This post is part of an ongoing small-memoir project by Lisa Reiter. To read other bite-sized memoirs from the project or contribute one of your own go to http://sharingthestoryblog.wordpress.com/2014/05/02/bite-size-memoir-no-1-school-at-seven/
I remember learning words in phonetic groups; cat, sat, hat, mat and numbers by ones, twos and fours.
I remember standing at Miss Nancy's desk proving I could count and add together the shiny, polished stones she held in her palm correctly.
I remember too, the slow sounding out of words by her side; painfully slow, too slowly for my age.
I remember being able to form the letters with an always stubby pencil but not string them together into anything useful.
I remember watching my friends move forward through the books on the reading shelf.
I remember trying to guess the story from the pictures, desperate to connect them to the words.
I remember waiting in the hall with my parents for the teacher conference.
I remember hearing Miss Nancy explain how far behind I was, how other kids like me had learning disabilities, that they went to special ed classes.
I remember her pausing, looking at me, deciding my fate, and finally saying, "She's smart. She can do math. I think she's just waiting for something. Let's give her another year."
I remember, one year later, walking down the hall each day for reading class in the room three grades above mine, no longer waiting.