Tuesday, April 03, 2012

March 2012 Reading

One quarter of the year complete!  Already!
March was another not-so-great reading month.   That is, if I only count the books I completed:

  • Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie.  Fun read; I had my kids read it too; then we watched the movie.  Enjoyable for all. 
  • True Grit by William Portis.  I'd been thinking about watching this movie with the family; then saw a piece about what a wonderful book it is.  I'd say it's a pretty good book.  There are some great lines by the narrator (Mattie Ross, an old lady telling the story of her life as a 14-year-old girl out to avenge her father's death) which I wish I'd written down. 
  • Setting the Records Straight!  by Lee Binz (TheHomeScholar).  This is a wonderful, helpful, calming book for the homeschool mom who is nervous about high school.  Credit, transcripts, course descriptions beautifully explained.  

Now for the rest.

I started several books that I didn't finish, for various reasons.  I picked up (at the library) A Ship for the King and A Game of Thrones to preview for my son.  But, I gave up because neither of them are genres that interest me, and who has time for that?  The kid is on his own.  Gillespie and I, and Bellfield Hall: Or, The Deductions of Miss Dido Kent were recommended to me didn't hold my interest.  

As part of the Hillsdale College Constitution 101 course (free, no credit), I've been reading The Federalist Papers and other documents related to, well, the US Constitution.  

Right now I'm in the middle of A Train in Winter which is a stunning book on women in the French resistance in World War II.  I'd have finished it if I hadn't been distracted by the books I couldn't carry on with.   I'm also reading The Joy of Calvinism which is a bit of a stretch for me; I'm going slowly, asking my resident theologian a lot of questions, and generally trying not to just rush through the book so I can say I finished it even if I have no idea what it says. 

And once again I'm up-to-date on my Bible reading, though I will admit the last day of March was pretty heavy. 

I've been told it's bad form not to include links for every book, but the unlinked books are easily found on Amazon.com.  Linked books will send you to a non-Amazon source. Yes, there are other places to buy books! 

What are you reading?

Can't we do better than this?

Yesterday my boy had his first day of standardized testing for the year.  (He goes back today for round two.)  A local homeschool evaluator organized this group testing at a local private school during the spring break. Though classes are not on, there are students and staff around; the campus is quiet, but not empty. 

This campus is a beautiful place.  It's quite small. There is a lovely old house that is used as the administration building, some other old and pretty buildings, a couple of new, ugly ones, and well-cared-for grounds with gorgeous, beautifully-shaped, mature trees.  At least one tree is a memorial.

Yesterday afternoon, the testing organizer sent out email to all the participants, asking that everyone please obey the traffic direction signs on campus.  Apparently people had been driving out the entrance, or in the exit, or otherwise not following the clear signs.  Like I said, it's a small place; it's not complicated.

A few hours later I received a second email, asking parents to keep their kids from climbing the trees.  She understood that the trees are inviting, and would be tempting to kids who just spent hours in a chair, but... the school asked that the kids stay out of the trees.

I mentioned this to my husband, who had picked James up after the testing.  He said he'd been surprised to see a kid playing on a ripstick in the driveway, right by the entrance.  He was astonished that a parent would let a kid play right there where cars come in off the street.

So, we have homeschool families coming onto private property (invited, to be sure), ignoring the traffic signs, playing in a (potentially) dangerous place, and playing on and endangering the trees (not to mention themselves). 

And this school should open its door to homeschool testing in the future because... ?

Sometimes we homeschoolers are our own worst enemies.