The boys headed back to school on Wednesday. They were so ready! This summer has been one for the books in every way, but we were all feeling refreshed and a little bit antsy to get back to our school routine. Plus, there were lots of exciting things happening this year! Alaster and Jack get to be at the same school for the first time since moving to Charleston, and Truman enters (if you can believe it!) Kindergarten! Don’t they look great!?
(PS- I find myself forced into a new way of making my collages and I don’t have any say in how they turn out. I only get to choose what pictures go in. So, future Jack and Truman: I didn’t love you any less. The computer chose to make Alaster bigger than you.)
Jack – 6th Grade, Alaster 4th Grade, Truman- Kindergarten
Dropping off the big boys was fun. Dropping off Truman was… PAINFUL. Oh, this boy! He was so excited and happy to go, but I think his drop off has been the hardest Kindergarten drop off to date for our family. Truman feels SO much younger and more… fragile… than Jack and Alaster did at this age!
Developmentally he’s such an interesting and amazing kid. He can read. Anything. Scriptures, chapter books, he’s solid. There’s almost no word he can’t conquer, and his comprehension is great too. He can recognize all numbers up to 100, and count to 100 by 1’s, 2’s, 5’s, 10’s, 20’s and he’s asked me to teach him by 3’s. He can do simple addition and subtraction in his head. One day he asked me “Mom. 5 minus 5 is zero, but what’s zero minus 5?” I told him negative 5 and we didn’t talk about it again. The next day when he was at our friend’s house he said to her “Marilee, what is 3 minus 3 minus 3?” Marilee knows Truman pretty well so she didn’t answer him. Instead she countered “Truman do YOU know what 3 minus 3 minus 3 is?” He said “Negative 3.” He’s been doing addition and subtraction involving negative numbers ever since. He memorizes like nobody’s business… Ask him the season and episode of any TV show we watch regularly and he can usually tell you (this comes in handy when Dorothy is asking for an episode of something and I don’t know where it is!). Ask him what street we are driving on in Charleston and he can tell you that too.
BUUUUT… his fine motor skills are horrible. He’s never loved coloring or drawing and his handwriting totally reflects it. I am also still concerned about his language skills. Reading has helped tremendously as we talk through books together, but I still think he’s behind because he started talking so late. He struggles when we talk, sans books, about abstract concepts and feelings. It’s hard to tell if he’s making the connections that he should be at this point. I loved that I was able to be his primary teacher this past year. I noticed small things like this (that probably only I would) where he seemed behind from the other children in the class so I tried to go slow and really make sure Truman was understanding and learning too. I also worry about him socially. What if he has a hard time making friends?! What if someone is mean to my sweet boy?! Will he know how to handle it?! And what about working and being gone for so LONG every day? I’m not so sure he has that kind of stamina! He’s just a BABY after all! And on and on the worries go. I couldn’t fall asleep last night for worrying about this child!
And yet, I wouldn’t send him to school if I didn’t think that’s where he NEEDS to be. I have high hopes that he is going to learn and grow a lot this year and that school will address many, if not all of the things that I have developmental concerns about. I’ve got a meeting set up with his teacher to make sure he is challenged in the areas where is ahead of the pack and to talk about the things I am worried about.
Plus, while it’s true that I am worrying myself to an early grave, he seems to be all excitement and smiles. Just look at him:
I took this in front of the school on the first day and in the gym as we waited for the teacher to come get his class. (He ate a full breakfast that morning, but he wanted another piece of zucchini bread in the car… that’s why he has that in his hand.) I had to hurry out to the other kids in the van so he had to wait for a few minutes on his own. I asked him repeatedly if he needed me to stay and he just kept saying he was fine!
I cried all the way back to the car.
Also, while Daddy couldn’t come to the first drop off because of a meeting at work, you should know that he feels the exact same way as I do about all of this. When I texted him pictures he said he would have cried too if he had been there. He’s such a sweet Daddy!
When the boys were gone all that was left was me and my girl! Of course I will miss the boys, but I admit I am really excited to have so much one on one time with my best little girlfriend. Guys, she really is my FAVORITE little girl in the whole world:
Everyone reported a wonderful first day. The first thing Truman said was “I learned about being responsible, respectful and safe.” Then he told me about the behavior chart and making good choices, having recess, finding some preschool friends on the playground, what he ate for snack and lunch, books they read, things they colored, how TIRED he was, how he was so glad there were no strangers (we had a safety FHE in preparation for school) and then “Could I just go home now and rest?” Jack and Alaster were talking a mile a minute when they got in the car too, and all of it was positive!
Here’s to another great year!