First Day of School and Preschool!

Vaughn started his first day of Kindergarten/1st Grade (I realize that's a really confusing statement, but it's true) last week.  His birthday is in September and the cutoff in Nevada is at the end of September, so he could have gone to Kindergarten last year, but I wanted to keep him for another year, so that he'd have more time at home, and wouldn't be the youngest in his class.

The school we decided on for him is not the school we are zoned for, so we had to do open enrollment, and in Las Vegas, you can't do open enrollment for Kindergarten-- it's considered optional, so I enrolled him as a first grader, since he's technically old enough, and then decided to let him go as a first grader, and will have him repeat the grade twice.  The school he goes to has about 12 kids in his class-- Kindergartners, 1st Graders, and second graders all in one class with a teacher and an aid, and the 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders in another class with a teacher and aid.  Technically they teach to the child's level, and so it doesn't really matter if we call it 1st grade or Kindergarten.  He's in the same class, with the same students, and the same teacher.

He loves it!  His favorite are the "specials" (music, PE, library, and art), and....lunch.  I pick him up every day and he tells me all about the food (and nothing about his school work).  He has a wonderful teacher, and I just love his school-- it is small, personal, surrounded by our favorite places (Red Rock Canyon, Spring Mountain Ranch, the town of Blue Diamond).  He's known by the teachers and employees on a personal level, and so am I.  Everyday I see his teacher, and can talk to her if I need to.

Every day after he gets out of class, all the kids from school, go out to the big field of grass and park right next door and run around and play.  I love to watch them play.  Last week there was a lot of butterflies in the grass, and they all ran around trying their hardest to catch one.  They play every day, and I've never seen any of the kids be mean to one another.

I had one little adorable girl who came up to me the other day and said "Are you Vaughn's Mom?"  When I said yes, she said "Vaughn's cute."  It totally made me laugh.  Then today a boy in Vaughn's grade asked me if I was Vaughn's Mom.  When I said yes, he smiled, stuck out his shoe, and said "Then will you tie my shoe?  Vaughn is my friend."  Oh man, I love kids!

I think he's cute too.

Today Mason started his first day of Preschool!  Actually it's called Joy School, and it's a co-op program that I'm doing with a few other families that we know.  I'm just not ready to give him up to a regular preschool yet.  I'm happy that I'll still get to have him at home on those days that I teach (and then Mon, Wed., Fridays too).

He was so excited to get to go to school, especially after watching his big brother go all last week.  The two of us really have a lot of fun hanging out during the day.  He is so easy going, and just loves to hang out with me, go on errands with me, and sit and draw and play when we are at home.

He's getting so good with his numbers, letters, and even spelling and reading a bit.  It's something that I've never really pushed on him, but that he's had a natural interest for a while.  He's becoming quite the talented little artist.  Last week he painted this picture:

I just gave him some watercolor paper, and he drew a Robin, Bat symbol, and flower for me.  Then I showed him how to trace his picture with a Sharpee marker (he loved that part), and then we got some watercolor paint out and he painted it in.  The only thing I helped him with was mixing the "skin color" that he wanted and was having a difficult time with, and he wanted a little help with his flower petals.  We don't paint very often-- mostly because he really prefers just to draw, so seeing his drawing come to life with some color was really exciting for me.

I just love my big boys, and how much they are growing and learning!