School's Out

  1. Today is the last day of school for my girls. Today is their last day of Fifth Grade. Next year my 3 little girls move on to middle school...not sure *I'm* ready for the trauma of them moving up. All that peer pressure. Any advice from you moms & dads who have kids moving into those adolescent years?

    I am very grateful that my girls have each other and are not alone as they go to middle school. Although I have always instructed them to walk away from any nasty encounters, tell the teacher, tell mom, use words, all that stuff...I have also told them that if it comes down to a fight (do all to avoid it!), I had better not hear that one of them was involved in a fight--it had better be that the THREE of them were in it. There are advantages to multiple births .

    [ June 07, 2001: Message edited by: Zee_RN ]
  2. 15 Comments

  3. by   night owl
    Zee, my daughter is having her "moving up" ceremony on the 13th and will be entering the seventh grade in Sept. I'm anxious to hear some responses also! I've tried to teach her to walk away from physical confrontation, communicate, communicate communicate with myself and her Dad about peer pressure with drugs, sex etc. Always stand up for what you believe in, trust your gut feelings because they are always right, so forth and so on. It's when they are out with friends that the true test will come. But you know the best teacher is experience and in order to learn anything they must experience it first. Hopefully all of the teachings that we've tried to instill in her will pay off, but only time will tell...No matter how hard we have tried, we as parents will always worry about them anyway. It's only human nature.

  4. by   lpnandloveit1
    my two middle children were in the same grade level in school. My son has learning disabilities and was a year older than my daughter. I remember looking out the window at the bus stop and seeing my daughter step off the bus, drop her bookbag and start wailing on the boy who got off at the same stop. he was about 6 inches taller and 50 lbs heavier than her. My son walked passed her and was calmly walking into the house as I ran out to restrain my daughter. Of course I made her go the boys house and appologize to the young man and his mom as she had bloodied his nose. When I asked what started the fight she said"he called Brad a dummy" I said "He told you Brad was a dummy?" no she said it to Brad, weel why did you fight with him "Well we have an agreament if someone talks about me he has to fight them and if someone talks about him I have to fight." needless to say we had the talk.........again and I grounded them both for a week her for fighting and him for letting her. This was all on the second day of middle shcool. By the way I have 4 kids 3 out of high school and 1 in second grade I get to do it all over again.
  5. by   night owl
    lpnandloveit1, 3 kids out of high school and one in second grade? And you'll get to do it all over again??? sigh! Oh the joys of parenthood...I will definately keep YOU in my prayers!
  6. by   Janet Barclay
    Hi LPN,
    Did you smile secretly as you were having the "talk"?
  7. by   lpnandloveit1
    night owl and janet. My kids are 24 20 18 and 9. This is more fun than it sounds. It's not nearly as hard to find a sitter if I need one. Did I smile when I gave "the talk"? no..... straight face stern voice concern in my eyes. When I told my mom about it over coffee the next day we "high fived" screamed ALLLLL RIGHT and giggled like school the way if you ever want to embarress a 15 year old tell him you are pregnant.
  8. by   st4304

    My middle daughter just finished 8th grade and the last 2 years of middle school have been the hardest years of my life!!! The kid went from a straight "A" student in 6th grade to a "D" student in 7th grade. Why? BOYS!!! It was all she could think about. Sitting in class, instead of learning, she was flipping her hair, freshening up her lip gloss, re-glittering her cheekbones, readjusting her bra straps, etc. I soon was on a first name basis with her guidance counselor who kept telling me that her priorities at that time were not school, but her blossoming POWER OVER THE OPPOSITE SEX! He also kept reassuring me that she would soon return to her old self. This year was much better with her grades returning to A's, but now I have a different problem. She believes she is in love. The two of them are on the phone all of the time (in fact he has called twice while I type this.)

    Despite all of this, I still trust her. She is a good kid and knows right from wrong. Just have faith in your girls, YOU RAISED THEM RIGHT! My best piece of advise is to keep your sense of humor! And remember -- Hormones! Hormones! Hormones!!!

    Your friend in teenage hell,

  9. by   night owl
    The hormones are truely flying high at this stage of the game!!! I went thru it with my son. GIRLS,GIRLS,GIRLS!!! Now I suppose although I'd rather not, I'll have to go thru it with my daughter. AHHH yes...the lip gloss, the hair...She's started that already! The right clothes, shoes...It makes me alittle nervous, but then I think back, WAAAAAYYYYY back when I was in middle school and it all comes back to me...We used to have kissing contests to see how long you could kiss a boy. Now a days it's a contest to see how many boys you can "nail" before you get to graduate! My how times have changed...My nails are getting shorter and shorter.................................
  10. by   Zee_RN
    AAAHHHH Sherri! You're scaring me to death!!! My girls are two identical and one fraternal. For some reason, one of my identical girls is developing faster than her identical sister. She is already "adjusting bra straps" and is fascinated with make-up (at 11 years old!!). Oooh, I can really see her becoming infatuated with that 'power over the opposite sex' idea.

    But, you are also right about keeping a sense of humor. And a constant dialogue with my girls. We have talked about EVERYTHING. (My 2 favorite questions I got from them when we had "the talk": [1] "do you have to MOVE?" and [2] "does he have to be on top?") Hee-hee.

    They know about the dangers of drugs & alcohol (I tell them my ICU horror stories). They know about sex (see above referenced questions ). They know about boys. They know about violence directed toward women. Sometimes I think I've shared too much with them. On the plus side, though, so far they feel free in talking with me about anything.

    And my husband just got his Black Belt in Shotokan Karate...I want every boy who comes in this house to be aware of that fact.
  11. by   prmenrs
    lpnandloveit1: all I have to do to embarrass my teenager is have a pulse!
  12. by   hoolahan
    OMG! Thank you for this post Zee! I know I'm not alone, but one of the hardest things about middle school is that you are not on the "inside" as much as elem school. At my kids' middle school, they rely totally on the kids to "have responsibility" to tell me when things are happening. Anything really important, I learned the hard way, comes mailed with report cards, and you better read everything that comes in the mail from cover to cover! Needless to say, from the kids, I hear nothing! Don't hestitate to call the school, that's what they are paid for! My dtr told me once that another child fainted with the heat in gym and the gym teacher didn't let her go to the nurse when she asked. I called the school, even tho it wasn't my kid, and that is my usual rule, it has to involve my own kid before I c/o, and found out that was not the way it happened at all, which I told the VP I was happy to find out! Also, if you think they are having trouble, contact the guidance counselor.

    My dtr was in 6th grade this year. She is blonde, blue-eyed, slim, and cute (nothing like me.) She now gets phone calls all evening long, and she says "I can't help it if I'm so popular!" Yes, she's one of those girls you loved to hate in school, but I have also taught her to stand up for the underdog, and if I ever hear of her picking on another kid, she would be banned from cheerleading. She spends all day long primping, and I wake her up at the last possible minute in the morning to delay the choosing of clothes ritual as long as possible, "I have nothing to wear!" She is still getting excellent grades at this point. OH! And the first day of Cheerleading try-outs, the poor thing got her first period, she had such bad cramps, she could hardly move. Surprisingly, there was very little drama with the period, pimples however are high drama for her!

    My son is 14, moving up to HS. His grades have taken a plunge, esp in the 3rd marking period, but after limiting all of his video games, etc, he now has 2 A's (one in math!) and 2 B's that said "Close to the next highest grade" on his mid-period report. He says he's not too interested in girls, and he is not into the phone calls and things like some of his other friends, but my friends assure me, they have had a son who may be a "late bloomer" and the whole thing doesn't start until 16. I had one bad scare this year with him, which, w/o getting into it, made me seriously think he is primed to start using drugs, and if the opportunity presented itself, I think he would, despite all our teaching. He went for a tour of the HS for a day, he shadowed a 9th grader, and he says they were smoking pot in the boys BR. I wouldn't doubt it. When I was in HS, back in the late 70's, I was offered every drug under the the girl's BR!!

    I had to laugh when you said you had all taught your kids not to fight back. I did that for awhile, but then I sent my son to Karate, since he was so small, I wanted him to be able to defend himself in middle school. (The year he was born, a child was assualted in the hallway after school, and had his skull bashed in with a baseball bat, never knew if he made it,or had permanent dmg, etc.... being post partum, I cried my eyes out in fear...even then.) So, I told my kids, they had my full permission to KICK A$$ if anyone so much as brushed up against them in a threatening way. So far, they haven't had to go there, but I have no doubt lpnandloveit, that my dtr could take someone out! My son works out everyday and he is small but all muscle, and he could too, but he would be less likely to do it.

    Ah, it is NO coincidence that gray hair starts at this age for us!!!! I think I can name for every gray hair, and incident involving my kids, and one whole shock of it to one B**ch at work! We will get through if we stick together and keep giving them the positive messages.
  13. by   hoolahan
    OMG night owl! That is scary! Just the threat would scared me to death, in this day and age!!

    Our school has a zero tolerance policy too, and you're right, in my school, just reporting the threat alone may have gotten that kid expelled. But, hey, your son had his nosed punched, maybe that was the best thing that could've ever happened to the other kid!! Maybe he has learned in the meantime to keep his big stupid mouth SHUT!!

    I can't tell you how many times I have considered home schooling my kids. My dtr would never wish that, she'd miss her social life too much, but my son would jump at the chance. Trouble is, I KNOW I don't have the patience and they don't take me seriously (I tried one summer to make them do a reading assignment every day, that lasted about 3 days!!) If my son felt truly depressed in school though, I would get him enrolled in one of those internet home school programs. Anyone ever used them? I have only heard of them, but never any feedback.

    I love the first week or so after school lets out, then I usually can't wait for it to begin again. There are no other kids in the neighborhood my kid's ages, and the few who are anywhere near, have parents who work all day, so they are at relatives, or camp. I'm trying to find a volunteer activity or "job" these kids can do to keep them occupied, but they aren't old enough for working papers, so I guess it's another long summer. They don't even like to go to the pool anymore without buddies there, and there aren't even too many kids there during the day d/t working parents.

    Which brings me to part 2 of this School's Out thread, what do you do with kids this age in the summer??? Cheap? Or suggestions for "work" type activities? Forget nursing homes, they are too young to help clean poop, they'l deal with enough $hit in a lifetime, anything else, I'm open to. Thanks.

    PS, if anyone wants to make this a separate thread, please feel free.
  14. by   AnneD
    As a school nurse, let me shed some light. School are bound by laws that they frequently did not write. They cannot expell a child with a documented problem ie,a child with oppositional defiant behavior cannot be expelled for an incidence of disruptive behavior. Children are put in the least restrictive enviroment. I know of a child that was prone to violent outbursts but could not be removed from the class without a lengthy process. If your school district is large there might be an alternative school, but if you have a poor small school you are SOL. The kid goes back into your child's class
    FYI The next greatest shortage after the nurses shortage will be for teachers. Small wonder. If we don't get our priorities straight we will all be screwed.
    My daughter started 5th grade which is middle school here. Before you spew your coffee, the 5th and 6th grade are in the lower hall and the 7th and 8th are in the upper hall. It was a memorable year...she had an in school suspension for one day and got the lowest grades she has ever recieved( she tests out very high and has been in the gifted programs). I tend to blame impending puberty and peer pressure. I have to have faith that I have instilled good values and that she will be ok. She hasn't realized that as I work at the same school, she can't get away with squat My most memorable moment was teaching one of her growth and development classes Her comment to me was that I didn't embaress her too much.