go carts

so i haven't blogged in a few days. it's been chaotic, crazy, busy with the first week of school. lots of tears have been shed by mom and kids alike. i'm torn about whether i made the right choice, because the girls are not liking the change, and beg me to send them back to their old school. sam's making the adjustment just fine and i love his teacher's style. i think it's a good fit. the girls' teacher, on the other hand, is quite rigid and militant in her style and if we are to stay with her, there are going to have to be some major attitude changes on all of our parts, starting with me. i'm having a hard time "getting with the program" because i'm having to really look at what is most important to me: that the kids are happy and enjoy school, and get a mediocre education, or that they buck up, learn to deal and get an exceptional education that will be NO FUN. if there's a middle ground there somewhere, i haven't found it. i'm torn. i've been told by other parents that the only kids who actually like this particular teacher are ones who've graduated from her class. that the first couple years with her are hard, really hard, (the girls will be with her for 4 and 5 years) and that eventually it becomes "tolerable". but that in the end, they will have an outstanding education, solid self-esteem and a feeling of pride and accomplishment, having "made it through". sounds a lot like the military, huh? i just don't know if i can justify the price. that's a lot of years of "no fun". sure, we do fun things at home. and i'm far from militant. it's just that grade school and middle school account for a large portion of their formative years and will hugely influence the people that they grow into. is that the type of influence that i want for them? just how important is academic excellence at this age?

i know for some of you reading, it'd be a no-brainer. no way would you subject your child to such a grueling environment. you'd want a more nurturing, caring role model for them.

and for others, without question you'd choose education above all else.

i thought for certain i was the latter. that's why i chose this school. now...not so much. i feel the tension when i pick them up at school each day, i can see the stress in their eyes when i ask about school. how can i justify choosing that for them? will it get easier? eventually when they learn the routine, yes. maybe not "easier", but more tolerable. will they learn to enjoy it? or does that even matter? i want them to love to learn, to be inspired, to be curious. that's what paul and i have always taught them. suddenly someone new is saying sit down, shut up and learn.

the end result is the same.

but the price?

so yesterday we went go carting for sam's 6th birthday. we had a blast! we needed a little stress relief after a rough week.

well, apparently blogger is not going to let me post pictures today. i'll try again another time. i'll close for now. i am open to all comments, thoughts, suggestions on the school situation. the only way i know to work through this is to see it from all angles. right now, i think i might have a narrow view.


Heather D. White said...

Oh man Michelle...I don't envy your position right now. That is such a difficult decision. I definitely agree that a happy medium would be the best alternative, but what do you do when that alternative isn't available?! I am definitely a firm believer in education, but on the flip side...in my crazy college days....I also believed that "you can always re-take a class, but you can never re-take a party." LOL! In short, I really think that the social and "fun" part of school IS just as important as the education itself. I know that had school not been fun for me, my personality would have rejected the education part and it would have been pointless. However, the structure and rigid atmosphere may be actually BETTER for some. It really depends. I would watch how things go for them this year and see how it goes. If you find them conforming and learning, then it might be worth it to stick it out. However, if you find them rebelling against the "military" atmosphere, you may want to re-evaluate again at that point. Gosh...I really wish I had some great advice for you, but it is such a hard situation, that I too am at a loss with what I would do. I hope things work out okay and I look forward to hearing updates about their progress in the new school.

Heather D. White said...

HEY MICHELLE...where are you???? I miss reading your blog....come back!!! ;-)