Today Neil and I met with Ty's first ever teacher, Mrs. Julia, for our first ever Parent/Teacher Conference. Honestly, it went a lot better than I expected. I had this image in my head that I was going to walk in there and the teacher was going to start yelling at me about how I was the worst mother ever and how Tyrus doesn't know anything and how she can't believe that we waited this long to put him in school (deep breath). The way it went down was nothing like that. It was a very peaceful experience and I think Neil and I both walked away feeling good. We absolutely have some things to work on, but that will never change.
Mrs. Julia started off the meeting by telling me that she had tested Tyrus the first week of school and, at that time, he knew the number 3, 8, & 15 (random). Today, when she tested him, he knew 0-5 and 7 (still random). The entire time she was telling me about the numbers that he knew today I was thinking about how we have a number puzzle at home that he puts together with no problems and how he is all the time counting stuff. She also tested Tyrus on his letters and he knew almost all of them. He had trouble with "b", "d", & "q" which she said was completely normal. She also said that he knows his colors and shapes 100%. That wasn't a surprise at all. She said that he likes to tell her, "I can't do that" and she tells him that "I can't" is not allowed in her classroom. She thinks that he likes the one on one attention that he gets from her because sometimes she will walk behind him and he will be writing his name even though he just told her that he didn't know how to do it. Can we say Little Stinker?
When she was done speaking I told her that Neil and I experience the same thing. Whenever we try to sit with him and have him do some type of writing that he just shuts down and says that he can't do it. We struggle with the fine line of making him do something and eventually hating to do it or just letting him do it when he wants to. She said that she understood that it was a fine line, but in her classroom she makes him do it and it is okay to make him do it at home. She also said that it's okay to punish him and take things away. I'm not sure how extreme Neil and I will get with this, but when I ask him to do something that I know he can do then I will absolutely be more stern with him going forward.
She did say that his social skills are great and that he has really opened up. Neil and I both told her that we have seen nothing but positive changes in him since he started in school. The last thing she said was that her youngest daughter was the same way that Tyrus is. She would have to sit right next to her and watch her do every little thing to make sure she did it. Even now that she is in 4th grade she still has to sit with her while she does her homework. However, she is in the gifted program at school. Maybe that's the road we are going down with our Tyrus. Maybe he's just too smart and he gets bored. :) We'll have to see.
I told Melissa that I would bring Joshua and Tyrus home since I was going to be at the school. When we finally got on the road we got behind a big "Schneider" 18 wheeler. We were several feet behind it and I asked Tyrus to spell that word and without even thinking about it he said, "S-C-H-N-E-I-D-E-R". I considered turning around so that he could show Mrs. Julia, but I didn't. I think she knows that he has potential. She's seen it firsthand when he didn't know she was watching.