Our report card

One of the things I was looking forward to as a parent was getting to go to parents’ evenings. This was mainly in my mind I would question all the teachers on their close reading of Shakespeare – something that obviously isn’t going to happen in real life. There’s also the feeling that when they’re in school, their failings could in theory be blamed on the teachers (teacher friends – I know it’s not your fault) but while she’s so little any developmental problems she’s having are really going to be our fault… But still, our first parents’ evening – a 15 minute slot with E’s key worker at nursery had me quite excited.

Of course, we did try and think of some questions to ask. Bearing in mind this is the first time we’ve sat down formally with them and they’re discussing her basic development, we came up with the following:

  • Does she really eat carrot and pepper sticks?
  • What are the words to the songs she’s asking us to sing at home – a lion one and a snow one?

Colleagues at work advised me to be led by the nursery, that they would have some reports to show us and we can take their cue from that. This was indeed the case.

We went upstairs with E’s key worker – the deputy manager who is the staff member I’ve warmed to the most since E has been there. She had a thick folder of E’s evidence – little notes that describe a situation and how E acted in each, and how this relates to things they measure on her developmental scale. There were also photos – obviously the first one I opened revealed E to be covered in chocolate as she ate a massive cupcake. I’m so proud.

In short, the evidence revealed E to be a creative child who loves stories and singing, who waits to observe situations with groups of people or children before deciding if she will join in. Classic introvert behaviour. I was pleased by the creative part. She also likes to look after the babies.

It’s been noticeable the last few weeks that she’s suddenly changed – to develop a character and sense of humour. Since she started talking, her development has been really pronounced – like this was the trigger for it all to start. Her potty training hasn’t been as bad as we feared it would be. Her confidence is obvious. And nursery has started to influence her behaviour at home – the things she says and the names and observations she talks about. The session today really seemed to confirm to us that we definitely did make the best decision for her at the time – and that everything’s alright. Now, if I can have another few moments to ask when they crack open the Shakespeare…

*She really does eat carrot and pepper sticks – she’s also eaten all kinds of berries that she doesn’t touch at home, as well as things like passion fruit. The lion song is called Leo the Lion and finally gave us a rendition of it at bedtime this evening. It mainly involves roaring.

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