The last few days have been a bit crazy at home – we’ve been checking out potential private schools for the kids, so that’s taken some time. Not sure if we’re going to send them or not, for a number of reasons, but both the DH and I agree that what the kids are currently learning in the public school is pretty awful.
I get that teachers have very little control over the curriculum – they have to teach to the SOL tests so that the schools continue to retain funding, but it’s a shit system.
Basic stuff like grammar and spelling have completely fallen by the wayside. For kids who pick writing/reading up naturally that may not be such a big deal, but I’m getting a first-hand look at how much of a disservice this is when I read some of essays that are coming home.
To complicate matters, we’re pretty sure Connor has some sort of processing disability. I don’t know if it’s ADD/ADHD or what, but focus (or lack thereof) is becoming a major issue. Like with a math test, for example? 1st page or 2 will be okay, and then the next few pages it’s like he’s forgotten how to do long division…and then on the last page, he’s remembered and it’s fine. So it’s like he’s hyperfocused or completely cloud-headed and there’s no room for in between.
(As opposed to Lucy, who can dance around the room and spell all her vocabulary words without really trying – I get that girls are different than boys, but when he can’t remember what he learned 5 minutes ago? Something’s up.)
We’re going through the process of getting him tested, but it’s a slog. I definitely don’t want to hop on the “instant medication” bandwagon either – we just want to find out how his brain works and what methods work best to help him retain information. Lots of hoops to jump through, though.
In other news, I know I’ve bitched a lot in the past about the “women in gaming” thing and how underrepresented we are, so I’ve got a little treat lined up on my gaming forum for next week. I’m bringing in Tonia Laird (who was a writer for Bioware) to do some informal Q&A on what it’s like to write for games. For one thing, I like being able to provide this kind of content to my users, but also? We really don’t see many interviews by women game developers, often because they’re attacked by threatened male gamers. Since I control this particular bit of online space, I’m hoping to make it a safe spot for her to be able to talk about it. I’ll post a link when the thread goes live – if you’re interested, go one over and register an account. It’s all free.
Otherwise – forgot to mention my Word Whores post yesterday – this week it’s about how things have changed for us when it comes to reading for pleasure – now that we write professionally. (Sadly, it *does* make you look at things a bit differently.)
And new Fox & Willow up yesterday as well.