Category Archives: Education

Special Needs Children: A Parent’s View on Restraining a Child

There has recently been a news story reported in several places regarding a six-year-old student being handcuffed in a Georgia school.  I have read several comments by numerous people about their views as well as the mother’s concerns as reported in the article.

First of all, I want to say that I do not know this child or the extent of his special needs or diagnosis.  I don’t even know what actually happened at the school to require the use of handcuffs on this child, other than what has been reported.  My views come from my own experiences as a parent of my own special needs child. Continue reading Special Needs Children: A Parent’s View on Restraining a Child

Hummingbird Bistro Grand Opening!

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This afternoon, I thought it would be fun to help the girls set up a hummingbird feeder.  We have planted a cardinal flower, which is supposed to attract hummingbirds, but so far we have had no customers.  So, I thought we would add a new item to the menu.

I took Morgan and Emmelyn out to Lowe’s to get a little feeder, and we came home to set it up.  To begin, we started to create our nectar.  I will include the very simple recipe at the bottom of this post.

IMG_0951IMG_0950Each of the girls had a hand in mixing the solution and also helped to
carefully pour it into the feeder when it was done.  While cooling, I went out to the shed and picked up one of our Shepherd’s Hooks to hang the feeder on outside our window on the side of the house.
IMG_0958Now we just get to wait and see if we get any interested birds.

Nectar Recipe:

1 part sugar
4 parts water
Bring to a boil for 1-2 minutes and let cool.

It used to be customary to use red food coloring in the solution to help attract the hummingbirds.  I have read in some places that the red dye can cause mouth sores to form in the hummingbirds, which is obviously not the intended outcome.  We chose a red feeder so that we wouldn’t have to add food coloring to the solution.  For more detailed information you can check out this article about how to care for the feeder and making the nectar solution.

High Point Fire Station 10

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Morgan and Emmelyn checking out the firefighter cabin of Engine 10.

Today, we took the girls to visit our local Fire Station.  We got to tour the entire house and get a glimpse into the life of the firefighters that work there.  Thankfully, they did not get a call while we were there, though I am sure it would have been an awesome sight to see these guys throw on their gear and head out to do what they do best…save lives.

Morgan and Emmelyn got to climb inside of Engine 10 to see what it is like inside.  Fireman Raymond Blue provided information about the trucks they use at the station and how some of the components of the fire truck work.  He even took the time to demonstrate the fire suit that the firemen wear when they go on a call.  He told us that in academy, they time gearing up down to under a minute.  I’m not sure he met that mark, but since it wasn’t an emergency, I think we can cut him a break!

We are very grateful for the time that Captain Ron Holbrook and Fireman Blue took to give us the tour.  We would also like to thank them for the very important work they do to keep us safe.  It takes a very special type of person to run towards danger to get someone else out and for that, the firemen of Station 10 in High Point, as well as every other firefighter, have our respect.

No-Zero Grading Policy In Lowndes County Schools Require Retesting Opportunities For Failing Students (UPDATED)

No-Zero Grading Policy

Scenario 1
Picture yourself in an ambulance being rushed to the hospital. Maybe you are having a heart attack. You arrive at the hospital and the doctors start to work on you. As the paramedics relay to the doctor your condition, you hear the doctor order an antacid for your treatment…an antacid. As you are taking your last breath, you hear the doctor say, “Whoops!!! I failed…can I get a do over?” The heart monitor begins the steady whine signaling your passing.

Scenario 2
During Superbowl 46, the Giants and the Patriots fought seemingly relentlessly for the title of champion. As the final moments played out, it seems that the Giants are going to win. The Patriots miss their last chance at a goal. As the Giants begin the wild celebration, the announcer comes across the PA system and state, “May I have your attention, please! Due to the hard work of the Patriots this year, the NFL judges have determined that they also shall share the victory this year! Please help us in congratulating the co-winners of Superbowl 46!”

I figure you are thinking to yourself that these are ridiculous scenarios. They are. I can’t imagine anyone wanting an ER doctor who is not at the top of his game. I also cannot imagine the chaos and outrage that would occur if the title of champion was diluted for the Giants. People tend to work harder when they know they have a limited chance to get it right.

While I agree that students should have every opportunity to learn concepts, I believe they need a level of achievement to strive for…for excellence. Allowing students to continue to retake exams or redo work just to try to get them a better grade to make the school look better is not helping the student later in life. An ER doc does not usually get a second chance to save a life. I want to know (or at least believe) that the doctor who is making split second decisions about my care excelled in his/her studies. I want to believe that the doctor has the drive to make himself better and not be satisfied with just completing medical school. Yes, my doctor might make a mistake…doctors are human…but that doctor also knows there are consequences for not excelling at their practice.

Likewise these students need to know that they must drive themselves to be better. They need to know that it is OK to fail…as long as they get up and try again. There are also students, though, that do not do the work. The policy from the school system above prevents teachers from issuing a “0” to a student for not completing an assignment. That student receives an “I.” According to this policy, a student that refuses to do assignments gets a minimum score of 60. That tells a student that they can skate through the class and still make a recoverable grade…without doing the work the other students are doing. How is this fair to the students who bust their rear trying to get it done. This policy cheapens the work of those students who do work hard and also sets unrealistic expectations for when the student gets into the work force.

I believe it is a huge mistake for school systems to adopt these types of policies.