Aug 29 2006

Katie and high school

Tag:Tag , , , Cyn @ 11:26

Katie is absolutely loving school.

Well, she loves the social aspect, and the challenge of interacting with new instructors. She isn’t happy about living by a bell, and of course all of us are adjusting to living on the school’s timetable in general.

At the end of the very first day, she called and asked if she could go hang out with her new friends at a nearby coffee shop. That’s my girl, the extrovert. She’d already made friends and continues to do so. So much for any worries (which we didn’t have) about her social skills.

She’s doing well academically, too. We talk about her school work and she asks for input at times, so I know what she’s doing. It isn’t nearly the same as the level of involvement required for homeschooling, but it’s something.

She isn’t accustomed to the adversarial relationship some teachers and staff members automatically assume towards students, and it isn’t something I ever want her to accept as right or normal. Expected at this level, maybe. But not right.

I’m still having some “empty nest” feelings, but seeing her thrive certainly helps deal with them. Homeschooling was definitely the right thing for us for the past few years, and did prepare her well for high school. We have no regrets at all there!

Aug 10 2006

Geography is colorful – and a whole lot more

National Geograhic is leading the My Wonderful World campaign. There are suggestions for parents, kids, teens, and educators.

I wanna be a teen. I want to get a passport and a nifty little GPS unit and go geocaching and explore the world and learn other languages.

Aug 06 2006

In transition

Tag:Tag , , , , TechnoMom @ 14:02

Katie is going to high school in a few weeks, a 10th grader. The school is much larger than the one she attended last fall – approximately the same population as my own alma mater when I was there.

I, at least, will continue to write here, as I’ve been interested in homeschooling and education much longer than I’ve had a child at home officially being homeschooled. In fact, I first heard of homeschooling as a modern reality right after I graduated in the mid-1980s, and was immediately intrigued. I read everything I could find about it, and have kept up that connection since then.

Katie is all excited, of course. I’m excited for her. I fear she may be dampening that excitement down a little because she knows that I’ll miss her, but she shouldn’t. That’s just a normal part of being Mommy. Letting go is in the job description.Trying new things is in hers.

Aug 06 2006

Quote of the Day

Tag:Tag , , , , TechnoMom @ 13:52

“If you cannot write well, you cannot think well, and if you cannot think well, others will do your thinking for you.”

George Orwell

Aug 05 2006

Online Writing Labs

So anyway, I meant to post about those Online Writing Labs (OWLs) that many colleges have put online.

Their contents and quality vary widely from one college to the next. They’re intended to help students write their papers at whatever time they get around to doing them, wherever they happen to be. Good ones include online access to reference tools such as dictionaries, thesauruses, and grammar usage guides, a link to the school’s library, any formatting standards established by his school in particular, and sometimes more specific material depending on the type of student expected to be using the OWL.

Unfortunately, some schools have slapped a list of links up on a set and called it an OWL. I won’t be recommending any of those pitiful little things.

Yes, it’s perfectly fine for others to use these sites. They aren’t behind the school’s firewalls, so they are a resource that has been generously shared with the public. If you find one especially helpful, consider sending an email to the site’s authors/editors, thanking them for their efforts

Aug 05 2006

Neat resource!

I was browsing through a magazine about writing today and came across an article about online writing labs (OWLs), suggesting that writers make use of them as reference tools.

I was distracted, though, by this: Ink, “A Free, Multiplayer, Online Game for Writing & Community.”

Imagine that you’re surfing the Web and you discover a site called Ink…You click Enter, and your browser loads a chat window and the image of a cityscape. A caption informs you that you are in the City Center. Almost immediately, someone notices that you’ve arrived and begins talking with you in the chat window. “Welcome to Ink,” the stranger says. “This is a great place. But we have a problem right now, and I’m hoping you can help. Our neighborhood isn’t doing well. We need to get a group of people together to address this problem. Can you help us? We need to design a flier that will motivate people to come to a meeting where we can talk about this problem. We need to draft a resolution that we can circulate to those who show up. We also need a brochure that explains why other citizens should vote for our proposal. And we’re going to need a white paper to explain to City Council the principles that inform our proposal. We’ve got a lot of work to do. Can you help us?”
The public beta opens on August 15, and they’re doing this as a Creative Commons project. I need to put that date on the calendar!