Thomas Paine ~ Liberty’s Hated Torchbearer

Thomas Paine

When Thomas Paine’s ship pulled into Baltimore harbor on October 30, 1802, a large gathering of friends and admirers were waiting at dockside to welcome him back. Others stood by as well, some filled with loathing, merely to observe a famous figure. Since leaving the United States in 1787 to find a builder for his iron bridge, Paine had authored some of the most incendiary tracts of the 18th century, had been imprisoned and narrowly escaped Robespierre’s guillotine, and was widely reported to be a drunk and an atheist. Continue reading

Allsup: Children of the Light ~ a story for children

Recently, I was asked whether I had written any stories appropriate for the second grade block in a Waldorf school or homeschool that features tales about exemplary people. I wrote this story and told it before the November festival of Martinmas which is a time when the year turns toward outer darkness and we are reminded of the importance of sharing the inner light of compassion. This story could be told, however, at any time of year. In fact, as I add this to the Growing Children blog in 2018, we have just experienced a great March Storm here on Cape Cod complete with 90 mile an hour winds and high seas that poured into our seaside villages. It is at such difficult times that we can be inspired by the best in people. ~ Kim
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Why North Carolina thinks $200 per K-3 teacher will help all kids learn to read

Author LeUyen Pham reads one of her books to second graders at Westerly Hills Elementary in Charlotte. John D. Simmons Observer file photo

State Superintendent Mark Johnson announced a $4.8 million plan to buy books, digital subscriptions and other reading aids for 479,000 K-3 students across North Carolina.

The allotment comes to $200 per teacher in those grades and will be distributed this month to school districts and charter schools. It’s part of North Carolina’s Read to Achieve program, a long-running quest to improve reading that has so far fallen short. Continue reading

There Are Three Times as Many Latino Students as Teachers in America

Two New Reports Show Why That’s Bad for Both

Latino teachers are eager to serve as role models and cultural stewards, but they feel their extra work as interpreters for Spanish-speaking families is undervalued, according to a new report from the Education Trust. Many see the additional responsibilities of community outreach as a second job they are expected to perform.

The report comprises responses from 90 Latino teachers in five states (New Jersey, North Carolina, Florida, Texas, and California) about the complexities of teaching Latino students, as well as their relationships with white colleagues and administrators, and their hopes for professional advancement. Continue reading

Benson: “Maryland, my (home schooling) Maryland

Home schooling is one of those things that scares the living daylights out of the Educational Establishment and the Deep State. Home schooling, and Christian education in general tend to be areas where the participants do not always (usually) accept the Establishment version of history and/or politics.

From time to time, as they feel they can get away with it, the “change agents” in the educational bureaucracy seek to remedy this situation by trying to find reasons to enforce new controls that will give them more power and control over home schooling, its curriculums, and its participants. Continue reading

School Daze…

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos struggles to answer basic questions about education on ’60 Minutes’ – and White House isn’t sure Trump was able to make it through the whole interview

Education Secretary Betsy DeVos struggled her way through an interview with ’60 Minutes’ as she tried to pitch her school choice positions and admitted she hadn’t deliberately visited underperforming schools. Continue reading

Let ‘Em Out! The Many Benefits of Outdoor Play In Kindergarten

Waldkindergartens, an all-outdoor kindergarten in Switzerland/Rona RIchter

For the typical American kindergartner, unstructured free play during the school day consists of 20 to 30 minutes of recess, and perhaps some time at indoor “stations” — perhaps creating with building blocks, costumes, or musical instruments. But what if there was more? What if the answer to “what did you do in school today?” was, “I climbed a tree, played in the mud, built a fire”?

That is exactly the kind of learning going on in the Swiss Waldkindergartens, or forest kindergartens, where children ages four to seven spend all of their school days playing outdoors, no matter the weather. With no explicit math or literacy taught until first grade, the Swiss have no set goals for kindergartners beyond a few measurements, like using scissors and writing one’s own name. They instead have chosen to focus on the social interaction and emotional well-being found in free play. Continue reading

Frederick Douglass and a Constitution for all

Freedom is not free, nor is it easy. The alternative to freedom is tyranny.

                       Frederick Douglas ~ American

President Trump has signed into law bipartisan legislation establishing the Frederick Douglass Bicentennial Commission to celebrate Douglass’ life and work. I have been honored to be appointed, along with Dr. Alveda King, niece of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and others, to this commission.

Born into slavery 200 years ago, Douglass taught himself to read and write, escaped to freedom and became an anti-slavery and human rights activist, newspaper publisher and advisor to presidents. Continue reading

An Accidental Discovery that Sparks Curiosity and Turbocharges Learning

Does photosynthesis work the same in underwater plants as land plants?

This perceptive query about photosynthesis asked in a fifth grade botany class led to one of those moments when curiosity electrified our classroom. When I admitted I didn’t know the answer yet, my students gave me an assignment.

Will you find out and tell us?Continue reading

7 Reasons to Shut Down Public Schools Immediately and Permanently

Students plan to walk out of schools to protest gun violence. They say they won’t return until lawmakers do something to address school shootings.

The students should walk out and never return. Being sitting ducks for gun violence is one reason, but it is far from the only one.

1. Students Are Left Defenseless
It’s not just crazy gunmen students are left defenseless against. Some schools put cops in the school, which sounds like a good idea. But if they aren’t stopping school shootings, they are generally handcuffing non-resistant elementary school students.. Other “resource officers” assault the students, or taze them while the Principal holds them down.

The administrations can’t address the real issues because they are too busy interrogating five-year-olds until they pee their pants. Every day in the news you see another report of a teacher doing something crazy, assaulting, or sexually abusing students. Continue reading

Time To Ban Public Schools?

When the sage points at the moon the fool looks at the finger. ~ Zen koan.

Jeff Cooper, a true philosopher of firearms who, among his many achievements in the field, created the color-coded levels of readiness, wrote that men fight with their minds; the tools they use are irrelevant. Rapper Ice-T, who most likely never heard about Cooper, reached the same conclusion when he wrote the lyrics, “My lethal weapon in my mind.”

Nevertheless, the overall reaction of the CFR-controlled presstitutes, brainwashed high school teenagers, bleeding heart liberals and corrupt politicians after the recent shooting at a school in Florida, shows that the anti-gun lobby is focused only in the tools the killers had in their hands, but doesn’t care much about what they had in their minds when they were mercilessly killing their classmates. Continue reading

BAN ‘best friends‘!

Schools are told to stop kids using the term which makes classmates feel left out

Schools around the world are banning the term ‘best friends,’ stopping children from naming their favorite buddy in a bid to ensure classmates don’t feel left out.

A New York psychologist says the trend that started in London is now spreading across the US.

‘The idea of banning the phrase “best friends” is a very intriguing social experiment,’ clinical psychologist Dr. Barbara Greenberg tells CBS in New York. Continue reading

What a Wonder…

There are days in this insane world when one is completely uplifted with the gift of life. This marvelous teacher will be a beacon of light across the years for her students. She will be remembered. ~ Ed.

It’s the second year in a row I’ve brought a white dress to school and my students have filled it with their artwork. This is one of my favorite things to do in my class! #thewearyteacher

This is something I’d seen on Pinterest a few years ago and I fell in love with the idea. I think every teacher should do this! It’s a great project and an even better keepsake.

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Ross: Breaking Down The Gettysburg Address

One of the only photo’s in existence of Lincoln at Gettysburg before delivering his address

I don’t know what the name Gettysburg conjures up in your mind, if anything, but in my mind I get an overwhelming sense of sadness at the loss suffered by the Confederacy; for Gettysburg, along with the fall of Vicksburg probably turned the tide, which had been decidedly in favor of the Confederate Army, and eventually led to Lee’s surrender at Appomattox.

But it is not the town of Gettysburg, nor the battle which saw over 50,000 men die that I wish to talk about; it is the speech given by Abraham Lincoln after the battle that I wish to discuss. I can’t speak for most of the younger generations, whose history teachers have eliminated, or distorted much of our nation’s history, but anyone over 40 probably could tell you where the words, ‘Four score and seven years ago…‘ come from; Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address. Continue reading

Belated Birthday Comments on Lincoln the Empire Builder

Well, we are now into February–the beginning of Black History Month, which should end sometime around the latter part of Spring. Yesterday was Abraham Lincoln’s birthday, with all the attendant legends and myths posing as history that always accompany that. As always we will be fed all the historical bovine fertilizer that goes along with that notable event.

This brief commentary would normally have been posted on the “Great Emancipator’s” birthday. I roughed it out the previous evening, only to discover that, when I went to print it off, the printer attached to my computer had suddenly developed a case of IDS (ink deficiency syndrome). Having been able to obtain another print cartridge late on the day of his birth I am now posting this, but the date on it will be tomorrow, the 13th. In this case a day doesn’t make that much difference, seeing that we all have already been treated to 150 plus years of historic swill. Continue reading

Confederate Case Law: The Rule of Law, Not of Men

The mark of an advanced civilization is the rule of law, with the highest being the rule of law that protects life, liberty and property. Based upon this standard, the Confederate States of America embodied an advanced Christian civilization.

Accepting this truism goes a long way in understanding why the Confederacy has been demonized to the point of eradicating it from historical memory, as the current campaign against Confederate monuments and memorials make clear. However, it should be understood that the attacks against the Confederacy are battles in the larger war against liberty, property, and, if need be, the lives of individuals. It goes without saying that the above mentioned rule of law is disdained by those preferring the rule of men; a rule designed to curtail the liberty and expropriate property of individuals to the benefit of the ruling class. Continue reading

How About the Rest of the Story?

The following column was originally posted by Kettle Moraine Publications on October 3, 2012. It is quite probable that any embedded links may no longer be active. By republishing these columns from our archives, we hope to establish and focus on the pattern of our declining education system ~ Ed.

Parents and teachers have a daunting responsibility. And one of their responsibilities is to promote critical thinking in the children entrusted to their care. This entails guiding children through careful consideration of all the facets of a reality or issue. This critical endeavor, therefore, requires, in age-appropriate fashion, that the entire picture be provided. Such is not what seems to have happened recently in a civics presentation at Mary Ellen Henderson Middle School in Falls Church City, Va. And, for all we know, this may not be an uncommon occurrence in many of our schools. Continue reading