Kelly - posted on 01/04/2012 ( 43 moms have responded )
I apologize in advance if this is choppy--it's the 3rd time I've tried to post it.
J is in 1st grade. His teacher is sweet, and he loves the social aspect of school, but he comes home each evening complaining that they are learning the same material over and over again--and it's not even 1st grade stuff, it's the stuff he learned in kindy!
Last year, in k5, his teacher noted that he "displays a high level of academic achievement" and she made every effort to ensure that his educational needs were met. By the end of the year, he was doing simple multiplication, squares and powers, and basic long division. He was reading longer chapter books--Charlotte's Webb, The Chronicles of Narnia, Spiderwick, and the like.
We are half way through the first grade now and she is still focusing on adding and subtracting multi-digit numbers, and have not even touched on fractions, multiplication, or division. The books they read are what I would consider pre-school level picture books, not the cool metaphoric ones either, just basic early readers.
Our district does not have an official Challenge curriculum until 2nd grade, but K5 & 1st grade teachers are expected to identify academic needs and ensure that they are met for every student. I know that J is not the only one in his class that is beyond simple addition, in fact, I would think most of them would be beyond that, but even if he were, she should be giving him appropriate work, like his k5 teacher did. I was prepared for the fact that a large part of the year would be wasted on review, but this seems excessive--at this rate, they will not reach any new material by the end of the year!
So my question: How can I broach this subject with her without sounding like a judgmental pain trying to tell her how to do her job? I don't want to negatively effect her attitude towards J, but I don't want his education to suffer either. Currently, this curriculum is stuff he figured out how to do on his own before he even started school--he should be moving forward, not backwards. Plus, I feel that this boredom could negatively impact his attitude towards school.
I have looked into private schools, but those in our area are not held to a very strict accountability and appeared sub-par during the interview process. We are in one of the best school districts in our state, but our state schools do suck when compared nationally. I do not feel I am equipped to homeschool him either, so I would like to find a solution within our district.