Please help us decide! (Sorry, long)
DH and I need to make a decision about my DD's school/ classroom placement for next year and we are so conflicted I need some outside advice! DD is going to be in 2nd grade. Currently, she is in an a accelerated class (mixture of academically gifted and highly motivated students) for 1st 2nd and 3rd graders (yes, an all day program with all three grades). We are considering pulling her from this class and putting her in another "regular" 2nd/3rd grade combination class.
DD is EXTREMELY outgoing, very bright, and also EXCEPTIONALLY empathetic (she has seen the school counselor on several occasions in an effort to convince her that she is not responsible for solving everyone's social problems.) However, DD is only borderline gifted and definitely does not fall into the "highly motivated" category where academics are concerned. The other issue is that while her teacher is fabulous in many respects, she has been doing this for 30 years, seems to be "burnt out" and is not the most encouraging or affectionate teacher there is. She is not mean, just very business-like. Generally, other parents really like the other teachers/classroom that we are considering although most complain that the teachers are not very organized.
My daughter really wants to stay in this class because she likes the other students, though I know she would make friends anywhere. Another issue is that my DS (10) and she are very close and he is in the companion 4th, 5th, 6th grade class that adjoins hers. The two classes have the same theme for the school year and do MANY activities, projects and field trips together. This makes my volunteer time very rewarding and convenient and dinnertime conversations and family outings great because there is a common topic that we can focus on.
There are other issues to consider: 1)surprisingly, her current teacher doesn't teach reading in a formal way she figures these kids are already good readers and they have to turn in lots of book reports so she knows they are reading a lot at home. 2)There can be a lot of homework?usually not more than 45 minutes but sometimes over an hour. (Usually none on the weekends though) 3) I know my daughter would have more fun in another class but she also would not be learning as much as she is capable of.
Finally, if we decide to take DD out of this class she will attend a different school, (only 2 minutes away). The "regular" classes have many more behavior issues--where there are basically none now. (About the worst thing that ever happens in her current class is talking out of turn.) That in itself seems like a pretty big issue.
I know this is long put please help me see things more clearly!