Friday, February 10, 2012

Dear Evan,

I want to write this little note to you so that when you are all grown up, you can remember how proud you made your mommy!  I can't believe you are almost 5 years old and almost ready to start kindergarten.  You are very excited about that, I know.  I am so glad that you love school and learning so much.  Although your Daddy and I already know how extremely intelligent you are as well as all of your other wonderful attributes, we love hearing that other people have also noticed.  Even your new nanny who has only known you a week was just so excited about how smart you are and went home bragging to her own mother about you.  She is preparing to be a teacher so she just loves being able to work with a bright child who loves to learn. 

Yesterday, we had a conference with your head teacher at preschool, and she had so many wonderful things to show and tell us about how smart you are and how much you have learned.  I just want to highlight a few of the wonderful things she told us:  

1.  She wrote us a wonderful little note that said, "Evan is a delightful little boy.  He has matured so much this year.  He should do well in school next year.  I have really enjoyed being his teacher this year. - Mrs. Bowman"  

2.  She gave us your first "report card" which was all S's which means you have succeeded in accomplishing all the skills necessary to be successful in elementary school.  You have wonderful language skills which your father and I always marvel at.  You have always communicated with us and other adults very easily and your vocabulary is excellent.  

3.  You have been able to write your first name for a couple of years now and have also learned to write your last name this year.  You can also spell your name orally which your teacher said was a great skill for your age since you don't just see your name and recognize the letters.  

4.  You have accomplished a whole bunch of other developmental and academic skills such as recognizing all of your colors, recognizing and drawing your shapes, recognizing and writing your letters in upper and lower case, counting and recognizing your numbers, etc.  Before our conference, Mommy watched you do your morning activities in your classroom.  Every day, your teachers set up "stations" with different learning activities on trays.  This week's activity trays were valentine themed so they were so cute to look at.  You chose a tray with red paper hearts that had dots on them.  You had to count and match the dots on the hearts with a heart clip that had the written numeral on it.  I was amazed at how quickly you completed this task.  You were also so funny with it because I immediately saw your OCD tendencies (you got that from me) come out as you picked up the hearts in numerical order starting at 1.  You do not like going "out of order" for anything, and of course, I love that about you!  

5.  You also have excellent fine motor skills which have probably been sharpened by your love of video gaming.  Ha!  You hold your pencil correctly in your right hand (you have always been decidedly right handed), you drew your circle, square, and rectangle for your teacher, but she said you told her you "couldn't" draw your triangle.  I assured her you did know how to draw a triangle.  You also use scissors with great precision and can cut out very detailed shapes and objects.  You can, of course, put together very large puzzles and that has been one of your favorite activities for a while now.  

4.  We already know that you are adept at the more physical tasks of jumping, throwing and kicking a ball and are very coordinated as shown by your skills in sports. 

5.  You also do very well with dressing yourself, but Mommy had to laugh when your teacher mentioned that you do sometimes need help with your jacket.  Mommy could just picture that little scene.  You are so independent, but you get easily frustrated when your jacket has become tangled or is turned inside out.  You also like to zip your jacket by yourself, but sometimes getting it started can be a little tricky which also frustrates you.  Again, you are so much like me getting frustrated when things don't go your way!  

6.  Of course, you know your name, age, and birthday and even know your daddy's name.  I had to laugh again when your teacher said you didn't know my name.  I am just "mommy" and that is okay with me!  I told Mrs. Bowman that you just hear me saying Daddy's name a lot more than Daddy says Mommy's name since I always have to call out very loudly for Daddy because he has trouble hearing me. 

7.  Socially and emotionally, you have developed and matured so much.  You love playing with your friends at school, and I love watching you and your friends play together.  You love to direct your friends in more organized games and pretend play.  You have a wonderful imagination!  You are also so kind and helpful and respectful of others.  I never hear you say hurtful words to your friends or adults.  You always want to help others.  You are such a loving little man which is why you are such a great big brother.  Brody is so lucky to have you!  

There is really only one big goal we are going to work on with you.  We have noticed and your teacher also noticed that you like to say "I can't" before you even try to do something.  We don't understand where this started as we have always tried to build your confidence and self-esteem by praising you and telling you how proud we are of you.  I cannot recall a task we have asked you to complete that you could not actually do.  You just seem to have a little problem with believing in yourself.  As your parents, we want to help you accomplish all of your dreams and do great things with your life.  Your teacher suggested that we try some form of rewards system to help encourage you to stop saying "I can't" before performing activities.  Mommy and Daddy plan to begin this system this week.  Daddy already asked you what you wanted your reward to be, and you said bowling so I think that will be your first reward.  We are going to begin with a weekly reward system and prepare a sticker chart to display for you.  We love you very much, little man, and we want you to be proud of yourself.  You are just one of the smartest, sweetest, and most loving children I have ever had the privilege of knowing!  We are so blessed to call you ours!  

Love always and forever,

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