Nope, not Christmas. Or Chanukah, for that matter. Not a holiday or a season or a special occasion. Simply, it's the end of the school year. Yay.
The volunteering in all four classrooms, plus keeping up with Hebrew school, plus getting involved with the PTA (towards the end of the year) has worn me out. I don't know about the kids, but I'm whipped. The school year here has so many fewer breaks built in that I'm totally ready for a three month vacation from School.
This end of year celebration brought PrincessE's promotion to sixth grade. She'll be starting middle school in the fall and so they have a ceremony, where they get awards and have a special day. We discovered at the ceremony that there were three academic levels to the awards. Some children got just standard promotion certificates, having passed fifth grade. Then there were silver awards. This was for outstanding academic achievement in one area. Lastly, they had a gold award. This award was for outstanding academic achievement across the board.
We were so proud when PrincessE received a gold award. Wow. What a kid! She was beaming when she got her certificate.
Then there was another surprise. The principal gives out a Good Character award. One kid per classroom, which means there were three winners for the fifth grade. PrincessE was chosen as the award recipient for her classroom. This one I was less surprised about. She regularly volunteered in the kindergarten classroom, she had been selected to participate in a reading mentor program, the Special Ed support teachers all knew her and she was asked to help out a great deal around the school. It was so nice to see her recognized for all her volunteer work and helping. We are so proud of her.
In addition to all this great news about our rising middle-schooler, our younger three came home with stellar end of year report cards. Everyone got fives (the highest grade you can get and it means you are performing above grade level!) for at least two or three subjects. Dadam and I were particularly proud of Lu-lu's fives in math, science and reading! It was a fantastic end to our first school year here. I think the kids have definitely settled in and gotten the hang of this brave new world.
Next year is going to be another shift in our adventure. PrincessE will be in middle school and The Boy-child will be the big man on campus. I'm going to be the PTA President for our Elementary school, which will be an adventure all to itself.