Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Singing and reading

A while back, someone gave Pipo the illustrated book of "He's got the whole world". Tonight, Pipo got the book down and told Fitz to get his guitar out. He then started to read/sing, and had Fitz play along with him. A beautiful scene in and of itself, but when you know the background, it is even more beautiful. And not the adoption background per se... the school background. When Pipo first arrived we did not focus on academics. I told the school I only wanted him to learn English and adjust to the structure of school. He had never been to school in his life, and with his health issues and all his other adjustments I just didn't want to overwhelm him. So last fall we started from scratch. And I really mean from scratch. With less than a year of English under his belt, he didn't even know the alphabet. Last year, in 3rd grade, Pipo did very little of the regular curriculum. His ELL teacher and his aid did most of his academics with him, and it was all modified. It was amazing to see the progress he made, but it was still not what his classmates were doing.

So now, a year later, Pipo is doing ALL of the 4th grade work. I received his progress reports this week, and he is getting all As so far. Real As... doing the real work. He is still getting reading tutoring, and vocabulary can still stump him sometimes (the other day he told me he liked my outfit because it 'rhymed'. It was a 'matching' warm-up suit.. but hey...match/rhyme...they are not that far off!) but he is doing the same work as his classmates with very little assistance. This boy has come so incredibly far in such a short time. And he certainly does have the whole world in his hands!


Becky said...

So sweet. I love the picture. It's amazing how fast the brain catches up.
PS I keep thinking of your weekly dinners. I wish I could pull that off....how fun.

Cloudscome said...

What a fabulous story! You must be so proud of him. We have a number of ESL students in our school and they usually have a difficult first year but with support they really blossom the second and third year. It is beautiful to see!

I love that book too. It's on my wish list. Kadir Nelson is one of my favorites!