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Thursday, January 20, 2011

Education Reinvestment


As our new Governor gets ready to talk education with Arnie Duncan this Friday he should keep in mind what is really important. Excellent schools for all.  In order for this to be achieved we need to step away from no child left behind which punishes the students by removing their principals and teachers if the school doesn't meet testing standards but does not address the core issues that got them to a failing point in the first place or assist in creating a pathway to success. We should be stepping forward to creating new and exciting curriculum that challenges and engages and puts all of our children on the road to success while addressing each school and communities diversity and specific needs. Adding enrichment activities, advanced placement, individual student support in addition to family and community support that meets the needs for each school plus add music class back into our schools is important. It is essential that we create a pathway from the beginning that sets all children on the road to educational and personal success. Reinvesting in our schools and our community needs really is an investment in our greatest commodity, our children, who are our future.

Who's to blame? What do we do?

Listening to KMOJ radio this morning the discussion was how do we as adults and community help keep our youngsters away from drugs when many of them are exposed to it by their parents or other family members who smoke weed and drink right in front of them and some introduce and share in smoking and drinking with their teenagers. I have spoken to many parents who say they would rather have their children smoke with them instead of out in the streets, at least they can monitor what they are doing. Is this really the role model and value system we want for our children? Is there a correlation between teen parents, teen std's, crime? How than are we shocked when our children become dealers, become sexually active or begin doing harder drugs, since many call marijuana the gateway drug? Is Marijuana a gateway drug? We as adults can say do what I say, but in truth children do what they see. Are us adults and community causing the drug addiction of our youngsters?  Are we saying it is ok? Are we the reason there are so many teen parents? Are we teaching our children destructive ways of self medication? What is our role and responsibility as adults, parents and community to our children?  

Monday, January 17, 2011

Play

Watching children play using their imagination and creativity is extremely enjoyable and participating is a joy. These days children have so many toys, gadgets, and places to go to keep them entertained but remembering that using household things to create imaginative play is a great way to go. Blankets, pillows and chairs make great tents. Helping a child make a costume of favorite super hero brings laughter and smiles a mile wide. Going for a winter walk or just playing in the yard in the snow making snowmen and caves can be fun for hours plus it tires them out and bed time can be much easier.