This year was completely different.
I attended the 5th Grade "Graduation" ceremony on Tuesday. I know, I know, you're not really graduating in 5th grade, but in this area 6th and 7th grade are at a different school, so the kids are leaving elementary school, therefore they have a little ceremony.
They handed out a "moving on" certificate to all the kids, then they distributed a few awards. There were presidential awards for good grades. There was a silver award for a GPA of 3.5-3.75 and Thing 1 got one of those. They had some awards from the gym teacher for kids who had done so many push-ups and laps and whatever.
Then they did what they called the Citizenship Award. Each of the four classes was asked to vote for three of their classmates on who best represented the class for honor and fairness and bravery and all around good citizeny stuff. Three students were chosen from each class.
And Thing 1 was chosen.
I was totally floored.
She is so quiet, so reserved. There are other kids in her class who are very dynamic and outgoing and noticeable, a couple little girls I know of who are really lovely little girls. Of course I think Thing 1 is all those things, but I'm her mother and I'm aware there is a certain bias here and she is not very self promoting and I imagine she blends into the background a lot... But apparently the other kids noticed her too.
It was really lovely. There was a certificate with a little pin attached.
Then right at the end of the whole ceremony the music teacher said she had an award. She said there has been one student all year who has helped on every promotional banner, has stepped up every time and made herself available to help at every opportunity. She had one award to give out, and she gave it to Thing 1. Thing 1 pretty much swept the award ceremony.
The school had a 5th Grade concert last Thursday, and Thing 1 sang a song. When she announced that she wanted to try out for this performance because the kids could sing solos if they wanted to, her sister and I didn't know what to think. When she announced she had passed the audition we murmured to ourselves that we weren't sure if this was a good thing or a bad thing. In a brilliant move, Hubby found her a voice coach and I have taken her down to the valley for voice lessons. She's had 4 lessons, and the teacher taught her to relax and sing out and just the extra practice and singing in front of him did her a lot of good. She did beautifully at the performance. I had suggested she sing The Show by Lenka, which was a good choice for many reasons, except that it starts bam on the the first note. No introduction, no preamble, the music starts and the song starts. So it's really easy for her to get off. And she has a hard time getting back on until there's a break in the music, and she can hear where she's supposed to be. Sure enough for the performance she didn't come in on the right beat and was a beat behind, until the first point that the music pauses and she can catch up. She was by no means perfect, but she hit a couple notes she usually has trouble with, and she sang out, and did really beautifully. I was tensely watching her perform, noting every little thing she did wrong, instead of letting her wonderful performance wash over me... I have heard her sing it enough that I don't sit and cry when I listen to her. Which is a good and a bad thing.
It has been a very good year for Thing 1.