I really need to prioritize how I spend those precious, kid-free hours. I have mistakenly scheduled appointments during that time and have been subsequently annoyed that I spent those hours at doctor's offices or the like instead of doing something I enjoy and is rejuvenating. I want to reserve those times for bike riding and sewing projects.
Finn is enjoying school so far. We have had a few snags: The teacher (who isn't new) sent the kids home with a number of homework tasks: math worksheet, 15 minutes of reading, a written reading response, spelling word practice, and math facts review. All together, it added up to about an hour's worth of homework which seemed a bit excessive for second grade. The teacher has since tweaked the requirements so that they are a bit more reasonable. But I am interested, if you have a similarly aged child, how much homework do they have a night?
We also had an incident with our bus driver. Last year, the normal and excellent bus driver retired. There was a substitute driver who finished out the last few months of the school year who was also excellent. This year, we have a different bus driver with a completely different temperament. After the first day there were complaints of yelling and mocking from the bus driver. The bus driver was also routinely late. I was willing to chalk it up to a new route and a new year. However, the other week, I picked Finn up from the bus stop. We were walking across the street when the bus pulls up to us, stops, and the door opens. From her seat, the bus driver starts telling me (yelling since I was not close and she was in the bus) how "naughty" Finn was on the bus. Completely non-plussed by this unexpected complaint, I asked her 1) if she had the right kid and 2) how he was being naughty. She said yes, it was the right kid and that he wasn't staying in his seat and talking too loudly, etc.
So there are many things wrong here. 1) If there was a problem, and I needed to be aware of it, she should have asked me to come up to her seat to talk it over, or called me later. 2) She publicly shamed my child by telling everyone in earshot about his misbehavior. And as she was yelling from the bus, this was a lot of people. 3) She had the wrong child. After discussing the situation extensively with Finn, it turns out he was the middle child of three on a bench. He could not easily get out of his seat. Also, it turns out he was being harassed the whole time by fourth grader (one who was sitting next to him and by the aisle) about the status of his teeth. (A whole other story about how awful and mean kids are.) I am pretty confident that there was another child who was causing trouble and the bus driver misidentified the kid. Not completely surprising as the children all wear the same colors (it is a uniformed school), but also annoying because she has not taken the initiative to learn the children's names, a task that even the temporary substitute from last year managed. And now, my son, has some anxiety about riding the bus this year. Yay. I called and complained, and I hope things go more smoothly from here on out.
(This is my first time dealing with a situation like this, and WHOA.......It hit a lot of my feeling buttons!)
I should also mention that I have already received quite a bit of positive feedback from Finn from his second grade teacher. She has written a few times about how she enjoys having him in class and that he is just so good! This makes my mama heart sing. (And it makes me want to shove this praise in the bus driver's face. "You have the wrong boy! My son is not the type to misbehave on the bus!")
Enna has had a much smoother time starting preschool. She absolutely LOVES going to preschool and is distraught and despairing on those days when she doesn't get to go. Mondays are the worst when Finn gets to go to school, but she does not. I get to hear about the unfairness of it all every. single. week. (o.k. So it has only been a week and a half of her actually going to preschool, but I sense a definite trend here.) I love that she enjoys it so much. The teachers are great and make it a point of sharing what the kids are learning and playing. They have also made a point of talking to me individually about Enna and what she did and worked on that day. Also, as Enna has a nut allergy, the preschool has made the all the classes nut-free. I love that they are so accommodating.
And that is the new school year! Perhaps a bit more of a rocky start than I wanted, but still, very good.