A Reason to Celebrate

Our young family rejoiced upon hearing that our little Nini ranked third in her class for the first quarter of the school year. This week hasn't exactly been a good one – as my fellow Filipinos would certainly agree – and the news did a lot to boost our spirits.

It was quite unexpected for me, thinking that certain adjustments with how we run things around here might be taking its toll on my daughter. Also, I guess I was constantly worried that my daughter may not be adapting well in school after her episodes during the first weeks of classes.

To our pleasant surprise, she managed to enter the Top 3. You can just imagine our relief! What's even more surprising is that she got higher marks in Mathematics compared to English. Maybe we focused more on studying Math and somehow took English for granted. Reviewing Math lessons with her has often led to frustrations, even arguments. We always thought English was her strong point. Puzzled as we are, we are of course very proud of her achievement.

When I mentioned adjustments earlier, I was talking about our everyday routine. Basically, Nini's classes end at around 3PM, by when her dad picks her up and takes her to his office (located near the school) where she waits until he gets off at 5PM. The two of them get home before 6PM, which does not give us a lot of time left to review her lessons.

We can't really jump at homework at once when she arrives because she needs rest, I have dinner to prepare, a dog to feed, and there are dishes to put away. As much as I want to be thorough in reviewing each day's lessons with her, I do not want to stress her out too much. Keeping her up late is out of the question as well. I just want her to enjoy learning and be aware that we have confidence in her.

Because of the challenging set-up, I make it a point to constantly remind my daughter to:

1. Pay close attention to her teachers.
2. Write legibly when copying her assignments.
3. Have a clear recollection of which subjects she's supposed to be doing homework on at the end of each day.
4. Remind her Papa of things she might need to buy for the next day such as with school projects or artworks.
5. Try doing some of her homework while waiting for her Papa in the office.

And because Nini struggles a bit with numbers, I also told my husband to practice simple addition and subtraction problems with her during the 30-minute commute to school. For a five-year-old, these are pretty big responsibilities. But I'm pleased with how Nini seems to be managing her "academic affairs." She is able to enumerate her assignments, in detail, when I ask her about homework. I also noticed that her handwriting continues to improve. Her report card says it all.

Nini is turning 6 next month and I am just glad to know that she's not being left behind by her classmates in first grade. My husband recently quit his job so that means he would be able to take Nini home much earlier than before. That should give Nini plenty of time to study, play, and maybe even take a short nap in the afternoons.

I remember the eagerness in her eyes when she told me that she made it to the Top 3. I was so relieved and exhilarated. She then tells me that she wishes to top her class. I told her that it would be nice but that we love her just the same, whether or not she makes it to the honor roll. What matters is that she just gives it her best, keeps on praying, and is always a good girl.


Anonymous said...

Oh Nini congratulations! And congratulations to you too Naomi and Gan for being awesome parents. :)

Honestly, I can't wait to see Holly in school! Whenever I take a taxi to visit the hospital for her check-ups, I always stare at the school nearby (St. Mary's something) and wonder how she would do if she started going to school. Would she cry and hide like how Nini did before? Would she beat all of her classmates with her test scores? Or would she be like her lovely Mama who ran after her boy classmates like a cheetah and pulverized them until the bell rang? :P

Naomi said...

uh, we're actually still working on 'awesome' but thanks a lot Steffi! :)

I'm so excited for Holly, too! Oh, boy, I sure hope she doesn't beat up any of her poor boy classmates. Haha. BUT. she's definitely gonna be a heartbreaker ;)

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