Meanie Mommy’s Summer Enrichment Plan for 2016

The Princess’s last day of school has arrived. This year I’ve decided to not go crazy with scheduling as many activities as in previous years. In fact, now that the Princess is entering (drum roll)…eighth grade…she is old enough to figure out how to fill up her free time. I’ll present a menu of options as well as some rules and requirements because I know a little structure here and there helps.

Some things are non-negotiable. She still has to participate in the activities which she’s signed up for. She still has to work on daily math and reading comprehension workbooks/worksheets and read a minimum of 30 minutes per day. The last thing I want is for her to lose everything she’s worked hard for. Already I notice how the lax schedule of the last two weeks or so of school has affected her. Time to crack the whip. Continue reading

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Meany Mommy’s Summer Boot Camp 2013

Summer WorkbooksThis summer, as in previous summers, I’ve decided to incorporate some Summer Bridge, math, and reading aloud for the Princess. I know with day camp and her other extracurriculars (tennis, swimming, Korean dance, skating, piano, speech) she is tired, but I believe that it’s extremely important to keep her brain limber and ready for the Fall. A little of something is better than nothing.

Every day she whines and argues with me, but I manage to get her to sit at the table and focus for a time Continue reading

Post Mortem: Meany Mommy’s Summer Learning Plan (Part II)

Looking back at my list, I can’t help but laugh at my optimism and foolish determination to cram knowledge into my poor daughter’s head. During summer, no less. But hey! I deserve credit for trying.

One thing’s for certain. Summer is tougher than the school year to keep her focused and motivated. I’d like to blame it on the heat, but I think all the physical activities take a toll as well.

Things that have helped: Continue reading

Meanie Mommy’s Summer Learning Plan for the Princess (Part II)

I can’t believe the school year is nearly over for the Princess. With one more week to go, it’s time for me to scramble as I try to figure out how to keep her busy and out of trouble this summer.

The fun stuff has already been set. She has drama camp for the first half of summer, and art camp for the second half. Then there will be private swimming lessons twice a week, piano lesson once a week, and speech once a week.

Although most parents would have their kids play all summer, I can’t allow her to do that. With the Princess’s challenges in language processing and reading comprehension, she can’t afford being any more behind than she is now. Somewhere in her fun-packed summer, I will need to make time for her core subjects of reading, writing, and math in order to get her up to speed with her peers, and maybe if I’m lucky, I can get her even slightly beyond.

I read a frightening statistic somewhere that children lose between 3 to 6 months of what they learned during the summer, so the first couple of months of the new school year usually ends up being serious catch-up time. I definitely don’t want this to happen to her. I want her to be ready to go when Fall comes.

So here’s Meanie Mommy’s summer learning plan:

Continue reading

Chip Off the What? Who?

I’ve come to learn to accept that my daughter—although I carried her in my belly for nine months—is and probably will always be an enigma. I also learned that she has many of HB’s foibles, so whenever she might behave in a way that’s erratic or unfamiliar, I must keep in mind that my genes only make up one-half of her. The rest is HB, and of course, environment and her own little spin on things.

The Princess doesn’t like to try or do new things unless she’s absolutely sure she can do it perfectly. The first time. This can be quite a challenge to get her to try something new, such as learning a musical instrument or a sport. And because of her food allergies, she also tends to be reluctant to try new foods, even though we promise they will taste good and will not hurt her. Very often she would throw a hissy fit so dramatic and traumatic, that any inkling of creating a sibling for her would vanish.

However, in public with no parents around, she has an entirely different persona and approach to new things. Her summer day camp has been a whole new eye-opening experience for us, and it’s only been one week so far. Continue reading

Meanie Mommy’s Summer Learning Plans for the Princess

Yesterday I had the end-of-year IEP review at the Princess’s school. Although I’m encouraged and pleased to hear about the Princess’s progress and growth over the year, all I kept thinking about was how much more work that still lies ahead.

I don’t know if it’s common for children with severe food allergies to have some form of learning or development delay, but I recently read about about another child with the same food allergies and development/learning issues as the Princess. Continue reading