Sunday, September 15, 2013

Up to our eyeballs in busy.


It seems as though I've come to the point of posting once a week.  Gosh, that was not my intention.  However, there was a certain incident where life was excessively crazy and no one got hurt and all is well but my husband made me promise to confess to my PTA Peeps my level of crazy and that my husband demanded that I cut back.  They nodded their heads, and then one kept calling and wanting and needing.  Did she not hear me talk of my crazy episode?  Sooooooo, probably by the end of the month, this side of crazy will start to calm a bit.

K has settled into 4th grade well.  A much better transition than last year.  Unfortunately, our school system is requiring an hour and a half study be put into reading and math each day (that's not unfortunate, but ...), their specials aren't to be trimmed (gym, art, music and library) so that leaves the additionals to be trimmed-- social studies, science, health and language arts (spelling.)  We're left to fill in the hole where 20 minute blocks are just not enough for each of these topics.  Heath is not taught all the time.  I think that might flip back and forth with social studies.  This is not a choice of K's particular school, but of the school system.  Hubs went over her science vocabulary with her yesterday.  Mrs. S had the children write that they have a vocabulary quiz this coming Wednesday.  Now, it would seem not that difficult, but the definitions are matter, mass, volume, density, liquid, solution, solid and gas. Hubs said that the definitions themselves are fairly complex.  He found a link online that talked about a chocolate bunny switching through several of these phases.  Still, we wonder how children make it through some of these subjects when we are essentially homeschooling the subjects that aren't permitted the time at school.  (K's teacher is so upset about it, too.)  We are very involved parents.  I was helping her with the regions of Ohio.  We were speaking of glaciation, temperate climates, map reading, history and so forth.  We spent an hour on the social studies.  It was so chewy that Hubs asked K to tell him that next day how many children actually turned it in.  (Just out of wondering.)  I'm blessed to have a partner as involved in K's education as I am.  We tag team and it works.

K's teacher gives them timed tests each Thursday.  The timed tests are considered a test grade and she is having them graph their improvement.  On the first trial test, K got a 59.  The next week, when the grade was going to count, she had improved to 88.  This past week, she missed only one (and clonks herself on the noggin) and scored a 99.  They've been testing in multiplication, but they will be testing in addition and subtraction.  Division comes in the spring.  I told Hubs that by using these as tests, it beefs up the math score and does give a little extra padding if a test should slide like it did last year.

K loves her teachers.  I did write a note to the social studies teacher just asking if we can find out when tests are a few days in advance.  I ended up running into her in the hall and explained why.  I told her that K tends to be nervous if the time to study is terribly limited.  The night before just doesn't work for her.  I told her that if that is the case, she becomes horribly nervous and vomits.  :terribly concerned face:  "We don't want to do that!"  She was kind and thanked me for talking to her about it.  I explained that K thrives best when she is given a block of time to study and take information in.  I told her that seeing it once just doesn't work for her.  I'm so glad that I was able to speak with her and have her understand that I'm not helicoptering!

As for me, my husband sat me down and talked about some ways that some responsibilities could be lifted from me.  He volunteered to take dish duty back.  It is something that he has always done, but he has had the habit of letting things pile and it drove me absolutely batty.  I took the dish duty away from him in June.  When the craziness of life had me spinning circles in the driveway, he decided that he could help out with that.  We're all working together to keep the house tidy instead of having mom, Mistress of All Things Bailey's Leaf, be responsible for it all.  Last night, I got home from a female obligation party (home parties are the worst!) and the dishes were still there-- stacked (not staked for those of you who read earlier!) all over the counters and in both sinks.  I needed to get up this morning to make brownies for Hubs for an optional-mandatory work picnic and I needed to make apple crisp for the church picnic.  I told him that as soon as I changed, I would get the dishes done.  He was a little huffy at first, but when I explained that was the reason I stripped him of the dish duty was for this very reason.  I had baking to do the next morning and had no surface to work from, which was the problem before.  He felt bad.  The dishes were done, the sinks scoured, the counters found and a promise was made not to allow it to return.  Amen.

I have reconfigured the time I commit to PTA things.  Soon that will lift.  Until then, I will dedicate only a few days a week.  Unless we have special events, I am trying to keep my in-school work to Thursdays only.  I have talked to my 100 Book Challenge advisor and she is good with it.

If I have been tired early, I have gone to bed early.  I have resisted the urge to pop open another can of Coke just to keep up.  My child and my husband require me to be here and as one person-- not some crazy spinning thing.  I shall do that for them.

In the meantime, you'll hear from me probably once or twice a week.  It's okay.  I'll be with my people.


Rach said...

I've been terribly worried about you Miss-I'm-Burning-the-Candle-at-Both-Ends. :oS Especially given the little erm...incident. :o(

I'm so happy to hear everyone is pitching in. The dishes thing would drive me batty! I'm one of those AR types who likes to have all her dishes done before bed. For the I need to cook the next day reason. And, I just don't like facing them the next day. UGH!

As for tests, um, kids should be given at least a week's notice so they can study a bit each night. I can't even imagine telling kids they'd have a test the next day. OMG! Unacceptable!!! I used to plan out tests and give two week's notice. Quizzes were a one week notice. If you plan accordingly you can make this happen. Sheesh. :insert extremely grumpy face here:!!!

Breathe, girlie, breathe. No more "incidents", okay? :oP

Bailey's Leaf said...

Last year, K's teacher was a one-day-ahead kind of lady. Yet another reason why 3rd grade was the year of vomiting!

And yes, the stupidity that injured no one and really nothing (except for my pride and admission of fraying sanity) and that I'm far too embarrassed to admit here, was a wake-up call to SLOW DOWN! It wasn't really that completely dire for me to run out and be on the dot on time to pick someone up to run to school and to be on the dot on time to set up for Garden Fair. My friend Kay was there and she was rolling with stuff before I even got there. Bless her heart!

Top part of the candle only-- I promise.

ChupieandJ'smama (Janeen) said...

Hugs, Hugs, Hugs! I hope things calm down soon for you. You do so much. Make sure to take care of you.

School is different for us this year too. Teachers are specializing due to Common Core. And M has gone to block scheduling because of all the changes. The teachers say they are teaching less information, more in depth. I haven't figured it all out yet. We are going with the flow, I just hope we can keep flowing until we get a handle on all this.

I'm glad no one was hurt in your incident. And I'm glad that hubs is pitching in.