Thursday, April 28, 2011

And now, a quick Keaton story

Perhaps it is a Trey story.

Tuesday night I had a late meeting, so Trey picked up the boys from Kids Klub and together they went to meet a family from Tucker's baseball team to try on baseball pants. They were a little short on time, so they were in a hurry.  I wasn't in the car, but I've heard the story and I imagine it went something like this:


At some point, Keaton says matter-of-factly, "Dad, my whole class got red today!"

Trey responds, "Awesome!"

Later that evening, we sat around the dinner table to eat and visit. It's during this time that we usually go through Tucker's homework with him and make a plan for when he needs to do it, and we go through Keaton's daily folder and ask him questions about his favorite part of the day.

Unfortunately, I opened Keaton's daily folder to see a red sad face, and a note from the teacher that the whole class had a bad day and continued to scream and run around when they were told to stop.

"Keaton!" I questioned, "What on earth happened in your class today?  Your folder says you were all being very disrespectful to your teacher. What do you have to say about this?"

Keaton popped a bite of food in his mouth and shrugged nonchalantly, "I already told Dad. He said it was awesome."


A Quick Tucker Story

If you've been around us at all you know that Tucker is weirdly smart. Case in point - one of his second grade spelling words this week is "condescending." I had to think really hard to spell it right.

However, Trey and I decided a long time ago that it's important for us to not talk about Tucker's intelligence, but rather comment on his hard work. Even though all things academic come pretty easy for him now, some day he will face challenging course work, and we want him to know that hard work is the answer instead of questioning his natural intellect. We want him to look for challenges and not be discouraged when something doesn't come naturally for him.

We swore not to have him tested for his giftedness until at least first or second grade so that we could avoid being "those parents" who think our kid is the smartest and needs special treatment, but his kindergarten teacher suggested the testing and we went with it. Since then, he has been in his school's gifted and talented program, GT for short.

In our quest to raise a well-rounded kid who isn't too full of himself, we never refer to his GT class as GT. Instead, we ask about what he's been doing with Mrs. Chenault (who just happens to be the GT teacher). I honestly don't know if Trey or I have ever used the acronym "GT" with Tucker.

This became painfully obvious last week because of a program called Lemonade Day. It's a day where kids all over the country become entrepreneurs by opening their own lemonade stands. Mrs. Chenault has taken the program on as a project for second grade GT, having a banker speak to them about loans (they did NOT like the idea of paying interest), a marketing consultant work with them to plan and film a commercial, a taste test in which they chose the best product - basically they created an entire business model for their lemonade day. While tomorrow at recess is the official day, they've done a booming business in pre-sales and plan to donate all of their proceeds to charities they think are important, including the animal shelter and Japan earthquake relief. Pretty cool.

All of the posters, videos, emails, and other correspondence about lemonade day reference "Mrs. Chenault's 2nd Grade GT Class."  Trey was talking about the project with Tucker and randomly asked him if he knew what GT stood for.

Tucker thought for a moment, "Hmmm...I think it's something like geographic technology."

My GT kid didn't know what GT meant, but had sense enough to choose the longest G-word he knows and the longest T-word he knows and put them together to come up with an answer.

And GT will forever, at my house at least, be Tucker's geographic technology class.

Here's the commercial in case you're interested (I have permission from all of the parents to post online).