First report cards finished, conferences finished.
Few surprises here in grades 5/6 Social Studies.
If you don't read to prepare for class, it is difficult to excel in social studies. If you are a sweet, nice kid who works hard, it is easy to get "A"s through 4th grade, but it gets increasingly more challenging to get by when we are asking for and evaluating critical thinking. That being said... a "B" is not a failure, contrary to what some parents in our little part of the world believe.
No, you can't do extra credit at the last minute to bring your A up to an A+
The A+ is reserved for kids who have been excelling all along.
If you got a "C" in my class, you had to try not to do well. I gave so many opportunities to "show what you know."
Conferences: The time when you realize "apples don't fall far from trees."
To be fair, I'd hate to be judged as a person by my children's performance since I DO beg plead and threaten and still they put forth less effort than I like, Or I would put forth.
Of course I get the serious expressionless stare from the parents who I have tell "I hope your child can relax a bit as the year goes on and enjoy class more."
And the hyper vigilant note taker parent who wants to know why the class notes are not written in complete paragraphs to help explain all the concepts to the students.. (umm, cause that is the textbook), and my child studied for 4 hours a day for 2 weeks for your test but only got a 98% on the test... and she is feeling stressed out by 5th grade .. (really, how surprising ?)
But mostly there are good trees which have deposited great apples. I am really enjoying my students this year.
The analogy that comes to mind is how terrific my hair always turns out the day before I plan on getting a haircut. As I hopefully prepare after the holidays for my full on job search to become an administrator with my shiny new certificate, I have to remember that in June these particular students leave me anyway.
These could be my last official conferences as a teacher... how scary/exciting !!