Adventures in public schooling continue. Or more like MISadventures in our case.
I continue to have no idea when the girls get out of school. Actually, I don’t even know when they start. I see most of the kids in town headed to school sometime around 7:00 am. I thought the high school (technically Haley is in high school) started at 7:15 and the elementary started at 7:30. But the other day the kids were not too close to the school and it was 7:11 but Haley tells me she still had plenty of time before school started that day. OK!
As for the end of school, I heard it was 1pm. But maybe earlier on Thursdays. 12:20 perhaps? And Fridays are early release too. Maybe at noon? But today (Thursday) Haley shows up at home at 11 but Zoe didn’t get out until 12:30. So you see it’s really anyone’s game when the kids get out. They other day Haley insisted that school was over for the day and told Zoe to leave class. Turns out it was 10:30 and although Haley was done for the day (for whatever reason) Zoe still had several more hours! I insisted that Zoe go back to school. Note to self: get Haley a watch.
Dan and I just got back from a quick border run to Costa Rica while the girls stayed home with Aunt Kim. On the drive back I’m getting texts from Candace who says there’s some meeting at the school. She says all the parents are there and talking and shaking their heads but she can’t figure out what’s up! I’m tapping into all my resources (read: texting everyone I know who is connected to the school) trying to find what is the subject of the mysterious meeting today and all I can figure out is that it’s not for Haley’s grade. OK!
When Dan and I returned home I reviewed some of Zoe’s work and she has “deberes” which is strictly translated as “shoulds” but is the word for her homework. Because there’s no copier at school the teachers write things on the white board and the kids copy it down. But the teachers here write exclusively in cursive. This is a double challenge for Zoe: unfamiliar handwriting AND a foreign language. So figuring out her homework each night is a bit of a scavenger hunt. “What’s that word? Is it similar to another word? What were the other kids doing? What subject are we even talking about?” You get the gist.
Yesterday Zoe’s homework was to write the numbers between 3000 and 5000 skip counting by 5’s. My multiplication skills (sharpened by recent homeschooling) tell me that that’s 400 numbers. Really? She has to write 400 numbers to prove her skip counting proficiency? That was last night’s homework and she didn’t do it (I was out of town so I’ll let Aunt Kim off the hook since she didn’t know Spanish). Tonight Zoe’s “shoulds” say she is to summarize the map of this area of Panama that was drawn in social studies class. How do you summarize a map? We are stumped.
But one thing we did know was that Zoe simply had to go to the local chino to get wooden clothes pins to make the Jesus that they are creating as part of an art project. Again, no separation of church and state here!
So far Haley is not coming home with any “deberes”. Yet another “I wonder why…” that probably will go unanswered for the foreseeable future.
It’s a little strange to go from being a very involved and informed parent to now having no clue about what is going on at school and being very limited in how I can help with homework. I guess it’s part of my adjustment too. I admit I don’t love being befuddled much of the time but I also admit that it’s probably good for me. Everyone needs long stretches of befuddlement to really put their priorities in order!