Thursday, September 4, 2008

Count Me In!

Dear Owen,
Tomorrow you begin Senior Kindergarten.

Today we went together to meet your teacher, Mrs. Fraser and to visit you new classroom. For the past few weeks, whenever we talk about school, you say "I am a little bit nervous and a little bit excited. I am just going to have to be brave". I am amazed at your ability to communicate your thoughts; it is so great to hear you freely express your hesitation and your plan to deal with that...such wise words for such a little guy. As we approached the school you gripped my hand and got very quiet. You said that you were a little scared and then in the next breath said that you were not scared at all. That is bravery.

When we arrived in the school we had to wait for a few minutes in the hallway. This was a wonderful little moment where you found your hook and cubby and were able to peek in the classroom on your own terms.

After some initial shyness you held Mrs. Fraser's hand while she gave us a tour of the classroom. Mrs. Fraser was cleaning a pirate ship which you were very excited about. There are stations all over the class for reading, listening to music and books on CD, 2 computer labs, craft area with easel for painting and a sand table. I walked behind you smiling to myself as you tentatively explored each area; you looked to Mrs. Fraser for reassurance a few times and she was warm and kind and just perfect with you.

We then sat at a table and you did some "games" with Mrs. Fraser. She asked you a lot of questions about rhyming words, numbers and sounds and you concentrated really hard and answered every question. There were a lot of distractions; the older kids were outside having recess and playing outside of the windows and you clearly wanted to explore the classroom, but you stayed focused until Mrs. Fraser said that you could go and play. I know how hard this was for you and I was so proud!

You played for a few minutes while Mrs. Fraser and I talked about the daily schedule and what we can expect in the months to come. There will be gym on Tuesdays and Thursdays, a reading book will come home once a week, you will learn new letters and math concepts each week and periodic trips to the school library.

You used the bathroom and went into the BOYS after reading the sign - great work! When it came time to leave you did not want to wanted to exciting!

As we walked back home, still hand in hand, but not the death grip we walked over in; we had a little conversation that went like this:
mama "So, what did you think?"
owen "Count Me In!"
OK buddy...we will count you in! The smile on your face was proof enough to me that you are going to be just fine! This school is very different from your last school and I have been feeling very nervous and apprehensive about how this year will go; how you are going to cope with the changes. After today's visit, I feel much better. Your excitement is contagious!

Tomorrow is your big day and Daddy and I couldn't be more proud to see you growing and moving forward! Have fun, be kind, pace yourself, be true to who you are, and most of all remember that Daddy & Mommy love you very, very much!

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