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Seriously.  I often have to stop myself when I recognize that I’m getting frustrated.  I follow the old advice and “count to ten, then take a slow, deep breath,” and center myself.  Then I force my self to smile…

My daughter is a lot like me.  I see it.  I recognize it. But, boy does it drive me crazy.  We butt heads. A LOT.  She is intense, assertive, sensitive, and stubborn.  I remind myself I am always modeling social skills,  and strategies for positive communication.

What’s works most often is humor.  Pretending to hypnotize her this morning to get her dressed for school made her crack up and resulted in a quick and easy transition.  When I see her tense up and start to resist, or if I can see she’s distracted by something more appealing than what I’m asking her to do, I often turn to using a funny accent, speaking in animal sounds or talking like a robot.  It works almost every time.

Her sense of humor is complex and far beyond her age.  She understands sarcasm, and often changes adult humor to fit new situations.  She plays along with my ridiculous acting.  Sometimes she jumps in and adds to the game.  It’s fun, and feels so much better than nagging.

She’s also creative, musical, passionate and loving.  She’s easy to love even when I feel like I’m about to blow my top.  And even when I am that frustrated, I enjoy laughing with her. Using humor keeps me sane.  And the best part is, it works.

A Mother’s guilt…

Posted: 31st January 2013 by myersct in Education, Life, Parenting
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Monday my daughter’s class had a field trip which included a bus ride to a local chinese restaurant, and lunch in celebration of Chinese New Year.  She was very excited and asked me if I could go with them.  She problem-solved ideas to work around my inflexible schedule and my need to have a sub for my home childcare/preschool program.

Unfortunately, none of these solutions worked out.  She was clearly disappointed, and so was I.  My job allows me to take my daughters to school each morning.  I’m home if they are sick and can’t go to school.  I’m also able to do a lot of volunteer work for their school from home. But, I can’t just take time off or flex my work schedule to be involved in their school days.

I told her how sorry I was.  That I wanted nothing more than to go with her.  She said she understood.  But she’s intense. Oh, always so intense.  And her behavior over the next few days communicated her strong feelings.

On Monday, she asked me what day it was as I dropped them off at school.  The realization that it was the day of her field trip, and that I wasn’t able to go brought tears to her eyes as she hugged me goodbye.  It was heart wrenching to disappoint her.  All she wanted was my time.  The one thing a parent shouldn’t deny their kids. She’s had many field trips.  A couple I’ve been able to go on, but most she hasn’t even asked.  It was a rough day for me.

When I checked in with her teacher, she said Jayden seemed fine.  Happily chatting with a classmate and his Mom on the bus, her text reported. A relief to hear, but it still did not alleviate the knot in my stomach.

When she got home she had a fortune cookie for me, and she shared how fun the trip was and how good the food was.  She had put the disappointment behind her, but I guess I had not.  It wasn’t the lunch I had missed but the time to connect, and the time to just be with her. I fear there will come the day when she no longer wants Mom to come along…

Tuesday was a crazy day.  Prep for dinner didn’t happen during the day as planned.  Tired and not wanting to cook I was struck by an idea.  Jayden cheered and just beamed when I asked if we should all go out for chinese together at the restaurant where she’d gone with her class.  She never stopped smiling.

I got extra hugs that night as I tucked her in bed.  She shared that dinner with me was the best part of her day.  It was the best part of my day too, I told her.  Time with my girls always is.

A new find

Posted: 20th January 2013 by myersct in Education
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Byrdseed A site dedicated to Gifted Education.  I stumbled upon this today, and I have to say I am excited to share this resource.

What is Byrdseed?

Byrdseed is a place dedicated to differentiating instruction for high-level learners.

Ian Byrd shares some great ideas and resources for using the icons of Depth and Complexity here.

But also offers help for teachers with:

Language Arts
Writing
Math
Emotional
Creativity
Technology