It seemed a little strange that there would be an open house at Kaitlyn’s school so late in the year, but that is where we found ourselves last night. Honestly, it was pretty cool to be able to visit the school and her classrooms (yes, two classrooms) and talk to her teachers about the progress she has made this year.
After navigating our way through the PTO’s silent auction (although there was very little in the way of actual silence in the cafeteria), we went over to Kaitlyn’s main classroom. Kaitlyn was very excited to show us around and show us what she had been up to; there was a checklist on her desk of things that she was supposed to show us, and she happily did. While we were standing by her desk, Kaitlyn’s teacher came up to us and chatted for a few minutes. She made note that Kaitlyn’s desk was remarkably clean (for her, it seems), and also commented that her desk was not the most chaotic in the classroom earlier in the day. Of course, this point warranted further investigation (I waited until this morning to ask), and as it turns out, Kaitlyn’s desk was the second messiest in the classroom before she cleaned it earlier in the day. More on who had the messiest desk in just a minute.
From Kaitlyn’s regular classroom, we made our way to the gifted cottage. Kaitlyn was very excited to show us where she has been going for the last six weeks or so. Pretty much as soon as we walked into the cottage, it made perfect sense that Kaitlyn would have such a messy desk in her regular classroom; the gifted cottage is what most would consider utter chaos (although I would probably call it “organized chaos”). As it turns out, the student with the messiest desk in the regular classroom is also in the gifted program, so it made perfect sense to me once Kaitlyn told me.
It is actually a pretty neat statement on the learning environment that is fostered in the gifted cottage. In there, it is clear that there is the understanding that each of the kids learns differently, and those different ways of learning are embraced. We learned that one of the main goals of the gifted classroom is to enhance the strengths of the students, and by doing so, make the weaknesses even stronger. As funny as it sounds, what with Katlyn’s adherence to routines and structure, I am confident that she will thrive even more now that she will be in that type of environment; next year, she will continue to be in a regular classroom setting most of the day, and will also continue to move to the gifted area to enhance her day.
If you were to look through the archives of when I write about Kaitlyn’s school , you will see that this theme is repeated constantly: we love where she is and could not be happier with the teachers she has had and the environment she is in.