Cody will do GREAT!!!

Tonya said...

My oldest son is in Kindergarten too. His teacher has mentioned his fine motor skills needing work and she just told us to work with him at home. Giving him objects to cut and writing his name neatly. But I see with him he doesn't like to sit and focus on these things as much as his sister did. Maybe it is just a personality thing too? I wouldn't worry about it he is only in Kindergarten. I would say try the program or just work with him at home.

Glass Half Full said...

I am not a teacher, but since Steve is an administrator, I get to hear all about these things.

If Cody needs extra help, so what? It'll be ok and he'll come out of it ok. In a few years you'll get over this and he'll be on track. Take the help and let time go.

Matt's K and 1st grade class does that "p" and "m" way of grading too. Letter grades start next year....oh boy!


Kari Lynn said...

Here's how I see it...put him in the program, humor his teacher and don't worry. It is probably just what you expect, he'd rather be doing something else. Two years ago Ashley's teacher pushed the ADHD issue, swore she had all the signs. We went through testing at the school and even took her to the doctor. Her pediatrician laughed. She said look at her, she is sitting perfectly still. Don't worry about it.

Sheryl said...

I agree, try it and see what comes of it. I'm sure I've heard that sometimes boys are slower at these things than girls. My kindergartener is having trouble handwriting and won't even sit on his bike because he has troubles making it work, but he's at the top of his class academically. Don't worry, they'll help him out and it'll all be over before any of the kids get old enough to realize that he's going somewhere else for 30 min. a week.