I had myself all worked up. After all, that’s what I do. Get worked up. I had googled “parent teacher meeting behavior”. Don’t laugh or roll your eyes. You know me by now. I’m a planner. I anticipate. I prepare. I research.
I was only ½ focused on work all day thinking about this meeting. At 4:59, I packed up, steeled myself and walked out of work ready to get hammered. Not drunk … hammered like, beat up. (English is a strange little language)
CC and I got to the school and made our way to Ace’s class where his teacher was ready and waiting for us. We sat and she began. Now this isn’t going to be a word for word quote, but it’s pretty damn close.
“I would just like to talk to you about Ace and his progress so far. He is doing well with his work. Better than many of the other children. I really have no worries at all where that is concerned. As far as his behavior goes though, I would like to make sure that we are in agreement on what needs to happen and how we will get the desired result. He is not a defiant child and he is very teachable, but his mind seems to wander when he’s expected to focus on a task that has a series of steps or when he’s supposed to be sitting and listening to a story. When I ask him questions, he knows the answers so the information is getting in but he doesn’t appear to be focused on what’s going on here. Another thing I’d like to work on is his eye contact when he’s having a conversation and he needs to learn how to wait his turn and not interrupt other people when they are talking. I will say, he is the youngest child in the class. By a whole year in some cases and at this age, that makes a big difference. He is very polite and I can see that he tries, but it’s difficult for him. I think he will be ok and with some coaching and re-enforcement, I think he will get it. I just wanted to make sure that we’re on the same page and the things that I’m teaching and that I expect from him are the same at home.”
I was a little speechless. That’s not even close to what I was expecting. I didn’t plan for that. Damn it. I had a totally different conversation plotted out in my head. I thought she was bringing us in to complain and to tell us that Ace is hyper and that she suspects he has ADD and we need to get him checked out and maybe medicated. I thought it would be a this-is-tough-and-maybe-harsh-but-you-need-to-hear-it type of conversation. I thought she was going to tell us how much of a problem he is and how disruptive he is and that he is a distraction to the other children and she simply can’t tolerate that in her classroom so we need to do something, and soon. There was none of that.
CC is not usually the talker-upper in our family, but luckily, he also is not the nut that I am and he was able to speak in a coherent way to her. He whole-heartedly agreed with her and assured her that she didn’t say anything we don’t already know and see and work on at home.
I may be a nut job but the thing is this … Of course, we want Ace to succeed in the classroom. We are not, however, interested in any type of medication at this time. I’ve heard too many people tell me that schools and teachers love to push that as soon as they come across a child that challenges them in any way. It’s their 1st go-to. I was pleasantly surprised to find that his teacher was not heading down that road … (yet). She and us are very much on the same page with what we want for Ace and how we are going to get there. CC and I have already learned some behaviour modification skills from therapists due to our experience with Jay and Ace’s teacher is apparently willing to work with Ace and us to make him be the best student he can be. Just like Ms M said, he’ll be ok. We just have to keep reminding him and working with him. *Whew*