One opportunity Kate's had is a special reading class. The librarian (media specialist, or whatever her official title is) has pulled Kate and another classmate out of class, along with one other student, a couple of times per week. The purpose was to stretch these students a little more since they were topping out in the classroom setting. During this time the group has read books together and recently completed a technical book report, of sorts.
We weren't even sure all of what they were doing but one day we received a letter saying that Kate's group was one of the finalists for a technology award in the school district. It asked us to attend the awards ceremony on a specified date. The date came and sure enough, Kate's group won. It was hilarious to see her reaction. Her birth was dramatic and she has carried on in the same fashion. She was just so excited, complete with the jumping up and down. She expresses feelings that I may inwardly feel but would never outwardly show:). Here's their winning night.
version if you're really hankering for detail;). Anyway each student learns and is timed on math facts. There are the basic addition and subtraction but then another level is introduced where they have to complete two math sequences to get to the final answer, it's too hard to explain without visuals but it gets them thinking in a more complex manner. After the students have learned their addition and subtraction up to 20, I think it is, a buzzer contraption is introduced. Then it becomes a game of speed; whoever buzzes in first gets to complete the mathematical solution. Anyway. We weren't really in on all of the details until one day Wes and Kate said they were being tested on these facts to see who would represent their school at the county-wide competition. Kate ended up being the top 1st grader.
We received another letter telling us she had a couple of weeks to prepare for the competition. All representatives from their school, grades 1-8, would compete. There ended up being 10 first graders she competed against. We kind of went into it blind and with low expectations ... not that we weren't confident in her, but we had just been prepped by her teacher that she'd be up against stiff competition. Anyway, it turned out to be a stressful night for me. While Matt was sitting there cool as a cucumber, I was sweating bullets. But Kate really surprised us with her speed and how well she kept it together. Once again her dramatics came through when I looked over at her and she was doing deep yoga breaths I had taught her to employ if she ever felt stressed, but she was doing them with exaggerated flare:). And a chatterbox! The girl wouldn't stop talking between rounds! You'd think Matt and I were the most social creatures on Earth to have produced such a girl. It's just the opposite ... she takes everything we don't have and has magnified it 10-fold:).
Anyway. Kate blew through rounds one and two, hardly letting anyone get a word, or buzzer, in edgewise. Then came round three and she still cruised through with nary a blink. Round four was a different story. These kids were fast! She held her own but in the end finished second or third in that round. With all scores tallied through all four rounds Kate ended up 2nd place overall. We were thrilled and she was very pleased. I think she was more excited about the trophy than anything, but when we explained the $50 book store gift card prize too, she thought it was pretty okay.
This girl has blossom and rocketed forward after a very turbulent kindergarten year. It's amazing to me to see the growth she's seen this year. We love you Miss Kate!!