Friday, March 16, 2007

Time for my little star to start shining

Conference night went...eh... last night. K.'s grades aren't near what they could be and that's a disappointment to both myself and her teachers. She's capable of so much more, and she's proved that time and time again. The agreement between us all seems to be that K. needs to spend some time focusing on non-fiction and learning how to process and retain it. She also needs to work on her writing.

Now, I do have to take a moment to brag about my kid for a moment. She's ten and currently in the fifth grade. The back-story to that is due to her birth date, she should be in the fourth grade, but I started her in a private kindergarten a year earlier than the state allows kids to enter public school. When she transferred over to public school, I fought hard to keep her at her then current grade level and her test scores supported it. After much fighting, it was allowed. (I still think the principal allowed it just to be rid of me.) So, technically, she's a year ahead of most kids her age with a birth date in October. Keeping that in mind...

They recently took a STAR Reading test and the results came back with K.'s percentile ranking at 93. Her Instructional Reading Level is 8.5. Now, what this means is that K.
"reads at a level greater than or equal to 93% of other students nationally in the same grade. This score is above average. The PR Range indicates that, if this student had taken the STAR Reading test numerous times, most of her scores would likely have fallen between 84 and 96.

The Instructional Reading Level (IRL) is the grade level at which K. is at least 80% proficient at recognizing words and comprehending reading material. K. achieved an IRL score of 8.5. This means that he or she is at least 80% proficient at reading eighth grade words and books."
So, she's technically a year ahead of kids her age in school, in the fifth grade and reading well into the eighth grade levels with fairly decent comprehension. It makes a momma proud, it does. But such test scores are why her teachers and I know, without any doubts, that she can do better on her class and homework. There really is no reason for the Cs she'll be bringing home for the third nine weeks in both Writing and Social Studies, other than she simply didn't apply herself. But it's those two subjects that make us think she needs to focus on non-fiction for a while.

Next year when she transitions into middle school, she's going to have a hard time of the work if she doesn't start focusing and applying herself. She's so very capable of the work, I just have to find a way to motivate her. And organize her. Sweet red clover everywhere, the child is disorganized. That's going to be a major goal for us this summer: getting her organized.

And that brings us to this morning. K.'s fever is back and nearly 100F. I have an email into her teachers to set up a quick meet this afternoon after school is out to pick up make-up work for the time she missed this week, and we have an appointment at 10:20am (EDT) at the pediatrician. Four days running temps from normal with major sinus congestion to 102.5F is just too much. She's not kicking whatever it is off on her own, so it's time to see a doctor before her little brain boils. Also, she asked if I would make her an appointment. When a kid asks to go to the doctor, any mother with half a brain listens.

This does, however, scramble much of my day. I didn't get to do grocery shopping yesterday because she was home sick, and now I can't go again today. At best I'll be able to make a quick stop somewhere while we're waiting for the inevitable prescription to be filled. Having her home will also make getting any serious catch-up cleaning done, too. If she sleeps, though, I may be able to get some filing done and work on my emergency notebook a little. Neither of those tasks is a major accomplishment, but they are necessary.

Um. It just occurred to me that I have no idea what's for dinner tonight. I should do something about that. I also need to glance at the grocery ads that came in yesterday's mail and set up a menu for next week. I can do that while at the doctor's office, and tweak my grocery list, too. Maybe I can get A. to watch K. while I go out grocery shopping this afternoon if she's not up to tagging along by then.

Usually I try not to post more than once a day, but there will be a post again later this afternoon. There will be a brief update on K. and then the semi-final draft of next week's menu. Final drafts are rarely achieved when it comes to menus simply because I like to maintain a little flexibility for activities and moods. I'm not sure at this moment what else will be in that post.

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