Thursday, August 30, 2007

Three for Thursday: First Day of School, 7-Year-Old Orthodontic Appointments and Boston Pre-School Application Mania

Item #1: School, Day 1.

And after Day 1, here’s what I have to report:

The school bus was 45 minutes late coming home yesterday afternoon. Forty. Five. At 35 minutes I was starting to panic and wondered if I’d missed some important memo about buses and drop-off procedures, whether my clocks were wrong and if I had unknowingly fallen into a short-term coma and somehow didn't see the bus. I called a neighbor, then the school and was trapped in the hell that is an automated answering service when I finally spotted the bus.

The Daughter immediately informed me that she was missing three of the required folders from her big bag of school supplies and needed them ASAP. I KNOW that we bought the white, orange and green, two-pocket folders when we went to Staples last week. I saw them go into her school supply bag in the store. (Each of the three children took their own school supplies home from the store in individual bags . . . I’ll have to apologize to Al Gore for the three separate plastic bags later.) Upon receiving the bad news, I quickly e-mailed The Spouse to ask him to please pick them up on the way home from work.

The Youngest Son’s teacher wasn't there on the first day and, according to him, will be out sick for the remainder of the week, so his class was in a holding pattern of sorts. When asked to name his favorite moment of his first day of first grade, he paused and then replied, “Lunch.”

The Eldest Son, who was very excited to have his very own assignment/datebook in which to write down items that are due on certain dates, panicked (like his dear old mom) 10 minutes after he went to bed last night because he hadn’t yet had a parent initial his entry denoting that he read for 20 minutes.

Item #2: Orthodontics and Your 7-Year-Old

I’m a bit concerned that my latest screed for Parents and Kids -- where I complain about the recommendation that 7-year-olds go for consultations with orthodontists -- will inspire orthodontists to send me hate e-mail. But, take heart orthodontists: You’ll likely be the beneficiary of thousands of my family's hard-earned dollars as at least two of my three children will likely require your services and 1.2 tons of metal in their mouths in future years. And we will be at your mercy, and in the end, you'll win.

Item #3: Boston Area Pre-School Application Mania

The latest issue of Boston Magazine contains an analysis of the pluses and minuses of Boston area pre-schools, along with a first-person piece written by a parent who thought that the madness of the pre-school application process would be relatively easy in Boston as compared to her former locale (New York), only to discover she was wrong. (“Suddenly, I became convinced that unless I installed [my daughter] in the perfect institution of learning by age three, my daughter would be consigned to a life of academic failure and an inexorable drift toward petty thievery to support her addictions to crystal meth and the Home Shopping Network.”)

Here’s the lead from the main article on pre-schools, “Junior Achievers:”
“Not so long ago, in what was a gentler, more forgiving era, the good children of Boston didn’t face their first make-or-break interview until they were fully formed college aspirants, or at least looking to sew up a spot in the prep school of their choosing. Now the decisive moment happens a bit earlier. Like at, say, about two, two and a half years old.”

*Bonus Item*: The web site Mommy Track’d – for which I write weekly about pop culture (TV, movies, media and politics) and news tidbits – has undergone a dramatic redesign. Check it out and be sure to leave a comment or two.

E-mail Meredith

1 comment:

mommyof2galz said...

I agree- 7 years old is way too early! I wore braces, and unfortunately, so will my girls.