This afternoon I saw a wonderful thing happen.
My darling boy started kindergarten this fall. He has been less than thrilled with it. Don't get me wrong, he likes the school and his friends that he is making. I think he also likes his teacher. However there is a great big list of things he does not like. He does not like getting up in the morning and getting ready for school. He does not like doing his "morning seat work" each day when he arrives at school. To his credit, I don't particularly like coloring seemingly (to his young, 5yo mind) meaningless worksheets either. He does not like handwriting. He most especially DOES NOT like homework.
The kids' school is a charter school. It is a school with high-powered dreams mascarading as a small country school. It is great. We added a new curriculum this year called The Riggs Method. You can learn more about it here. It is a total immersion English language program. It is a great program that promises great things for our kids. But, and this is the biggie, it is new, a bit scary and a lot of hard work for the students. My two girls, 8th grade Jessie and 4th grade Emily, are adapting well enough but the boy is having issues. It is a big adjustment from "play"school, i.e. preschool to all this work. DH has been dealing with the morning issues and I have been dealing with the homework issues. It has not been fun until today.
Today I finally saw what this program can do. I think my DS finally saw what he is working so hard to achieve. He did not have any homework today so instead we got books to spend some time reading. He just happened to grab a book titled "Go, Dog, Go!" With the Riggs program the students learn the letter sounds as their mode of identification versus their names. For example, A has four sounds in the English language. The letters/sounds that the kindergarten has worked on so far are A, C, D, F, G and O. As you can see, this book that he chose was perfect. Three letters and all ones he has been working on already. With a little prompting, my DS, the one who has not wanted to do the work and has been fighting us every step of the way realized that HE CAN READ!! Yes it was only two works, three little letters but HE CAN DO IT! This program is working. Furthermore the book has a lot of color words in it which is something else they have been working on in class. He is starting to get those too.
Let me say this again....MY DS READ WORDS TO ME!!
I had the pleasure of seeing that the program is working. Furthermore, I had the pleasure of sharing this success tonight at the PTC meeting. Now granted I got emotional about it but really, it brought tears to the eyes of many in the room, particularly the ones with whom I have shared my frustrations with over the last few weeks. I am so excited. I am so ready to see what comes next.
Seeing it happen, seeing that look on my DS's face when he realized that he was actually READING makes the frustration and the difficult times worth it. I am quite sure that there will be more bumps in the road, after all, DS is a stubborn little bugger but for now, for today, I am just going to revel in what we accomplished today.