Monday, August 31, 2009

apple


(new duds thanks to Nana)
Today is finally the day - first day of second grade! We're ready with her new backpack stuffed full of school supplies, a new lunch box full of a favorite lunch (bonus points for you if you can name her favorite sandwich), and a brand new day with a brand new teacher (really new - apparently the regularly scheduled teacher is off on extended leave before her maternity leave) and brand new friends at a brand new(-to-us) school!


Grace and I went to new student orientation on Friday. It was so great that I really had to hold back the tears of joy. Silly I know, but true. Their philosophy and expectations are just what I would hope them to be (in fact they were my own back in my days of education dissertations and classroom set ups).

And the campus, (in CA they do things a bit different, its not just a school building, its several buildings with outdoor "hallways" in between; the lunchroom is actually outside under canopies -total new world here) well the campus is outstanding. When we went into the school library I had to pinch myself. It has more books than the kids' section in library down the street from our old house. The computer lab is loaded with new macs, that they actually intend the children to use. The art room is stocked with all kinds of medium, papers, supplies, lots of room to work, natural light, and a wonderful & fun teacher. (Think back to last year's art room with a cranky art teacher, a small, dark room, and only crayons and pencils to use). There's a science lab with lots of exciting things, including two chinchillas! I really won't bore you by telling you all of the other details, but I am excited!

I know there is more to education than just supplies, facilities, and orderliness; but the feel of the school is what I love the most. Each child was taken to school today by at least one parent (many kids were there with both parents). Little siblings were in tow. Families greeted each other. Everyone was friendly. No one was crying. Everyone knew where to go, what to do, and it was so fun! Grace saw a couple friends from church, that helped her find her confidence and her groove was on. The teachers were welcoming everyone. There was a designated place for backpacks, supplies, etc. The community is completely supportive of the school.

I've struggled with finding quality education for Grace for years. I think we hit the jackpot this year. I'm looking forward to the ride.

9 comments:

Alicia said...

Love, love the apple outfit. I miss eating lunch outside, but I suppose we can do it in AZ all winter long. Enjoy this year of CA...I must admit I'm jealous.

H. said...

I am SOOOO happy for you!! After having to deal with ghetto situations before, I can completely understand the desire to cry with joy at Grace's new opportunities!! Here's to you both! (There is defintely no equality of public education in our world, is there?)

Meredith said...

Yeah!! That is so very exciting! It's a comfort for a parent to know how great a school is and you have a trained eye for these things. I hope her school year is spectacular.

Angelavon said...

yay! that is so great!

Kev and Chels said...

That's so great! Woohoo! I always wanted to be in a school with outdoor hallways!

GG/MOM/geny said...

Dear Gracie..I love your new school clothes and first day at school "Happy Face." In fact, you are your most beautiful when you are with a "happy face." You must send me a note and your favorite picture of you on first day of school..Much love, your-grits-by-the-sea-shore-just a-wee-bit-from-Goose-Creek.GG/MOM/geny

Seriously... said...

I have struggled to find good education too....that's why we're moving this week. The district / school we're moving to is awesome, Brady is having a great time and I really feel good about the school. I love that the "outdoor hallways" are new to you....i remember thinking how strange the one-building schools were in ohio. Glad you're loving the school, i think it makes all the difference!

Gina said...

Your description made it sound so fabulous, now I want to go myself! Congrats!

Michelle & Jesse said...

I'm so happy for you guys. I know school was always a stressful situation for you guys in St. Louis. Grace's "campus" sounds like 90210!