• Attendance

    January 2020
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  • The “Class”

    Avery, Naim, Aaron

  • Subjects

  • Portfolio

Bookworms, HeadStart

A and N had Math Playground, where they did odd/even numbers, something about chinese jump roping and read “Even Steven and Odd Todd.”

Both went to Bookworms (got all that transferred ok) and made lap books about “ME”. Aarons had a picture of our house, family and favorite thing (Bionicle), color (red), food (strawberries) place (Lego store) and some others. Naim forgot to bring his home so hopefully I can see it next week.

Legos was snake building and Science for Naim was food chemistry. He brought home a little tube of Naim made butter, so we had biscuits and Naim butter with dinner.

I took Avery to his first Head Start “socialization” class which take place every two weeks. Socialization is a bit of a misnomer because these kids are too young to socialize and the parents speak at least three different languages. But I still think it is good in that it really is open ended and tailored towards kids in the 1-3 range.

We took the big, yellow school bus that stopped in front of my house. They even provide a carseat. (They also provide snacks, lunch and DIAPERS…I really didn’t know what to pack!) Avery and I, as expected, were the only white people and probably the only native English speakers. The bus ride was LONG on the way (I was first on, but also first off, so back was much better.) They say that  legally they can’t keep kids on the bus more than an hour, but we clocked in at right about an hour. The stupid thing is, every single person we picked up was in Hillsboro, and then we drove all the way down to Tigard for class when there is a Head Start in Hillsboro.

The schedule goes:

Snack, free play with open ended centers (water table, paint, shaving cream, etc.), circle time (short) bathroom break, outside, lunch reading/free play, go home.

Avery did well and seemed to like it once we got there and he had a few minutes to acclimate. Having him in Little Villagers definitely helped because he sort of got what was expected of him as far as coming to circle time, washing his hands, etc. One thing I wasn’t expecting is that they make you brush your teeth after lunch with a toothbrush they provide. You are supposed to model teeth brushing, but it is a little weird to brush your teeth in front of a room full of strangers. Still, Avery was all into it and tried to brush my teeth, too.

One aspect of “socialization that we get a chance to work on there is Avery’s penchant for hitting other kids when they get in his way. We are trying to teach him your turn/my turn, but it doesn’t always go down well. Once I walked about 20 feet away from him, which was TOO FAR and he actually whined “MaaaMaaa” for the first time.

I told them that I couldn’t hear them when they told me and a few other new mothers the policies. So…and this has never happened to me before…everytime they would say something to the whole group, they said it in English, then in Spanish, then they walked right over to me and said it again to me loudly in English. I was amazed. No one has ever been willing to do that for me before. It was always, tough shit, you figure it out.

So, I think it is good and will be good for him and is not too big of a commitment. The Head Start teacher is coming tomorrow and so is the EI teacher, for a half hour or so, which I’m kind of dreading. She is so useless and the head start teacher is pretty good, so it feels like she is wasting my head start time. God I hope I was never that utterly useless when I was teaching special ed.

Oh, and they only had cups so Avery drank out of a cup about three times and did very well and got better each time. We are soon to see the last of the zippy cups.

Note: yesterday Naim went to Sky High with Ruoda and Aaron went to Outdoors in with Nik, so a little PE time there, then they went to D’s to visit his mother and visiting aunt.

Another Note: NO PICTURES in head start (tell Nik) because of women from domestic abuse shelters need to protect their identity, sad.

Thursday VH

Kids went to VH today and then Naim went to D’s while Aaron went to his friend Stockton’s house and then to D’s. Discoverers, Measure for Treasure and Drama, I heard nothing about them except it was a good day and they “played and did the usual.”

Avery and Nik went to Little Villagers. Avery played a lot with Jacob, the boy who is just a few weeks younger. No parallel play for them, they were actually interacting apparently. He was Meh on circle time and was NOT GOING TO DO the art thing under any circumstances. Which was something about drawing their outline. Other than that, all ok and Teacher Terri is going to run with Nik in the 5K Turkey Trot, so I think the kids and I will do the 1K.

At home, Avery has a definite “bye bye” and a definite “yeah.” It came back!

The Viking Fetus lives on! These two are only a few weeks apart in age and Avery towers over him.

Hanging out on the little rocker.

Early Head Start and Junie B. Jones

Educational Guides

I talked to people from 9 am to 11 pm today. Exhausting.

First, Avery’s new headstart teacher came and we filled out paper work. She seems cool. But the curriculum she uses is parents as teachers which made me groan. It is the same one as healthy start that I already did with Aaron and Naim. There is nothing wrong with it per se, it is just so focused on parenting skills and basic child development. It is another example of people in poverty being assumed to be stupid and in need of “skills and education.” I have no issue with someone who really feels like they could benefit from child development and parenting skills education getting that stuff. Nothing wrong with that. But what I need, and what I think a lot of poorer parents need is QUALITY child care. Meaning, they need someone to come in and actually spend time with their child and have activities and things already planned. I want him to have quality interactions even when I don’t have time to do it myself. I want another set of eyes on him, someone elses ideas. I may be able to get some of that, but I am so bummed about just sitting there talking to these teachers while they give me handouts on how to play with your child and guess what? NO ONE IS PLAYING WITH MY CHILD! It is a waste of my time and Avery’s time. I think, you are telling me all this stuff I already know, and I could be actually interacting with my kid. Or at least YOU could be interacting with my kid. It is like WIC or anything else. In order to get my formula, food, etc. I have to prove worth by taking nutrition classes. Again, nothing wrong with nutrition classes, but this assumption that poorer parents are too dumb to feed their kids so that is why we have to teach them what to feed them and dictate what they eat is not what most parents need. Most parents need MONEY FOR FOOD and TIME so they can go look for work, etc. Not take nutrition classes. (The SNAP/TANF ones are unbelievable. They basically teach you how to shop and spread out the foodstamps as far as possible when the foodstamp money is paultry at best and does take some real skill to try to utilize them without starving your kid. Instead of spending money and resources to teach parents how to get by with so very little food, why don’t you just use the money to give them MORE FOOD?)

But anyway, this was her first visit and it was all paperwork, so we’ll see what we can make of this. I did a much more toned down, much nicer version of the rant above, hopefully she wasn;t totally intimidated by me, but her demeanor and voice changed afterwards. It was less condescending nicey nice and more realistic and matter of fact. I liked her, I hope she can be of use.

Melanie and Ruoda came and took care of Avery and that seemed to go well. Kids and I went to NWCT to see Junie B. Jones. I had trouble hearing, which has never happened before. Kids enjoyed it. We want to read the books now. Naim found a girl from VH from his Chinese class so he went to sit with her. Had pizza at Hot Lips after and I realized I left my backpack in the theatre. Went back and got it and they were working on the sound and sound checks, so maybe it was a sound system problem and no just me. Nik said he had trouble hearing it as well.

Dropped A off at D’s and Naim came home to play with Ruoda. I talked to Melanie about homeschooling schedules and stuff. The kids were so LOUD though. Driving me nuts. Rouda and Melanie walked Naim over to D’s house and later my dad came from Kansas. By the time the kids and D came back at almost ten o’clock, I was about ready to die of over communication.

Saturday Catch-up

Felt fluish again, so stayed in and tried to catch up on missed Friday schoolwork.

Kids did Word Time: LOUD QUIET

Math, practiced counting backwards from 30. Finished the chapter on counting higher numbers. Kids are excited for next chapter on time and money.

Reading. Aaron read review word list for the first Bob Book in the Level 2: Advanced Beginners box and then read the book “Fun in the Sun.”  Both watched Lesson 27 in ZigZat. Naim did Lesson 27 workbook pages. Singulars and Plurals, read a small put-together-yourself book about body parts. labeled body parts (Aaron did that yesterday! he made sure to tell us.) Played memory game matching body part pictures with labels. (once with me and once with Aaron.) He reads much better than he knows his letters. Its strange. He gets sounding out, he gets context cues. He forgets what a lot of letters look like.

HWT: Did the final end-of-book test and we are finished with Get Set For School! Finally! Now moving on to the next book: Letters and Numbers for Me. Both did OK on test. Aaron got everything right. (Letter identification, drawing letters and numbers, etc.) Naim missed a few letters and numbers. Neither of them did amazingly on the “Draw a Picture of Yourself” thingy. They want lots of detail, and neither kid was very into making much detail on demand.

Avery has been a crap the last couple of days and driving me nuts. Maybe he is a bit sickish, too.

Ruoda was going to come with us to see Junie B. Jones next Wednesday. Then Melanie said she can’t because she has to catch up on school work. I think it is kind of crappy. I already told the kids she was coming and got her a ticket (Although it was Avery’s, so not like a paid extra, but now no one will use it.) My policy is, yeah, you can withhold things from kids sometimes, but not things they’ve already committed to. It is too upsetting to the other kids. But maybe they can play after for a bit. I wonder how much school work she’s got that kid doing a day. Sound pretty hard core.