Tuesday, February 10, 2015

High School Update

Well The Fashionista has completed two part weeks back at school (Friday was a public holiday in NZ).

She gets herself up every morning at 6am, and gets her breakfast and gets ready (we do her bag and lunch the night before) to leave at 6.50 with me. I drive her to the nearest town to catch a bus into her school for a 8.45 start. Then she arrives back at the bus stop at 4.30ish for me to pick her up and drive her back home ... you can see the exhaustion in her little face. Frankly I ain't loving the early mornings too much myself and I get up half an hour later than she does.

In year 9 they place all the 300 odd girls in random classes, except for 2 classes which they call extended class for the girls who did well in their placement exams that they took late last year and 1 class for children that didn't do so well and require a little extra help to bring them up to speed.

TF was placed in one of the extended classes which she was pretty chuffed about ... don't get me started on how thrilled the mama, papa and extended family were too. It's kind of nice to have confirmation that home education works as well as we all believe it too. She stays in that class for most subjects except for her electives and math. For math they have another smaller special class for top performers which she ended up in apparently so far it is very boring whilst they review math which frankly if they don't know they shouldn't even be in High School.

She also has a "tutor teacher" and every day a tutorial session is scheduled. There are 5 girls from each year level (Year 9 -13 are the High School years in NZ) in her tutor class and the reason they do it this way is for the older girls to help mentor the younger girls with any issues they may have also.

She started off loving just about everything about school but within a week there was a major melt down one evening. She did not do well in a science test (just to see where they were at), fell down a flight of stairs in one of the buildings (there are 1800 girls at the school and apparently it is pretty manic at times), was petrified of her new Social Studies teacher, and was having issues with her IPad and kept heading to the library every day to get it online but the person was never there, so she ended up at the school office which had a queue a mile long and so missed lunch. She just exploded into tears that night. She wanted to keep going to school, but not that one because it was too busy, etc., etc.

Her Papa, who was at work, told me over the phone later when I explained what had happened, to tell her she could have the day off if she needed it, which really brightened her up. Not because she could have the day off, but I think because she realised we had her back. She and I discussed it but agreed that it would be better to get everything sorted the next day, and after a cuddle and our chat she went off happily to bed. I actually drove into her school the next day to pick her up as I was pretty sure it was simply tiredness that had made things so bad the day before (the bus trip home exhausts her as she has to stand sometimes and it's nearly an hour trip), and was pleased to hear that her day went really well. I took her and her sister out for an early dinner and we had a little bit of fun shopping. 

There has been minimal homework so far, more tasks like doing their front pages for their classes, etc. and introducing themselves.  Much to her surprise the scary Texan Social Studies teacher has turned out to be really nice and has offered to help her catch up on any work she has missed due to problems with the IPad situation. There were 3 in her class that had issues but she was the only one she offered to help, when TF was packing up her bag after class. Apparently everyone else rushes out of the classrooms but TF likes to place everything properly away.

I must say that the teachers there do sound quite lovely. All very supportive and nice so far, I am impressed with that.

She absolutely LOVES her electives, drama and digital technology but they only go for 6 months of the year, so will be interesting to see what happens next semester.

I am really not sure how it is going. She gets quite frustrated with some of the things that happen and more especially seem to take forever to happen. She does enjoy most of the actual classes though. So at the moment it's one day at a time.


  1. Starting a new school (or workplace) is utterly exhausting. I remember practically bursting into tears when I heard we were expected to go for welcome drinks at the end of my first day as a trainee solicitor. (And when I walked the wrong way to my new flat from the station later that night, the tears did flow!) it sounds like you're all doing really well. Soon TF will be in the swing of things and this stress will seem so far away. Well done to her and you on the placements, btw! Oh and I love the pink books. How cool is that. Can I send mine over to you? My daughter's nursery teacher actually LAUGHED at my attempt at book covering, can you believe? :-D

    1. Oh Lucinda that's too funny ... how rude of that nursery teacher. I do wish you had pics though, they must have been great!

      Yes she was utterly exhausted. Frankly I don't know how she keeps going at the pace she is, with the early mornings and late evenings from dance. Simply all the driving is killing me.

  2. Oh how I can relate to the tiredness and tears! It's such a tough thing, managing yourself, long days, lots of people and so much noise (people don't realise how noisy schools are!). Sounds very familiar :-)

    1. Yes, you are right about the noise. She has never really liked crowds or noise much anyway, so she is probably in the worst possible school for it as it's one of the biggest in the area. My husband keeps reminding me that we lived through it and that she will too but I don't know somehow it seems worse these days.


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