Thursday, May 28, 2015

Summer is Finally Here!

Monday was Memorial Day.....the unofficial start of summer.....but also the day that we (my family) remember the family members who are no longer with us, who served our country with grace, honor, and dignity.  Tuesday was my daughter's last day of school (seriously, they went ONE day this week!).  That means summer is finally here!  Lots of changes in our household this summer.  For one, we had to take our foster doggy back to the shelter......he tore up our couch, and seemed to not enjoy sharing all of the love and affection with our fur baby.  He has since found his forever family and hopefully is getting all of the belly rubs he needs!  We also decided to homeschool, so right now I'm working on gathering up supplies, resources, and creating a plan for the next school year.  Is it me, or do we as parents have much higher expectations for our kids than schools do (my kid is going to think I'm one hard teacher).  I am also in the final stretch of our chicken fight.  City hall seems to think it's a laughing matter (I mean, they charge you $250 just to have this heard by the p&z board....who also thought this was a joke, and shot it down fairly quickly).  I'm trying to not give up though!  In other news.......how about the Duggars?  I for one, am a huge fan of 19 Kids and Counting, and the Duggar Family.  I will say, I am shocked over the current news of the oldest son, Josh, and what occurred 12 years ago.  Not to be controversial, but I will say this, many of celebrities have had sex scandals, or have been accused of something as serious as molestation or rape.  Yet, people rally behind them.  People believe that they are truly innocent, or had a lapse in judgement.  Consider this, as I walked down my high school's hallway, countless times I saw young boys, teenagers, grabbing girls in private areas, only for the girls to look over, and have no clue who touched them.  We have created a society that idolizes such things.  Teenagers who have no respect for themselves, or others.  If he was just another teenage boy, well.......boys will be boys.  Since we were not present, and no one but the parties involved will ever truly know the full story, or how it was handled, can we safely assume that he was dealt with, received help, and has since become a productive member of society?  Let's be honest here.....it could have been ignored, it could have been worse, he could have gone down a darker path with no return.  As for the victims......I understand there were 5.  I have read many different things, but most of the stories say that 4 of them were his own sisters.  Let's be thankful that the girls also received help, and that such an experience did not cause them lifelong pain.  From what I understand, they have forgiven him (Josh).  Lastly, let's stop persecuting this family, we can't be so hypocritical to think it's ok for one person to behave in such a manner, but not another person.  And there is my 2 cents on the topic.....that is all I've got to say about that!  Anyways............let's enjoy some summertime fun!

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Deciding to Homeschool

As the school year begins to wrap up, I have to wonder, did my child learn to her full potential?  Was she challenged enough?  Has she retained important knowledge and life skills?  My daughter has received outstanding grades this year, but I'm almost certain I can answer no to those questions.  My daughter attends a local public school.  Her old school, in the same district, closed down two years ago because of budget cuts.  She enjoys her new school.  They do some fun activities for the children and their families.  They also started a school garden this year (which we have been busy helping out in!).  The school and district are ranked in the top tier for the state.....but I still wonder, is it a good fit for my kid?  There are 4 categories of students in school (which I know a little about from my own experience in the grade school system).....the children who are having a little trouble learning, and are offered extra help.....the children who are slightly above average, not in need of extra help from the teacher, but not quite to the level were they are considered "gifted"......and then of course, the gifted students, who get bused off once or twice a week in order to do higher level learning and activities.  Two of these groups get all of the attention, while the rest are left to their own devices, and more often than not, aren't being pushed to unlock their true potential.  That is where my daughter falls.  Last year she was tested for the gifted program, she missed the score needed by 1%.  By all measures, my daughter is brilliant (and by brilliant, I mean book smart......let's not discuss common sense!).  She wants to study rocks and become a geologist one day, she even has an extensive rock collection, including a case full of rocks and minerals from a local university!  There is so much potential that we have yet to see from her........has the public school system failed her?  Would she be better off as a homeschool student?  This summer has a lot of thought and questioning before us........my question is, which way should we go?

If you homeschool, or have in the past, I'd appreciate any input.