It happens every year. We begin school with smiles and promises of a great year, and I always begin my talk with the elementary students by saying, “Today everyone has all “A’s” and “E’s” in conduct. What happens with that tomorrow is up to you.”
Somewhere around Week 6, we start feeling some resistance. Why? The teachers have proceeded into the new curriculum for their grade. The work is no longer familiar and relatively easy. Ultimately, some students begin to struggle. Parents wring their hands. “Last year’s teacher must not have prepared them enough, and the work is harder,” they might say. And of course, the work is harder, but it is not because the students were not prepared. It is rather because the new work for their grade is being introduced. Do not worry; teachers at Shlenker have had the best training in differentiated instruction, teaching reading and writing, and math instruction. Additionally, our very small classrooms enable teachers to have time for individualizing their teaching.
What can we do as parents? Keep supporting your child by providing a place and time for him/her to do homework. Help with planning for long term assignments and tests. If your child is having difficulty in a specific area, contact the teacher. Every child may not internalize a newly taught strategy or remember new information at the same rate or in the same way.
With all of us working together, students will begin to feel comfortable learning new information, and the beginning of next year will be a “piece of cake” because the students will be well prepared from their hard work this year!
Head of School