Smile for the Joy of Others

Smile for the Joy of Others

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Sunday, March 19, 2017

Perspectives to Ponder

Perspectives to think about:

In today's modern theology of education, the word "rigor" or "rigorous" has become a popular description of the education goal at hand.

"After Common Core, States Set Rigorous Standards"

"Remember the three Rs – reading, writing and ’rithmetic? Get ready to add a fourth: rigor. It’s the buzzword in education"

" “include rigorous content and application of knowledge through high-order skills” – the concept of rigor will be a mainstay of the education agenda for the foreseeable future."

"Ever since, the idea that with the right support all students can master rigorous content has dominated public policy discussions and put a new spotlight on the idea of rigor."

The word "rigor" is Latin, meaning: "numbness, stiffness, hardness, firmness, roughness, rudeness. Rigor mortis derives from this meaning which is "the stiffness of death".

I read the above statement from a homeschool book (Teaching from Rest) that encourages a peaceful education experience. Obviously, applying a rigorous aspect to a homeschool education wouldn't likely contribute to a more peaceful experience, at least not in our home.

The author goes on to use the word "diligence". This word comes from the Latin word "diligere" which means to "single out, value highly, esteem, prize, love; aspire to, take delight in, appreciate."

Now, applying those 2 theories into education whether it be at a traditional school or homeschooling, to the students can result into 2 very different types of students. The word "student" also comes from Latin, "studium" meaning "zeal, affection, eagerness." Based on the above meanings, do we want our children to be "rigorous students" or "diligent students"?

As homeschooling parents, Jeremy and I must choose which theory to apply to our boys as we create an education lifestyle. Rearing "diligent students" is more appealing and pleasing than rigorous. Neither are easy but the consequences of both make for very different perspectives of life. My goal in rearing "diligent" students, is that our boys will find that learning, however that's defined by them, will be enjoyable as they grow into being who God has purposed them to be.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Baseball Season Begins

Tournament baseball...I have a love/hate relationship with it.

I love that CB gets to play. I love to watch him improve and play a sport he loves. I love the parents on his team. I love that his coaches are truly there to coach these kids into better players, not to make a name for themselves or for their own kid. I love his fellow teammates. These fellow sportsmen exhibit the same class, sportsmanship and gratitude of their parents...they make their parents proud. And ...I certainly love the lessons CB is learning in both the failures and successes.

I love seeing friends from former teams or friends on other teams who also make this game an enjoyment. There are some parents who are doing it right...keep on my help keep the sport family friendly.

What I hate is that many parents allow this sport to bring out the worst in them. Some coaches can't seem to keep a realistic perspective of why the game is played and who is playing the game. Some players think they are the next MLB MVP as much as their parents do and it's exhibited in their cocky/hot-headed attitudes (not to be confused with confidence). Although, this weekend's tournament didn't present any of the negative behaviors I just mentioned, the season is young.
And I hate just as much when the ladies' bathrooms run out of toilet paper and baking in the sun when mother nature turns the thermostat to "southern heat/hell degrees"

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Monday, March 13, 2017

A Tale of Which end is the Tail...

Another tale of...

A puppy whose hair was do flowing
He really had know way of knowing
Which end was his head...
Once stopped me and said,
"Please, sir, am I coming or going?"

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Rambling Review from a Reader...Secret Daughter

Secret Daughter by Shilpi Somaya Gowda

My sister knows my love for reading.  She calls me from Georgia when she's shopping at her local thrift stores and allows me to shop for books.  This is one of the books that came from my over-the-phone shopping in GA.

I consider this book to be an average read with an exceptional story. The writing doesn't mirror the storyline which keeps me from giving it 5 stars.

The story takes place between 2 families, one in America and one in India with 3 of the 4 main characters being Indian. Somer and Krishnan are an inter-culture couple who met in med school in America. Somer is American and Kris is Indian. Somer's first visit to Kris' home country, India, was to adopt their daughter, Asha. The story unfolds with the lives of Asha's biological and adoptive families and how being oceans apart isn't the only literal difference. The chapters are vacillating tales from each family.

I thoroughly enjoyed learning about the Indian culture entwined in the story. One of the reasons I enjoy reading as much as I do is because a good story can take me to places I would otherwise never be able to visit. This book took to me to India where I was able to vicariously experience both cultures of India...the poverty stricken culture as well as the wealthy culture. Living in America, I hear about other cultures such as India but books like this give a better understanding when it's tied to characters the reader is able to connect with. This book also taught me the unfortunate acceptance of infanticide and sex-selection abortions within the Indian culture. Due to poverty, girls are not wanted as children. Dowries and the cost of living are deemed a burden for families with girls. As a result, there are generational shortages of girls in the population.  The daughters who do not become a victim to infanticide or sex-selection abortion become "secret daughters" in the adoption system.  Most mothers simply leave their daughters at the doorsteps of the orphanages with no more info than the child's name, and even then, a name for her daughter is rare. India is not friendly to international adoptions so many of the girls grow up without a family and age out of the system around sixteen. Boys are desired because they can help earn money for the family and dowries paid to the family are considered an income for the future. Education for most of the impoverished families is minimal at best and doesn't particularly serve to improve one's future. The reader experiences all these circumstances through the book's characters.

There are a few mild curse words but it's not a common theme throughout. There are no sexual scenes nor innuendos. Issues that some may find sensitive within the story include: pregnancy loss, infertility, infanticide, abortion, adoption, poverty, religious gods, inter-cultural marriage, mild spousal abuse and women as inferior citizens.

I give the book 3 stars because the writing doesn't necessarily beckon you to read it but the storyline is one that any reader can be transported to another place in this world experiencing the culture. If you read for the mere aspect of learning, this is a great book and deserves 5 stars for this merit alone. But, as I mentioned, the writing and choppy chapters doesn't help the best cause of being a great book.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Homeschool Happenings

Brother B: "Do we have detention in our homeschool?"

Me: "yes. It's called 'go to your room'!"