Thursday, November 19, 2015

Schooly Transition

About a week ago, Hubby and I attended Abi's parent-teacher conference. As I suspected, but to my dismay, she was falling behind, and being placed in remedial classes, especially in math. 

Since she started the year at grade level, I was frustrated. More and more, I could see how the fast pace of a busy classroom wasn't working for her. The aides weren't getting all of her materials appropriately adapted, and just the pacing itself wasn't a good fit. The class moved from activity to activity, and Abi barely had paper loaded into her Brailler. 

I could tell she was also feeling frustrated, and I worried that her frustration would soon transfer into a feeling of inadequacy. She is fantastic at understanding math concepts, but she simply needs time to think and time to write. She wasn't getting that, as the aides felt pressured to hurry, hurry, and they'd often simply ask her to dictate her work just to get it done. 

Still, we really debated whether or not to homeschool her again. Last spring, we wore each other out emotionally. My expectations were too high, and her PTSD neediness clashed with them. I didn't know if we'd fall into the same cycle. Also, I was deliberately choosing to spend time with the boys while she was at school. 

To make a long story short, we decided to homeschool her again, this time completely solo, with no school affiliation. 

We have both been thriving! I have been careful to be gentle in my expectations and not make her feel unduly pressured. She, on the other hand, has loved getting to delve into each subject and complete each assignment with great care and understanding. 

Unlike my older two kids, she loves to write, and daily makes up magical stories about princesses and ducks and Aslan from Narnia. 

I'm careful to assign her enough independent work that the boys still get their share of my attention. All in all, it's working even better than I'd dared to hope. 

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