Monday, August 25, 2008

A Very Strange Chain of Events

About a week ago, we start getting ready for school to start. Pippi stomps her foot, telling me that she does not like school and says that she wants to just be with her family because school is boring.

I hear about the Spanish immersion program (from 2 different sources) in nearby elementary schools. I find out it's too late to apply. I am ticked.

Pippi finds out that one of her friends is doing the Spanish immersion program and asks if she can do it to. I feel frustrated, and say no because it's too late to apply.

The Warlock and I attend back to school night with Pippi. We meet her first-grade teacher to be. I grit my teeth through her presentation without even knowing that The Warlock is doing the same thing. Everything feels wrong.

I tell my friend who Pippi's new teacher is, and she says the same teacher was her daughter's teacher last year. She tells me not to worry and that nothing is set in stone.

On a whim, even though Pippi has already motorcycled home with the Warlock, I decide to go and visit her teacher from last year. She's alone in her room. We chat. She asks who Pippi's teacher is. I say the name, completely unaware of my misgivings being so obvious. She attempts to reassure: "Oh she's really nice. She's just quiet." I don't feel reassured. She begs me to tell her about it, so I lay it on her. I tell her how ticked I am that I didn't even know about the Spanish immersion program. She admits Pippi would have been a perfect fit. I tell her that Pippi doesn't want to go to school because she's bored. The teacher presents the option of promoting Pippi to second grade. The thought had never even ocurred to me.

As I walk home, I can't get the thought of second grade out of my head. Clearly the teacher she has is all wrong for her. When I arrive at home, the Warlock shares his impressions as well. We decide what we think we should do, and then we pray. Even the next day, we feel like this is the best option. I mull it over for the full day that I have, I even "teacher shop," trying to find a first grade teacher that I feel good about. And then I browse the web sites of the second grade teachers and I find the teacher I want for my daughter. Then I send the email to the principal. She gets back to me promptly, schedules Pippi to be assessed the minute she walks into the door of school this morning and magically, 45 minutes after walking into school, Pippi has been transformed into a second grader! (And without me even asking, she got the teacher I would have picked for her.)

So Pippi, that's how it went down dear girl. Some day you might curse me for putting you in a situation that will be challenging, but I want you to know that we were doing our best. You like to learn with the pack, and I'm afraid if you stay in first grade you will not like school because you will be bored. You might not be valedictorian or All-State Volleyball Champ because you will be a year younger, but this was what was right. Both Dad and I felt it and knew it, and your kindergarten teacher knew it, too. We all adore you.

15 comments:

Amberly said...

the best part of this story is that you feel great about it. that you relied on the spirit to guide you and can feel peace about whatever is to come because it was right. there may be struggles for pippi, but she'll greet them and conquer them with grace. congrats pippi!

citymama1 said...

I agree with Amberly, way to trust your gut! I'm sure she'll do great.

Deon said...

Wow! I'm sure that was the last thing that you expected waking up that morning. I'm sure she will do just fine. That is so awesome! Go Pippi!!!

Nancy said...

i went from second grade to third grade in a week because i told my mom i was bored too. ;-) But it turned out okay, that was the right thing for me and i'm sure it was the right thing for her.

Kissy said...

You know, the whole time you were visiting I was working with kids Pippi's age, and I just kept thinking how Pippi was so far ahead of them, but then I'd stop and think, 'well these kids are language delayed, of course they're going to be behind' but it still just seemed she was way ahead of the pack. She's going to do great! I'm glad you took your problem to the Lord, and that it turned out just as it should...If it's more challenging, it'll help her grow, and that's a good thing. :)

tenacious d said...

I skipped first grade also. It was challenging for me socially, because I was very young for my grade. Pippi doesn't seem to have any problem making friends or having self-confidence. She identified her own problem, and you and W were sensitive to the Spirit and found the best way to help her. She will do wonderfully, I'm sure.

Sheralie said...

well i am totally floored. it makes sense though. wow. i am not sure how to tell jeffrey - maybe we will have to call ya'all.

Sisyphus said...

I suspect, given the brain Jeffery carries around, they would have recommended an assessment for him too.

Prairie Smoke said...

I thought Pippi should be in second grade too. With an October birthday, she is not that much younger than a lot of the second graders. Also, she just seemed too advanced for first.

eryka said...

I'm sure she will do fine. I bet she's so excited! 2nd grade!

Congratulations on having a girl!

Jaime said...

wow! i've wondered how things like that happen and now i know. i am so glad you feel better about the new situation. i know so little about school - you know i'll come right to you when the time comes. she will do great and school from here on out will be a different experience for her.

Natalie said...

I'm so glad that it worked out so well! Good job! She'll do great.

Jecca Lee Ivie Johnson said...

I feel it is always best to go with you gut. I hope Pippi has a great year and finds it challenging enough to keep her learning and not twiddling her thumbs.

JessK said...

I always knew Pippi was brilliant. How could she not be?

You and the Warlock are very wise. I'll have to remember this, because I think we may have the same problem in about 5 years...

Prudence said...

Sorry, I left a comment with a bad typo! Pippi will do awesome. She's always seemed older than she was. Who knows how this will affect the rest of her life! I know it will be positive! Lets chat some time.