Amaya Rain

Wife. Mother. Crazy woman.

Kickin’ butt, takin’ names.

So. My daughter’s class in school is a disciplinarian’s nightmare. No, they aren’t bringing weapons to school or trying to beat each other up or anything, but still. They’re doing typical kid things, but those kid things are being done by most of the class, and all day, every day. The teacher, who used to be one of the strictest teachers in the school, just lets them run roughshod over her. And then if there’s a substitute?

This is how the severity of the issue came to my attention. Munchkin calls me last week and says, “please come get me. I have a headache and I’m really really dizzy.” So, I bring her home, make her chew an Advil (because she suddenly can’t swallow a pill, and I’m out of liquid pain relievers), and send her to bed. THEN I find out that she’s not really sick, she’s sick and tired of the other kids in class, and she’s not going to take it anymore.


After I calmed down, we had a long talk. I’ve been blowing her off all year about this, telling her that kids are kids, and she just needs to learn how to deal with other people’s behavior because life just isn’t easy, that if it’s that bad she needs to talk to the teacher, etc., etc. So of course, she finally stopped telling me how bad it was. My friend, M, had been consistently speaking with the teacher about the same issue, and I just let her without jumping in myself. Yeah, well, I changed that today.

The principal was so full of it. She claimed that she was completely unaware that there was a discipline problem in the class, that was the first time it’s been brought to her attention, etc. These kids have all been together for years, and they’ve always been a discipline problem, woman. Have you noticed that the only kids who stay are the worst ones? That all your good students in that class end up leaving (M is pulling her daughter out for next year to go to a school about 30-40 minutes away, about 1/4 of the class isn’t coming back next year)? Oh wait, it wouldn’t have to do with the fact that MOST of the kids who are the worst in class just happen to be the children of large contributors to the church who sponsors the school???? Oh yeah, that’s it.

So then while I’m there, we call Munchkin in so that she can tell the principal HER view of what’s happening in the classroom. Turns out, first thing the principal asks her is about a fight at recess. What? Well, apparently, this girl in class who is a really bossy, ugly, mean, nasty person, started saying bad things about Munchkin’s friend (M’s daughter). Munchkin finally, after over a year of dealing with her with nothing but love and tolerance – at least to her face – she says, “You know, we all try to be your friend, but I just can’t take it anymore. I don’t want to be your friend if you’re going to act like this. You’re wrong for being mean to [A], and you know, you don’t show anyone compassion, ever, and it’s going to just bite you one day, because no one is going to end up with any compassion for you if you keep acting like that.” Her friend called her this afternoon to tell her “thank you” for sticking up for her – especially since us calling her to the office was ill-timed… the class thought she was being sent to the principal’s office for saying it.

So, my daughter tells me last week that she’s been considering homeschooling again. Last time, first grade, it kinda sucked. I didn’t know what I was doing. I was teaching her with a goal of her getting back into a regular school the next year in a different state. I was busy trying to fill school requirements, keeping her busy, but not getting her too far advanced because the school, no matter her test scores, were not going to allow her to skip a grade, and I didn’t want her to be miserable relearning everything we’d already learned.

She ended up being prepared for second grade – very well prepared, actually – but she wasn’t happy, and neither was I. It’s been the running joke that if she does something wrong, as a punishment I’ll take her out of school and homeschool her. Then she laughs, yells oh no!, and then we move along.

And now she’s asking to be homeschooled.

So, we’re looking at doing a trial run for about a month during the summer, just to see if we can stick to it. We’re both fine with this, and getting rather excited.

Well, my mother is having a hissy fit. She had the nerve, when I mentioned the homeschooling, to shake her head over and over and over and flat out say, “oh no, not going to happen, you are NOT going to pull that child out of school.” So, I did what any logical person would do. I told her that for the most part, it was Munchkin’s decision, but it was something that would be decided between me, her and her dad. Period. It was OUR decision. She was all pissy about that.

So, Munchkin tells me this evening that when her and her grandma went for a drive this afternoon, my mother was telling her how she couldn’t homeschool, that she needed to stay at her regular school no matter what, because it would get better, but even if it didn’t, it was better that homeschooling with me. She kept bringing up 1st grade over and over, and telling her that if she thought we didn’t have time for things last time (which wasn’t the issue, but I digress), that I certainly wouldn’t have time with the twins being here.

Oh really? I’m very upset about that conversation… and it explains why, when I told my mother this evening (AFTER this ride happened) that she needed to not try to talk Munchkin out of homeschooling, that she needed to make her own decision about it, my mother gave me this “oh I’d never do that” kind of look.

When I asked Munchkin what she told her, she said, “I told her that you had made me a commitment and that you wouldn’t go back on your word that this time would be different if it’s what we decided to do.”

I love my girl. She’s one amazing little person.


May 16, 2007 - Posted by | Daily Life, Other People's Children, Parenting, School


  1. Your daughter seems quite mature for her age. Good for her. Personally, I wouldn’t lose too much sleep over whether to homeschool her. I’m not sure what grade she is in now, but I’m of the opinion that kids should choose the path which allows them the most freedom or happiness right up until college…although this is the antithesis of what I’ve been told my entire childhood.

    You only get one, after all.

    I have friends from top tier colleges who were homeschooled all their life. It’s not that big of a deal. Assuming you live in the United States, standardized testing is used too much anyway.

    Comment by malchus | May 18, 2007

  2. She’s 9, and about to go to 4th grade. She’s extremely bright and mature for her age, but school has knocked down that brightness a level. Hopefully we can get it back up again! She didn’t dumb herself down to her class level (she’s still the highest achiever in the class) but she hasn’t pushed herself beyond anything that the teacher tells her to do, either. The teacher was great about working with her in the beginning, but that slacked off as soon as the discipline problems in the class got worse.

    Comment by amayarain | May 24, 2007

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