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Morgan is Four and a Half
Four and a half! It is a different age than four, and a very different age than three and a half.

She's increasingly capable of remembering and reasoning about her own emotions. Her reports of her preschool mornings consist of who she played with, what they did, and whether anyone was mean or bossy to her. The common threat at this age is "If you don't [play what I want] I won't be your friend any more" and it is a very present and scary threat to Morgan. Even though she doesn't have independent contact with any of her friends they are very important to her and she thinks and talks about them when they're not around.

She's having a hard time dealing with Tori getting more attention, and spends a lot of time pretending to be a baby too, or wishing they were twins.

She still won't admit she can read, because it's hard and puzzling out words does not result in anything like the pleasant story flow of being read to. She can write, though. She usually wants the nearest grownup to spell out each word for her one letter at a time, hEr OrtHograPHy lOOkSSS LiKE thiS, and sometimes she takes several stabs at a particularly tricky letter or runs out of room left-to-right and takes off in a random direction or starts somewhere else entirely -- or all of those, which can lead to particularly inscrutable collections of letters if you weren't watching her write it down in the first place.

She's quite good at simple addition, and subtraction as well if she's got paper to jot hashmarks on for counting. She can write all the digits from 0-9. She still tends to skip 15 when she's counting.

She colors inside the lines; draws faces with eyes, noses, mouths, and sometimes hair; draws stick figures with arms, legs, and occasionally hands. She's gotten much more willing to just take a stab at something even if it doesn't come out exactly like she wanted.

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I was befuddled when she asked how much longer until four and a half last week and I realized she was. She was rather excited "I hope someone asks me so I can tell them I'm not four, but I'm four and a half!"

Some of the kids apps have sections for parents that are unlocked by simple arithmetic. She startled me by encountering 5+3=? And calmly typing 8 to show me a video for an app she wants.

She has a reading tv show she likes with super kids who fly into books to find answers to their problems. It does a lot of letter identifying, complete the sentence, with a different word that changes the meaning but makes sense, and sounding out rhyming words. I approve because it has kid appropriate problems and answers. "I'm afraid to go down the slide.... I'll ask my friends to cheer me on!" "I want (character) to stop knocking down my block tower.... I'll tell them it makes me feel bad and ask me if they want to help!"

Anyway, sometimes she'll read words on the screen to herself and quickly look over to see if I've noticed. She really doesn't want us to know for some reason.

One of my boys was anxious that his ability to read would mean that I'd read to him less.

This is my suspicion. It also might have something to do with wanting to be a baby? She's pretty resistant to the whole "but look at all the cool stuff you can do because you're a big kid" argument.

How do schools handle kids that read befor 1st grade now? I was so horribly bored.

We are trying to get her into the dual-immersion program, so if all goes well we figure learning how to do everything en Español will keep her busy. The other possible school does some ability-tracking regrouping of the kids between subjects -- in some ways it is not so much three separate kindergarten classes as a very large class with three rooms and three teachers. And she certainly has a lot of fluency to work on. My first day in first grade, they handed out these readers. I sat down, read through it, and went to hand it back at the end of the day to get the next one. The teacher asked me some comprehension/memory questions, which I did not do well on, and she handed me the reader back to go through more slowly and work on more thorough understanding rather than just zooming through. After that I remember being bored when waiting for other kids to get through their paragraphs of reading out loud in turns, but that would have been true regardless of my ability level. The nice thing about reading is that so much of it is independent practice it's fairly easy to individualize.

I'm more worried about the math, personally. Math review can be deadly dull when the rest of the class is having a hard time grasping something you already fluently understand. My dad taught me simple algebra around second or third grade, so algebra class in middle school was an exercise in mutual frustration where everyone else in the class was all "this is so haaarrrd" and I was all "I don't even understand how to explain this, it is so obvious. How can you not get it?"

They do keep changing!

And do develop lots of personality too. Our two girls, 6 and 9, are COMpletely different. They each show lots of one of the parents..

It's so lovely to hear about all the new things Morgan is doing and learning.

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