Last week Parker had a short week at school. It was the end of the quarter and a teacher in service day, so he was done for the week on Wednesday. I found a phonics workbook in his backpack last Wednesday. With it was a note from his teacher saying that once it was completed, he would get the blue one. Now, this is not a hefty huge workbook, but for Kindergarten and a 5 year old, it seems like it may take awhile to get through. (It would be really cool if I could tell you at this point that he finished it already....that would totally blow your minds! But come on! He is 5! Some realistic expectations please! Ha). Because he has to get through it in a timely fashion, I decided that he would have to do 1-2 pages a night starting this past Monday.
Monday he opted to do the workbook pages first before he played or took a bath, the first page was a challenge. It was crayons with the colors written on them, there were no instructions so I told him to read the color and then color the crayon with the proper color from his crayons.....I wasn't really thinking about the fact that he is at the beginning of reading aka sounding a lot of stuff out aka most color names are not easy to sound out. So it was a challenge and he got really frustrated with him self. Eventually he got them all, but I couldn't imagine him wanting to move onto another page. My little trooper was frustrated with himself but moved on and the next 2 pages were a breeze for him! There was an image, for example, a cat then under the image was __ A T. So obviously you fill in the missing letter. He flew through that page. Sitting there. Naming the image. Saying it slowly to hear all the letter sounds that he was saying and the figuring out which sound and then letter was missing. It is astonishing to watch and hear him figure these things out on his own. I don't remember not being able to read and taking the time to do every small stage of each word and all the connections you have to make between letter sound and letter recognition. He amazes me. He did 3 pages all together that night. We skipped Tuesday but the pages he did last night we more difficult than Monday's. The words were missing two or more letters. He sat at the table and I watched him kitchen, image recognition, letter sounds, and knowing which missing sounds went into each missing space. I went over to check his work and every "a" he had written was backwards. I calmly and gently told him that and immediately he was upset with himself. He strives to do it right the first time and it is hard on him when he doesn't do it right the first time. He gets mad at himself. I told him that he was fine because lots of 5 year old who are just learning how to write there letters tend to get "a's" backwards. His frustration shows that he takes pride in his work. He will have that trait for the rest of his life and will demonstrate it every time he tries to do something right the first time. Watching him do his work in his workbook, hearing him figure out the problem on his own and witnessing the time and care he puts into it is my proud mama moment of the week.
When he turned 5 and we started preparing for Kindergarten, I was very nervous about the changes that lie ahead...parents start to lose influence over their children when they reach school age. But, now that we have adjusted to the changes of this fall, this age is so much more than I realized it would be. Yes there is way more attitude already (which will just get worse) but the intelligence and independence out weighs the attitude.
Last week he also got all E's and all :) for work and behavior at school.