Ready Yesterday

Ane is ready for kindergarten NOW.

And if not now, then YESTERDAY.

On Tuesday, we went to her new school and met up with some of the kindergarten teachers. They had asked each parent to make an appointment for their child to come in and do a kind of “meet and greet” that would allow the teachers to also assess the child’s current skills and talk to the parent about preparing for kindergarten.

Let’s just say that Ane passed the assessment with flying colors. When I recounted the story to Friend, she said, “And you were worried about that?”

“No, not worried – but it’s always hard to tell if Ane will perform on demand, you know,” I replied.

“But in that situation, where she’s so eager to please a teacher? I knew she’d be fine,” Friend claimed.

The teacher Ane worked with will not be her teacher next year. Unfortunately, the half-day kindergarten teacher than Ane would have had was let go at the end of the school year due to budget cuts, which is a real shame. The Webmaster and I had met her and liked her a lot, but it was her first year at the school and she had the least seniority. The teacher who Ane will have is the school’s current reading specialist, so I’ve been told by another parent. In an effort to keep the specialists, some of them are going to be teaching this fall. I hope that Ane does well and enjoys the class, because I am disappointed that the other teacher is not going to be there this next year.

Anyway, the teacher doing Ane’s assessment asked her to write her name, “so I know how you spell it.” Ane painstakingly and carefully wrote it out for her – and it should be noted that Ane’s real name is longer than her blog name, so this is not a casual effort. She has worked all this last school year on writing her name properly and putting the letters in the correct order. After doing that, she counted, read numbers, identified colors and shapes, named all of her uppercase letters, only mixed up a few lowercase letters (she has trouble remembering “b” and “d”, though she can recognize them if she’s concentrating, and mixes up “h” and “n” because of the length of the stem), and was able to tell the teacher letter sounds (something they seriously worked on in preschool this last year) when the teacher pointed to them at random.

The teacher smiled at me and said, “I think she’s ready for kindergarten.”

“She was ready yesterday,” I replied.

The teacher handed me a list of the concepts they had just covered, but she admitted that “she’s got them all down, so just let her have a fun summer playing with other kids and getting some social time.”

After the assessment was over, the teacher asked Ane if she had any questions about kindergarten. Here are just a few of the questions that Ane asked:

“Why is it important that we go to kindergarten?”

“Where is the nurse’s office?”

“What happens if someone is sitting next to me, and bugging me, and I’m not doing anything to them and I’m trying to do my work?”

I get the feeling that most of the kids, when asked if they have any questions about kindergarten, most often shake their heads and say “no,” because they just want to be done. Not my kid. To her credit, the teacher took each question seriously, though with a wide smile on her face, and gave Ane all the answers she wanted.

Ane told the teacher that SHE was going to behave in kindergarten, and then asked me if we could go find the nurse’s office. The nurse was not in, but Ane peeked in through the window – and had a mild freak-out when she spotted a skeleton in the corner. “What if it’s alive?” she asked me worriedly.

“If it was alive, it would be in someone’s body,” I told her.

“Oh. Okay.”

We also stopped by the principal’s office to say hello and to say that Ane was totally ready for kindergarten. “Of course she is!” the principal said with familial pride. After promising to get to the reunion this July, we tried to leave the office, but Ane was dragging.

“How come I can’t start kindergarten right now?” she asked me plaintively, in front of the school secretaries, who began to smile.

I looked at the secretaries. “Would anyone else mind if we just skipped summer and started the school year now, so she can start kindergarten?”

To placate Ane (and to get her moving), I took her out to lunch at Ivar’s after we stopped off at the library to visit C. and get some new books. I also picked up the library summer reading projects – the preschool one for Tad, the elementary one for Ane – which tracks the minutes that the kids either read or are read to over the summer.

There. Ane has homework. That’ll keep her happy for a while.

2 Responses to “Ready Yesterday”

  1. Ressis
    June 25th, 2009 07:06

    I think Ane was ready for kindergarten at age two.

    And you need to join Facebook! 😉

  2. Cousin Shelley
    June 25th, 2009 09:55

    Are you guys SERIOUSLY going to the Compton Killer?? hahaha!