best teachers

My son’s first cello teacher, Gilda Barston, died when he was 10. He warms up every day with a short song she taught him for getting his fingers in tune. He’s been playing the exercise for so long that it’s no longer an intonation exercise as much as a prayer. A prayer to teaching, I […]

Search is a skill kids develop on their own

Today’s students memorize fewer facts because they are well aware that everything they’d need to know is online. To get the best of this sea change, your kids actually know how to find things. It’s not as simple as you might think, and kids need a lot of time to explore the Internet unfettered by parental […]

When homeschooling is like playing pinball. And you are the ball.

Being a homeschooler and breadwinner feels like I’m the ball in a pinball machine. I hit something, hopefully make it light up, and go to the next thing. I never stay too long at one thing or I fall down the black abyss.

Lesson plan: how to suck it up and go

How do you know when to quit complaining and put up with the terribleness of life? We shouldn’t torture ourselves, but maybe some things should be endured.

How much do elitists spend homeschooling?

It’s difficult to get a real number for how much homeschooling costs. The answer is: it depends. It depends on a lot of things: your income, family size, location, etc. But the real question parents are asking is “Am I doing okay?”

Working memory affects how we process, retain and use information. Specifically it’s memorizing and repetition to retain the information. A common trait among prodigies  is having incredible working memory.

Public schools in the US are a living history lesson about social class. Grouping by age teaches kids to be sorted according to birth. Sounding bells teaches kids to become factory workers. Our high school math curricula teaches kids how to win the Cold War. 

There’s an article in the New York Times about the relentlessness of modern parenting. Americans love hearing about how hard parenting is because we all know it’s over the top. This article had some good statistics, though. For example, mothers today who work outside the home spend as much time parenting as stay-at-home mothers in […]

My older son has ADD and OCD and if I leave him alone for more than 20 minutes he is likely to start staering into space. Or doing one of his million OCDism that he probably wouldn’t want me to write about even though I think his best bet at getting into college is doing […]

I get hopeful every time I see people pushing back on schools. I think schools have way too much power in our society and I’m shocked by how many parents put up with it. And right now the group of parents pushing back the hardest are football parents. 

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