Pulling on my heart-strings

I’m a mother of 4 great kids that range in age from 18 to 3. My 18-year-old, who is now in his first year in college never had to deal with the Common Core changes and the mandates from Race to the Top. He is doing wonderful in college and is an A student.

My ten-year-old who was an A and B student all through his first 5 years in school is now struggling with math and writing. What used to take him 30 minutes to do homework is now taking 2 hours at times. He is getting frustrated and confused at some of the things that are being asked of him.

My four-year-old is in kindergarten. He is what is pulling on my heart-strings more and more every day. He has no play time in the class room and they have no toys or computers in the classroom to help calm his raging mind. Second, due to him having to sit for hours at a time and complete lessons, his behavior has been changing. He is acting out and not wanting to listen to the teacher. He gets so stressed that he started stuttering and it takes him many tries to say a simple word such as “that” or “was” or even his brother’s name that he has said a million times has become a problem. Due to him acting out in school and not wanting to pay attention, the teacher puts him on yellow, a disciplinary warning and takes away his recess.

This is a mistake; he needs to have that time to uncharge his brain and run off his energy that he now has had pent-up for over an hour without a break. The second mistake is that because he has been zoning and not paying attention the teacher writes nasty notes on his papers to send home to me. Notes include statements such as, “he couldn’t keep up and had to sit during recess and do it”, “he isn’t paying attention and he wasn’t coloring in the lines.” He is 4! What four-year-old can color in the lines.

This has frustrated me more than you know. Being a stay at home mom, I see what my children can do and how smart they are. I see how sending them to school has had a negative change on my babies. It hurts so much watching my four-year-old struggle and not sleeping. He went from being so excited to go to school because he loves to learn and socialize, to me hearing him say that he hates school and that it is boring. I have to force him out the door every day. I find myself wanting to keep him home, so he can have a break and be a four-year-old and not a solder in the School Army. My youngest child is three and I fear she will struggle more and more if this trend in education continues.

The board is so worried about the dropout rate. Let me tell you this, if this keeps up that rate WILL not go down. It will surely increase. If students hate school at such a young age, the first chance they get they will drop out.

That is so NOT what I want for my children. I am angry and frustrated.

Please join the fight. We need to fight for our children and be their voice. STOP this COMMON CORE and the baggage that comes with it while we still can save our kids.

-Trina, Worcester

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About Betsy Bloom

Betsy is an Associate Professor of Education at Hartwick College in Oneonta NY. She is also a parent of two, a nine year veteran middle school social studies teacher and the current president of the NYS Foundations of Education Association, an organization dedicated to achieving social justice through public education.
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One Response to Pulling on my heart-strings

  1. Time to homeschool since you are a stay at home mom. You won’t regret it.

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