Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Ken Robinson Says Schools Kill Creativity

My son encouraged me to watch some videos on TED and I found this one today. If you want to know what's wrong with the education system, watch this!

A quote: "To improve our schools, we have to humanize them and make education personal to every student and teacher in the system. Education is always about relationships. Great teachers are not just instructors and test administrators: they are mentors, coaches, motivators, and lifelong sources of inspiration to their students."

Monday, May 6, 2013

Book Review - A Noble Groom

I really hate writing bad reviews, but I have to be honest. A Noble Groom by Jody Hedlund wasn't my favorite book. 

I did read the book, and I had no trouble getting through it. It's just that I didn't like it as much as other books I've read in this genre because the plots are becoming all too familiar: a woman ends up alone, either through death of spouse or divorce, has a kid or two, and is struggling to make ends meet. Along comes good-looking guy, usually with some kind of secret, who, after he proves worthy, rescues her and they live happily ever after. A Noble Groom is a good story and it does have unique characters, but it's still the same story. 

The writing is excellent and I learned something about German immigrants; but, honestly, I just got bored. It isn't that I didn't like A Noble Groom. It's just that I didn't like it enough. For me, it's a 3 out of 5 star book. For someone who hasn't read many of these type of stories, it will probably be a 5-star book. It does have an interesting story and is told well. I'm just looking for something fresh and new. This doesn't do it.

(I received this book as a gift from the publisher, Bethany House, for the purpose of writing a review. The opinions are my own.)

Thursday, May 2, 2013

End of a School Year and Planning for Next!

Only one week left of this school year. Wow! It really went fast. It's hard to believe that this time last year, I was looking for a job and wondering what I was going to be doing for the "rest of my life." I am so glad I found Cornerstone Tutorial Center. I have really enjoyed tutoring there. The staff are super nice. My students are awesome, and I probably learned as much as the kids did! It was really fun!

In Biology, I learned that girls like to dissect as much as, or even more than, the boys! That was a surprise. In composition and marketing class, I learned that teens are super creative. I was so impressed with their stories and marketing projects. I also learned that you have to give them a limit on story writing. Some of my students wrote novels instead of a short story!

I will make some changes next year . . . No cell phones in class! I thought I could keep them under control, but not with all the kids. Next year, they will go in a basket when they enter the classroom. Lesson learned!

This summer, I'm going to take a couple of classes related to teaching elementary students in order to prepare for next year. I'm going to tutor some younger kids in some fun classes, as well as continuing with my teens.

In addition to preparing for the next school year, taking classes, and writing articles, I'll be tutoring a few students during the summer. I better get to work!