The thing I like most about having kids (well maybe not THE most but this is high on the list!) is getting a chance to learn things I didn’t really learn the first time around. Sure, I had great grades – I was a straight A student so I must have been learning things at the time but evidentally I was not transferring the information to my long term memory. Some of the interesting things I’ve learned recently are facts about Lurleen Wallace, the first and only female govenor of the glorious state of Alabama. Lucy researched her for a 3 minute presentation in her 4th grade class. The kids were supposed to dress as their subject and then share interesting tidbits with the class. The teacher acted as if the child was the actual person and “interviewed” them. It was really awesome. But while I helped her practice, I asked a question to which she didn’t know the answer. So I started reading up on Lurleen. The next day, I’m still reading about her. She was a fascinating person!
Last night, Keegan needed to summarize the Bay of Pigs. I’ll confess, I should know what was involved in the Bay of Pigs. I’ve heard about it all of my life. I just knew it involved Kennedy, Castro and Cuba. I helped Keegan pull together the information that his little group had assembled but then I was up until 1:30 am learning more and more about it. History is much more interesting than I thought it was when I was in middle school. Sadly, I remember my 7th grade Social Studies teacher and he would give us homework every night. ‘Who was George Washington?’ ‘Mr. and Mrs. Washington’s son’. We would get full credit. It just shows that a person will often only do the minimum required. If I, a straight A student, could get away with that, I realize that my A’s may have come too easy in that particular class. I really didn’t appreciate what was being taught at the time.
I have finally learned how prepositions work (a 7th grade mystery to me), can now remember the difference between an adjective and an adverb, have a basic understanding of linking verbs – the list goes on and on! This isn’t to say that I was a terrible writer – I just recognized how things should be stated. Probably a function of reading everything I could possibly access since childhood. But now I can usually come up with the appropriate rule as well. So – here’s to learning! We are never too old to learn something new every day.