Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Can You Hear This?

Summer is winding down. It may not seem so for those of you who still see weeks of scorching, Southern heat ahead, or those of you who still remember when summer ended when August did. But for those of you who, like us, have to figure out where you're going to drop your kids off every morning from mid-August to next June, it's time for panic mode. C will be back at Downtown Elementary and JP will be joining him. We're trying to get S in there, as well, in the Pre-K classes. GK is going to have to get a job to help offset the cost of her living here...somebody has to.

Kristy has explained the Pre-K situation in the Memphis City Schools to me a dozen or so times and I still don't quite understand it, but it seems that your kid has to be really slow or really smart to be admitted. Let's just say S qualifies and leave it at that. The city schools, though, can't make anything as easy as simply registering, so there are some hoops to jump through first, and the the first of these is a hearing and vision test. These tests aren't cause for concern unless the hearing test becomes a listening test. I don't think S could pass a test on listening. For instance, she hears me say, "Close the front door," and she hears me say, "Your shoes are on the wrong feet," and she even hears me say, "Let go of your brother's lip." I know she hears these things because of her grin and the way her pupils glow red like an ember as she shakes her head slowly from side to side. She just doesn't listen to any of it. Even after repeating myself two or three or 18 times.

I may not be sure what Pre-K is all about, whether there is any actual teaching going on or whether it's just another place to color and leave Play-Doh lying around, but apparently it will involve seeing and hearing, so let the testing begin. I'm not clear, either, what the tests will entail, but I assume she'll have to identify shapes or colors that she sees, which shouldn't be a problem for her. And I imagine she'll need to signal when she hears a certain tone - again, not an issue. But whatever these hoops may be that she's expected to jump through, I just hope she lets go of the tester's lip long enough to listen to the instructions.