Tagged with "education"
17 Oct
2017
Posted in: uncategorized
By    Comments Off on For the Love of Everything, Put Down Your Phone

For the Love of Everything, Put Down Your Phone

Friends who drive, I need a favor. Put your phone down while you’re driving.

I know it’s tempting to check email real quick at a stop light or respond to a text. I know the nagging feeling once you get a notification. You’ll just sneak a quick peak. It’ll only take a few seconds.

I need other drivers to help me in teaching our son. As parents, drivers, and members of law enforcement, we can talk all we want about the perils of mobile phones and driving. Our talking means nothing if what those young drivers see is mom and dad checking their phones while behind the wheel.

Let’s take a step back and remember what we’re doing when we’re driving. We’re operating a motor vehicle. We’re attempting to get from point A to point B. We all want to arrive safely at our final destination. I sit at stoplights and count the number of drivers on their phones while they’re driving. It’s ridiculous the number of people who are distracted. Next time you’re stopped, take a look at who is distracted around you. For most of my life, I left my house for hours at a time with no way to contact me. Guess what? It was fine. I managed for decades to not be connected at all hours, so I think I can make it across town without touching my phone.

teenage boy driving red truck

Our oldest is a new driver. He’s exhilarated to have that driving permit in his wallet. Every time he’s behind the wheel is another learning experience. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the most dangerous thing I allow my son to do is, not playing football like I’ve been repeatedly warned by well-meaning friends, but operating a motor vehicle. Accidental injury is the leading killer of teens in the United States and 75% of the injuries are sustained in motor vehicle accidents.

It’s in our best interest, as adults, to teach our teens to be good drivers. We teach them to follow the laws of the road and how to operate a vehicle. In our house I preach about mobile phone usage and when and where are appropriate times to be using a phone. A moving vehicle you are operating is not the place to be using a mobile phone. Period. Our teen is always watching drivers now that he’s counted among them. He notices infractions like failure to use a blinker, speeding, running a red light and who is distracted by a phone. Let’s educate our teens on driver safety, not just by telling them what to do, but by showing them.

 


 
Keeping Children Out of Politics
By     |    Oct 5, 2016
Posted in: parenting     |    Comments Off on Keeping Children Out of Politics

Keeping Children Out of Politics

I’m not overtly political in nature. I have my opinions, but I don’t enjoy debating politics. The last few weeks I’ve had conversations with my elementary-age children regarding issues they’re hearing at school from children that have me questioning what, exactly, adults are thinking. It started with comments about Benghazi and deleted emails. Then there were walls and taco trucks. My daughter has been told by a fellow 1st grader that she’s “what’s wrong with the country” because of who... [Read More]

Read more
Dear Teachers: It’s Not You, It’s Me
By     |    Sep 12, 2016
Posted in: parenting     |    Comments Off on Dear Teachers: It’s Not You, It’s Me

Dear Teachers: It’s Not You, It’s Me

Teachers, I’m asking for some grace. We’re in our first full week of the new school year. We’ve done the back-to-school nights and signed all the papers. We’re almost in the groove, heavy emphasis on almost. Give me time to acclimate to the four varying schedules and demands of our children. Half our kids don’t have homework. The other half will, one far more than the other. There are reading logs to keep and behavior ladders to memorize. When I... [Read More]

Read more
Wading through Adulthood
By     |    Feb 19, 2016
Posted in: parenting     |    Comments Off on Wading through Adulthood

Wading through Adulthood

At times, I feel I missed my calling as an actress. I’m playing the part of an educated, well-spoken, involved mother of four. In reality I’m an overwhelmed, potty-mouthed, tired person masquerading as an adult. I honestly have no clue how all of this adultness manifested itself.  One day I was sitting in a college statistics class and now I’m in meetings discussing community-wide issues and education policies and referring to stakeholders and best practices. One choice led to another... [Read More]

Read more
Tips for Visiting Kennedy Space Center
By     |    Nov 19, 2015
Posted in: travel     |    Comments Off on Tips for Visiting Kennedy Space Center

Tips for Visiting Kennedy Space Center

I recently finished reading “The Martian” by Andy Weir. I was skeptical I would enjoy a book heavy on science, space science at that, but I devoured it. The main character is compelling and funny, even in dire circumstances. There were science and math sections that didn’t hold my attention, but nothing that kept me from needing to continue with the story. I had to finish it. I was invested in Mark Watney. Those last 50 pages had me simultaneously... [Read More]

Read more
Calming Fear in Children
By     |    Feb 2, 2015
Posted in: parenting     |    Comments Off on Calming Fear in Children

Calming Fear in Children

Our oldest son is not a fan of needles. He’s done more than his fair share of begging and pleading to avoid vaccines, to no avail. There’s always weeping. He was anxious leading up to last Friday for a medical procedure that required both needle and scalpel. His anxiety made me anxious, and both of us weirdly awkward and nervous in the waiting room trying to avoid the elephant sitting between us. We talked earlier in the day about his... [Read More]

Read more
Take a Trip: Brown v. Board of Education
By     |    Jan 19, 2015
Posted in: travel     |    Comments Off on Take a Trip: Brown v. Board of Education

Take a Trip: Brown v. Board of Education

I knew when we walked in the door and were greeted by two signs: white and colored, this historical site wouldn’t be like any we’d taken our children to before. We were on our way home from vacation in Illinois in July and stopped in Topeka, Kansas at the Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site. We try not to shy away from tough conversations with our kids, but our conversation about segregation while at that place is one... [Read More]

Read more
The Abundance of Thanksgiving
By     |    Nov 27, 2014
Posted in: uncategorized     |    Comments Off on The Abundance of Thanksgiving

The Abundance of Thanksgiving

I spent yesterday in a kitchen with four kids baking and prepping food for the feast we’ll share with friends today. Christmas music was our soundtrack of choice. The counters were sticky. Crumbs littered the floor. Every single mixing bowl I own was dirty. The sink was full of dishes waiting to be cleaned. It was perfect. When I give myself time to truly reflect on what I’m thankful for, my breath catches. I live in a house with on-demand... [Read More]

Read more
Embracing the Next Step in Parenting
By     |    Sep 2, 2014
Posted in: parenting     |    Comments Off on Embracing the Next Step in Parenting

Embracing the Next Step in Parenting

My tumultuous emotions revolving around my oldest starting middle school has everything to do with me and not much to do with him. This is my selfish mama moment. He’s ready for this next level. He’s capable. This next chapter excites him. I thought I was terrified of the big, bad middle school filled with hormones where my son will be exposed to heaven knows what. I am, a little, on-edge for the doors, both good and questionable, that will open... [Read More]

Read more
Denver Zoo: Bunk with the Beasts
By     |    May 19, 2014
Posted in: travel     |    1 Comment

Denver Zoo: Bunk with the Beasts

Last week we spent the night at the Denver Zoo as part of the Bunk with the Beasts program. I hear the words “field trip,” and I begin to reorganize my schedule. It’s hard to say who likes them more in our house: me or the kids. For the last few years, the elementary school our boys attend has celebrated the end of 5th grade with an overnight field trip to Denver. The trip is educational, but also a culminating... [Read More]

Read more
DIY Teacher Appreciation Gift
By     |    May 7, 2014
Posted in: projects     |    Comments Off on DIY Teacher Appreciation Gift

DIY Teacher Appreciation Gift

This week is set aside to celebrate teachers. My children are blessed by the amazing, loving, dedicated teachers in their lives. A simple teacher appreciation gift to say thank you seems inadequate for how grateful I am. Our nearest family lives two hours away, and we rarely see them. There are teachers and other staff at the boys’ elementary school who are part of our family. I’m grateful we found a place that not only educates and grows my children... [Read More]

Read more
Encouragment for Standardized Testing
By     |    Mar 5, 2014
Posted in: parenting     |    Comments Off on Encouragment for Standardized Testing

Encouragment for Standardized Testing

Standardized testing is my least favorite phrase. My skin prickles every time testing comes up in conversation. March has been ruined for me. Before sending children to public school, the month of March meant the near-end of winter and the start of spring. Now March means PAWS…Proficiency Assessments for Wyoming Students. It’s our state’s annual testing to gauge academic progress. My children will tell you PAWS stands for Punishing All Wyoming Students. That’s just how much they love it. The... [Read More]

Read more