Sunday, November 13, 2011

First term

We're proud, and couldn't be more pleased (and truthfully, quite relieved). Earbaby just completed her first term in her new school and came through with flying colors. We, her dad and I, can now exhale.

It's not that we were worried that EB wouldn't be able to adjust to a new school, with all new friends, and in a bigger, more competitive setting. It's just that she had spent the last eight years of her schooling (including K1 and K2) in smaller settings. Her first school was small, her second one slightly bigger, but still only one class per grade. Now she's in with high schoolers, with clusters of other bewildered seventh graders, from all over the city, being bused into a community she had never known.

She was quite overwhelmed. For one day.
And then with the self assurance that is truly God-given (I certainly didn't have her confidence at her age and her father also claims no such talent), she adjusted. She figured out her schedule, finds friends to eat lunch with every day, keeps careful track of all her assignments, and even buckled down when she started to struggle in a class or two. She talked of possibly engaging a high school tutor for the class she was having trouble in.

Mornings, always a bugaboo in our house, are now a habit. She rises without much drama, takes a shower, gets herself together, and is ready to head to the bus stop, even before the break of dawn. The change from daylight savings to standard time threw her off a little. After two months of going to school in the dark, the emerging sun made her feel like she was running late.

And after choosing to take music and picking up the trumpet, she also has adjusted. It turned out playing the trumpet isn't as easy as she imagined. But she wasn't allowed to quit despite her discomfort of being the only girl in the class and in her words "the worst one." Well while Louis Armstrong wasn't worried about being usurped from the great beyond, she has vastly improved and the initial sound of dying geese now sounds like music. She practices every day for a few minutes, and it shows. I can recognize songs and she assures me she sounds better at school.

Her first report card showed three A's and three B's, quite the accomplishment for any kid going into such a vastly different situation. (We're not finished, we all agreed she will be working to turn those B's into A's for the next terms).

But her dad and I are happiest because she's happy. Yes, she misses her old school, her old friends and the sixth grade. But when she says she loves her new school, I know we made the right decision in encouraging her to go. Another root for another wing. So far she's on the pathway to soar.

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