Sorry for the lack in blogging…we are becoming a boring family. The kids go to school, we hang out with friends & family, we eat dinner together…it’s great!
Last week I went with our kindergartners on their first field trip. We went to a pumpkin patch & petting zoo. I was thankful for the time to meet more parents in our kid’s class. The hardest part was once again the language barrier. Our kids are in a Spanish speaking class, we are the only all English speaking parents in the class. So I arrive to the school & head to the classroom…I am the only parent there. When I asked the teacher she told me that her parents are shy & will wait in the car until the last minute & then meet at the bus. I tried to put myself in their shoes & I think that I would do the same thing. In fact I have done that same thing. Uncomfortable situations where I don’t know a lot of people, the language, expectations…I would be sitting in my car too. Luckily one mama ventured in & I asked if she wanted to ride with me to the field-trip. Bless her heart, I got her into the car & then told her that I don’t speak a lot of Spanish, I definitely saw a look of dread pass over her face. Luckily she was very kind & patient & we spoke Spanish the entire 45min while we were in the car. Please know that I had to rephrase several things before they made sense but we did it, we communicated & for the majority of the time we were able to understand each other.
At the petting farm the kids did great, big sister chickened out & touched a rabbit & a cow. After that she was only interested in watching from behind a fence. Middle brother was pretty fearless & approached every animal. They both had their first TX hayride & middle brother got stung by his first bee.
After the petting zoo we headed to the park for a quick lunch, once again I took my non-English speaking captive & she rode with me again very patiently. At the park I got to meet more of the moms, once they found out our story & why I speak English & my kids speak Spanish they were ready to let me into their circle. I am so thankful for a school that has made their setting as comfortable as possible for non-English speakers, I am thankful for a community of mothers who love their kids & want the best for them & encourage their children to learn English. I am thankful for the perspective, the difficulty to fit in & feel safe and secure in a new setting.
We also had our first teacher conferences & the kids are doing pretty well. Our big guy is still trying to catch up but he is making strides. We are working on the alphabet right now, recognizing letters, & simple math problems. We were drowning in homework at the beginning because he had to read 4 books a night, 3 times each & that alone would take us 2.5 hrs. After talking to his teacher & his teacher telling me that “he can’t read” I asked how are we supposed to do these books, teach said. “just describe the picture.” Done! We can do that! Please know that he still gets very discouraged & homework time is still hard but he is having success & that keeps him going. We do a lot more celebrating than crying!! Morning drop-offs have become a little difficult, he has taken to picking on his little brother & thinks that since he is at the back of the van that he is safe from the mommy eyes. Several mornings 2 of the children are dropped off & then we pull into the parking lot & Mommy & Big brother have a talk about being kind & a good big brother. Luckily I haven’t worn my pjs to drop off the kids yet so the make-up free walks into school with the oldest haven’t been completely humiliating.
Big girl has found her stride in Kindergarten, she loves to learn, help the teacher & complete her homework. Her biggest problem is that she has a little brother in her class. She was spending her whole day at school helping him with everything. Turns out if middle brother can get help with something he will take it & happily watch others do his work for him. Needless to say he has been having trouble being independent & following instructions. He wants to do what he wants to do, when he wants to do it. Thankful for a teacher that holds him accountable & reminds his sister that she is not his Mami or his teacher, & that her only job is to learn & be a student. Their teacher moved them as far as possible from each other in the classroom & we have seen some improvement. It feels weird dropping them off at school every morning & reminding the kids to be, “kind, respectful & big sister, do not help your brother at school today.”
At the dinnermesa,