Jacelyn, my baby, my angel, my stinklepink, starts PreK tomorrow. TOMORROW. She is going to St. John's Catholic school. She will be wearing a uniform - standard catholic school plaid jumper, polo shirt, mary janes. She has a PE outfit to wear on the days she has PE - Monday and Tuesdays. Wednesdays she will have library and computer time and mass with the rest of the school. Thursday is music and Friday is art. They have language arts curriculum (based on a program called 'The Land of the Letter People'), a math program, religious study, and a couple of other programs that I can't remember right now.
Yesterday we took her supplies to school, and she met her teacher and teacher aide. There are eleven kids in her class, which is a good number at that (or really, any other) age. Her classroom is cool - computers, books, toys. There was a little chair with her name on it, which whenever I think about I tear up. I was fine with everything else, but there's something about that damned little chair that gets me. She has a cubby hole where her markers and crap will be.
One of the items they noted was that they are going to learn the alphabet, a letter every four days. Something else said that they will learn number recognition. When they saw that, the Bernardos, as I knew they would, said, "She's going to be bored. You should see if she can skip a grade". Yes, she knows the alphabet, yes, she can write the entire alphabet and some small words (if told how to spell them), and yes, she can recognize and write her numbers. BUT she has never socialized regularly with other children. And just because she has had some one-on-one instruction by Michelle on how to write her letters and numbers and whatnot does not mean that she is ready to advance a grade level. And I'm certainly not going to ask. I figure, if she's some extraordinary genius, they will notice and come to me, not vice versa.
I'm not worried about the separation. I'm worried about how she will behave. And she BETTER behave. I've been drilling her on her manners for the last two weeks. I was a little disappointed at the orientation yesterday, that despite my attempts at having her say 'yes ma'am' and/or 'no ma'am', she just mumbled 'yes' or 'no' and at one point, 'Huh?'. Other than that she behaved well, but I'm a firm believer in the ma'ams and sirs. I'm so nervous. Spread your wings and fly, little one. But you better fly right, lest you lose your TV privileges. Kidding. Maybe.
I'll let you know how it goes. I know she will be fine, I know she will. I'm trying to come up with some sort of something to reinforce good habits and behavior. She will get a daily conduct report with a color code: green for good behavior, yellow for decent, and red for "Tomorrow will be better" - their words. But then again, should I reinforce good behavior? I mean, I was expected to be good, and I usually was (at school, anyway) because if I didn't, I would get in trouble. Ah, well, I'll muddle through. We'll both muddle through. Wish us luck! Well, her mostly, but I could use some, too. She's a big girl now!