Tag Archives: kindergarten

Lexi’s Last Day of Kindergarten

168th Day of School - Last DayIt seems like only yesterday Lexi was heading off to her first day of kindergarten. She was over-the-top excited and Milo burst into tears.

Today was her last day of kindergarten. She’s older, wiser and taller.

The last day celebration included a cookout with Pete the naturalist at the Dodge Nature Center, featuring mini hot dogs (Milo ate half the pack) and pizza. Then we headed back to school to hear about some of her favorite things from throughout the year and every student received an award for following one of the school’s five overall rules.

Lexi was recognized for “safety,” because she always brought the right gear. I think that means I should get an award for sending my kid to school prepared (which usually meant stopping her on the way out the door and insist she wear something more appropriate). She also got the award for making sure everyone else was being safe too, which I’m pretty sure means she’s just bossy. She practices all day long on Milo, so it’s good to see it’s paying off.

It’s been a fun year watching Lexi grow. I think the social aspect of kindergarten—learning how to interact with other kids, following the rules, being prepared—has probably been the most important, though it’s also been cool to see her learning the academics. She’s learning how to read, slowly and with more and more confidence. Having a kindergarten teacher for a mom, some people expect reading to be a serious and early milestone in our house. But it’s actually counter-productive to teach kids to read too early (Abby could give you all sorts of reasons why—I’ll leave that blog post to her). It’s important to let them go at their own pace. And it’s been fun to see that with Lexi, to see her start to read signs in stores and read stuff over our shoulder. She’s still gaining confidence with reading books, but she’s getting there.

I’m also trying not to be too proud that one of her favorite things in school was writing.

Finally, the end of the school year means the end of a little project of mine, the Days of School. It started with me taking pictures on the first day of school (I have an addiction to feed). Then as we waited for the bus on the second and third days of school Lexi kept asking me to take pictures. So we started taking a picture every day. I think we only missed one or two days when Lexi actually went to school, and of course we missed all the days she was absent (and since she had mono in the fall, there were a lot of those). But in the end we have 151 pictures of Lexi going to kindergarten.

As we went outside to take her picture today I told her  we were taking her last picture. She told me, “Nope, you’re taking pictures in first grade too!” So we’ll see how long this thing continues.

Check out the Days of School:

Half Day Kindergarten

Tour of My Childhood: Scotch SchoolI’m a work-at-home dad. With a 2-year-old and an almost 5-year-old. That means I don’t get much work done.

In the past few months I’ve gone from one child napping in the morning and both children napping in the afternoon to only one child napping in the afternoon.

Work happens during that lone naptime, in the evenings and when I’m otherwise neglecting my children. In other words, not much work happens. And I have no social life.

I’ve been holding out hope for kindergarten. The Tuesday after Labor Day couldn’t come soon enough.

Until I learned our district only offers half day kindergarten. All day kindergarten, it turns out, is not mandated by the state. So if you want it, in our district at least, you pay for it. To the tune of nearly $3,000.

I wanted to cry when I heard the news.

I love my kids and it’s pretty great that I get to stay home with them. But the whining, complaining, fighting and general disorder are not my cup of tea. Unlike some people, this is not my calling.

I’m trying to console myself with the fact that half day kindergarten is better for kids, that it’s a more gradual introduction to school, that all day kindergarten is mostly filler and babysitting, that naptime may even resume when kindergarten starts.

But I was really counting on that babysitting.

Now I’ve got my sights set on 2014.

(As much as I dislike the district’s policy, in a time of budget cuts, salary freezes and rejected levies, it’s a pretty smart fiscal policy.)

Kindergarten Hero & Tuxedos on Mission Control

And now, more adventures from your favorite kindergarten hero, Kevin D. Hendricks. Today he read the thrilling account of one Miss Ridinghood and her encounter with a flesh eating wolf to groups of squirming children. And he read the story not once, but four straight times! He also comforted crying kids, banished a misbehaver to the corner, and amazed many a five-year-old with his rubber ball-kicking ability. (cue superhero music)

Today also brought a record breaking night for Mission Control. With only six hours of lead time Mission Control produced an extremely successful poster and e-mail campaign. The radio station is having a free stuff week (which is the norm for Mission Control), and my show was given the honor of giving away a free tuxedo rental. That’s a prize you just have to plug. Who wouldn’t want a tuxedo? Heck, even if you don’t have a date, it’ll extend your laundry window, or be a nice pick-me-up in the middle of the week (everyone smiles at people who dress up, trust me, we did it tonight for the show). Anyway, the last minute campaign worked extremely well. I was especially proud of the simple yet effective flyer I designed in under twenty minutes.

While I’m plugging my own radio show, we also added sound clips of the infamous Hostage Takeover to our web page. It’s a multimedia event! You can listen to the abduction and read the ransom note at the same time. What a deal. Check it out at: http://listen.to/missioncontrol (follow the link to the hostage clips).

Kindergarten Hero

And now the continuing stories of your favorite hero, Kevin D. Hendricks, kindergarten volunteer. Today number recognition was left behind and new ground was forged in rhyming words, letter sounds, and how not to listen to the teacher. Today demanded patience, energy, and quick thinking. Needless to say, when I finally returned home I took two aspirin and crashed on the couch, refusing to move for half an hour. I now have a new found respect for teachers that somehow manage to do this every day. Are they really dedicated people (a.k.a. crazy), or just well paid?

“If I do not acquire ideals in my youth, when will I? Not in my old age.” (from Maimonides, as quoted in The Rule of St. Benedict: Insights of the Ages by Joan Chittister, pg 164)

“Money often costs too much.” (Ralph Waldo Emerson, as quoted in The Rule of St. Benedict: Insights of the Ages by Joan Chittister, pg 150)

Random Bizarreness

This morning I woke up really late. Class starts at 8:20, and I became conscious at 8:05. My roommate claims my alarm did go off at the usual 7:15, but I don’t believe him. Anyway, I was able to get ready in record time, and headed out the door looking disheveled and having had only a smidgen of orange juice for breakfast (this is grave travesty, for those of you who haven’t heard my tirades on breakfast. To put it in Seinfeld terms, I’m the Breakfast Nazi.). I got to class just barely on time, only to find that class had been canceled.

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