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annotated progress report

Apart from our recent travelswe’ve hit the road three out of the last four weekends – the Munch has had a quiet couple of weeks at home after finishing the first semester at his new school. Following an end of year parent-teacher conference, S received an electronic progress report on Munchkin’s first semester, which was amusing in its over-the-top accolades, at least a few of which were clearly apocryphal.

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The report starts out by noting that Munchkin is “a happy boy who enjoys coming to school with a huge smile.” That much is definitely true. After the first couple of weeks at the FSI daycare — once he got over the shock of being dropped off in a room full of strangers and figured out that we never failed to come back for him — he has always loved school, and we can only hope that trend continues.

He “is very familiar with the school routine,” the report went on, “and has no problem moving from one activity to the next.” The first part is believable enough, but the second clause definitely stretches the truth. The Munch has a rebel streak a mile wide – good luck getting him to change gears once he gets engrossed in something. “Fleee minutes. Just fleee more minutes, mama,” he’ll repeat over and over. Never mind that he has no concept of time. His teachers say he pulls the same stunt at school, though perhaps with slightly less success.

Socially, he “is a very friendly boy who is liked by all his classmates.” A dubious statement. We don’t know all of his classmates, but judging by the 20 minutes we spend carpooling with one of them each morning, we know Munchkin can bicker with the best of them. “He loves taking care of other children by … giving gentle reminders to his classmates who he thinks need them.” That, we believe, is called spin. Clearly, what they meant to write is that he is bossy and enjoys telling other people what to do – we see it in action dozens of times each day.

A few exaggerations aside, however, it is not at all difficult to recognize our little man in this exuberant progress report.

  • He actively participates in Sensorial activities. He loves using the materials for quite some time with no interruptions – that he most assuredly does, and he even uses the Montessori vocabulary at home: “Mama, I need another material.”
  • His vocabulary has greatly developed since the beginning of the semester. He is able to construct a full sentence that we can all understand. He loves singing, in English and French.
  • He always uses his kind words “please help…” — This last one is right on the nose; Munchkin is polite to a fault. Even when bawling his eyes out – upset, hurt, or frustrated by something – he uses his “kind words.” A couple of days ago, S tried to hold Munchkin still while D removed a splinter from his hand. The little man screamed bloody murder, every so often interrupting his shrieks to sob, “Please, can you stop please? Please, I don’t want any more.”
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