By: Davida Grant
My preschooler, Simone, got her first report card this week, or rather I should say the hubby and I got it. I was a bundle of nerves before the parent-teacher meeting. I really want baby girl to do well and being the overachiever, straight-A student I was, I was fearful that I would not respond well if Simone’s teacher gave her less than favorable or even mediocre scores. I know this sounds a little crazy because she’s only three, but hear me out. Simone had serious medical issues her first year of life which impaired her ability to verbally express any sound until she was 1-years old. Since then, she’s been in speech therapy classes (thanks Stacey Raina, a Brookland area DC mom) and at home, we’ve put a lot of effort into developing her pre-literacy skills. We apprised her teachers of her issues and Simone has been consistently working with a school speech therapist. Her communication skills have improved dramatically. While I would expect Simone’s report card to take into account her communication issues, those issues should not be used against her. I’m not having that, PERIOD. Simone, from a cognitive perspective, is on track (she’s had multiple tests in this area) so I fully expect the majority of her scores to reflect that she is on target.
The hairs on my arms (nope, I don’t wax those) were literally standing at attention when I sat down for the meeting. I braced myself as her teachers (she has two) slid over the white envelope containing her report card. You could hear a pin drop. WHY WEREN’T THEY TALKING! As I opened it, the sound of my heartbeat was pounding in my ears. I know this sounds overly dramatic, but it’s the truth. My hubby stared at me, not knowing which Vida Marie he’d see if I didn’t like those scores. I know he was silently praying, Lord please let Simone’s scores be good AND Lord, please don’t let my wife embarrass me. I marvel at how that man deals with me, but I digress. I quickly glanced at the report card, focusing on her scores. I took a deep breath, and the meeting began.
Her scores were a mixed bag. She scored “on target” ( a 3 out of 5 rating) in most areas (YAY), but received a “1” and a “2” in a few. As her teachers explained the “low” scores, I did my best to remain calm and focused. After all, the purpose of the meeting was to identify any areas of concern and that’s valuable. So, how did I do? Well, surprisingly I took it in stride. My hubby was so impressed with me!!!! He was positive I was going to grill them. Thinking back on it, there was something about her primary teacher’s demeanor. It was soothing. Somehow, she made me feel like everything was okay. I say hats off to her because I know I can be a piece of work, especially when it comes to my babies. I heard and more importantly I received her message. Simone is generally on track and only needs a little more help in a couple areas. We agreed that there were additional steps the hubby and I could take at home to reinforce the classroom learning, and they agreed to apprise us on a fairly routine basis regarding her progress. That’s a win-win for everybody. I couldn’t ask for anything more.
How was your child’s first report card? Feel free to brag. I love celebrating excellence.