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4 Bumps

What is she expected to learn?

My kindergartner came home today with a stuffed animal, Curious George. The monkey has a whole backpack full of stuff--shoes, hats, a scarf, pajamas, a toothbrush, storybooks to read to him, and a picture book of all the places he's been. In other words, a shit ton of junk to keep track of. She's supposed to take care of Curious George. She's also supposed to take pictures of him for his travel book so she can tell about his adventures when he goes back to class, before he heads for another kid's home. Neat trick, since our printer is broken again.

So what I'm wondering is, in order to facilitate this, what the heck is she supposed to learn? What's the point of this? I'm feeling a bit overwhelmed because, on top of homework and the fundraiser she has to do, it's one more thing to bother with. But I'm willing to support it--I'm just kind of wondering what the angle might be. Haveany of your kids had a project like this?


Asked by Ballad at 6:59 PM on Sep. 24, 2013 in School-Age Kids (5-8)

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Answers (24)
  • I don't know what the teacher's vision is but I can imagine there are lots of things that the experience could develop or strengthen in a child. And also in the sense of community & shared connection among classmates.
    I can see how it could feel overwhelming or like "one more thing," too.
    Are you feeling like you want to do a good job but some circumstances make it hard? (The fact that it's not necessarily "easy" to deliver up photos if you don't have a working printer, pieces/accessories get easily lost.) If it's important to you to do a good job & some things feel out of your control & threaten your ability to do so, an assignment is likely to feel more upsetting.
    I can imagine that actual photos are assumed/expected, but that drawn depictions would be accepted. You could email photos or you should be able get digital photos printed locally (online prints are available as well) at a drugstore, Target/Wal-Mart, grocery store.

    Answer by girlwithC at 12:29 PM on Sep. 25, 2013

  • She's supposed to learn about taking care of things that don't belong to her. She's supposed to use her imagination about his travels. She's supposed to learn storytelling skills (language, critical thinking, etc)

    Are you sure she can't draw pictures in lieu of taking them with a camera? She has a backpack for him so she should keep all his things there when she isn't using them.

    I guess the bottom line is that this is what education is all about and she's going to have a great deal of activities like this throughout her grade school career. If you're feeling overwhelmed by kindergarten this is a good time to figure out why and how you can better structure your life/day to accommodate her assignments.

    Answer by Mrs_Prissy at 7:05 PM on Sep. 24, 2013

  • Better take a deep breath. The monkey is nothing compared to 1st and 2nd grade.

    Answer by DJDNY at 8:08 PM on Sep. 24, 2013

  • Sounds like a more local version of Flat Stanley. Not sure what's so confusing about it?

    Answer by NotPanicking at 7:12 PM on Sep. 24, 2013

  • "then offer a donation to the PTA / PTO. They won't turn you down."

    I agree with this. We rarely did the fundraisers. We'd ask family and close friends and then supplement what they bought with a cash donation. Certainly nothing excessive but PTO is happy to take money any way they can get it.

    Answer by Mrs_Prissy at 7:25 PM on Sep. 24, 2013

  • "why he has to come with so many accessories? She already misplaced his pajamas, and now she's on the hunt for them."

    That's why. Responsibility

    Answer by Mrs_Prissy at 7:18 PM on Sep. 24, 2013

  • mine printer not working either- email them to teacher

    i think for one - it is a kind of show and tell, betting each child talking about it at school when they return
    caring for items (responsibility)
    all the items are tangible items that are taking place in story, so makes child more interested in reading
    george also very immature, so young children can feel "smarter than him in certain ways, places kids in a teacher role
    - adds to love of loving of learning

    Answer by fiatpax at 7:38 PM on Sep. 24, 2013

  • Idk, but I'll trade you for the curious George assignment if you take the 2 hours of home work my first grader has each day! Purty please.

    I've never heard of such. The one thing I would like to stress to all kinder mom's is push sight words. My dd's kinder teacher never sent them home so now the entire first grade class is behind, struggling and frustrated.

    Answer by PandaGwen at 7:06 PM on Sep. 24, 2013

  • Oh and your DD shouldn't "have to" do fundraiser stuff. We don't do them.

    Answer by 3libras at 7:15 PM on Sep. 24, 2013

  • Oh, and about the fund raising. Don't feel obligated to go door to door. Everybody's kids are selling the same stuff. I think they want you to pimp it all to friends and family and buy some stuff yourself. I was one of only about 7 that bought from DD's fundraisers in Kinder. Do what you are comfortable with. And if you want to support them but don't want to participate in fund raising and buying things you don't want or need, then offer a donation to the PTA / PTO. They won't turn you down.


    Answer by QuinnMae at 7:22 PM on Sep. 24, 2013