Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Back to School!

I have felt bad for my middle child the past week and a half.  He's the only one who hasn't started school!  It might be a bit confusing this year as I have three different calendars with three different handbooks!  What I mean is, I have three boys in three different schools!

Hunter caught the bus at 6:40 AM on August 23rd for his first day of sixth grade.  Middle school!  I have posted pictures of us at Tim's summer softball games before and the school you might have noticed in the distance was the middle school.  I stressed myself something awful all that day.  Even though I took deep breaths and told myself, Hunter can handle it!, I couldn't help thinking of combination lockers, three minute time limit and classes in different rooms.  Even though, as a student with an IEP, Hunter went on two tours of the school at the end of last year and we went and saw the school again when he was given his locker combination and class schedule.  At our end of school year meeting, I suggested possibly having another meeting within the first couple weeks of school because of these concerns, but the school is doing a wonderful job!  The Intervention Specialist, who is the same lady who worked with Hunter in 4th and 5th grade, is right on top of things.  When Hunter arrives every morning, he meets with her and at the end of the day he meets with her again.  One of the goals in his IEP is better organization, so I need to send thanks to the IS for making sure Hunter brings home his school work!  So, Hunter is doing so far, so good.  The first day he said he needed to ask for help with his locker combination, but other than that, no complaints.  In his words, he's "surviving".

Bryce was next to start school.  He doesn't have an IEP like his biggest brother, but he is considered speech delayed as he isn't talking as much as a three year old should (as my two year old nephew Landon proved to me last week while he was here with his mama).  With that in mind, he was placed in a preschool that would best fit him and it just so happens to be in a different district than Hunter.  We had an open house him on the same day Hunter started school.  We were a little late, Devin, Bryce and I, as the only entrance I knew of to the school ended up being on the backside (although they have a sign out front that makes it seems like it's a main entrance) so we had to walk around the school to find where we needed to go.  B's room is actually inside a portable classroom with wooden steps and handicap access. I had never been in one up till then.  There are probably eight or so other kids with one teacher and an assistant.  The classroom is on the smaller size of the rooms inside the school, but what it has the school doesn't is air conditioning!  It's just a window unit, but it was making a difference! 

Bryce didn't have any problems at all joining the kids among the toys and books while the other parents and I listened to what the teacher had to say. I also met the speech therapist who would be working with B.  later we walked hand in hand, we joined the other parents and kids following the teacher down the school hallway to see the gym and then the playground.  The next day was Bryce's first day!  When Hunter first started preschool...oh, let's not talk about that.  Those were some long, stressful times!  Devin didn't go to preschool but he did go to pre-k and most of the time he went without a complaint, but on some days he'd cry and whine.  I drove both Hunter and Devin.  It was about 12:15 when a white van with a school bus yellow School Transportation sign pulled into the driveway and sent Knight into a frenzy. Bryce had already helped me put on his shoes and rode around in his brothers Jeep while we waited.  He climbed out, let me put on his backpack, and then climbed into a car seat inside this strange van without hesitation.  He looked around with a smile and let the lady drive away with him.  It was kind of scary how easily he was taken away, but I know he was going to have a good time.  Through a communication notebook I have read how well he's doing, but I've been taking him to playgroups and such for a year before preschool, so I knew he was going to transition just fine.  Sniff.

You might think that Devin is going to the elementary school Hunter attended, but he's not.  If he were, I would only have two different school calendars, not three.  Devin is going to a school in another county because the kindergarten classroom he would be going to if I hadn't taken advantage of anothers open enrollment is having kindergarten classes only two days one week and three days the next.  For how much school's expect kindergartners to know these days, that amount of time is too small.  Devin was accepted, but he had to wait a week and a half after Hunter started before he could go, too.  Almost every day Devin was asking me why he couldn't be in Kinder Camp again, which was the two weeks, two and a half hours a day he attended earlier this month to help him get ready.  Then when Bryce started to go to school then, too...  Poor Dev!

Last night he went to bed with a smile on his face knowing that in the morning I'd get him up and it would be his first day of school!  Now, if you remember back to when he started pre-k, he was also excited about that.  He behaved about the same way the night before and in the morning, he was asking to go before it was time, but when we got there....  This morning, Devin didn't ask to leave earlier, he didn't really talk about going to school at all.  He ate his breakfast, got dressed, helped me pack his lunch and backpack, brushed his teeth.  He wanted to wear his sandals but agreed to wear shoes and socks when I reminded him he couldn't go out on the playground with sandals because of the wood chips possibly hurting his feet.  Then we got in the van with Bryce and headed to the school.  We saw two school buses and each one he needed to know the number of the bus.  One bus we passed had parked at a stop sign and we could see the driver standing up and facing the kids.  I assumed they were getting hollered at, but as I passed that way headed home, the hood of the bus was up!  The bus was empty though.

Devin let me take more pictures of him at the school and as you can see, he was his goofy self!  This kid is always smiling!  These first three days I can walk him to his classroom, but starting Monday, he has to walk into the school on his own.  His classroom is pretty easy to find as the kindergarten hallway is straight down from the school entrance.  Since we had brought all his supplies to his classroom open house the day before, all he had in his bag was his new Spideman lunch box, which I had taped a note of encouragement to.  Devin said his teacher read it to him.  He hung that up in his cubby and took his seat at his table.  After a few more hugs and kisses I told him I'd see him when the bus brought him to the house we baked a couple dozen cookies for and I walked away.  He called me back and I thought, OK, here it comes, but he was still smiling, he just wanted to know what he was supposed to do!  His teacher told him to go ahead and start coloring the picture she had put on his table and he went to it and Bryce and I left!

Since Devin is going to an different school, the bus can't drop him off at our house, even though there's a house three doors down that the bus stops at!  It was suggested by the school secretary when Dev was accepted at the school to ask that family if it was all right if we waited in their driveway to catch the bus.  After telling Tim this, he said bake them some cookies and go ask.  So we did and they agreed.  I'm only having the bus drop him off there after school though and that's probably a good thing because, even though he was happy to see me and told me a little bit about his day, mostly he complained about the walk to the house and wondering why the bus won't go to the house.  I tried to explain, but I don't expect him to understand.  It was hot today, over 90, and on the way back he asked me, in a tone that made it sound like he was on the edge, Can't you see I'm losing air here?  We made it back to the house without me giving in to a piggy back ride and without him passing out.  He brought home his first piece of kindergarten artwork and a great attitude about going to school!

Once again, going to different schools might cause a problem, but only if Devin finds out!  This weekend is the county fair.  Both districts that Hunter and Bryce are going to school in are in this county, so they don't have school the rest of the week.  Devin however does.  I don't think he'll notice as Hunter is usually gone before Devin wakes up and Bryce doesn't go until after lunch, so it should be OK and Devin might surprise me and not care because he wants to go to school.  It's a tease to me though because I had one day, today, where, for a few short hours anyway, I was ALONE!

Thanks for reading.


No comments: