One Quarter Down, Three to Go

The first quarter of Dude’s Junior year is over.

The first quarter of Jazz’s Freshman year is over.

The remaining three quarters will zoom by and I’ll be left staring at a SENIOR and a SOPHOMORE.

I’m sorry, WHEN exactly did my boys grow up, again?!

This next quarter will drag – the second quarter always does, even though we’ve got Thanksgiving and Winter break (because God forbid we call it Christmas break).

However, the third and fourth quarters? Will ZOOM by. I will blink and the end of the school year will be upon us.

The boys’ classes didn’t change overly much. Dude finished ACT Prep and Personal Finance (LOVE that Personal Finance is a required class – he learned the stone-cold truth about taxes and how he will be paying for our gluttonous’ government spending when he reaches ADULTHOOD. Thanks for that, Obama). Dude now has P.E. and Drawing II.

He doesn’t exactly LIKE Drawing, but he needs the class to satisfy his fine art requirement (since he doesn’t participate in music, like Jazz). I think the class is good for him, though. It teaches him to tap into the creative part of his brain.

I’m happy about the weight lifting class. Even though it will be tough on him at first, because of his sedentary lifestyle, (the boy never exercises – he sits in front of his computer all the time), he will eventually adjust and he’ll have MORE energy. He’ll also develop muscles in his arms. How do I know this? Because he took the weight lifting class last year for P.E. credit. (You can take it more than once). I just hope he keeps his hands clean and away from his face because weight lifting and germs? Yeah, hand-in-hand. (HA! There’s a pun right thar).

Looking Through Grandma's Eyes
(This picture doesn’t have anything to do with anything, I just think it’s cute and Dude looks so studious wearing my mother-in-law’s glasses. This was also, like, another lifetime ago).

I’d like to take a moment to brag on Dude a moment. I don’t know if the kid is trying extra hard because he wants to measure up in our eyes, or if he’s “competing” for our attention because we’ve been giving Jazz so much attention via his marching activities, but Dude has been working his BUTT off these past several weeks. I’ve mentioned before that math and Dude simply doesn’t mix. He comes by this math struggle honestly – I stink at math.

But I will be the first to admit that Dude is MUCH smarter than I am and especially when it comes to math. But that’s a subject that he simply STRUGGLES with. Algebra II is “technically” the last math class he has to have in order to graduate. So, if we could juuuust get past this hump, he can move on to other classes that have math, but are more interesting to him, like computer programming.

He has been willingly spending HOURS studying and practicing math problems. And though Kevin has had to help him past a few speed bumps, for the most part, the kid is doing it on his own.

Dude’s math teacher allows the kids to re-take one test per quarter. Considering there was one test that Dude completely messed up on, he got up early on the allotted day and I made a special trip up to the school so he could take it before his first class.

He ended up getting a B on it. I was proud of his improved grade, but I was MORE proud of his maturity and his willingness to work, just a little harder, in order to get that better grade. I’m so proud of his motivation and his DESIRE to do well. And I think the experience has served to reassure me that this kid? Is going to do okay in life. 🙂

Jazz finished P.E. (thank goodness. I always breathe a sigh of relief when ever he has P.E. at the beginning of the year as opposed to in the spring because of his allergies) and now has health which he ALREADY despises.

Since Dude finished the ACT Prep course and now has a pretty good idea what to expect from the actual ACT course, we’ve been talking about possible test dates.

He’s a little freaked out about the whole thing – mostly because of the math. He’s not sure he’ll remember everything, but we’ll make a trip to Barnes and Noble and find some study material for him. The counselors suggest the kids take the ACT test their Junior year, sort of as a practice test, and then take it again their Senior year because by then, their scores are better and will look more attractive to colleges.

So, that’s what we plan on doing.

Dude and I talked it over, and I’m going to sign him up to take the ACT in April. I really want him to take the test as soon as possible while all of the material is still fresh in his mind. I made the mistake of waiting to take the ACT several years after high school and wow, my score was terrible. I won’t even tell you my score. I haven’t even told my family, but suffice it to say, it’s BAD. I think the only reason I got into college to begin with was because I was an older student and they A. felt sorry for me and B. wanted to meet their older student quota.

So … April 10th Dude will take the ACT test.

I’m really anxious for this second quarter to end. Dude will have completed (and hopefully made a decent grade in) Algebra II and can go on to computer programming. And Jazz will have Jazz Band (it’s an actual CLASS!) which means he’ll have to forfeit a required course in order to take Jazz band and that will give me a pretty good idea what class he’ll need to make up in the summer and I can start making plans for our traditional summer family vacation.

Hey, I’m a planner, what can I say. 🙂

When I was in high school, we didn’t have NEARLY the class options that the kids have nowadays (I sound like such an old fogey). We had the same classes ALL YEAR long and now, the kids not only have several options, but a lot of the elective classes are only a quarter long so there’s really no chance to get bored with them. I wonder, if we had had the same sort of class variety back in my high school days, if I would have liked school any better.

Nah. Probably not.

UPDATE: Just picked the kids up and Dude told me that he was taken out of P.E. (something about the weight room is reserved for athletes during this quarter) and moved to Civil War. Alrighty then. I can’t keep up with these kids!