End of a first term

End of term today. Secondary school is very different from primary school — there are six classes each year instead of one, for example, and different teachers for each subject.

Lost this term:

1 School coat

1 "tech" folder

1 scarf

1 swimming costume, towel, goggles and swim bag

1 school coat (that’s another one, not the same as above)

1 hockey sock

1 trainers and socks

We received a letter from the school today. It began: "I am writing to congratulate your daughter for her excellent marks…..which were among the highest in her year group."


7 thoughts on “End of a first term

  1. Ah, Maxine, we received a letter from school yesterday, too, about Mark (13, in 7th grade). It wasn’t so encouraging. Despite the genius IQ, the kid cannot stop being the class clown. Our letter gave reports from each class. Three of the teachers found him “a pleasure to have in class.” The other three found him “disruptive, interrupts the teacher, talks during lessons, etc.” I don’t know what I’m gonna do with this kid. He is *so* funny and so bad (sometimes).
    You should hear his Borat and Ali G. imitations — he gets people falling on the floor with laughter, but he can’t keep his mouth shut during class.
    He’s grounded now, though who knows how much good that will do. After all, he loves to read, so it isn’t much of a punishment…..

  2. Susan, please be mindful of the – rather American – genius trap. It worries me that you mention this in the same sentence as his behaviour, which may or may not be related. I’ve gone through the class clown routine, and it’s a very complex situation. And I’ve got another child in a gifted programme – she’s one of the ‘normal’ kids chosen to add balance – in which the very brightest boy, four years younger than the norm and an absolute whiz at maths and chemistry and physics (and Latin too) – is also one of the easiest kids in the class. In other words, there are many factors.
    But do cherish Mark’s strengths – they often prove far more interesting and productive and creative than intelligence alone.
    And if I may add a word of presumptuous advice from long and tough experience – forget the grounding. It doesn’t work.

  3. Maxine, sorry to preempt your post in my comment above. I love your list of lost items. How familiar it all is – still is. And on the other hand, I’ve got an ever-growing collection of found objects from my children’s friends which have never been claimed. I suppose I’ll toss them when Abby goes off to study.
    And it’s terrific that your daughter’s doing so well.

  4. Hi, Lee — Thank you for the wise comments. My daughter is a breeze compared to Mark: She doesn’t seem to crave attention like he does. She’s an amazing guitarist and painter, and loves science and math, but she was always the quiet one in class: The teachers would not know who she was until they read one of her essays.
    As far as Mark goes, I have often told him he will either end up in the White House or the Big House (prison), and we just don’t know which one yet!
    Maxine, I love that list of items. My kids have stocked the Lost and Found with their coats and umbrellas. The only thing Alix was genuinely sorry to have lost was her iPod. She’ll never misplace one of those again because it took her months to save enough money for a replacement!

  5. Thanks for your comments, Lee and Susan. In Jenny’s case, the lost property all seems to be in one direction, but she is very easy in that the trainers were old ones of Cathy’s and so didn’t cost us anything (until she loses the next pair). Also the school is pretty good at selling only uniform that is cheap. As for behaviour in class and out of it — that’s a whole other issue on which I fear I am not the best source of advice— you two sound as if you know your respective offspring as well as anyone can, but at the end of the day, I guess they have to make their own way. A hard one for a parent (me included) to learn.

  6. Susan, now you have me giggling. That’s almost exactly what I’ve always said about my eldest, Gabriel – and still do, even now when he’s got fingers in more pies than I care to count. Only I said he’d end up confronting gates – the barred ones, or the one who knows something about running a business.

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