"Meredith Phillips, an associate professor of public policy and sociology at the University of California, Los Angeles, used survey data to show that affluent children spend 1,300 more hours than low-income children before age 6 in places other than their homes, their day care centers, or schools (anywhere from museums to shopping malls). By the time high-income children start school, they have spent about 400 hours more than poor children in literacy activities, she found."
I had been fretting about achievement gaps, mostly as the gaps relate to race, and then I decided not to worry about it. I will be active, proactive, positive and encouraging. I am aware of reality, but I do not want to put burdens on my kids and make them think odds are against them.
The above italicized statement was part of a researches study on achievement gaps. We have exposed our kids to many things and given them a broad community experience. They have a point of reference for many things. I realize that their frame of reference at these ages can only be as broad as what/who I ( and Mr A ) am exposed to. Now I am evaluating what I have knowledge of and access to and things I do not have experience or knowledge of and what expanding I can do.
The dean of curriculum at TR's school called to discuss starting the school year. I am excited. I was happy to get an informational call. The school is small enough to allow a live person. The local school district regularly calls me with recorded messages, so a real person is nice change from robocalls. I have never believed a small student-teacher ratio was necessary if kids are there to learn, but I am pretty exited about how small the core classes will be.
TR is very social, so I am not sure how she will feel about a small class, but her class will be larger for lunch, art, music, religion and p.e. I think the way the program is organized will work well for her. I envision her doing round offs, press hand stands and cart wheels in p.e., and us getting calls to tell her to stop.
TR's gymnastics class had 5 girls for nearly a year and now has 6-7 girls. One girl moved and three new girls were placed in her class. The addition of new girls with different ability has made it challenging for the coach and all of the kids. When everyone started together, they developed together. The new kids have to get strong and be taught the skills in a short amount of time, which delays the other girls.
TR's original group did 2 years of Pre-team training in one year. The group was very competive and completed the first level in 6 months. They are on schedule to compete, with the next competition year. The new girls have to learn the same skills, in even shorter time.
I imagine in a classroom, the addition of new students is also disruptive. I have been told of some private schools, who do not fill space when a child leaves mid-year. They do not want to disrupt the class. It seemed harsh, until I witnessed how the addition of a new kid can impact the class.
My mother teaches at public school and kids come and go throughout the year. It makes her job so challenging. There is very little stability and it is usual that as soon as she settles the new kid in, the kid leaves.
Hopefully TR's kindergarten class will remain stable.