November 27, 2015
After I went to the parent teacher conferences last week at our school, I decided to dedicate one blog post solely to our children. We have the best children in the world!
Of course did we know this before, but it is always nice to hear a confirmation from others — especially their teachers who spend much more time with them during the week.
I did not expect to hear any horrible news, but I was prepared to hear about pouting, crying, getting really angry, throwing things around and similar. But apparently none of this happens at school (our children safe those rare feelings only for their parents). I was really amazed to hear the teachers’ reports about my children and in some moments I even thought they were talking about somebody else’s children …
Lilo is doing great in her class and has improved a lot over the past year. She stopped the additional English-as-a-second-language lessons beginning of this school year and started to learn Japanese. Even though her English writing skills are not very strong yet, she is constantly improving. Lilo’s new teacher encourages her a lot and she seems to have fun doing her homework. Her reading is at higher class average level and she participates actively in class with many good ideas and observations that proof her understanding. Lilo is also very active in any discovery class session. She is interested in everything from volcanos to electricity and has a quick understanding. She still needs to work on her maths skills, which basically means that she has to memorise her times tables in order to solve her equations correctly. She has no problem at all solving equations — just a major detail to do so is missing. Lilo’s social skills are remarkable. She is one of the few girls who plays with every girl from the two grade 4 classes. She also plays with children from different age groups during recess time. She is kind and caring and takes responsibility. She is very independent and unafraid and has a very positive mindset.
Since beginning of this school year the twins are attending different classes. And if I see how they develop, I have to say it was about time to split them up. Leonard is a chatterbox who is constantly talking — preferably to his best friend Luke – but also to everyone else in the class. The teacher wonders on a daily basis how he manages to eat his lunch while he is entertaining his class mates at the table. Leonard contributes a lot to class discussions and always finds kind words when commenting on the work (mostly drawings) of other children. He is very gentle and caring and apologises quickly when hurting someone or when making a mistake. He is friends with everyone in the class and gets along with all children at school. If he is upset, he takes a deep breath and goes back to work. He does not get angry nor does he throw things around. I don’t know why he thinks he has to do this at home.
Leonard loves to share his knowledge on animals and anything else. He makes very good progress in reading. Even though it was a little tough at the start, he now enjoys reading and spelling words — which both boys do a lot at home, too. When it comes to numbers he is very quick and has a very good understanding. The teacher showed me a page where he had to draw different combinations of carrots and pies adding up to 7. He had done the whole page in a few minutes without any hesitation or any mistake. He is curious and loves to learn new things.
I don’t even know where to start with Linus. His teacher didn’t know where to stop. He said he could go on and on talking about what a wonderful boy he is.
What struck me most was that his teacher was talking about Linus’ patience with others and his great listening skills. Qualities that would not immediately come to my mind if I had to describe him. Apparently Linus is a natural active listener. He listens to his classmates with full concentration and focuses completely on what they say. He also helps them a lot with their work, patiently explaining what needs to be done how. Very often his teacher needs to remind him that he needs to finish his tasks first before helping others. I was told that Linus does not help others in order to shine, but because he wants everybody to do well. He is one of the most active contributors to class discussions and his hand is up all the time. As he cannot be the one talking all the time, he uses his friends whispering his ideas in their ears and making them raise their hands.
Like Leonard, Linus as well is friends with everyone in his class and with many children in kindergarten. Together with Leonard he is part of a boys’ group who play rough but fair and only occasionally pout, cry or fight, but most of the time settle their arguments quickly amongst themselves.
I was very impressed when the teacher told me how Linus stands up for his ideas. Currently they have a lot of talking going on in the class about who is going to marry who, mostly pairing boys and girls. Linus said that he was going to marry Luke to which quite a few kids responded that this was not possible as two boys could not get married. He told them that they could indeed get married, but some of the other kids did not believe him and the others where quiet. After insisting for a while, Linus finally turned to the teacher and the assistant teacher to ask them for their opinions. They both confirmed that boys (or men) could get married. During their explanation Linus was obviously savouring the moment repeating “See!”, “See!” several times.
Linus is also taking care of the procedures in the classroom and of keeping the classroom neat and tidy. He reminds people that they have to put away their toys or materials first before taking new ones. And he can be very strict and insisting!
And he never cries at school! He never breaks into tears when he faces a difficult situation and thinks that tears may save him. He takes a deep breath and gets on with it!
I cannot describe the feelings I had when I walked out of school that day. These three are just so wonderful! I am very proud. Now we need to work on those rare behaviours that they save just for us parents: pouting, crying, trowing things around, screaming , etc.