Chronicle of Higher Ed:
A noted sociologist diagnoses school shootings. “In high-school contexts, we want to avoid what sociologists call ‘labeling.’ We do not want one bad year to predispose teachers to expect the next one to be equally troubled.” Labelling was particularly bad at my high school, IMHO, from year to year. Both students and teachers. Labels carried down from your older siblings, too.
NY Times Opinion:
Research shows that girls with ‘feminine’ names steer clear of ‘masculine’ maths and science. Sounds like utter bosh to me.
The Perfect Weapon for the Meanest Wars. Children. “By the time groups in Congo took that technique to its lowest depths in the late 1990s — some child soldiers there were instructed that eating their victims made them stronger — the world started paying attention.”
SF New Mexican:
Post pictures on MySpace, get in trouble with school authorities. Now that’s a meta link. How many times is this scenario being played out across the country?
Another famous violinist makes a go at busking, with somewhat better results. Moral: Rely on your kids to know the good stuff.
NY Times Op-Ed Contributor:
Off to work she should go. “We could make an effort to change men’s attitudes. Sociologists have found that mothers (rich and poor) still do twice the housework and child care that fathers do, and even the next generation of males say they won’t sacrifice work for home. But in the short term, it might be easier to change the tax code.” My italics. Oh, come on. What a cop-out. Keep that inequitable stereotype going, why don’t you? Media pummels us with images of weak fathers who can’t be counted on to follow a shopping list reliably ... yet men run our country, corporations, control most of the world’s economic and military power?
It ain’t hard to learn the “American Standard” backstroke. Take time with the youngsters, there’s no reason a child should be screaming for Momma exclusively. Laundry can be challenging, but consider memorizing each article’s particular washing regimen as an Alzheimer preventative.
Families have a tough call these days. Which is better, two parents supplying more money for better education and opportunity - or more time with Mom for a well-adjusted child?
I still say, make higher education free. Solves both problems.
“It wasn’t supposed to turn out this way. The abstinence-only sex-education programs on which the federal government has been spending around $176 million a year have been shown to have zero effect. That’s right: zero.” They need to follow up this study with incidence of pregnancy and STD transmission in both abstinence-only and other programs before lauding one over the other, or deciding to keep throwing good money after bad. If abstinence-only teaches nothing about contraception or safe sex, one can guess the results without scientific research. Still, the research needs to be done. Thoroughly.
Alcohol at 18.
Before you believe the generalizations being expressed so freely, find proper stats to back up your arguments. “College student drinking attracts much attention in the press. But the proportion of college freshmen who drink continues to decrease. Freshmen entering college in 2003 reported the lowest rates of drinking in the 38-year history of the national college Freshman Survey.” There’s a great deal of methane being spewed in the media at the moment. I’m not taking sides, mind you. Just pointing out a particularly bald-faced problem.
SF New Mexican:
Involved parents sometimes turn ‘Machiavellian’. Sounds like in-class assignment is better than homework these days.
NY Times Tech:
Police ‘regret’ at killer’s video. Rightly so. Broadcast of the video has placed a new model before attention-seeking troubled youths, a new standard to one-up. I think we’ll come to rue this choice by the network. Upon seeing that video broadcast, I harbor a sense of doom and inevitability that it will happen again.
SF New Mexican:
Official says Imus’ problems won’t affect state support for horse race. “We made a promise to some kids, and we’re going to deliver.”
Antidepressants’ benefits trump risks for kids. One must look carefully at the studies themselves ... “The study didn’t measure the effects of talk therapy.” Getting a patient malleable with antidepressants, receptive to talk therapy, is one of the most effective techniques overall ... or so I understand. Also, no mention of whether there were side effects other than suicidal thoughts. I’d like to see the report itself, and which studies were examined.
“Students who took part in sexual abstinence programs were just as likely to have sex as those who did not, according to a study ordered by Congress.” No surprise.
points out Autism Awareness Month, with an easy way to make a donation (watch a video).
Ted Rall, Corrupt Student Loan Biz Can’t Be Reformed. “It’s time to end the student loan racket once and for all. Outstanding student loans should be forgiven. Non-repayable grants could cover 100 percent of tuition for those who can’t afford it. Can the U.S. afford it? Yes. All we have to do is get out of Iraq.” As I’ve said many times, education should be free.
Police order boy, 5, to stop chalking hopscotch ‘graffiti’ on the street. We got in trouble for this in the early ‘70’s, too. The old ladies who lived on our street found them unsightly, and sicced the cops on us. This is sad: “Officers attended because anti-social behaviour is a priority.” You’ll find drawing with chalk on a street, for young children, is highly social behavior.
Students sue antiplagiarism website for rights to their homework. “Teachers can see if students are lifting work – a valuable tool given that research has found that 40 percent of undergraduate students admit to copying and pasting passages from websites.” Holy cow.
“The successful students have to have shown some passion for science and technology in high school or their personal life ... [snip] ... That means creating a computer system for your high school, or taking a tractor apart and putting it back together.”
NY Times Fashion & Style:
Mommy and Daddy’s Little Life Coach. Nice to see an article about children that does not feature the child-as-victim stereotype, though it leans that way towards the end.
Boy finds watch after it floats some 2,900 km from North Pole. History at your doorstep.
SF New Mexican:
“Sons born to women who ate a lot of beef during their pregnancy have a 25 percent below-normal sperm count and three times the normal risk of fertility problems, researchers reported Tuesday.” So, cattle supplements finally show an effect. Go for organic, don’t switch for the complications of phytoestrogens in soy.
Tangential: NY Times Op-Ed Contributor, Who Killed Fido? We All Did.
SF New Mexican:
One World Coffee and Trade Closed for Business. Even in closure, it’s a learning experience. Offhand, I’d say location worked against them.