Monday, August 23, 2010

First Day of School!

I can't believe it is here--Aiden's first day of school. And in typical Aiden fashion, we are doing things a bit different from everyone else--we are going straight to FIRST GRADE!

Over the summer, Brad and I had Aiden tested for placement. We had reviewed the curriculum standards for kindergarten and discovered that Aiden had already mastered the entire kindergarten curriculum, and even some of the 1st grade stuff. He's reading chapter books now, he's even reading Harry Potter to us each night before bed, and he's great at simple addition and subtraction, even counting money, so we felt that testing was warranted, just to see where Aiden is truly at.

After 2 days of math and reading testing, the school determined that Aiden should start the year in first grade as a temporary placement. After 10 days, his teachers, counselor and principal will meet with Brad and I, we'll all compare notes as to how the first 10 days went, and decide whether Aiden is emotionally and developmentally ready for first grade, or would do better in kindergarten. This should be an interesting couple of weeks--I'm both excited and nervous for Aiden, and praying that God would lead us to make the best decision for Aiden.  There is a lot to consider--Aiden's need for an educational challenge, balanced with concerns for his emotional development and even physical development in comparison to his peers. We worry about the long-term consequences of jumping him ahead--like getting his license a year behind his friends and peers and hitting puberty later than his classmates, but we also don't want Aiden to fall into the boredom/misbehavior trap and be labeled as a troublemaker by his teachers, or even learn to hate school because he isn't challenged.

The great news: Aiden's teacher is fantastic and spent years as a school counselor before becoming an educator, and is one of the teachers for the Talented and Gifted program, so she is especially qualified to evaluate Aiden and give us her recommendation for his placement. And Aiden, who doesn't really know that anything special is going on, is ecstatic that one of his neighborhood buddies is in his class. So we are all excited to see how these 10 days play out.

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