The Parent Teacher Conference That Will Go Down in History

Back in February I made a post about my son and getting in trouble at school

So really… it’s no surprise that we’d have an interesting parent teacher conference.

I was elated to hear that my son is one of the most advanced writers she’s had. Content wise at least. His handwriting is probably the worst she’s had but she was polite enough to leave that portion out. My son has an elevated use of vocab, imagery, and detail that is beyond his grade level. <~ and his other two teacher before noted that the reason they suspect his handwriting is so crummy is because  he has SO MUCH to write in SO LITTLE time that he gets stressed about getting what he wants to get out in the time allotted.. His teacher this year showed me a story that he wrote and read to a sixth grade student. She beamed with pride as she mentioned how engaging his stories are and how the the sixth grader was laughing throughout it and said it was such a cool story. She said he has a talent for engaging the reader..

Then she told me about how they’ve been writing poems. Apparently they did one where you’re are supposed to elude to an emotion and after reading it to the class the students have to guess what emotion you are writing about.

My son’s poem was about how he loves living in “lala” land and is sick of being told to focus all the time. Then, in only a way that an 8 year old can, he told of how he hated school and finished with how he wants to be homeschooled where he would be free to learn as he saw fit..

All while holding up a picture of his teacher nagging him while he’s trying to read.

It was a clear defining message for his teacher. The children guessed emotions like “frustrated” and “angry”. His teacher said she was a bit sad and concerned that he felt this way about school..

I, was not surprised. This is something my son has faced since 1st grade when he learned that the schooling system works at a faster pace than he was comfortable with. Volunteering in his classrooms I saw him shift from station to station roughly every 20 minutes, never getting work done the first go around and then rushing to complete a handful of tasks in one quick mini wrap up session.

It frustrated him, to get on task with something just in time to have to reshift onto something else.

My son used to have really good handwriting entering 1st grade. By the end of 1st grade his handwriting went downhill because he learned it was not the content that mattered to the teachers, but just getting the tasks done.

I in no way blame his teachers, it’s just the way things are…

It continued into second grade, when she asked me to get him tested for ADHD. He would tune her out and miss the cues in switching to stations. His doctor said he showed no signs of having ADHD. In fact he sat there for 15 minutes, at barely 8 years old, just listening to the doctor and I discuss the situation. When she asked him questions, at first he answered them in ways that he was conditioned to answer in school. “Do you have trouble focusing?” < “Yes because the teacher said I do” She eventually asked him what he felt and he said he felt rushed all the damn time..

Which leads into third grade, I think he’s adjusted to the rushing by rushing and obviously very frustrated about it.

The teacher said they discussed his frustrations and the students “helped” by saying that he had to go to school.

And in my head I’m thinking this:

August Wilson has won two Pulitzer Prizes. He dropped out of school at 15 and self educated himself at the library.

Condoleeza Rice, ya know the former Secretary of State… homeschooled until she was 10.

Thomas FREAKING Edison… homeschooled..

In fact.. Here’s a great link to Awesome people who were homeschooled

There are certain people in this world that are driven to greatness. That don’t fit the societal mold despite trying. They either crash and burn or flourish by creating their own paths. I’m not saying my son is one of those people, but I won’t be the road block to his greatness if he is. Honestly, if he is that passionate about home schooling.. I’ve have a mind to make to it happen now….



2 thoughts on “The Parent Teacher Conference That Will Go Down in History

  1. I was homeschooled from 6th grade on. I had the opposite problem back in the day; the teachers were always moving at such a snail’s pace, teaching at the pace of the slowest kid in the class, that I became frustrated and stopped trying all together. Why bother?

    The “centers” thing that I saw in the local middle school looked more like what you’re talking about and the kids often did seem rushed and frustrated when they weren’t able to finish whatever it was they were working on. It feels like they went from one extreme to the other in the last 18 years. 😦

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