Wednesday, June 3, 2009

4th grade in review

Now that the summer is here, I wanted to take a few minutes and reflect on the past year in 4th grade for Carson. This year has been the roughest so far for him. But, as his teacher wrote in his report card, "We made it!"

Academically, he just never found the right connection with his teacher (nor did we) and spent a good deal of time bored in class. While he brought home all A's and B's on his final report card, his grades represent very little effort on his behalf. As a parent, it's frustrating to know how well he could do if he just applied himself a teeny, tiny bit. It's frustrating seeing that love of learning dwindle (especially considering that we're both in the field of education!). We're hoping for a strong teacher next year who will re-ignite that fire of knowledge.

He's made some new friends and drifted away from one particular old friend. He's redefined what a friend means to him and it's been a painful process. He's learned that friends don't always treat one another so nicely (himself included there) and that trust is a big issue that can break up a friendship. Again, as a parent, it's been hard watching this process unfold and there have been times I've wanted to jump in and fight the fight for him. I've had a steep learning curve as I've realized he's growing up and needs to learn to fight his own battles. Unfortunately, the issue has driven the moms apart as well, something we swore we'd never let happen. But, I've also learned that the friends your kids surround themselves with are vitally important to the character they develop. Through this whole painful process, he's learned (as have I) to really value those good friendships. He's starting to make several good friendships through our church and I'm happy about that. I'm still hopeful that he and this other boy can find a way to be friends without hurting one another. Maybe in time.

Soccer continues to be his sport of choice. He joined a new team this past spring and really excelled. The coach was great and we're looking forward to being a part of that team again in the fall. Through that new team, Carson has managed to jump start some old friendships from the past with some really good kids.

Oh my goodness, he's noticing girls now! I've caught him changing his clothes and making sure he looks nice if he knows there is a chance he might run into certain girls. And I'm noticing sly looks from girls in his direction. Scary!

And growth has been a constant theme this year. He continues to shoot up. Comes up to my chin now and I know it's only a matter of time before he's taller than me. That height is a blessing and a curse. When you see him in a group of his peers, people assume he's older and expect him to act older than 10. (Let's be honest, 10 year old boys can be a tad bit immature!) He eats just non-stop, but is willing to try new foods! He's discovered some very healthy foods that he really likes this past year (like tilapia, salmon and sweet potatoes).

We're looking forward to a summer of down time and renewal so we're ready to hit the ground running come 5th grade this fall. Yikes...5th grade?!?

And just hours after school got out for the summer, the phone started ringing with calls from his friends. He's already sleeping over a friend's house the first night of summer break. I think this might just be the theme of the summer. And, you know what, I'm OK with that. :)


Super Mommy said...

Sorry it's been a rough year ... I'm sure Carson recognized the same things you did - no connection, loss of interest. Hopefully next year will be filled with challenges and wonder.

It's so true what you wrote about the people you associate with. People tend to mock behaviors - intended or not!

I hope you all have a great, relaxing summer!

Vivian M said...

Here's hoping next year will be a much better one. Be proud of what you accomplished depsite the obstacles! Have a great summer!

The Morris Family said...

Such great photos. Fourth grade is a toughie-so many changes hurtling at them. All A's & B's is a pretty good outcome in spite of everything.
Hope he enjoys the summer and that next school year brings yet more success!