Wednesday, September 08, 2010

School Already??? - by Cara

That was the phrase uttered by my son just the other day. I have to admit, the summer has certainly flown by. With the exception of a planned vacation, much of the summer has just whisked its way through many hot summer days.

I don’t think I was able to see my friends as often as I planned. I did spend more quality time with my son. But except for a few cute movies and an exciting theatre excursion, we really didn’t take advantage of the summer activities as we usually do.

I think much of it had to do with the almost endless clean up from the tornado that hit our town at the beginning of June. There were weeks and weeks of clean up going on in local parks and pools. That certainly put a damper on our outdoor activities.

Daily day camp occupied my son who almost always came home exhausted. And we had a reading tutor come after camp twice a week. With almost daily homework given. Except for the endless laundry, summer really hasn’t felt like...summer.

We didn’t use our outdoor grill even once this year (I plan to rectify that next year!) Except on his camping trip with his Dad, my son didn’t have the energy or time to even catch fireflies, as we did together last summer. There were very few gatherings or get-togethers with even just my friends.

And now school is back in session. By the time this blog is posted, my son will have completed his first day of Second Grade! I am as excited for him as he is. But also wary. With higher-grade levels bring larger homework loads. I wonder whether my son can deal with the greater workload. Or will I be writing many explanatory letters.

My son will be heading into school with a long list of modifications already outlined by the professionals who follow him. But will he need more? Will the school provide him more?

The one relief I have, that I blogged about last year, is that the PTA came up with an interesting fundraising idea this year, to help out overburdened parents (such as myself!). The PTA sent out  flyers at the end of the school year, last year, offering to have every single item your child’s new teacher requested, for the new school year, available for a reasonable fee! All the way down to 24 sharpened pencils! Heck, it is worth a few dollars just to have someone else sharpen 24 pencils for me! Each child would be presented with their own, boxed supplies (almost like a gift!), presented to them on the first day of school! No dragging of heavy items into school the first day. No misplaced pencil cases, erasers, notebooks. Everything is right there waiting for each particular child whose parents chose to utilize this service.

As I was walking through Staples last week, I saw several frantic Moms, with trails of their children, holding pieces of paper with their school supply lists. The Moms were blowing hair out of their eyes while their children complained in unison that either the items Staples had were not the right brand, too large, to small, or just plain sold out. As I quietly picked out the proper ink cartridge for my printer, I just stood there and smiled. No sharpening of 24 pencils for me this year! I have plenty of other things to do!

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