Wednesday, September 10, 2008

First Day of School

Here are pictures of them heading out the door this cool, foggy morning.

Today was the first day of school and everything went well. During a parents meeting Tuesday night, (the night before school started...waited a little late didn't they?) we discovered they had Brooklyn, Faith and Liberty in the same grade. First grade. Faith and Liberty probably need to start in the first grade with the opportunity to work through first and second grade in the same year. Which is what we are trying to do. But Brooklyn absolutely will not go in the first grade. So we kept her out today as we made a trip back to the school later this morning with her language teacher who is a retired teacher of 33 years at the same school to discuss this matter with the school officials. I tell you what, messing with my kids is a sure enough way to see the wildcat in me. I take after my Grandma when it comes to this. My family knows what I'm talking about when I say that. My sweet girl, who is much taller than the average 9 yr. old here in Portugal, will not sit in a class with 6 and 7 yr olds. She'd barely fit in the chair!! Why would they do that to a child?!

Anyway, after a meeting with officials and the girls language teacher putting her neck on the line saying she would be responsible for her they agreed Brooklyn needed to be put in the third grade provided she could pass a test that she will take tomorrow morning. So those of you praying, please keep praying. Brooklyn was very nervous this morning as we sat in a very small, crowded meeting room with three Portuguese people talking very rapidly around her and about her. She was addressed directly from the school officials and she understood everything that was asked of her, but she was very shy in responding. She doesn't like all this attention.

Onto another thought before I get fired up again. After the parents meeting Tues. night we all went to the classes where our kids would be so that we could get specific instructions from the individual teachers. The first grade classroom didn't have a single thing on the wall. Not even the letters of the alphabet. The bookshelves were empty and there were three potted plants in various places. Nothing that indicated school started in the morning. Now this is a first for us, public education, but don't teachers in the States start decorating their classrooms weeks in advance? And get this, this morning when I dropped off Faith and Lib we arrived about 10 minutes before school started and we went straight to their room so I could introduce them to Professora Fatima. But the class was empty so we waited outside the school for her arrival. School starts at 9:00 and she showed up about 9:05. Unbelievable!! And she wasn't carrying anything in her hand but her purse! ----When will she decorate the room?----Can you tell this bothers me...maybe I need to volunteer? Be her "room mom". Do they still have those? I loved room moms when I was in school. They were the coolest moms who always brought cupcakes and threw the best classroom parties. That's what I want to be. "The Cool American Mom" who barely speaks Portuguese. Kids love it when I try to talk and mess up. They think I'm hilarious....wait a kids probably won't think it hilarious, huh. Embarrassing is a much better word. Maybe I need to rethink this.


Anonymous said...

No, don't re-think it. I think that it is a fabulous idea for you to be the room Mom. It will be great! Since the girls are not teens yet it is okay, you are still cool at this point. I can't wait to follow this blog. I wish I could come to visit before the school year is over. Nina, just promise me one thing...promise me you won't SNORT!
Mrs. Lora

Anonymous said...

What can I say.... I have some beautiful grand-daughters! The pictures are so good and Brooklyn looks so grown-up.
Do they have room moms? If so I think you need to go for it. Keep your cool and remember your no longer in Alabama.
Love Mom

Anonymous said...

I guess you have to ask yourself if you want your girls in American school or Portuguese school. It's not going to be the same, because you are in a completely different culture. I would advise you to just go along for the ride. Who knows, you might learn something! :)

Jungle Mom said...

Is it public or private? Down here , public schools have no funds for decorating and teachers don't make enough to do much on their own.

Anonymous said...

If schools in Portugal are similar to those in Equador, there just isn't money to decorate. Our missionaries visiting the school actually put swatches/scraps of material on the walls of the classroom just to have something colorful in the room. It also helped the younger children learn their colors.

With your homemaking skills you will make a great room mother. If the teachers don't know what that is, introduce them to the wonderful idea. From all your photos it seems the local people enjoy any kind of a party!

Brooklyn has lots of people praying for her. Last night our bible study group spread the word about her challenge, so tell her all the prayers will be answered. She is a delightful young lady, and as God provided Moses the abilities needed, He will provide for Brooklyn too. Share that thought with her.



Tori said...

Oh wow girl, I'm nervous for your kids just reading this. If it's any consolation, Croatian class rooms basically look the same. Hey do your girls have to wear house shoes in the school? Here in Croatia they can't wear regular shoes instead they have to have a pair of house shoes there and they are only allowed to wear those while in school.
Anyhow, they don't decorate here either. It's more like "business as usual".

I'm sure things will pan out and the girls will settle in and everything will be great.

I think you would be an awesome room-mom but knowing Europeans, I don't know if Mrs. Fatima (is that her real name?) would go for it.

Anyhow, happy PTA!

Butler said...

I know when you was at church the kids loved you,Dillon always thought you was very funny& cool.I think its a great plan for you.I was one when mine was in school, I loved it.And I also think you need to decorate that room,the kids will think your even cooler than that you care for them that much. That is if the whats her name don't care.

Let us know what you do,,,
love Becka

The Webbs said...

Yes, there is still the "ROOM MOM" because I'm it for this year! I have been room mom or helping since Dylan has been in school. You would love it and the kids would love it too!!! I know you would be great and I completely understand about sticking up for your children. If you don't, who will??? You're their voice in Portugal and I think you should continue being the great mother that I know you are! I love you!