Friday, September 4, 2015

The transition to high school..

Jordan's first few couple weeks have passed by and it seems like a pretty easy transition, so far.  Here are a few thoughts...

1.  After 8 years of homeschooling, the whole business of getting a kiddo off to school in the morning feels absolutely foreign to me.  As luck would have it, Jordan is actually very easy to wake and get moving.  He makes his own breakfast and so forth.  All I have to do is roll out of bed, grab my coffee and drive him one whole mile to school.

2.  Rule Change.

     a. Kids can bring cell phones to class.  Hell, they can even use them.  Each teacher has their own rule about phones.  Yes, you can play music during a test. (!)  Yes, you can answer that text, if it is really important.  (!!)  Yes, you can play games on your device if your work is done. (!!!)

     b.  Assignments can be turned in up to a week past due date, for full credit.  Even that is negotiable.

     c.  Poor clothing choices are the norm. (Do these parents ever look at their children before they walk out the door???)

     d.  Students are shockingly rude to their teachers.  Openly giving the finger, refusing to remove an earbud while the teacher is conducting the lesson...  w. o. w.  Everything I hate about the atmosphere of public high schools.

3.  Helicopter parents rejoice!!  The parent portal is hands-down awesome.  I can log on and see Jordan's schedule, see his attendance and know if he was tardy to any class, view his past, current and upcoming assignments and see his grades on everything and know immediately if anything is missing.  I try not to be 'that' parent, but so far it has come in handy when I logged in yesterday for my weekly-lookover and saw that he had a missing assignment from last week.  I texted him immediately.  He was in history, so naturally he texted me back.  I got on to him for missing the assignment AND for texting me back.   He will be spending Labor Day weekend finishing that assignment. :/  I can also log into to his lunch account and see his purchase history.  He's been buying an extra cookie almost every day.

4.  Jordan is experiencing what classroom culture is really like.  Students still pass rude notes.  Now they apparently also video you with their phones while snickering with their friends.  Some kids are nice.  Some are assholes.

5.  Yes, the cafeteria burrito bar is really that bad.

6.  Student assemblies are fun.  And loud.

7.  Bell schedules take some getting used to.

8.  Yes.  Homework before screen time.  Always.  And I know when you have homework.  (awesome!!)

I try to separate my feelings/memories of high school from what he is currently experiencing.  His experience is unique to him.  He is stronger in many ways than I ever was to peer criticism and the desire to fit in.  He confronts those who pester him.  He has made acquaintances, but not necessarily friends.  He often eats lunch alone, but also with a purpose - he has found a quiet corner that he likes to sit at and do his homework so he doesn't have to do it at home.  What parent would complain about that?  I just hope he finds his tribe soon.  It will help when clubs start up...