Friday, September 25, 2009

Boring Week, Kids, Jessica's Dilemma

Even Shy is tired of the constant rain! He's been helping me with a writing project.

It's been a rainy boring week. Tomorrow was suppose to be the first day of soccer but since it's been raining, many of the teams haven't had practices yet. So the start of soccer is delayed a week. Some of the teams are going to go ahead and practice tomorrow.

Now that we are a few weeks into school, I am noticing some deteriorating behavior in the kids. The start of school was exciting enough to get them off to a good start. For one child, it's hard to break behavioral habits that have been going on for a long, long time. And sometimes being a good kid doesn't get you the immediate attention that the shock value of inappropriate behavior gets you. (Yes, we praise his efforts but not overboard) It earns more privileges, which is better, but sometimes they aren't immediate. For another, emotional growth and maturing is bringing out some special needs that we suspected were there but hadn't seen yet. The behaviors are still very managable with rewards and redirection. For the other two, I think it's the stress of keeping up with school, work, and homework.

Jessica ended up dropping band this year (12th). She went into the highschool marching band in 10th part way into the school year without the experience the others had. The Christian school did not have band so she had been just teaching herself at home. Going from that to a well established marching band was hard. She should have been placed in the lower band but wasn't. She didn't have marching experience. Instead of making suggestions or offering help, the band director made her the target. He would make jokes at her expense and this encouraged the band members to do the same. She would come home upset every day. But she really wanted to be in band.

She was going to quit at the end of last year after putting up with almost two school years of it. But then the director retired so she stayed hoping things would improve with a new director. But they didn't. The new director didn't criticize her but neither did he end what was already going on. She'd been the target for so long that the kids were just used to criticizing her and making jokes at her expense. The new direcctor is kind of wimpy and I'm thinking the band will be strong as long as the returning players are there but will probably go down hill after that.

There is one saxophone player named Sydney who is really nasty. His favorite word starts with "f" and he uses it liberally. He would say the most rude things to Jessica every single day. If I weren't such a nice person I would really wish for Sydney to fall flat on his face during the marching band assessment next month. : )

The after school band practices and marching at games were also leaving her little time for her job, homework or anything else so I finally talked her into dropping band. Why continue on with something that makes her so miserable? Yes, she loves the excitement of marching at games etc but it just wasn't worth it.

She wanted to stay in past senior recognition so we could walk out on the field with her. That was the only thing keeping her in band so I told her we'll take her to Chilis for dinner that night!

She is in the church orchestra which at our church is a big deal so she will still be playing saxophone. Practices for the big Christmas concert will be coming up soon.


Karen said...

Aww, Kathy, that's so hard not when your kids hurt. Hopefully she will have more time now and feel better about dropping band. I'm afraid I would have had a "set-to" with that first band director....

Hey, does your cat write alot of stuff? :0


Are These Kids All Yours? said...

As a former band teacher that kind of behavior from any teacher is appalling! I am so sorry to hear that, but happy she can play in church. Some kids are sooo rude.

Lou said...

Shy does look fairly bored.
But you did not need to send the rain this way.
I think Jessica will keep plenty busy with out the band and the constant harassment does nothing to make a good Senior year.