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Thursday, July 11, 2013

You don't say...

My blog is not a place for airing dirty laundry. But bear with me; this isn't a complaint about my husband. It's a commentary about school, and another facet of the "why" behind our homeschooling adventure.

My beloved is a computer professional, and as such he periodically attends seminars and training courses to keep his skills up to date. He's been at training this week. Every evening, he has been increasingly foul-tempered. Initially, he was just tired/grumpy, but things got worse as the week progressed. He became clumsy. Snappish. Bitter. Short-tempered. Unfocused. And finally, he threw a real live tantrum. Then as he apologized/explained, he was sullen.

The boy is NOT happy.

When I pressed him for a reason for his Jekyll-and-Hyde behavior, he complained about the class. He said that it is boring, and the presenter is not engaging. That there aren't enough breaks. That he's tired from all of the reading, but mostly all of the sitting. That if he were at his regular job, he'd be able to "get up and walk around as needed" but that he was stiff and tired and unable to focus. By tonight (Thursday), he admitted to wanting to call off sick tomorrow to avoid the final class.

And I listened without comparison, but OH MY GOD PEOPLE, do *you* see the parallel?

Do you see that we expect this of children--little children, and getting younger every year--every day, for 180 days a year, for 13 or more years of their lives? That we're cutting recess for energy-driven 7-year-olds and cutting physical education for hormone-flooded 17-year-olds, and expecting them to endure what even 47-year-olds can't do without complaint?

1 comment:

  1. Good post, Heather... I hadn't thought about the parallels with traditional classroom schooling, but you make an interesting point.

    With some of the research coming out on the benefits of standing desks in the workplace, I wonder how much of this thinking might translate to the classrooms - getting kids into more (inter)active styles of learning where they are up and moving around. I should mention this to my brother, who's a 4th-grade teacher...

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