This year I made a big change in how we homeschool. Up to now, I let them learn whatever they want, and when they needed help, I hired an expert: skateboard lessons, pottery lessons, and biology. And I taught the kids myself if I thought I’d enjoy it, like violin, and Hebrew and boogie boardingRead more

I’ve been reading about the correlation between reading fiction and having empathy. The correlation has been established for a long time. And, of course, the correlation between empathy and good health is known as well. Read more

In the middle ages in Europe, animals were held accountable for human laws, and many animals were put on trial. The most common punishment was hanging, but there are records of more brutal versions of animal capital punishment. For example, the man who robbed a bank and was burned alive for the crime alongside his co-conspirator, the mule. Read more

I am not sure if this is good news or bad news, but it’s pretty clear to me that the purpose of school is to teach kids to be PC. Because how else will you do it? Think of all the major shifts in the social mores of the US: schools were the focal point for civil rights, for example. Evolution plays out in schools. And now, LGBTQ rights are playing out in schools. Schools teach kids how to succeed in a world different from their parents.

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My first encounter with moneyball was in high school. The boy I had a crush on was playing fantasy baseball so I played too. I had four months to teach myself everything about baseball before the draft. Read more

When I first started writing, I wrote stories about myself at work. I didn’t know anything about reporting, or research. I just wrote about the insane things my coworkers did.  Read more

I go back and forth about if I should develop my weaknesses. I am bad with money. Not bad at earning it, but I’m bad at waiting for stuff. I just buy what I want. Imagine a petulant bratty child shopping online some nights and drinking wine to cope with self-induced financial pressure on other nights. Read more

Pretty much all research about education reform points to how important self-directed learning is (especially for kids living in poverty, in case you’re wondering.) It made sense to me theoretically, but in practice it meant my kids are playing video games, fighting with each other, and shopping at GAPRead more

We tried out a new piano teacher. And as an introduction to the teacher’s studio, he sent me the recital program from last spring.

One thing I noticed is that each student’s age, school and grade are listed. I read a little more closely and I can see the kids are ranked by how far along they are in their piano studies (most advanced at the end of the program.) And you can tell who is really talented by who is young and advanced. Read more