Saturday, February 25, 2012

Differing Views on Continuing Education

Anyone who has ever met me or talked to me about my views on raising children knows that I value education. Not only do I value education but I also expect my children to excel at school. I have seen children who school was hard for succeed with a lot of hard work and determination. Children who could not read at grade level in early elementary school later making honor roll in high school and being admitted to colleges and universities. School seems to come very easy to my children so I expect that they will do well and eventually go to college. Not going to college will be seen as a disappointment. Even now my kids know they will someday go to college. That's why the following conversations touched me. The first one made me chuckle since he can't really believe I would ever allow this to happen. The second one made me beam with pride and hope that his dreams really do come true. Both of these conversations were on the same morning and occurred about 30 minutes apart.

1st Conversation:

Me: Matthew, I registered you for kindergarten and kindergarten screening.
Matthew: I'm not going to kindergarten.
Me: What do you mean? Of course you are going to kindergarten.
Matthew (laying on the ground): I'm not going ! I'm staying in 4K!
Me: You are going. It will be fun.
Matthew: I'm only going if I can go to this school (not our neighborhood school for grades K-5).
Me: We can argue about this in August.

I then told his wonderful teacher about our conversation. She agreed to talk to him and help him see how much fun it will be.

2nd conversation about 30 minutes later:

Jacob: Mom? Where will I go to middle school?
Me: I'm not sure. They are making a lot of changes right now. It will depend on where we live and what schools and programs are available (they are starting new charter schools as well as planing on starting a lot of new programs in the school district).
Jacob: Where will I go to high school?
Me: I don't know. Maybe the one by our house. We will have to see how you are doing and what our options are then.
Jacob: Where will I go to college?
Me: Where ever you want! I will take you to visit and tour colleges when you get to high school. You can go where ever you want.
Jacob: I want to go to Wisconsin Badgers school!
Me: Then you can. I'll work with you to help you get ready and get accepted. It's a hard school to get into but you are doing great in school. You just need to keep working hard.
Jacob: I'm going to Wisconsin Badgers school!

Update: Matthew later talked to his teachers and my parents about kindergarten. He is now willing to at least try it in the fall. He now says he's just not willing to learn how to read.

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