Thursday, September 27, 2007

Less Widespread Panic

Things look much rosier today. My eye thing got better and that always has a big impact on my general happiness. Epu fixed my laptop, which had crashed into oblivion just as the freelance work is beginning to roll in. Grey's Anatomy premiered, although I missed the first half because I was out buying Nutmeg a fantastic fall/winter wardrobe at a fantastic consignment sale.

But most of all, I "volunteered"* this morning in Nutmeg's class and things don't seem so bad there. Granted, it was one of her good days, but still I did not get the feeling that this is a kid totally out of control in school, or one whose behavior consistently stands out from the other kids.

But I'm not fooled into thinking there won't be days again when she is hitting, spitting or who knows what at school. To those who suggested this is a transitional issue, I hope you are right, and to support that theory, it does seem like she has her worst days on Mondays and Tuesdays, when the school week begins.

After considering very good advice from friends here and offline, and talking it over with Nutmeg, I decided to try to attack the aggressiveness problem with a little positive reinforcement: If she has a good day at school with no hitting, she and I do a special activity together while Pebbles naps that afternoon. She hits somebody, no one-on-one activity with Mommy.

Yesterday we had a playdate with the other kid in the class who the teachers have called "rambunctious," and the other mom was full of criticism for Nutmeg's teachers. She doesn't think they're doing a good job handling the misbehavior when it happens, for one. I had a chance to watch the class for myself today, and I have to say I wasn't thrilled with it. Although there are 3 teachers, they spent a good portion of the class yacking with one another or with moms and a nanny who hung around a good hour after drop-off. Of course the kids were having free play during that time so I'm not sure what I would rather the teachers do. Take copious notes on my child's free play abilities?

In general I found the place casual, low-key, but basically hitting most of the notes preschool should hit. Not a ton of creativity or enthusiasm, but the kids seemed happy at at the right level of stimulation. I didn't have super-high expectations, knowing that you get what you pay for and this program is pretty cheap.

I don't think I'll enroll her in this program next year, but I probably won't pull her out this year unless her problems there get worse. It seems to be doing her good, and I'm enjoying becoming part of the class community.

* It was more like hanging around, because besides helping pass out the snack and delivering a little glue to little art projects, there wasn't much for me to do.

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