Saturday, March 15, 2014


In our lives. I am typing this on the plane on my way to Israel. Smarty is generally used to my business trips, but I didn’t have to travel for more than a year, and she was somewhat whiny and clingy all week leading to my departure.  Partially, spring time change is to blame – it kept us all exhausted in the mornings and somewhat cranky in the evenings. Both Smarty and her Papa are sniffling, and I am hoping that I am not taking their virus with me on the trip. Hopefully, everyone is better next week when we reunite on Friday.


School. Smarty’s favorite part of school is recess. She has a new friend in school and they usually build ladybugs enclosures or play balls during recess. We received report cards for the second term – no real surprises there, but we are a little frustrated that the card still shows “approaching grade level” in math when we already established beyond any doubt that she is far beyond grade level. We are still debating whether to pick up another fight about that or let it slide – advice is welcome!


Afterschool. I’ve seen a terrific post from Lemon Lime Adventures comparing different types of edible playdough, and we made Nutella playdough on Wednesday. It was great fun for Smarty, especially since she could taste the dough as much as she wanted through making it. The weather was beautiful this week, and we could do this experiment outside. In general, we tried to spend as much time outside as possible to take advantage of one more hour of sunshine in late afternoons.

Books we are reading. Disclosure: I am an Amazon associate and this post contains affiliate links. For full disclosure, please click here and thank you for supporting my blog! This week Smarty was happy to reread some of her old favorites on her own. Together, we read through Irish Leprechaun Stories and a very funny picture book The Very Inappropriate Word.


Places we are going. Smarty’s school had a science fair this Thursday. Smarty didn’t do her own project, because there was no time to work on it before her Germany trip and, I figured, she won’t be able to do it in one week after her return either. As usual, her class did a group project, it was on pendulums. It was my first year of seeing science fair projects, and I was pleasantly surprised with a number of projects, their variety, and creativity of participants. Hopefully, next year Smarty will be able to participate with her own individual project as well.


Favorite memory of the week. Walking in the room and finding Smarty clutching her favorite blanket and reading one of her favorite books – she looked so rosy and cozy.


Emma @ P is for Preschooler said...

Perhaps they assess her incorrectly in math because of the way they test? Just a thought.
I always love walking in and finding them reading, even though mine can't actually "read" yet! :)

maryanne @ mama smiles said...

I hope your trip to Israel goes well, and that you stay health - and that Smarty and her Papa get better quickly!

We have yet to participate in a school science fair. We need to.

That photo of Smarty reading is very sweet. Her hair is getting long!

Ozymandiaz said...

My daughter is in Kindergarten and just finished the fourth Harry Potter book. Her second trimester report card shows she is approaching grade level in recognizing letters and letter sounds:)

The teacher claims they don't give "4"s on the report card till end of year. Personally I think it is so the report card shows progress over the year, like the teacher actually taught her something.

It is a battle we choose not to fight, but I get your frustration.

An Almost Unschooling Mom said...

Don't feel too bad about the clinginess. I'm only working 12 hours a week, and I have to pry my youngest from my leg before I head out the door. Hope you get some time to enjoy the country while your there!

Joyful Learner said...

She will get 4s but the end. I remember the day when they changed the grading policy. No child could receive 4s because the idea that they could not have mastered what they have not covered in school. Little do they know how much these kids learn outside of school!

We have the opposite problem. K received all high marks but she's confused about its validity because she doesn't feel that she has to work particularly hard for them. She just thinks our ES is being nice. Plus, when you score high, it seems like there is nothing else to reach for.

I wouldn't put too much faith in the grading system. At best, it's an accurate reflection. At worst, it gives a false sense of confidence that your child is doing well but is not or vice versa.

I would put my energies on making sure your child is challenged and learning from mistakes.

And don't settle for having your child act as a tutor for other children. I was happy to help other kids when I was in school but I received very little education myself because I was busy tutoring others. And can't say I was the best tutor either as oftentimes, I gave out answers.

Ticia said...

I can see why you like that picture, it really captures who she is.

Hmmmm..... I'm thinking on that math issue, I'd check with the teacher to see what's going on with that, is it a mistake or a requirement to mark it that way? I say the latter because I had a friend who was flat out told the "district rule" was to mark "approaching grade level" for all kids regardless of if they'd mastered it or not because they hadn't learned it in class or some other nonsense.