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Hilarious Real Stories That Show Us Kids Know More Than We Do

Hilarious Real Stories That Show Us Kids Know More Than We Do

The world around us is changing at tremendous speeds, and we, the adults, are often left behind, scratching our heads while the kids run off ahead. Let’s take a look at some hilarious real stories that show just how much our kids really know.

Adult Prejudice Is Exposed By Our Kids

Often kids point things out to us that we have conveniently overlooked or would rather not see. They can do this at moments when we least expect it and surprise us with their honest insights. A prejudice one English teacher may have held was pointed out to him, in a very amusing way, one day after he had finished his English lecture. After the teacher’s class has left, a tenth grader stayed behind to confront him:

“I don’t appreciate being singled out,” he told his teacher.

The teacher was confused, “What do you mean?”

“I don’t know what the ‘oxy’ part means, but I know what a ‘moron’ is, and you looked straight at me when you said it.”

The Pure Honesty of Kids Reveals A Lot

What is sometimes perceived of as naivety can rather be blatant honesty. Kids sometimes tell us what other adults are too scared, or polite, to share. One teacher was presented with a surprise present that told her more, perhaps, than was intended.

To her German-language students, the teacher is known as “Frau Draper.” One girl gave her 
a pin that she had made with the teacher’s name on it. However, the pin was not big enough to include all of the teacher’s name, so the student gave Frau Draper a badge that read FRAUD.

A kindergarten teacher experienced the honesty of her student when, during snack time, a kindergartner asked her why some raisins were yellow while others were black. As she didn’t know the answer, she asked her colleague, a first-grade teacher, if she knew.

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“Yellow raisins are made from green grapes, and black raisins are made from red grapes,” her colleague clarified.

One boy said to the teacher, “Maybe that’s why she teaches first grade,
 because she’s just a little bit smarter than you.”

Who Are We Simplifying Our Language for?

Many of us have the habit of talking in simplified language or modifying our speech so that it can be more easily understood by children. Sometimes, this has the desired effect, but other times it can come right back at us. One teacher found her simplistic turn of phrase was interpreted in a way she may not have intended. Or, perhaps, the true meaning of her words were revealed.

“Don’t do that,” she said when one of her first graders placed
 a dollar bill over his eyes. “Money is full of germs.”

“It is?” he asked.

“Yes, it’s very dirty.”

“Is that why they call people who have a lot of it ‘filthy rich’?”

Another teacher found that her language came directly back to her when on the last day of the year, her first graders gave her lovely handwritten letters. As she read them aloud, she started to get teary.

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“I’m sorry,” she said. “I’m having a hard time reading.”

One of her students said, “Just sound it out.”

Our Kids Find Their Own Direction

Often, we try to guide our children in the direction we want them to go, or towards the answers we want them to provide us with. We cannot, however, control where they end up in quite the way we would like. This eighth grade teacher was taught a lesson of her own when she tried to teach her student about Pike’s Peak.

“Who discovered Pike’s Peak?” the teacher asked an eighth grader. He remained silent. “All right, here’s a hint,” the teacher continued. “Who’s buried in Grant’s Tomb?”

“Grant?” he asked 
tentatively.

“Good. Now, who discovered Pike’s Peak?”

“Grant!”

An English teacher was given a surprise when his student gave a big thumbs-down to the autobiography he’d read. The reason the student gave was “The author talks about only himself.” It’s fair to say this is not the reason the teacher was looking for, but it is, in all its honesty, a reasonable truth.

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Our Kids’ Amazing Imaginations Teach Us A Lot

Our kids never fail to astonish us with their creative imaginations. We often need them to jolt us out of our everyday routines and show us something with fresh eyes.

An English teacher was forced to reconsider his assumptions when teaching Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis to his sophomore English class. The teacher said “A man, discontented with his life, wakes up to find he has been transformed into a large, disgusting insect.”

A student thrust her hand into the air and asked, “So is this fiction or nonfiction?”

What We Say May Be Taken Literally

As adults, we often become sloppy with our language. Children are often there to remind us of what was actually said.

During a driver’s ed class, a student came up to a right turn.

“Use your turn signal,” the teacher reminded her.

“No one’s coming,” said the student.

“It doesn’t matter. It might help those behind you.”

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The driver turned to the students in the backseat and said, “I’m turning right up ahead.”

In another story, when one girl had finished the
 English portion of the state exam, she removed her glasses and started the math questions.

“Why aren’t you wearing your glasses?” she was asked.

She responded, “My glasses are for reading, not math.”

We think that it is us, the adults, who are steering the boat and are often surprised when we look up and see our kids sitting in the driver’s seat. We have a lot to learn from our kids, and it looks like we will spend most of our adult life doing so.

Featured photo credit: Parent Map via parentmap.com

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Published on November 7, 2018

How to Homeschool in the 21st Century (For All Types of Parents & Kids)

How to Homeschool in the 21st Century (For All Types of Parents & Kids)

In 2016, it was estimated that 1.7 million children were being homeschooled in the U.S, roughly 3.3% of all school-aged children.[1] Although this may not sound like a big portion of the population, the growth rate of homeschooling has been 7 to15% per year for the last two decades.

The burgeoning numbers are not a coincidence. There are tremendous benefits to homeschooling, including one-on-one teaching, adaptability to individual needs and learning styles, a safe learning environment, encouraging learning for knowledge rather than grades, and tailoring a curriculum to the child’s interests.

Is homeschooling something that you have been considering for your family? With all of the tools and resources available for homeschoolers in the 21st century, it may be easier than you think.

How to Homeschool (Getting Started)

After thinking it through, you’ve decided that homeschooling is the right step for you and your family. Now what? Here are the first things you should do to get your homeschooling journey started on the right track.

Figure Out the Laws

Homeschooling is regulated by the state, not the federal government. The first step is to find the current and accurate legal requirements mandated by your state in order to educate your child legally.[2]

The regulations can vary widely, from strict guidelines to no guidelines at all. However, don’t be overwhelmed by the legal jargon. There are many resources and local communities for homeschooling families that can help you figure out the logistics.

Decide on an Approach

Every child’s needs are different. This is your chance to choose the homeschooling style or combination of styles that best fits your child’s learning style and interests. A brief description of seven different homeschooling methods are listed below.

Supplies/Resources

Often times, purchasing a homeschooling curriculum is done too early in the planning process, resulting in buyer’s remorse.

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A curriculum is not always needed for homeschooling, and other types of free or less structured resources are readily available.

Find a Community

Getting connected with a community of homeschoolers is one of the most important parts of building a successful and thriving homeschool environment for your kids.

Look for communities online for virtual support or a local group that you and your kids can interact with. Partnering with others fosters better socialization skills for the students and provides opportunities for field trips, classes, and outings that wouldn’t have otherwise been a part of the homeschooling experience.

7 Different Homeschooling Methods

1. School-At-Home

Also known as Traditional homeschool, School-At-Home uses essentially the same curriculum as the local private or public school but at home.

The lessons can be completed independently, but more commonly, they are administered by a parent or a teacher-facilitated online school.

  • Benefits: formal standards, wide selection of curricula, same pace as peers, short-term friendly
  • Drawbacks: expensive, inflexible, time consuming, parent can get easily burnt out
  • Resources: K12, Time4Learning, Abeka

2. Classical

One of the most popular homeschooling methods used, it borrows educational practices from Ancient Greece and Rome. Subject areas are studied chronologically so that students can understand the consequence of ideas over time.

Socratic dialogue fosters effective discussions and debate to achieve beyond mere comprehension. There is often a strong emphasis on Great Books[3] as well as Greek and Latin.

3. Unit Studies

Rather than breaking up education into subjects, unit studies approach each topic as a whole, studying it from the perspective of each subject area.

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For example, a unit study about animals could include reading books about animals, learning about the classification of animals, figuring out which animals live on which continents, etc. This method is often used as a technique in other more comprehensive educational methodologies.

  • Benefits: promotes thinking about concepts as a whole, not monotonous or redundant, student-directed, bolsters weaker subject areas, beneficial for teaching multi-age students
  • Drawbacks: incomplete, knowledge gaps, curriculum-dependent
  • Resources: Unit Study, Unit Studies, Unit Studies Made Easy, Konos

4. Charlotte Mason

This Christian homeschooling style utilizes shorts periods of study (15-20 minute max for elementary, 45 minute max for high school), along with nature walks and history portfolios.

Students are encouraged to practice observation, memorization, and narration often. With a focus on “living books” (stories with heroes, life lessons, socio-ethical implications), reading plays a big role in this student-paced teaching style.

5. Montessori

Maria Montessori developed this method through working with special needs children in the early 20th century.

With a primary focus on the student setting the pace and indirect instruction from the teacher, this approach includes free movement, large unstructured time blocks (up to 3 hours), multi-grade classes, and individualized learning plans based on interests.

6. Unschooling

Unschooling is a learning model largely based on the work of John Holt.[4] The teaching style focuses mainly on the students’ interests, putting priority on experiential, activity-based, and learn as you go approaches.

For basic skills such as reading, writing, and math, a systematic technique is employed, but testing and evaluations are typically not utilized. Teachers, in general, play more of a facilitator role.

7. Eclectic/Relaxed

As the most popular method of homeschool, eclectic homeschooling is child-directed, resourceful, and non-curriculum based.

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Parents can sample any combination of homeschooling methods and styles or resources. One growing sector of eclectic homeschooling combines part homeschooling with part traditional schooling.

How to Facilitate Homeschooling with Technology

One of the reasons homeschooling is more feasible than ever before is due to the accessibility of tools and resources to enhance the learning process.

Email

Email is a tool that has really stood the test of time. Invented in 1972, it is still used today as a primary means of communicating on the Internet.

It is a great way to share assignments, links, and videos between parent and student.

Google Drive/Calendar

Google Drive offers a multitude of essential programs that can come in handy for homeschoolers, such as Docs, Sheets, Slides, and more.

With its sharing capabilities, easy accessibility, and auto-save ability, it’s easier than ever to organize and complete assignments. It will improve students’ writing and typing skills, as well as eliminate the need for paper.

Google Calendar is an excellent tool for tracking assignment due dates, planning field trips and activities, and developing time management skills.

Ebooks

Rather than invest in physical copies of books, ebooks are a wonderful option for saving money and space. There are plenty of places that offer a free or paid subscription to a wide selection of ebooks:

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E-Courses

When a structured curriculum is necessary for teaching a certain topic, an e-course is the way to go.

From watercolors to calculus, there are e-courses available about almost everything. Including different teaching styles that vary from the parents will encourage students to learn in different ways.

The visual and auditory stimulation will also be beneficial in helping students understand and retain the concepts being taught.

Some recommendations:

Youtube

Youtube is not just a platform for music videos and cats doing funny things. There are a number of Youtube channels that produce quality educational videos, free of charge.

Creating a playlist of videos for various topics is a great way to supplement a homeschool education.

Some recommendations:

Final Thoughts

Homeschooling in the current age looks much different than it did ten years ago. There are more options and more flexibility when it comes to educating kids at home.

Don’t be overwhelmed by the idea of homeschooling your children if it could make a positive impact on your family.

Featured photo credit: Hal Gatewood via unsplash.com

Reference

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