Friday, February 19, 2016


I was pretty worried about how the beginning of this year would go, especially for Bug. After three years at the same preschool, he would be starting kindergarden at a new school. After three years in the same apartment - the only place he really remembered living - we'd be moving. The move was scheduled for 2 weeks after school started.

Last year, Valerie's second year at the elementary school, was very hard for her. She struggled with the food, with rude boys in her class, with increased expectations for what she should be able to produce (especially writing was a big challenge for her). She was throwing up at school from anxiety. We started packing a lunch for her and working on Spanish at home. Eventually things got better.

This year has been incredibly smooth in comparison. Val is so happy to have her little brother at school with her, and having her there to explain things to him has helped him tremendously as well. The school itself has settled into a good rhythm after some major administrative upheavals last year (which I think contributed to Val's anxieties at the time - there was just a lot of underlying tension in the air). Gabe adores his classroom teacher, and Val is thrilled with new classes like Laboratorio (science).

After we moved to the new place, our walk to school changed dramatically and I was worried that the kids would complain a lot, get tired, need to use the bathroom mid-route - but it has been fine. They play "obstacle course" through the apartment complex, and then I Spy all the way to school. Or we talk about different interesting things - what are angels, where do babies come from, etc. :-) The walk to school has evolved a new ritual.

Last year Val's Spanish improved dramatically, as did her drawing skills. I was blown away by the work she started to bring home. It's really interesting to me to hear the differences between the two kids as their bilingualism develops. Val speaks Spanish much more correctly than G, but he is much more inclined to code-switch fluidly.

So I'm breathing a small sigh of relief, for now.

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