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July 01, 2011

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Mary Anne

ahhh, We have had those years too...and as a teacher I find it very very difficult. My kids seem to bounce through ok, and continue to excel. Max is such a bright child, and his drawing skills are far beyond his years, and I think that is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard. It goes against every thing taught in early childhood education schools here in the US. But, he will be just fine. :) Oh, and as a teacher, I always tell my 3 year old parents to remember that 3 year olds are "forward thinkers". The past is done, and what they want to talk about is what is next. Therefore, almost every 3 year old answers "I don't know." Trust me, that will change soon enough!
Miss Alixe sounds just like her cousin Sarah(who had no more words than that at her age) Now, we can't get her to be quiet!
:)Have a wonderful vacation full of learning by playing and making all kinds of memories! :) Best learning there is!
love you guys....

stefanie

ah....seeing those pictures reminds me of what an awesome time we had last summer! We also used to go around the dinner table and talk about what we did at school that day. Maybe that is because my mom is also a teacher. Sliman and I still do that and I always ask how Lilah spent the day with the nanny.

The Bold Soul

Just to make you feel better (or if not better than maybe feel not alone in this), in the 3+ years I've known Georges and his kids, I have never once gotten a detailed answer to "What did you do at school today?" Sometimes he'll volunteer information later on, but never under direct questioning. So I stopped asking and instead now I ask "Did you have a good day at school? How was the pool/the after school activity/whatever else special might have happened that day that I knew about in advance?" Instead of worrying about what he actually does all day (I would love to know, too) I now concern myself more with his overall attitude and energy surrounding his day. If he comes out in a good mood, with good energy, then I know all went well. Some days maybe something didn't go right, and I alert his father so they can discuss it later together, just in case there's a problem with another kid or something (when he was 6 there was a 9-year old trying to shake him down for cold, hard cash, and he was really scared to go to school until his parents went to school over it). You are absolutely right about the lack of transparency in the schools here, that has been my experience too. It's like "their" world (both teachers and students) and they run it the way they want. Georges has been an involved parent, he was on the parents' board for a couple of years so that's how we knew more about what was happening, but otherwise it's not easy to get information out of anyone, be it your child or the educators. Our cleaning lady has been having a tough time dealing with the school directrice (same school as our kid) whom all the parents seem to hate, and who doesn't seem to give a crap about a bigger kid knocking a smaller kid to the ground (for example). Now there is a rumor this woman is going to move on to some other position outside this school and all the parents have their fingers crossed because she's just horrible.

At some point maybe you or Julien could find opportunities to volunteer on parents' groups at the kids' school. I suspect that kind of networking is key.

Marion

Hi Aimee,

If that's any reassurance, my mom was told 25+ years ago by my sister's maternelle teacher, in the most serious tone: "Madame, votre fille ne sait pas dessiner un bonhomme"..... while my sister was probably the most creative and arty of the three of us. 25 years down the line and my sister has a degree in history of art and works the Musee de Cluny.... making drawings and all other forms of art the centre of her life! It's scary to see the French education system hasn't really evolved in two decades, but hopefully this is down to individual teachers and I hope that Max will find a fantastic and positive teacher next year!

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