Hi Deborah, Thank you so much for taking the time to meet with me. I know it’s not always easy to get to these things.
We talk so much on Classdojo, it’s so nice to see you in person.
I know! Thank you for being so communicative on there. You always answer my questions so fast!
Before we start, I just want to tell you what a great job you and I just adore Jaxon. His witty jokes crack me up. He is very caring and loves to participate.
Yes! He is our jokester at home and keeps us on our toes.
I can absolutely see that! He is also such a great little mathematician too. He catches on to new math concepts quickly and when something is a bit more difficult he perseveres. He is a creative problem solver and I enjoy watching him work and help others in his group.
He’s always loved math. He even helps his older sister with her math.
Oh that’s great!! So he is great in math, Science, and Social Studies, but I wanted to talk about Reading and how he has been doing this year. As you know, we have taken several reading and spelling tests this year. He is improving on his spelling tests, I can tell that you are working with him at home and it’s great.
Oh yes we are! I did want to go over the STAR test and our DIBELs test. I believe these are the ones helped us with while we were remote.
Perfect, let’s go over those results. He did score below benchmark in Phonemic Segmentation- this is where we say a word like “hall” and they tap out the sounds. He has a bit of trouble with putting the sounds in order of each word.
Oh yes, I remember you both working on that while remote.
I also think the one minute timer is tough because anytime he talks or wants to share a story, it is taking away from his time. But, as you know, we are already working on this with our progress monitoring.
Yes! He is our talker. I could see that.
His STAR Early Literacy score was a 39.1 and our goal is 50 and above, so he is showing as a pre-reader. This also partners with our AR levels.
Oh okay. I think I remember you telling us that he is at a 0.5? Is that right?
Yes. Here is how that AR umber works; The “0” is for kindergarten and the “5” is for the 5th month into Kindergarten. So right now, he is considered about a year behind. However, first grade is typically where kiddos grow in the reading area so much!
Ahhh, that makes sense.
You know, we are both working on reading and so this will be a primary goal this year. As you know, academic expectations change from KG to Gr1. There is less play and more emphasis on academic learning. This can take time for some children to adjust to and it’s all about building confidence.
I see what you mean. This has been especially hard due to the fact that last year was cut short last year due to the pandemic. Jaxon didn’t have the opportunity to socialize with other children his age, just his older sister and two cousins. We have kept to ourselves pretty much since March.
I know we’ve been working on our reading levels and he’s been using GetEpic for reading at home. How is that going?
Well, my husband and I both work long hours. We are under stress financially these days. Also, my husband’s Mom fell and needed hip surgery, so we have been looking after her. It’s been a challenging time for us, and to be completely honest, we don’t always get to the reading. Although we always make sure we give a lot of physical affection and love, especially @ bedtime. And, even if we don’t read, we try to enjoy some play / TV time that is funny, makes us all have a laugh and reduces stress.
Wow. It seems your family really has a lot going on right now. I am so sorry to hear about your husband’s mother. That’s right. Mental health should be your priority right now. One way or another the academics will come, and what I want to do is make a plan that is manageable and realistic for us given the current circumstances. I have noticed that Jaxon tries to avoid reading at school, which can be common in first graders, but I am working with him on this.
Thank you for understanding. I appreciate it. I can’t imagine how you keep up with your own family while teaching during this challenging time.
It’s definitely an adventure, but we are all in this together and we will continue to meet children where they are at, no matter what. Do you have any questions or concerns you would like to discuss?
Well, at home he has a hard time following directions. Is he the same way in class?
He does have a difficult time following multi-step instructions in class. We typically use 2-3 step instructions and he struggles with this. He also has a tough time with transitions and in first grade we have several transitions a day.
Oh okay, I was worried about that because I have seen this at home. I have a brother with ADHD and Jaxon has a lot of the same personality traits .
Oh, thank you for sharing that. I am not in a place to diagnose, but I can absolutely keep an eye on him in class and continue to keep you updated on his struggles, but also his continued growth.
That would be great! Thank you so much. I appreciate your updates on Class dojo. I feel like I always know what's going on in class.
Oh thank you! I want you to know everything that is happening in here. While we were discussing your concerns and family history, it made me think of executive function. Have you heard of this term?
I have not heard of that. What is it? Do you think it will help him?
Yes, don’t worry. It is somewhat new to me, but I think it could be beneficial. Can I show this quick video that helped me to understand?
Thank you so much. I have never heard of executive function before but that was easy to understand and it does seem like it could be helpful. I will also do some more research.
I’ve also got this easy-to-read Infographic to help. Here, you can take this. I learned a lot about executive function when my son was in first grade., but am still learning. Do you have any questions?
No. The video and Infographic are pretty clear. Wow. Thank you.
I know, it's very interesting. These kiddos deal with so much and everyone handles it differently. Remember, by us partnering this year we will be able to help Jaxon so much.
Thank you so much. I am happy to partner with you this year. You know, we have a lot going on, but I am going to try my best.
All you can do is your best and that is what I am going to do as well. So I will continue to work with Jaxon on his reading and progress monitor him on a weekly basis. I will also work with him on multi-step directions and transitions.
We will work on reading also.
Sounds good. I will continue to update you through dojo, but please do not hesitate to reach out if you have any questions. Thank you so much for meeting with me today.
Yes, I will let you know if I need anything. Thank you so much.