Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Blondechick15 Adjusts to the Idea

So we visited her new school yesterday.

I was glad that I had clued in the principal to the fact that she wasn't exactly rejoicing over her acceptance. He spent nearly two hours with us, selling Blondechick on the school the whole time. And by the time we left, she was reluctantly willing to admit that it sounded pretty good.

One of her first questions was whether she'd get her own locker. (She was going to have to share one at the big school.) Yes, she would. And it got better from there!

He described various kinds of hands-on, project-centered learning rather than test- and textbook-centered learning, including getting out of the school and into nature, museums, camps and other field trips. We saw a "digital documentary" that a teacher put together to introduce a unit study on labor struggles in the early 20th century. The topic was a mystery to the students, and this video was one of several "puzzle pieces" they were given. We saw another that a student had created as a final project to illustrate her knowledge of the civil rights movement, with her own selection of images, music and poetry and a narration written and voiced over by the student.

We met teachers--all personable and interesting--who we knew, from the principal, were supremely well-qualified; five of the ten on staff are former Teachers of the Year. We met students who were volunteering their time setting up a classroom. They were friendly and immediately engaging. ("I wanted to stay and help them," BC told me later.) We met a humorous black boy who will be in choir with BC, which got her more excited about the mixed sophomore choir than she's been about the Women's Chorale she would have been in at the big school.

We saw brand-new chemistry desks and stools and brand-new risers for the choir. Blondechick was thrilled to see a cartful of Mac iBooks that were for student use, and we were impressed by the ratio of one laptop for every two students.

The principal described the school as a family, small enough that everyone knows each other and even gets to know each other's families. This really appealed to Blondechick, she told me later; it reminded us both of our theater group. He also described a perk for students who had no makeup work due--early release on Wednesdays--which captured BC's imagination quickly: Wait till my friends hear this! The principal encouraged her to take both Honors English and Honors History, since they teach them in such an interrelated fashion--and she agreed readily, to my surprise.

So maybe--just maybe--this is not going to be SO bad, Blondechick is thinking.

And Mom and Dad are rejoicing (quietly, to ourselves, or course) because, darn it, this is even better than we thought!

Either we lucked out, or once again God knew what He was doing....

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us,
to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations,
for ever and ever! Amen.
(Ephesians 3:20-21)

I only wish that Bantam17 could go there too! But I am sure God knows what He is doing in B17's life too.


Summer said...

Oh I'm so glad to hear the great news. It sounds like that school is going to be a great fit. Will continue to pray for BC and Bantam 17.

Love you all!

Dani said...

Wow. Would I love to have a school like that available to my children someday! I'm so glad it is all working out for your family.

Islandsparrow said...

It sounds fantastic!

Amy @ Experience Imagination said...

Wait, you're telling me God knows what He's doing? All the time?? Really???


I'm glad the new school is as good (even better) than you were expecting.