Archive - March 2016

1
Nurturing Creativity in Our Children: More Mess, More Time
2
Standardized Testing: a Primer
3
The Creative Thinker: Is Your Child One of Them?
4
Bookends: the Kids Who Struggle in a Classroom Environment
5
Am I Supposed to Check My Kids’ Homework?

Nurturing Creativity in Our Children: More Mess, More Time

  Creativity:  putting things together in novel ways, or seeing the world, or a given problem, with fresh eyes. (ahaparenting.com) “Oh, my, he’s such a mess!!” Grandma could barely get the words out through her laughter.  Her loving observation of my older son at age three was spot on.  There he was, sitting at our kitchen table working on crafts:  stuff was piled everywhere, stuck together randomly with glue from a dripping bottle.  His clothes were streaked with food (oddly, even now, breakfast is on his person before he’s even had any), his face mustachioed with lunch. The perfect picture of a…

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Standardized Testing: a Primer

March Madness!!!! I never realized how zany a month March is.  I mean, take a look: ~Will March arrive like a lamb or a lion? Wait.  No one really cares that much about that anymore, do they? ~NCAA basketball, the ultimate in cager mania.  Go Skyhawks!!! (Fort Lewis College, NCAA II tourney, in case you b-ball enthusiasts were curious.) Wait.  They lost.  Darn.  Well, there’s always next year… ~The beginning of daylight savings time!  More sunlight after dinner! Wait.  Actually, who likes “spring ahead?” I was so tired I accidentally made decaf the morning after.  Not. Good. Anyway, what seems…

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The Creative Thinker: Is Your Child One of Them?

Legos (and Grandma’s sugar cookies) are like crack for kids…at least they are in our house.  Once any of us, dad and mom included, starts snapping together those technicolor pieces, time and reality disappear.  But for my older son, Legos are a way of life.  He eats, sleeps and breathes Lego creations, and he is truly Pavlovian when he watches a Lego master build ships and shopping malls on YouTube.  He is well on his way with logging his own 10,000 hours to attain Lego mastery.  His goal is to be an architect but his dream?  To work for Lego….

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Bookends: the Kids Who Struggle in a Classroom Environment

Imagine a single bookshelf.  Filling the entire length are books, books of varying thickness, topic and cover design.  They are different from one another but all are still books.  At each end of the shelf is a thin, metal bookend.  Present, but easily overlooked.  They are, of course, not books, but despite taking up very little room on the bookshelf, they still occupy the same space. Now think of a classroom of, say, 25 kids.  Most of those kids function pretty well in that setting.  Each child has his own strengths and weaknesses, interests and personality, but these students can…

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Am I Supposed to Check My Kids’ Homework?

  I don’t understand homework in elementary school.  My past, and likely yours, too, had many hours devoted to homework…but I never did any, had any, until middle school.  And I settled myself after school at the kitchen table with paper and pencil because teachers told us do this at home and turn it in tomorrow, and I did (yes, I was one of those kids…).  But it’s a different ballgame today for families: homework comes home for our elementary schoolers, and they really need some supervision, unlike (mostly) the older kids.  It can be a time-consuming process, especially when…

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