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  1. #26
    Carpe Chicken Chicken's Avatar
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    Yep, defeated here in Cali too (unless that is where you are from then errr... just yep).

    Also I don't think kids are getting dumber. In fact, 3rd graders today are taugh things that I didn't even come close to having to know in 3rd grade. Every year the standards (what the kids are required to know for each grade level), are dropped down. I often find things that were in the 4th and 5th grade columns in MY column now.

    Times have changed and while my father was virtually guarenteed a job if he were to comlete college, this just isn't the case anymore. I do feel that education hasn't kept up with changing technology, and isn't nearly as interesting as nintendo. Kids today are bombarded with high, fast visuals on t.v. and with video games, and school doesn't quite compete with that as far as attention span goes.

    Stupid parents is stupid kids, as Forest Gump says... these children aren't given the same drive to excel due to uneducated parents (in my district), or working parents that have less time. Days of mom staying home and helping the kids with their homework are long gone.
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  2. #27
    Your Lord and Master, Foamy gold trophy Hierophant's Avatar
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    Actually my fiance and I have decided that once we get married that she will stay home from school to be with the kids more.

    Her son who is 5, is autistic. For the first 4 years of his life he had an ignorant out-of-work father to look after him while his mother worked to pay the bills. Essentially he was raised on Cartoon Network and Cocoa Puffs.

    He could be a lot more advanced than he is right now if that hadn't been the case. In the last year we have had him in a special daycare, which is subsidized but still costs her approximately $800 dollars a month (which I further subsidize).

    He has improved a lot since he has been in the school. We feel he'll be better off if is mother stays home with him full time. We are also willing to sacrifice 1/4th of our combined yearly income to do this as well. Not everyone will be able to make that kind of sacrifice and for a lot of people it would be a lot higher.
    Wayne Luke
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  3. #28
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    Originally posted by psalzer
    Do you really think kids are getting dumber? I don't know..I don't have kids in schools any more, but educational demands seem different today. When I was a kid, (when dinosaurs roamed the earth) kids and educators didn't see a problem with a kid not being "college bound" and that kid might be tracked very differently. When I was watching my kids grow up, I saw kids struggling to try to get up to speed to attend, at least, community college, because they were, naturally enough, afraid that they wouldn't find decent employment without college. Some of them just couldn't do it, though. So, they did badly in tests that they never would have been taking at all a generation or so ago. They would have been doing a vocational program from the start.

    I don't have the answers, but free, public education should be a right in this country. And vouchers bother me for a number of reasons, not the least of which is that they don't cover the whole cost, which means that not everyone will be able to benefit from them.
    Yes, they are dumber. A study eariler this year said that (if I remember correctly) your average teenager (13 or 14 I think) 20 years ago had a vocabularly twice the size of today's.

    I don't think there's much to disagree with - people make a decent living here because we live in a free country like this - I think we'll start to see more people hired from other countries through the Internet - very superior to a lot of people here.

    Once again, bottom line: I don't know anyone who is happy with the job the current system has done, and I think we can agree that it's simply not working. We may not agree on what changes need to be made, but something needs to be done.

  4. #29
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    I would like to add that I am not talking about raw intellignce. I believe that a human's capacity to learn and such is getting better with every generation - however intelligence capacity is very different from actual knowledge and skills.

    Kids today CAN learn more, but they actually learn less. In my opinion, they have less respect for school, more distractions, and are taught some things they don't need to, while other vital things are ignored.

    Side-note: I think we need to teach some new things in school. Politeness, morals, typing, basic computer skills. How to introduce yourself to someone. Clarity, and all around "using your head."

    These things seem to used to go without saying, but overall I feel my generation lacks a lot of these things. Kids have THREE things to prepare them for the world...school, their parents, and their own experiences...mostly the first two.

    I'm homeschooled, so for me it's what I see on my own, and what my parents teach me. As well as input from outside sources of course. Non-homeschoolers spend a good deal of time in or involved with school, and as such, it needs to teach them some more things. I think a fair amount of parents count on school to teach their kids some of these things.

    I certainly doubt your average parent has the expertise or time to teach their children how to handle themselves or use computers, etc.

  5. #30
    SitePoint Addict superbird's Avatar
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    I dunno, I think if the kids don't have morals taught to them outside school, the school is not going to help one iota. It's just so basic to who I am and I think most people feel the same.

  6. #31
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    Originally posted by Chicken
    Yep, defeated here in Cali too (unless that is where you are from then errr... just yep).

    Also I don't think kids are getting dumber. In fact, 3rd graders today are taugh things that I didn't even come close to having to know in 3rd grade. Every year the standards (what the kids are required to know for each grade level), are dropped down. I often find things that were in the 4th and 5th grade columns in MY column now.

    I was going to bring that up in my last post too, but it was getting a little wordy so I didn't. The difference between what really young kids had to learn in the ten years between my two kids - in the same schools - was staggering. I felt very fortunate that my younger one learned very easily in all subject areas and liked the challenge. Kids who were more "average" academically didn't have much chance to keep up as far as I could see, especially in the absence of any tracking except in reading in the early grades. With having to cover so much ground, at an age when shoe tying is a challenge for many, they don't have a lot of chance to get grounded in the things that will help them learn anything they need to later on. And I do think that some kids are very, very frustrated by it. They don't like to feel they're failing, and some of them work all the harder, but they're children after all, and some give up early.

  7. #32
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    Originally posted by superbird
    I dunno, I think if the kids don't have morals taught to them outside school, the school is not going to help one iota. It's just so basic to who I am and I think most people feel the same.
    You're probably right - although it would certainly help. It'd be a nice change from the handing out of condoms and other such things.

  8. #33
    Carpe Chicken Chicken's Avatar
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    Originally posted by TWTCommish
    Side-note: I think we need to teach some new things in school. Politeness, morals, typing, basic computer skills. How to introduce yourself to someone. Clarity, and all around "using your head."
    It might surprise you to learn that we do teach this. Every child is taught from K on in my school:

    honesty, integrity, respect, responsibility and 7 other topics every month (I can't think of the whole list right now, but it changes monthly)

    They greet all adults, "Good morning Mr. Whoever", are told, "Good morning little Jimmy, how are you this morning?", their response is, "Fine thank you, and how are you this morning?", to which we reply, "Fine thank you." Now this isn't always quite like this, but they ARE taught how to talk to adults. They are taught to respect adults. This of course goes out the window when their parents come on campus telling one of the teachers to "F-OFF, and if they'd like to go around the block and take care of things". Yes, this has happened. Obviously this is a school education problem right?

    We teach basic typic skills from K on. Using your head, etc.

    These things seem to used to go without saying, but overall I feel my generation lacks a lot of these things. Kids have THREE things to prepare them for the world...school, their parents, and their own experiences...mostly the first two.
    Kids spend just as much time at school as they do at home per day. Why only the first two? The problem is NOTHING is reinforced at home.

    I think a fair amount of parents count on school to teach their kids some of these things.
    Hard to argue that since many of our parents are rude, and don't have books at the house. Some, or did you mean all?

    I certainly doubt your average parent has the expertise or time to teach their children how to handle themselves or use computers, etc.
    No excuses. If you think we have all sorts of time to teach children this, then you are mistaken. Really although I have a child from 8:30am until 2pm, you'd be surprised at how little time I have.

    8:30am-9:55am
    >>Journal writing (what you did yesterday)
    >>Math Journal (word problem of the day)
    >>Math Meeting (calendar, counting, etc., activities)
    >>Beginning English (includes a wide range of things to satisfy ELL requirements)
    >>Open Court (our full reading program)

    10:25am-11:55am
    >>Continue Open Court reading (reading stories aloud/comprehension/laguage skills practice)
    11:30am-11:55am
    >>Math Lesson

    12:50pm-1:00pm
    >>Cursive writing
    1:00pm-1:15pm
    >>Silent reading
    1:20pm-1:50pm
    >>Math Part II (part one of their homework)

    Now add in writing mandated by the state, social studies, science, health, character education (honesty, respect from above), anti-smaking and drug programs, and my day is PACKED.

    I certainly doubt your average parent has the expertise or time to teach their children how to handle themselves or use computers, etc.
    This isn't my problem. When you have kids, you *should* stop smoking whatever it is you are smoking. Kids tell us all the time, "daddy drinks and hits mommy", " daddy does drugs". Unfortunately they don't have the expertise to be responsible citizens themselves, let alone the ability to raise a child.

    Teach basic typing skills by going to your local library. Even Inglewood has a library. They even have typing and learning programs!

    As teachers, we are reeally tired of hearing that it is the school's responsibility and fault for things. It's never the parent's responsibility for anything. Everyone with children should take a long, hard look at what YOU are doing for your children in terms of their education. Where are you taking your kids to increase their knowledge? What museums, science centers? How many times do you go to the library? Are you going to buy educational games for your child this Christmas or Play Station 2? Do you ever let your kids pay for things and count the correct change? Ask them what time it is? Ask them how long until dinner time?

    Keep in mind that educated people often do these things, and I am preaching to the wrong crowd. My kid's parents wouldn't even think twice about most of this stuff. It simply doesn't happen. Kids stay up until 10pm (way too late for a 3rd grader) to watch WWF yet can't complete the ONE page math homework I give them with 10 questions on it (takes approx 10 minutes to complete). Homework is sloppy, yet the parents sign off on it. 1/2 comleted homework - signed. Incorrect homework - signed. *I* have to make them re-do it. Does that waste time? You bet.

    Originally posted by superbird
    I dunno, I think if the kids don't have morals taught to them outside school, the school is not going to help one iota.
    You hit it on the head Superbird.

    [Edited by Chicken on 11-11-2000 at 04:57 AM]
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  9. #34
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Chicken

    It might surprise you to learn that we do teach this. Every child is taught from K on in my school:

    honesty, integrity, respect, responsibility and 7 other topics every month (I can't think of the whole list right now, but it changes monthly)
    Glad to hear it - that certainly is not taught later on...and it's usually forgotten later on. All schools I've come in contact with (above K, of course) have not had anything of the sort. They do hand on condoms, however. Why they have a class on sex and not on responsibilty or morals is beyond me.



    Originally posted by Chicken

    Kids spend just as much time at school as they do at home per day. Why only the first two? The problem is NOTHING is reinforced at home.
    That all depends - yes, home is important to all of this. My point is that school is making things worse in some cases. The condoms (is that spelled right?) are a major problem. I doubt parents usually hand out such things. Both sides play a role.


    Originally posted by Chicken

    Hard to argue that since many of our parents are rude, and don't have books at the house. Some, or did you mean all?
    I'm a bit confused - what is it you're asking? All I meant to say was that I think a lot of parents assume school is playing a major part to help their kids prepare themselves for life...

    I think we can agree that learning how to use Windows 98 or speak clearly is usually more important than the internal structure of a dung beetle.


    Originally posted by Chicken

    No excuses. If you think we have all sorts of time to teach children this, then you are mistaken. Really although I have a child from 8:30am until 2pm, you'd be surprised at how little time I have.
    I understand people are busy - but something needs to be said for time with your kids. My father has GOT to be one of the busiest people around. The guy has several jobs, and one of them involves him falling asleep early so he can get up at 5AM each weekday morning. He still finds time to recommend books to me, go places on weekends, and nudge me in the right direction now and then.

    I'm not going to demonize busy parents - I myself am starting to learn just how busy the world can be. However, teaching these things are essential, and I think a lot of people underestimate how important they are.


    Originally posted by Chicken
    Now add in writing mandated by the state, social studies, science, health, character education (honesty, respect from above), anti-smaking and drug programs, and my day is PACKED.

    What grade/school is this? Like I said, I've never seen any type of "behavioral" classes anywhere other than very early grades.


    Originally posted by Chicken

    As teachers, we are reeally tired of hearing that it is the school's responsibility and fault for things. It's never the parent's responsibility for anything. Everyone with children should take a long, hard look at what YOU are doing for your children in terms of their education. Where are you taking your kids to increase their knowledge? What museums, science centers? How many times do you go to the library? Are you going to buy educational games for your child this Christmas or Play Station 2? Do you ever let your kids pay for things and count the correct change? Ask them what time it is? Ask them how long until dinner time?
    Whoa whoa, hold on. I'm a conservative, and as such am constantly calling on people to take responsibility for themselves and, in this case, their children. My point is that if we're pouring all this money into public schooling, and public school is currently the 2nd most influentical thing in a child's life growing up, then some new things need to be taught.

    I think a parent that neglects his children in terms of learning needs to be set straight. But hey, you said it yourself: people are busy, days are packed. It happens. So either the parents need to intervene to teach these all-but-ignored basics and morals, or the schools need to take care of it. And given the money and time invested, as well as the fact that the children spend a lot of their development years there, they need an influence like that from the school. Home is needed as well, but it should be at least one place, if not both.


    Originally posted by Chicken

    Keep in mind that educated people often do these things, and I am preaching to the wrong crowd. My kid's parents wouldn't even think twice about most of this stuff. It simply doesn't happen. Kids stay up until 10pm (way too late for a 3rd grader) to watch WWF yet can't complete the ONE page math homework I give them with 10 questions on it (takes approx 10 minutes to complete). Homework is sloppy, yet the parents sign off on it. 1/2 comleted homework - signed. Incorrect homework - signed. *I* have to make them re-do it. Does that waste time? You bet.
    Like I said before: kids are getting dumber. Too many distractions, lower standards, busy parents - it all comes together to give you children who are capable of learning more than those 20 years ago, but just don't.

    Originally posted by superbird
    I dunno, I think if the kids don't have morals taught to them outside school, the school is not going to help one iota.
    You hit it on the head Superbird.[/B][/QUOTE]

    I think it will help - doesn't make much sense to me to say "the parents arn't teaching this kid anything useful about morals...so he's lost, let him go." I don't see the logic in that.

    I think that every bit helps. For those with immoral parents: it will be a positive influence to them, and the ones around them with moral parents will not only influence them as well, but they will have their own morals re-inforced most of the time.

    Makes sense to me.

  10. #35
    SitePoint Wizard edshuck's Avatar
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    hi

    i live in California, vouchers were on the ballot and i voted against them.

    some years ago my daughter qualified for gifted education in the public schools and when it came time for high school chose to attend a private school, Lick Wilmerding. this was the early 80s.

    the voucher question came up about that time and i opposed it then and do now. here is why.

    on the question of quality of instruction.

    will the instruction quality go up for the voucher student? yes if the a good environment with decent instruction is found. no if it is not.

    and for a moment look at the reason a corp would enter education....money.

    where would corporations get their teachers. probably the same place school districts do.

    are more people going to enter teaching as a career? probably not.

    will the instruction quality change for the remaining students? possibly.

    parent participation. schools with parent participation seem on the surface

    educational focus has never been correct. at the moment, there is a need for cisco certified. this should be a shop class in many high schools.

    i have to finish this later. but vouchers drain resources from the public system. the focus should be to modify the system not create a new one.

    peace

  11. #36
    SitePoint Addict superbird's Avatar
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    When I refer to morals I mean don't lie, don't steal, do as you would be done by. I think teaching morals beyond that is a minefield because all parents have different ideas as to how they want their children brought up.

  12. #37
    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    There as basic morals we can all agree to. I think most people will agree that, even if for some bizzare reason the parents don't mind their teenagers having sex, they won't mind schools teaching them the importance of responsibility. IE: no harm ever came from waiting.

  13. #38
    Carpe Chicken Chicken's Avatar
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    First, I want you to realize that when I say, "you" - I didn't mean "you as in Chris, the guy who is reading this", rather parents in general (I'm aware you aren't a parent yet, and are more on the other end of things).

    Originally posted by TWTCommish
    Glad to hear it - that certainly is not taught later on...and it's usually forgotten later on.
    I know what you mean, and yes, I think a big change happens after 3rd grade, and especially after in the middle school.

    Originally posted by Chicken

    Hard to argue that since many of our parents are rude, and don't have books at the house. Some, or did you mean all?

    I'm a bit confused - what is it you're asking? All I meant to say was that I think a lot of parents assume school is playing a major part to help their kids prepare themselves for life...
    What I meant is that some parents mistakenly assume that EVERYTHING is taught in school, and they rely on only that. Again, educated people tend to teach their kids respect and manners, varoius school skills, their address and phone number at least, etc.

    Originally posted by Chicken

    No excuses. If you think we have all sorts of time to teach children this, then you are mistaken. Really although I have a child from 8:30am until 2pm, you'd be surprised at how little time I have.


    I understand people are busy - but something needs to be said for time with your kids.
    I think you misunderstood me, that is my school schedule. I teach 3rd grade (if I didn't mention that before), so you can see that I don't have loads of time during the day. I wasn't talking about how busy I am after 2pm (which is another ball of wax).

    I'm not going to demonize busy parents - I myself am starting to learn just how busy the world can be. However, teaching these things are essential, and I think a lot of people underestimate how important they are.
    Agree 100%, but we teach them one thing and they go home to another. Did you get most of your values from your teacher or your parents?

    What grade/school is this? Like I said, I've never seen any type of "behavioral" classes anywhere other than very early grades.
    Heh, these are the very early grades, 3rd as I said. And I think this is the difference. You are talking about what happens after 3rd grade, and I agree, but some things can't be taught at school. Just like religion- if you parents are forcing you to go, and you keep hearing dad say that church is just a waste and is a bunch of b.s., what are the chances that the child will value religion?

    I think a parent that neglects his children in terms of learning needs to be set straight. But hey, you said it yourself: people are busy, days are packed.
    And how do we "set parents straight"? If I want to lose my job, I could, but other than that, we have to be a bit careful as to what we say and do. Parents don't hesitate to sue the school district these days. -and I said *my* day is packed during school hours, just to clarify, but I agree anyway. I was just letting you know that between all the programs I have to teach there isn't much time left over. We (the teachers) had a stern lecture from the principal. We were keeping the kids past 2pm and parents were complaining (no buses here so the road gets clogged with all the parent's cars). -But there just isn't enough time to cover what we have to cover!

    So either the parents need to intervene to teach these all-but-ignored basics and morals, or the schools need to take care of it. And given the money and time invested, as well as the fact that the children spend a lot of their development years there, they need an influence like that from the school. Home is needed as well, but it should be at least one place, if not both.
    Well speaking from an elementary standpoint, it is being taught in the classroom, and not enough is being done at home. Keep in mind that children spend much more timne at home than they do at school during those development years.


    lower standards, busy parents
    Busier parents yes, but not lower standards. As I mentioned, things in the upper grade columns continually appear in my column the next year. Standards are being raised.

    Ohhh, and only TWO of my kids' mothers works. Seems that they'd be able to take some time out of that busy schedule to help their kid, eh? I have some kids, who NEITHER parent works! What the hell is their excuse? We're not talking about busy power lunches here, and meetings that go until 10pm.

    I think it will help - doesn't make much sense to me to say "the parents arn't teaching this kid anything useful about morals...so he's lost, let him go." I don't see the logic in that.
    No educator says that, but I hear parents saying something to the effect. "We don't know what to do", "Alex doesn't listen to us". If you can't set some ground rules for a 7 year old, you are surely going to be in trouble when this child reaches his teen years. These are 2nd graders we are talking about! Hard for the boy to respect his mother when daddy is beating the crap out of her. Of course he doesn't respect his mother!

    I think you come from a normal family, in at least a middle to upper middle class area. My sister (a social worker in N.H.) said recently, "I didn't realize that most kids don't grow up in houses". Neither did I util I started teaching here I suppose.

    My kids live in apartments with 2-5 other kids sleeping in one small bedroom. Sometimes I am amazed that they get their homework done at all. There is no quiet place for them to set up books and study. I had my own room, with parents that didn't beat me. They spoke English (these parents don't for the most part, some not at all). My father and mother were married (many of my parents are not), highly educated (one is a teacher with Masters, the other a Nuclear Engineer doctorate). My kid's parents? Some have finished high school, a few went on to college, maybe one finished 4 years. As I said, they either have been, or are, in jail (in my town that would be UNHEARD of).

    Too long already, and anything els I write will be skimmed, heh. Sorry so long... I also want you to know that I agree with all the points you've made (I know it sounds like I am arguing with you, but really I'm not). I'm just trying to apply them to what I have to deal with every day.

    [Edited by Chicken on 11-11-2000 at 02:34 PM]
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    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    Also, part of teaching morals is doing away with the anti-moral things involved. Schools should teach children about lots of things, but I don't think how to use a condom is one of them.

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    SitePoint Wizard TWTCommish's Avatar
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    "Agree 100%, but we teach them one thing and they go home to another. Did you get most of your values from your teacher or your parents?"

    Actually my parents and teacher(s) are one and the same: I'm homeschooled. I did go to public school for a year though, and have been reasonably close to the school system around here, and some others. I consider myself fortunate given the school district I live in.


    "Well speaking from an elementary standpoint, it is being taught in the classroom, and not enough is being done at home. Keep in mind that children spend much more timne at home than they do at school during those development years."

    Of course - problem is, there's just too much going on these days. I think parents definitely need to step-up.

    I also feel, however, that a voice of reason concerning morals from school, even if not echoed at home, is worth a try. The very least that can be done is to remain neutral on things like sex - rather than "well, you're going to do it ANYWAY..."

    I don't know if this is stil true today, but I read that a few places had actual classes titled "Outercourse 101" - I'm not going to elaborate on their content matter, I think the class name speaks for itself. Ridiculous, to be sure.


    "Busier parents yes, but not lower standards. As I mentioned, things in the upper grade columns continually appear in my column the next year. Standards are being raised.

    Ohhh, and only TWO of my kids' mothers works. Seems that they'd be able to take some time out of that busy schedule to help their kid, eh? I have some kids, who NEITHER parent works! What the hell is their excuse? We're not talking about busy power lunches here, and meetings that go until 10pm."

    Pure laziness I'd imagine. I think standards have lowered in some senses. Obviously parents are busier, but the two are directly linked. A busy parent isn't going to run over a kid's homework with a comb the same way someone with lots of time would - so in a sense, the standards are lowered.

    And of course, the general decline of children who can read, or perform several other skills, lowers the standards automatically. Did you know that a class in high school some years ago offered over 40% of the grade for being able to write all the letters of the alphabet, upper and lower case without a hitch?


    "No educator says that, but I hear parents saying something to the effect. "We don't know what to do", "Alex doesn't listen to us". If you can't set some ground rules for a 7 year old, you are surely going to be in trouble when this child reaches his teen years. "

    Ugh - a whole other issue I'd say. Punishment of children...as you can probably guess, I'm in favor of spanking your kids - I've got 5 siblings (some direct, and some step-siblings) who were all spanked as children, and they're all fairly obedient for the most part, and I don't see anything that even resembles emotional scars.

    Let's face it: too much stock is placed in "a child's self-esteem" - I was spanked whenever I was bad as a young child, and I don't feel worthless at all. If anything, I feel as if I should hold myself to higher standard whenever possible.

    I think part of it is that too many parents want to be their kid's friends...all they should try to be is their parents. Fair, but just.


    "I think you come from a normal family, in at least a middle to upper middle class area."

    Yeah, basically. But don't get me wrong: when I was growing up, we were very poor. Things were quite rough. My life isn't peaches and cream - my parents are divorced, and shortly after the divorce our father lived in a small apartment, and inside he, myself, and 3 of my siblings would squish in, low on room.


    "My kid's parents? Some have finished high school, a few went on to college, maybe one finished 4 years. As I said, they either have been, or are, in jail (in my town that would be UNHEARD of)."

    I know what you mean - things are out of control in a lot of areas. I will say this though: in the case of homeschooling, a parent's intelligence or level of schooling hasn't been shown to have any significant effect on their ability to educate their children - so in the case of help at home in addition to school, I think the parents are capable, just too busy, unwilling, or interested.

    Interesting conversation - despite the back and forth, I think we have a lot of similar ideals.


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    I just want to say that my younger offspring graduated high school just 3 and a half years ago, and never got condoms in school. He was taught some about the reproductive system and related issues, and there was information about AIDs. Parents were permitted to opt out of that on behalf of their kids if they wished. Condoms were never part of the deal though, and we live in the suburbs of NYC, not in an ultra-conservative area. There was no anti-morality taught. Rather, I got the impression that they were teaching about the possible consequences of certain behavior in as academic and non-judgemental manner as possible so as to have half a chance of being effective. If the kids were just hearing another morality lecture there would be little chance of getting through. I do believe that some of it made an impression, if not in terms of waiting, at least in terms of being more careful than they might have otherwise.

    When you talk about the influences on kids - I think that parents' values, or lack thereof are probably the biggest influence lifelong for many people. During the growing up years, though, I'd say that peer group, media and marketing are the most major influences on many, many kids. I tried to teach my kids critical thinking in terms of the media and marketing, but never could defeat the peer group part. Luckily they outgrew that intact.

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    Originally posted by TWTCommish
    Interesting conversation - despite the back and forth, I think we have a lot of similar ideals.
    I agree, and (not to insult you if I am wrong!), aren't you approx. 16 or something? If so, I am impressed with your level of discussion! Not just because you are 16, -at any age mind you!

    Also, you got me on that "Who did you learn your values from, your teacher or your parents..." question, heh. Yeah both, as they are one and the same, heh!
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    To be fair to a lot of parents out there - many of them have no clue about how to help their child learn the things they need to learn these days. When I was in school, lo those long years ago, there were a number of parents who were unable to help their kids study or learn the concepts behind things, as they did not have the necessary framework to do so. Many of them learned the three r's and that was it. Computers (such as they were then, and even moreso now) were certainly beyond them. Calculus? No way. Physics? Right.

    While certain things may rely on parents - teaching their kids to follow through on things, for instance, or helping them learn how to learn - there are other things where parents are completely lost, due to their own upbringing. Those who are more interested in their child's success will generally do the things they can to assist them. Those who are too frightened or ashamed to admit what they don't know are the ones that need to be told that it's not a crime to not know everything in the world.

    A few years ago, I worked with the Learn to Read foundation. One of the guys I tutored was the father of two girls who were struggling in their classes - and there was nothing he could do, since he couldn't read well enough to even offer rudimentary help. He was one of the best students I ever had, because he a) admitted there was something he couldn't do, and b) took steps to resolve it. Most people, however, are unwilling to seek help, which is a shame. Imagine the possibilities were it otherwise.
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    Originally posted by Chicken
    Originally posted by TWTCommish
    Interesting conversation - despite the back and forth, I think we have a lot of similar ideals.
    I agree, and (not to insult you if I am wrong!), aren't you approx. 16 or something? If so, I am impressed with your level of discussion! Not just because you are 16, -at any age mind you!

    Also, you got me on that "Who did you learn your values from, your teacher or your parents..." question, heh. Yeah both, as they are one and the same, heh!
    Hehe - thanks! Yes, I am 16. People like you force me onto the Internet - it would be a disaster if I had to fit my huge ego through doors in the real world - so I'll just hang out on SP until Luzer, Annette, or some other left-leaning person slams on me enough to bring it down to quasi-normal size.

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    Annette, you're right, and I have a fair amount of parents (maybe 1/2) that cannot read English, nor are able to do 3rd grade math, so errrr.. it makes it kinda difficult. We're asking the company that publishes our Math program (Saxon, ask for it at a school near you - really great!), to consider a Spanish version. They seem more concerned with creating a language arts program to compliment their math program.

    I'm all for it as Open Court (our current lang. arts program) is a Canadian product, and while it is fine for white English speaking Canadians, it fails my Spanish speakers too often.

    The 'A' card is a sheep... or so I thought. It is actually a lamb, pronounced how Canadians would pronounce it: "l-ahhhhhhmm".

    Also, I wonder if the Canadians that designed this program have ever seen a 70's porno? The tape they have the kids listen to:

    "U... tugboat, tugboat, uhh uhh uhh uhh uhh uhh" - it is really disturbing.
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    Chris, you funny guy. I may tilt to the left a bit, but my sense of fair play remains intact!

    Chicken, I don't know aboot having a Canadian company try to teach English to a bunch of Spanish kids. We have a very dear friend from Canada who recently became a US citizen and tried to demonstrate for her how she sounded to the rest of us. I have pretty much a non-accent unless I'm mimicking someone (I have a real facility for that, which may explain my interest in linguistics), but most of the people around here have the slow drawl that folks from other places have come to expect. Hearing her trying to ape those with the southern accents was amusing, to say the least.

    However, back to the topic - I haven't the foggiest what they're teaching in elementary school these days. My little brother is the last one in school, and his teachers (at a college prep magnet high school) don't seem terribly bright to me - although, to be fair, one of his instructors is right out of college (graduated the spring before the new year started - that's how fresh). But the solution to that is not to start shipping kids off the private schools with public money. Teachers in FL have one of the lowest payrates of any state. If we started paying teachers like we pay people in the private sector, no doubt we'd attract the same types of highly qualified people - and hopefully this would result in better instruction, which would then lead to better results.
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    I try.

    Saxon Math? That's what I and some of my siblings use - great stuff. Obviously I have a gripe with math and other things I don't think I need to learn, but as far as teaching you all you'll need to know about math, Saxon is great. I actually have discovered a couple of botched problems, though.

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    It is how math should be taught, designed very well! Good to see another "user". If you have school age children who are not using Saxon, I recommend you bug the principal to check it out.

    Children who went through the 3rd grade program scored very well on the 4th grade Sat9 tests. Tells you something.
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