Thursday, September 10, 2020


 "In school, you are taught a lesson and given a test. In life you are given a test that teaches you a lesson." I can't take credit for that. Tom Bodett said it. It was this morning's cryptogram. I get up early and do the cryptogram with my coffee. My goal is to get it done before William gets up. I've been meeting that goal lately. 

I'm not a teacher, but I play one in my house. I feel a great responsibility about this. If William falls behind, the blame falls squarely on me. Education is a very big deal to me. Because I am not a person with especially high self esteem, I doubt myself all the time. If I come up against a problem, I immediately assume that I'm the jackass. 

I am beginning to learn that  is not always the case. As Bob pointed out, this curriculum was put together hurriedly. One size does NOT fit all. For whatever reason, the teacher is not familiar with the modules. I'm sure she's playing catch-up just as I am. 

It's been stressful.

Today, William and I marched through his classes. PE. Math. Social Studies. Science. Language Arts. We got it all done and he had time to read his book. 

Something that I'm still struggling with is saving his assignments. I have no problem with any subject but Social Studies. I usually just print the stuff out and scan it in, but I've been able to just save the stuff from his other courses, so I tried again with social studies. I was pleased to see the file went right into his school folder where it belonged, but was horrified when I could not open it. It said the file was corrupted. I sent it off as an attachment to an e-mail with a vulgar subject line, so I don't think the file is the only thing that got corrupted. 

In any case, half a world away, Cara received that e-mail and was able to get it open and then copy and paste it and return it to me in another e-mail. She did this in an amazingly short time, which was even more humiliating, but let me say, I have learned a valuable life lesson here. Every assignment gets copied until such a time that I am sure that the file is saved properly. (Still don't know what I did). 

Today, I submitted assignments like nobody's business for math. He even took two math quizzes. He made an online post about his science project and we attached a photo. He is much relieved to see that we are done with the dreary boring discussions on Scientific Process and about to launch into Earth Science. We studied the American Indians and read about the Ghost Dance and Animism and the Sun Dance. He did an essay on that (which thank Cara he did not have to rewrite). He took a quiz for Language Arts. 

Today I had no questions for the teacher, and I am sure she was happy not to hear from me for a change. 

"In school, you are taught a lesson and given a test. In life you are given a test that teaches you a lesson." William is learning his lessons and he's taken some tests already and done well. For me, this is a test. I have learned a lesson. I'm pretty sensible. If I think that something has veered off into pure-D nonsense, I can trust my judgement. 

I celebrated that lesson with a celebratory afterschool wine cooler. You know, God is wise. I was supposed to have two students, but the other boy's mother changed her mind and decided to send him to school. These first two weeks have made me grateful that I only have one student. 


  1. I can't imagine doing what you are doing for both of my girls. It would probably take more than a wine cooler for me to unwind at night.

  2. Ditto my friend Ed. And you’re doing a great job!

  3. Love the quote. My paper carries a different puzzle... mine was one from Moliere. "A learned fool is more foolish than an ignorant fool."

  4. Er, nobody said working as a teacher made life easier. But someone has got to do it. Hold tight, from you blogger friend from Portugal.

  5. You are doing great things. Asking for help is both a great lesson to learn, but also a great lesson to teach.


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