Skip to main content


I had a parent-teacher conference regarding Mallory's kindergarten progress last week. Mrs. F said that on the whole Mallory is doing very well, and that in fact sometimes she's surprised at how well Mallory is doing because it often appears that Mallory is off in outer space instead of paying attention. She said that Mallory consistently answers very hard questions correctly (regarding things like sequences and logic -- yeah, logic, in kindergarten!) but that sometimes still misses easy things like rhyming. She said Mallory is a mystery to her. I said to join the club. Oh, and Mallory is also consistently the slowest child in the class to accomplish tasks such as putting away crayons and packing up at the end of the day and often forgets things such as where to find her math workbook, which is in the exact same location every day. She asked if Mallory were this way at home and I said yes but I thought all 5-year-olds were that way. Apparently they are not and we need to work with Mallory on "timeliness" and "task completion." I wanted to say I would be happy to address those concerns once Mallory gets over "losing her temper when rushed" and "snotty comebacks to constructive criticism," but felt that would be inappropriate.

Anyway, Mallory is constantly displaying her kindergarten knowledge and I can tell that she really has soaked up a lot. She's always spelling out, and trying to sound out, words we see. "C - o - w. Is that c like k-k-clicking cameras or like s-s-sizzling sausages?" she'll ask. Or she'll sings songs about the animals assigned to the letters they're learning, like Sammy Seal and Tiggy Tiger and Mimi Mouse (who minds her manners in the house. When she drinks her milk she never makes a mess, mudpies never stain her dress!). She informed me that not everyone knows this, but when you count you should start with 0, not 1. "I know that because I'm in school," she said. The other day she suddenly exclaimed to me, "This doesn't make any sense! How can Phoebe's name start with the P and make the F sound?" When asked, in preparation to doing a "thankfulness project" for homework, what she was most thankful for, she answered, "Being able to go to school." (She later changed her answer to, "Being bigger than Phoebe.") She can write the words I, see, Friday, red, and my.

Mrs F asked if I had any concerns and I said not really. I am pleased with her education thus far. I think what I want most in respects to my kids' educations is that they never get tired of learning. It's early days of course but so far we're doing okay.


aimee said…
What a smartie! I loved kindergarten--watching Rhett figure things out was so much fun.

And I hear you about losing one's temper...can't wait to hear what Noah's kindergarten teacher will have to say. The other day he was crying when I picked him up from school because he was a human vacuum, not a chair stacker. The unfairness of it all.

Popular posts from this blog

New Math

This word problem was on Mallory's math homework last week:

Lesia has 32 stickers. Diana has a few stickers. Lesia adds their stickers. She has to regroup when she adds. How many stickers does Lesia have? Circle the number.

We puzzled til our puzzlers were sore, but we still couldn't figure out the answer. I wrote a note beside the problem: "Mrs. G., this problem didn't make sense to either Mallory or her parents."

The next day the paper came back with a note from Mrs. G. She circled the last line of the problem and wrote:

"Misprint! This should have said Diana."

Okay! Whew! I was relieved to know that I wasn't, in fact, dumber than a second grader.

Except then I realized that I still didn't understand how the answer could be 3, 5, 6, or 8.*

I can't wait til she gets to algebra.

*Unless what they're calling "regrouping" is what we used to call "carrying the ones." In which case the answer would be 8. I think. Maybe.

Rocko Bama for President!

I was explaining to Mallory the other night that we'll be electing a new president soon, and then told her who my particular favorite was. She was intrigued by his name and kept asking me to pronounce it; then she asked if the other people who wanted to be president were "bad guys." I said, "Yes! They're evil, evil I tell you!" No, I actually said, "No, they're not bad guys, and one is actually a woman, they just have ideas that I disagree with."

Last night the phone rang and Mallory ran to answer it. She listened for a minute and then her eyes got really wide. "Mommy, you gotta hear this!" she said, bringing me the receiver. I listened; it was a robo-call from my candidate, in his own voice, encouraging me to vote in our upcoming primary. "Do you know who that was?" I asked Mallory.

"It was Rocko Bama!" she said excitedly.

Close enough.

And, just to drive home the point that my daughter is no master of elocution, la…

Confederation, confederation, confederation

Mallory has a big Social Studies test today. She’s not doing well in Social Studies, this year. When I asked her why her grades were so low, she said, “I don’t like Social Studies. Besides, no one can be good at everything.” I thought this was a fair point, but let her know that it was not acceptable for her to do quite so poorly, whether she liked it or not.

We studied for hours for this test. We read the chapter twice, summarized main points, went over vocabulary words, filled in blanks and did true/false quizzes. There were moments when I despaired – as when I asked, “The villages of the Cherokee people came together to form a...” and she said, “Um...bison?” But I think she knows the material pretty well; honestly I’m not even sure what else we could have done to get her prepared. I told her we would like for her to get at least a B.

I know she’s nervous. I’m nervous for her. I slept poorly all night.

But, I also know more than I really wanted to know about the early peoples of …