Highlights of the Week
Smarty turned 9 on Monday, and we started the day with our tradition of a birthday crown made by Papa, a cake, and presents. Our main present to her will be a special “science day” at Berkeley in November, but she also got a couple of small presents from us and special gifts from grandparents. Today we have a party to celebrate her birthday with her friends, and Smarty is eagerly looking forward to it.
It’s a time of special events at Smarty's school. On Wednesday, everyone made a relief map of California with salt dough, and on Friday school was out to prepare it for an annual Halloween Monster Boogie Bash. Smarty is extra happy that Monster Boogies Bash always falls on her birthday week adding special fun to both events. She is going as a pirate this year. In less positive news, we are really frustrated with lack of meaningful differentiation in math where things seem to be reverted to “do these worksheets”, then do “bonus work”. This is not what we discussed earlier this year with a teacher, so I am meeting with her on Monday to talk this over.
Smarty was exhausted this week with all the after school activities. She didn’t even have much time to enjoy her birthday presents yet, because she is so busy and then she comes home and wants to play with a new friend across the street. I am glad that she finally has a friend in the neighborhood, and I hope that the girls will continue to get along. Smarty also attended a fun birthday party in the rock climbing place for one of her best friends last Sunday. She worked hard to make this pretty card for her friend – she probably spent more than an hour on it. Despite her “busyness”, I make a point to do a little bit of math every day before bed. Not much, 10-20 minutes,… but Smarty has wrapped entire 5th grade math curriculum in the last 2 months.
What My Child Is Reading
Smarty is always reading something by bringing books from her class library or school library. Usually she reads them very quickly and puts them back into her backpack, so I am not even sure what they are. The only book that I “caught her with” was the one that we bought together: Ender in Exile, a direct sequel to Ender’s Game that she read earlier this fall.
Favorite Memory of the Week
Smarty’s band “homework” included learning finger positions for the first 5 notes on trumpet. She does not have perfect pitch, so my husband took out our keyboard, switched it to trumpet sound, and showed her how different notes should sound like. Smarty invented her own method by giving herself keyboard help during her practices. She is not clean yet with her sounds, but she is improving… I hope!
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