Thursday, March 1, 2007


Today I picked up Shantal from school because it was raining. Since Spencer gets out so early on Thursdays (10:45am....NO JOKE!), I left Emma and Ian with him while I ran to get Hannah from Kindergarten and then on to get Shantal. I got there about 10 minutes early so decided to walk in and get her. I decided to take the time and ask Shantal's teacher how things were going. She said that Shantal is really struggling with the German. And with that, she is wondering if it would not be better if Shantal moved to the 2nd grade. I mentioned to her that Gardner and I have been having some of the same thoughts but were conflicted about what was really best for Shantal. Frau Lurz (Shantal's Teacher) said that parent teacher conferences are in three weeks and she would like to see how Shantal does within the next three weeks and then we can all discuss it in further detail. She has so many teachers spending one on one time with Shantal and wants to see where that goes and how well Shantal takes to it.

Well, Shantal heard this and started freaking out. She does NOT want to move to the 2nd class. This is the same girl who did not want to be in the 3rd class when we moved into our house. She has a friend in her class who she really wants to stay with. I need to explain to her that there is only one more year and then they will all move onto different schools anyway. I told Shantal that we all just want to do what is best for her. And her strong reply was, "the only good thing for me is to move back to America!"

The thing is, and I know I have said it before, school here in Germany is way ahead of school in America. Spencer has already learned the math here in Germany that Shantal still does not know. Multiplication and Division. If she moved back, she would have time to still learn those things that she does not know and has not had the chance to learn. It would give her an extra year to work on her writing skills, which cursive is a must here in Germany. And she has been fighting to actually write that way because she is not as fast as everyone else in her class. (meaning, she is not doing it even though she is supposed to.) Plus some of the letters are written differently here in Germany than in America.

Elementary School only goes until 4th grade here, so it is important for us to make the best decision for her, even if she does not agree with us. Sometimes it is so hard to be a parent. I do feel for her, but I wish she could trust us enough to know we are trying to help and protect her.

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March 2007