4th grade means state project.
i remember doing my florida report in the 4th grade. back in those days, my teacher had to copy large amounts of text on the blackboard and we had to copy it on notebook paper to insert into our folders. if you didn't copy it down in the time allotted: incomplete.
then, a beka books introduced these florida project books. you just fill in writing, insert pictures... easy way out if you ask me. i remember writing letters to chambers of commerce all over the state to get brochures. i had to draw a chickee hut and a sabal palm. this was all back in the day when you addressed your envelope 'Pompano Beach, Fla. 33064'. yeah, not this 2 letter state abbreviation. it was Fla. and we memorized all 50 state abbreviations that way. which is probably why it is still hard for me to distinguish between MA, ME, MN, MS, MO and MI.
now dot has to do her state report. which means i have to do the state report. i got wal-mart photo to print out pics of all the state symbols. who knew we had so many? state insect?? i nicely adhered the pics to the papers (she is to fill out) with scrapbooking brads instead of glue. i didn't do it perfectly, however, it has to look like a 9 year-old did it, right? i used the avery template to print out the labels for the chapter dividers. cute font! then i made a lovely layout for the cover with the appropriate information and a great picture of dot at the medieval faire.
chapter 1 is due in less than 2 weeks, i think we'll be fine, since i'm going to have her work on it this weekend. we didn't have the luxury of a home computer and the infinite information of the internet when i was 9.
so i've become that mom. the mom that really works on the school project with input from dot, asking her 'which one of these?' or 'how do you want this?'. then i do most of the manual work. i made the pioneer wagon out of a shoebox and popsicle sticks, the top hat with life size eagle head made of styrofoam, felt, and polymer clay, etc.
the thing is, the school always pounds it into our heads as parents to be strongly involved in our kids' work. finding the balance of how involved in this project should i be? teachers don't want the kids turning in crappy projects, but they know when a parent has done the entire project and the child turns it in. so dot will be handwriting all entries in her notebook, even if her handwriting is atrocious. i will refrain from printing everything out after tirelessly formatting it so the text perfectly lines up on the lines on the paper. nope, not me. presentation is what i will focus on, and she will focus on information. my mom worked at a stationery store when i was growing up, so i had the best folders and binders and lamination (and atrocious handwriting). thanks, mom.