Mexican school: My kid’s as happy as a pig in slop.

Hopefully you’re not sick of hearing about the school yet. Here’s what’s new.

So yesterday around 10:30 in the morning a gmail chat window pops open on my laptop. It’s from Scout. She tells me that the Spanish teacher has sent her to the computer room alone to do online Spanish, while the rest of the class does something else.

Say what?!? Scout wasn’t bothered at all. Well, except for the fact that she’d been jerked from the Mac-only cocoon in which she’s been raised and tossed into the all-Windows hell that is the school’s computer room. But I digress…

But I was bothered. Did the teacher  — whose name I don’t even know — have a good reason for moving Scout down there? Or did she simply not want to deal with a kid who doesn’t speak Spanish? Scout says she likes her, and I must say, the kid’s like a canary in a coal mine when it comes to identifying not-great teachers. But I hadn’t met the lady yet, so I didn’t know what to think.

Well, today Mark and I met with the principal about a few administrative issues so I asked about it. Turns out the teacher only sent Scout out because the class was practicing for a test Scout wasn’t going to take and she thought the computer time would be more fun. Harmless enough. Then I got to meet the teacher, Miss Angeles, and really liked her. She radiates warmth and kindness.

So I guess there’s nothing to freak out about.

Since Scout won’t be getting an official certificate from the school (our choice), she isn’t required to follow the Mexican curriculum.

Academic flexibility is more important than the certificate. So the principal helped us work out a special program for her. The homework will be tweaked for her (a few pages of reading every night from her Spanish school books as well as writing work). But Scout won’t need to stress out about the state exams.

After the meeting Mark and I checked in on the kid, who looked radiant. Hanging out with her buddies in the sunshine, laughing, horsing around. She introduced us to her friends, who were all cheerful and polite specimens.

When I picked Scout up after school she was EXHAUSTED. Apparently today is sports day and they had her running all over the place. I love it.

That’s about it. So far it’s all rainbows and unicorns, but we’ll see how things go. Frankly I think the biggest challenge for Scout will simply be learning to manage a real homework schedule.

At $3000 for the year, the school is going to put a big dent in our budget. But it’s worth it. Beans and rice, here we come.

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jenn December 5, 2012 at 10:11 am

Yay!! Great news! So happy for you all and very excited for Scout. She’ll be fluent in no time and make some lifelong friends. Fantastic!
Jenn

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2 Renee December 5, 2012 at 10:22 am

Thanks! That’s what we’re hoping, Jenn. Are your lovely kiddos still in touch with their french pals?

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3 Tiffany December 5, 2012 at 11:47 am

Great update! Glad it looks like it will work out. What an awesome experience for Scout, and for you to see the “system” actually working. I can only imagine how good it felt to have the instructor notice Scout’s learning and coping mechanisms. What a gift. We can relate to those who can’t – and it’s presented as a behavioral issue. We were really surprised to hear such a focus on “behavior” at our recent parent/teacher conferences. Not much talk about “learning” style, but how their “behavior” was/wasn’t. Weird and disconcerting.

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4 Renee December 5, 2012 at 12:23 pm

You’re wise to be suspicious of the emphasis on behavior over learning style. That false dichotomy is the whole reason we started homeschooling. And I do still consider us homeschoolers. Scout’s doing a specialized program until June, sure, but then we’ll move on to something different. Ultimately her education is in OUR hands, and not being dictated by an institution.

Tiffany, I really appreciate your taking the time to comment and share your p/t-conference experience. Thank you. And good luck with it!

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5 Melissa Harris December 5, 2012 at 9:03 pm

What fun! Beans and rice are so worth it and yummy 🙂 Love the story! How refreshing to find a school that is well rounded.

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6 Renee December 6, 2012 at 7:32 am

Thanks, Melissa! Well-rounded is a good way to put it. And the place is kindness-based. We’re not huge fans of school-based education (pretty obvious by now), but I’m so grateful to have this option for immersion purposes. And for friendships/fun.

I’m also seeing that being a foreign student suits Scout. She gets to be a little different, which she loves, and the 2nd language component adds a welcome challenge that keeps things interesting/relevant.

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7 buddy and girl December 6, 2012 at 4:29 am

This is so great on all fronts. Awesomeness to you guys for letting Scout lead!

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8 Renee December 6, 2012 at 7:25 am

Cheers, Daisy!

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