Monday, July 23, 2012

Jump on board

Why do I need a manual for getting through elementary school? I have already gotten through school and I survived. It wasn’t that big of a deal! The world has changed dramatically and school has not really changed. How can you blend the demands of life with what your child needs to be successful? How can you be the “captain” of your child’s ship?
Think of this as a metaphor for school and the journey we all have taken and the one our children are taking. It is one that can be smooth with just a few glitches, or it can be like sailing on stormy seas being tossed about the whole way. Each of us has individual needs and interprets the same events differently.
Each year is different. Your child has grown and matured, your family circumstances may have changed and therefore the dynamics between you and your child and his teacher are new. This does not even take into consideration the fact that there is a new teacher in that captain’s  seat!!
I will refer to fifth grade in this blog because I have been teaching fifth grade for the past four years. It really can apply to any grades, but the upper elementary years are crucial to your child's future success. Think back to your early memories of school. Most of us start those more vivid memories at about the fifth grade level. 
The fifth grade year is important because it will be a journey to independence. Your child will be equipping himself to be able to sail solo.
I am excited to take your child on this journey. It will be much like a sailing trip. Sometimes we want to race, sometimes we have no wind, too much wind, or we even may run aground. Our goal is to enjoy the journey and to get to our destination.
You may ask – Why sailing? I’ve never even been on a boat!!
I am a sailor. In fact, I live on my boat! The analogy to life and to your child’s life in school is an easy one. It will make sense, I promise.

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