Friday, December 17, 2010

Grades are for Dogs

My eight-year-old daughter is in third grade, and therefore now receives report cards. The first one came home not long ago. She did fine, but it gave me a pang that this form with its boxes and letters was meant to summarize the skills of this joyful, unconventional child and her particular quirky genius. I didn't love the "outstanding" "satisfactory" and "needs improvement" system of last year, but I liked it a lot better than this. I did what parents do: I praised her, and then we brainstormed some ideas she could use to raise a couple of the grades. And then I worried. Because eight seems mighty young to spend precious energy strategizing to raise grades.

I just recently, however, I came across the following in a stack of her drawings, stories, and notes. (By the Way, George is one of our two dachshunds, who we adopted from a rescue society last summer.)

George's Report Card

Sleeping Skills A+
Racquetball skills C-
Talking in class B
Eating the trash A+
Shares his bone B

I shouldn't have worried. If the kid can write a report card for her dog, I think she's got this in perspective.

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