Friday, October 8, 2010

Last Day of School



Yes, it's only the beginning of October but Nicholas had his last day of school today...public school, that is. He started public school last year for kindergarten and he was bored. He was doing work that he knew in preschool and didn't learn much throughout the year. We didn't think much of it. It is only kindergarten. How much do they need to learn? But we expected things to ramp up for 1st grade.

They didn't.

I looked at the class work that he brought home and was disappointed to see that it still wasn’t challenging work for him. When we talked to him about it, he said he is bored. He said that he wished he could just learn something new.

I looked into the Gifted and Talented program through our school system but at this age, it consists of the child leaving his regular classroom for about 30 minutes once a week to meet with other GT students to work on higher thinking level projects. It does nothing for challenging a child who can read and work math problems at a 2nd grade level. In this setting, he would continue to be bored in class and would essentially be wasting another year without a challenge.

What about moving him to 2nd grade? He may be bright but he’s already younger than many of the other 1st graders. His maturity level just wouldn’t fit in with a 2nd grade classroom.

Stuart and I know that God has great plans for Nicholas and we have to do all we can to ensure that his growing mind is being fed enough to continue his love of learning.

We would love to send him to a private school with a more rigorous curriculum but financially it isn't an option right now. So we've decided to start homeschooling him. I have been considering the idea of homeschooling since Nicholas was about 2 years old. I knew we probably wouldn't be able to send him to private school and homeschooling just seemed like the next best option. Private school at home.

I’ve selected a curriculum that is used by many of the Christian private schools in the area – the very schools that I would send him to if we had an extra $10K or more a year burning a hole in our pockets. This 1st grade curriculum is said to be more in line with 2nd grade at public school so I think it will be a good fit. However, if we start working through the material and it still isn’t challenging, I can supplement other work into the day or even bump up to a 2nd grade textbook for any particular subject that he needs. He wouldn’t be able to do that in his current school.

There are definitely going to be some challenges that we will have to work through with homeschooling. I’m a little nervous but mostly excited about this new step for our family. I’ll write more about homeschooling later. For now, we're just enjoying this last day of school.

I snapped a few pics as we walked to school this week.





Eating an apple on the way to school because he's got his first loose tooth!



Yes, my big 1st grader still blows me kisses in front of everyone at school before he walks into the building!



I love this little guy!

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