Friday, March 25, 2011

Conference Time

Parent-teacher conferences always fill me with dread. The kindergarten teacher who fondled my thigh. The second grade teacher who dramatically recalled Kaylin jumping in a puddle at the first conference and coloring her entire desk top with pencil at the second conference. The first conference with Logan's teacher this year where she scared me half to death about his reading issues...

The fall conference with Logan's teacher was the first time I had to deal with a real learning issue. Everything negative I'd heard before was a behavioral issue or a personality conflict- stuff that was cringeworthy for various reasons, but nothing that sent me into a panic. The reading thing pulled the rug out from under me. This teacher struck me as overly strict, but not crazy. When she told me my son was on the brink of failure that was going to RUIN HIS ENTIRE LIFE, I believed her. Heh. Live and learn, I guess.

I went into a panic for a couple of weeks before realizing Logan just needed to be TOLD that reading was important. Once he understood that, he was like "Oh, ok, I'll do it." Last night's conference lasted maybe 5 minutes. His teacher showed me his most recent reading testing. I don't remember how the actual scoring worked, but his score was 108. She said the expected score for 2nd graders by the end of the year is 90. PFFFFFFFFFFFFF!!! So with a quarter of the school year left, he is well above where he needs to be. In 4 months he went from "needing intervention" to above level. I was commenting to her about how impressed I was at Logan's VAST improvements in spelling and how he now reads street and business signs and how he actually sounds out words he doesn't immediately recognize rather than looking at the first letter and guessing. She was all "Yeah, isn't it neat how kids just blossom in 2nd grade?" I sort of felt like punching her in the face.

Logan still needs to work on reading and comprehension, but not because he's in danger of failing. He came so far in such a short amount of time I think by this time next year it's very possible he'll be reading well above his grade level. He probably won't be a bookworm 3rd grader reading at 12th grade level, but I'm more than ok with that. My panic from the fall conference brought some good change including Logan's ear tubes and making him realize reading is important. However, I stressed out WAY too much over an issue that more or less resolved itself. My life lesson is to take what the teacher says seriously, but to step back and use common sense rather than freak out and panic.

Today I have Kaylin's conferences. She's doing well and I'm half tempted to skip out. I won't, but I'd like to.

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