School?!

Back before Alex, I didn’t really believe people when they said that kids grow up so fast. Now I do.

In just a couple of weeks, Alex is starting Junior Kindergarten.  Yes, I’m quite emotional about this big step!

Don’t get me wrong. I’m very excited for him. I’m excited that Alex will meet some new friends, learn new things, become more independent…  but…

Alex’s speech is something that is of concern to us. Right now, Alex is unable to say his name – something we are supposed to have him able to do before JK.  It comes out more like “Ali Robi”.  (note to people choosing kids names – make sure it is easy to pronounce!) We are working on the sounds, but its going slowly.   He is still in his SmallTalk, and we work on various sounds and word endings all the time, but like everything with Alex – it will all come when he’s ready.  That being said, we have really seen a real development in Alex’s sentences – much longer, more complex, and even more clear. I’m sure his speech will improve quite a bit once he is around more of his peers.

Alex is excited about school. He told me this week that he wants to take the bus! It picks up the neighbourhood kids just down the street.  I was hoping to drive him – but I think the bus will be good for him – so long as he can find his classroom after he gets off the bus…

Alex will be attending Junior Kindergarten, every other day, at a school which has a set-up called “Balanced School Day”. With a Balanced School Day, the day is split up into thirds with no main lunch break, rather two nutrition breaks.  It is also a peanut free school and there is boomerang lunch – everything you bring must go back with you – no garbage allowed. As you can imagine, that leads to all sorts of things we need to consider: lunch containers, smaller portion sizes, creativity with the food options, teaching Alex what he’s allowed to eat at each break…

So, to deal with this concern, we have purchased the “Balanced Day Lunchbag” – the hockey print of course. Also we have also picked up some special containers that have “flip” closures to make it easier for little fingers to open and close.  It’s also been suggested to me to send one thing in a baggie so that Alex an put any “messy” garbage like pudding containers in there – last thing I want to see at the end of the day is pudding all over his bag! I’m also going to be researching balanced day break meal ideas – you can follow me on Pinterest if you are interested in  them too.

I’ve also been getting his school wardrobe ready. We just need to get him some running shoes and rubber boots and we will be set for a while.  And we need a backpack – I’m thinking Spiderman.

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7 responses

  1. I feel for you with the speech. Leah says her name as “Eeah” and I’m pretty sure she has never actually said her last name. Does Alex qualify for additional speech therapy through your school board? (Leah will be on the waiting list for both speech and occupational therapy once school begins — in addition to doing a twice per week for 10 weeks intensive therapy block through the Speech and Stuttering Institute.)

    While I was really apprehensive about school earlier, I’ve decided that it is what it is and I’m not going to get hung up on what Leah can and can’t do. The school will be making accommodations for her and so I’m more concerned that she’s excited about starting JK.

  2. It sure is tough to see our little boys growing up way faster than we’d like! I agree– Adam is ready for JK and I am so glad that he is so excited about it, too. Adam also will be doing every other day (M, W & F), full days, taking the bus. I know there will be lots of big kids swooning over him to help him get to his class. His school also does the Balanced Day with two “lunches”. I have a Planetbox for Adam which is totally package-free and bento style. They give lots of ideas of how to vary up the lunches as well.

  3. Gettong ready for full-day school is so much different than the prep for half-day. I think D is a bit disappointed that he won’t be packing a lunch or taking the bus like Adam! We simply need to send along one healthy snack so I won’t bother with a special lunch bag. We just did shoe shopping for D…an inside pair and an outside pair! I’m sad that I’ll miss his first day, having to be at school myself. Oh well! I’m sure Alex will thrive at school. I know what you mean when you say that progress happens on Alex’s terms. That is SO Daniel!

  4. Wow… reading both your post and the comments is a little surreal to me. I’m a little nervous that I will be a complete and utter mess next year when we face kindergarten. (And this reminds me I am overdue on a similar post…) Alex is going to do so well at school… I just know it! And don’t forget, you are allowed a good cry too. Hugs.

  5. Wow, big day coming up! I know Alex will rise to the occasion. I think the learning that takes place at school is so rapid. I bet you’ll see huge improvements in Alex’s language pretty quickly … although as you say, on his own terms 🙂 Good luck!!!

  6. Balanced School Day sounds like a really interesting concept! He is going to do great, although I completely understand the nerves! And I’m laughing at the “give your kid an easy name” thing. Rory still can’t say r’s so her name comes out “Wowee” and she always spells it for people. 😉

  7. I can’t believe the kids are going to start in a few weeks!!! Make sure Alex’s backpack is big enough to hold his lunch bag and a few other things. When I taught JK there were too many tiny backpacks and there would be no room to send home notes and crafts once the lunch bag was inside 🙂 Alex will be fine on the bus and the school should have a system set up to get the JKs to their classroom. As I give this advice, I’ll be worrying about the same thing with Xander!

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