Category - Education

1
Questions to Ask Your Child’s Teacher: the Sooner the Better
2
Playing it Safe in Bear Country: a Few Stories From the Other Side
3
Rules of the Biking Road: Hand Signals
4
Homeschool: a Year in Review
5
Why the Arts are Important
6
The First 100 Days (of Homeschooling, That Is)
7
Inauguration Day…and a Call to Action
8
A Call for Unity That Makes Sense
9
Homeschooling Ups and Downs: the First Five Weeks
10
Putting Standardized Testing in Perspective

Questions to Ask Your Child’s Teacher: the Sooner the Better

  As if summer didn’t commit its disappearing act yet again, here we are, facing down November, and I haven’t published my back-to-school post.  No, the dog didn’t eat my homework (at least not this time), and I don’t really think of myself as a procrastinator (my fault usually lies in being the opposite).  Honestly, it’s been tough adjusting to the new school year, and it still, a whole quarter down, feels like we are settling in.  Looking back, it was a bad omen when we shopped for the usual cache of No. 2 pencils (sharpened!) and three-ringed binders (four different…

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Playing it Safe in Bear Country: a Few Stories From the Other Side

  At 3 am we were awakened by a dull thumping-and-scraping coming from our garage.  In my half-awake haze I wondered why one of the kids would be up at this hour, and in the garage no less.  Then I heard slap-slap-slap-slap-slap! on the mud room door, and I realized my husband was up, making a ruckus of his own. There’s something in our garage, he said. My husband strode purposefully out of the room, and I was left confused as to where he thought he was going, if our garage was being rearranged (so it seemed) by someone who didn’t…

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Rules of the Biking Road: Hand Signals

    My family lives in a free-spirited town.  A place where you can’t say I’ve seen it all, but you regularly get a little closer.  Like the other day.  As my favorite barista was handing me a much-needed java, I spotted, making a bee-line across the local highway, a bicyclist pulling a child trailer. Even in my coffee-deprived state I was present enough to think OMG, that’s dangerous, then realized with relief that the trailer did not chauffeur a toddler but an oversized stuffed toy huskie.  An arthritic toy dog, who I swear had a look of frozen terror on…

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Homeschool: a Year in Review

Homeschool is out for the summer!  We did it.  We really, really did it.  175 full days.  Sometimes we hummed along without a hitch, and some days drug on.  And on.  And on.  In other words, our school year was much like a traditional one, with ups and downs.  And here are some of them: The “ups”: I got to spend lots of time with my kids.  Every day.  We haven’t spent this much time together since before the kids started all-day Kindergarten.  I feel like I know them so much better in their “tween” stage; I’ve had more time…

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Why the Arts are Important

The C scale wafts through the house from the front room, my son warming up his piano fingers for “When the Saints Go Marching In.”  He provides the background melody for the fiddle piece his brother is working through for a recital.  Then joining in is my daughter, learning the first few measures of Bach’s “Minuet I” on her violin.  It’s a discordant masterpiece.  No dueling pianos here, but rather a solo piano fending off violins attacking from two separate fronts. Whew.  Just another afternoon of music practice. I have long been a lover of the arts, having sacrificed my…

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The First 100 Days (of Homeschooling, That Is)

  Sometimes it’s hard to believe we’ve gotten this far.  At other times, it’s not.  Recently we reached a milestone:  100 days of homeschooling.  We fastened our seatbelts back in August and ready or not, we took our newfound motivation for a spin.  Map in hand, we had a pretty good idea where we wanted to go but no idea where we’d end up.  Sometimes the ride was smooth, sometimes the dips and turns were expected (math) and sometimes they were not (grammar).  But here we are.  100 days and not yet out of gas. Last fall I wrote an…

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Inauguration Day…and a Call to Action

  “Wisdom is knowing what to do next; virtue is doing it.” – David Star Jordan Even the dashboard for pulseonparenting.com is feeling it:  the daily inspirational quote came from Star Jordan’s timely words.  Timely, in that they were posted on MLK, Jr., Day, and timely, in that Friday is Inauguration Day. Whether you look ahead to this always historic occasion with anticipation or with dread, I think about another of my favorite sayings. Be the change you want to see in the world. Many who voted for our PEOTUS did so looking for change; many who did not want…

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A Call for Unity That Makes Sense

Well.  What a week.  I had another topic to post but given the historic nature of last Tuesday, it just didn’t seem natural to go ahead like nothing has happened. None of us is untouched by the events of the last week, and many of us are feeling mentally and emotionally tapped.  But I promise you that this post is not politically charged; it’s not my purpose to use pulseonparenting to spread propaganda.  My site is intended for every parent, left- or right-wing.  It is meant for mothers and fathers and guardians, stay-at-home parents and parents who have careers outside…

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Homeschooling Ups and Downs: the First Five Weeks

  Many people have asked, “How’s homeschooling going?”  And my usual response is, “It’s had its ups and downs.”  I’m not one to sugar-coat or complain a lot but I’ll admit my urge is to respond, “Well, we haven’t killed each other yet.”  My boys would certainly like to, but instead, they get to write essays about why they trash talk and fight during school.  The silver lining?  More writing practice. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t get frustrated and show it.   I’d be lying if I said my daughter didn’t have her moments as well.  But…

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Putting Standardized Testing in Perspective

Well, the remaining 40 percent of the districts are reporting in.  But it’s too early to call it. Even in this tumultuous election year, I actually wish this post were about the drama leading up to November 4th.  But instead, this post is about standardized testing.  Our school district is one of the 40 percent whose scores from spring testing are not released until the following school year.  As expected, the scores were released recently, and they made headlines in the local newspaper (Butler, Ann.  “State tests:  Math results alarming, 9-R superintendent says”  Durango Herald, Friday, September 2, 2016) ….

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