Sunday, September 1, 2013

Another School Year Begins!

We're off to the races! Our days are non stop with both Madeline and Charlie at Richards Elementary -- three round trips to the school every day! Each morning, while the big kids are in school, John and I have a little one-on-one time to read, play blocks and be silly.

Just like last year, Papa and Ning brought doughnuts (and Rob hung back from the office) to celebrate the first day back to school. We had a parade, falling in line with the rest of town as everyone pushed their strollers, greeted the crossing guards after a long summer, and made their way to their respective lines in front of the school.

Madeline's in first grade and has the fabulous Mrs. Yeager. On the first day of school, she and I wore matching outfits. She's reading, bringing home math homework three times a week, and actually making presentations to her class using the Smartboard -- it's called Popcorn and Publishing, and each child picks their favorite original essay out of their composition book. She asked me to pack her hot soup in a Barbie thermos for her lunches, which I do every morning, and she's planning a Doughnut Club during recess with her little girlfriends. We're in the habit of sitting at the kitchen table when we get home from school (I pop a fizzy water for her, which makes her feel so grown up!), and she works on her homework while I start dinner. At night when I put her to bed, she'll open up about her day and chatter excitedly about what she's learning. She absolutely loves school.

Charlie's in junior kindergarten, or K4 as they call it here. He has Mrs. Kubicki and a fun-loving teacher's aid, Mrs. O'Neill. Charlie adjusted beautifully to the big elementary school -- a big change from the darling two-days-a-week church preschool he attended last year. I think he adjusted better than I did. All the rules and structure just seem over-the-top for a group of four year olds, but after the third week, it was smooth sailing. On the last day of his first week, the exiting 5th graders created a bridge with their arms for the incoming junior kindergarteners to walk under; the principal came out to officially welcome the new class. I drop Charlie off at 8:05, like Madeline (though I usually arrive early so I can watch him play on the playground), and pick him back up at 10:40am. Every single morning, without fail, we waits patiently in line to give his teacher a high five and then sprints, arms outstretched with a HUGE grin, to me where I pick him up and give him a bear hug. I love hearing about his day while we eat lunch together at the kitchen table. He and I have special time while John naps, and then we pick up Madeline at 3:05pm.

Charlie's bridge ceremony
When the kids got home from their first day of school, we celebrated with one of their favorite special treats...dangling doughnuts!
John says, "Wait for me!"

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