Maybe part of the “New Normal” should be the “Old Normal” – ’cause it sure beats Abby Normal!
In the last two weeks, lost among the coronavirus ruckus, some organizations have issued reports revealing the poor scores of our elementary and middle school students on standardized tests. From the Pioneer Institute comes a study showing the failures of Common Core in basic subjects like reading and math.
“Nearly a decade after states adopted Common Core,” said the Pioneer Institute’s Executive Director Jim Stergios, “the empirical evidence makes it clear that these national standards have yielded underwhelming results for students. The proponents of this expensive, legally questionable policy initiative have much to answer for.” Continue reading
Exactly! Schools teach one thing: dependence. Since we would eventually like our children to be independent, I think we better continue to handle this ourselves. ~ DeeAnn Schank Standlee
Developing an attractive, legible cursive handwriting style certainly has great aesthetic value, but it also has numerous mental, physical, social, and practical benefits. Continue reading
Author Jack Cashill recently wrote an article entitled “Why Your Sons Refuse to Read”. It is a must-read for every parent with a son who has not learned to read or who has not learned to read well enough to succeed at his grade/age level. I hope to help parents understand what must be done in order for their sons (and daughters) learn to read well, to enjoy reading, and to begin catching up with all of the concepts and vocabulary that they missed during the years of not reading. Continue reading
Storytelling Help for Parents in the Era of COVID-19 and Sharing the ongoing story: The Secret Prince
You’ve stocked up on essentials: hand sanitizer and toilet paper, and you’ve got a cupboard with non-perishable food including enough pasta to feed your neighborhood. But your neighbors won’t be visiting anytime soon.
If you have children, here’s one more thing to add to your list of essentials in this era of solitude: stories, especially stories that you create yourself to help your kids cope with unexpected changes in their daily lives.
The Secret Prince is an ongoing story meant to support the inner journey of children in this time of solitude. You will find the first five chapters below. My goal is to add a new chapter each Monday, Wednesday and Friday. I hope your child(rens) aged four through twelve, find The Secret Prince helps to normalize staying home for many days.
The story shows a child whose independent spirit helps him deal with being stuck inside for weeks. This story has no mention of disease; it’s about a boy who has to stay inside due to flooding. It’s not an explanation for why we are practicing social distancing. By now your child already knows why their daily routines are different. The question now for most children is not so much why as how to re-imagine their daily lives. Continue reading
Our children live in a fast-paced society, and their life has become much easier than the one we were used to.
I know countless applications that can do their tasks and assignments instead of them, and they can type just a few words on their computers and find everything they need, without having to jog their memory or use their knowledge.
Yet, many fear that in this way, we are raising slouches, irresponsible future adults, and a burden to our society. There is no doubt that new inventions have provided more comfort than we ever dreamed of living in. Continue reading
As she stood in front of her 5th grade class on the very first day of school,
she told the children an untruth.
Happy Birthday, Miss Jones ~ Norman Rockwell
Like most teachers, she looked at her students and said that she loved them all the same. However, that was impossible, because there in the front row, slumped in his seat, was a little boy named Teddy Stoddard.
Mrs. Thompson had watched Teddy the year before and noticed that he did not play well with the other children, that his clothes were messy and that he constantly needed a bath. In addition, Teddy could be unpleasant. Continue reading
“A government is like everything else: to preserve it, we must love it.”
Today’s schools teach only the ugliest parts of US history, turning students off from civic engagement. Shutterstock
When he was young, Thomas Jefferson carefully copied those words — a quote from the great political philosopher Montesquieu — into his “commonplace book,” the private journal he kept as a student for future inspiration.
“Everything, therefore, depends on establishing this love in a republic,” the passage continued. “And to inspire it ought to be the principal business of education.”
Thomas Jefferson thought teaching children American History, at an early age, should be a central focus. Continue reading
The idea that parents get in the way of children’s education and can halt their flourishing is nothing new. It’s also false!
At the heart of debates around education freedom and school choice is the subtle but sinister sentiment that parents can’t be trusted. They are too busy, too poor, or too ignorant to make the right decisions for their kids, and others know better how to raise and educate children. Never mind that parents have successfully cared for and educated their children for millennia, ensuring the ongoing survival and continued success of our species. Continue reading
The US film industry may have generated revenues somewhere in the region of $40 billion last year, but it seems Hollywood still has plenty of work to do if it wants to compete with that most hallowed of American institutions: the public library… Continue reading
No, Let Me Shout It Out For You… ‘BOOM, BOOM, BOOMER!’
“Boomer” as of recent past is being used as a pejorative term to paint us boomers in veils of black. How quaint! Yes, it’s true that we think a lot alike.
We grew up with all-American values, values that coarse through our veins as our life blood. Freedom is more than just a word; it has become a genuine part of our DNA! We know Americanism because we were taught from young on what the alternative was. We embraced the American way of life with every fiber of our being because we were taught the history of what the alternative was. WE WERE GIVEN THE CHOICE AND GIVEN THE FREEDOM TO CHOOSE, WE CHOSE FREEDOM!
A recent report shows that 87% of state history standards include no mention of Native American history after 1900.
At the old well of Acoma (1904) Tiwa by Edward S. Curtis
On the heels of the National Indian Education Association’s conference held in Minneapolis earlier this fall and just in time for Native American Heritage Month, the nearby Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community announced a $5 million philanthropic campaign to fund resources, curriculum, and training on Native American heritage for teachers and administrators across Minnesota, according to the Star Tribune. “We’re hoping we can move the needle in the narrative in Minnesota and be a model,” Rebecca Crooks-Stratton, the secretary-treasurer for SMSC, told the newspaper. Continue reading
This isn’t a new thought, as highlighted below, but this does need to be a growing trend. Teaching the youth that not only is it acceptable to work with your hands, it is also very rewarding. The process of creating something, and then being able to hold it in your hand, can have a profound effect on a kid’s desire to learn more… Continue reading
There is this idea Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir Mohamad asking Malaysians to emulate Japan and Korea as models, of showing recordings of good teachers teaching. The 94-year-old prime minister liked it a lot and wants school to adopt and implement. I suppose his minister of education would also abide by the wishes, as a loyal party member. But I hope I am wrong. That this is not to be the solution to improve our education system, any for that matter. If this is so, I believe this is an idea whose time should never come. Continue reading