I am going to give you a hypothetical situation. I have this “friend” whose five year-old daughter, who formerly loved school, suddenly dislikes it intensely, much to the chagrin this little girl’s parent. This “friend’s” mother has an art for not seeing through a phase and making a mountain out of a mole hill, landing this little girl as a five year-old drop-out because of her sudden dislike of school.
I am sure you have caught on that I know this mother and five year-old even better than indicated. –A little more background maybe in order. This five year-old just came off of an excellent holiday break from school and just got over the flu that seems to have a tentacle grip on her whole classroom, cough! cough! She has been pretty wiped out by it. This little one said she did not want to work at school all day and that she just wanted to stay home and play with her baby brother. This five year-old is what I believe you would call a kinesthetic learner, unlike her more cerebral older sister who excels at lecture style classes that more visual/auditory learners and the new core standards seem to favor
This five year-old’s learning and development agenda is far larger than her older sister’s kindergarten program was, with the same lovely and talented kindergarten teacher. I am told these new core standards have both student and teacher in a frenzy to accomplish everything on the agenda and within the curriculum.
This mother that I know very much wants her child to return to her former loving relationship with school. She has been a very excited and happy student up until now. So this mother has taken some action and has done a little research. After a discussion with her teacher, she learned that there is not anything going on in the classroom that is an evident barrier (i.e., no conflicts with peers or with understanding her coursework in school). A conversation between the mother and daughter simply found a child who was not finding her coursework fun anymore. She was reminded that not everything can be fun and that school was her job, just like her parents had their own jobs to do. Also she was reminded of the importance of school. Following the words of a wise educator who encourages parents to empower their children when something is not liked, said five year-old was asked how she would make school more fun again for learning and will share her conversation with her teacher. Her “friend” has mixed feelings about the core standards and how they are affecting New York State students. She wants the best for her daughter and all students in this new environment, and will advocate on all their behalves for a learning environment that meets the needs of all different types of learners….