Essays, Parenting

Dear high school graduates

With high school graduations coming up, I have a message that I’d like to put out here for any high schooler who desperately wants to go to college but believes they can’t afford it:

Just get there.

I know you’re looking at those student financial aid packages and the amount of money you still have to come up with on your own, and you’re thinking it just isn’t possible. But I’m telling you it is.

Just get there.

Take whatever free money you can get. “Free” meaning you never have to pay it back. Take only what you need in student loans to actually pay for your tuition and dorm room (if you need one,) and then start looking for a job on or near campus. Ask the financial aid office to set up a payment plan. Work your ass off this summer and save up as much money as possible to help pay for that first year of school. Don’t worry about the second year yet. Just figure out how to pay for that first semester.

Just get there.

Continue reading “Dear high school graduates”
Corbin, Memoir

An update on my “semi-famous” son

My son and I were invited to attend the Homecoming kickoff assembly at his high school Monday morning. While he’s not officially back to school yet (It will be another month before we find out when the doctor will release him to return to class,) he enjoyed stopping by the school and soaking up his fifteen minutes of celebrity status in front of the entire student body. Here’s a video:

Continue reading “An update on my “semi-famous” son”

Education, Essays

Criticism: How to be constructive rather than destructive

English: Students working with a teacher at Al...
How do you provide criticism to a student without destroying his or her sense of self-worth? | English: Students working with a teacher at Albany Senior High School, New Zealand. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

One of the most important – and most difficult – parts of teaching is providing constructive criticism without destroying a students’ belief that he or she is capable of succeeding in school.

I recently started reading Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity and am working through some of the exercises she presents in her 12-week course. This morning’s task was to write about three old enemies of my creative self-worth.

I’ve been lucky in that I’ve had a lot of encouragement of my writing endeavors throughout most of my life, so it was hard for me to think of three. Then I remembered my high school Rhetoric tea Continue reading “Criticism: How to be constructive rather than destructive”


Can a bully be forgiven?

Mitt Romney
Do we want a bully in the White House? | Mitt Romney (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We were all young once. I’m sure we all did things in high school that we aren’t particularly proud of. If you were a bully, you might even feel shame or horror for the pain that you caused. Or you would if you’ve grown up since and developed a sense of empathy for others.

If you were ever bullied, you may wonder if the bully remembers the things that he or she did to you. You probably hope that person is human enough that such horrors wouldn’t easily fade from his or her memory.

Mitt Romney was recently accused of bullying a gay student when he was in high school back in the 60’s. When I first heard the news, I was willing to give the man the benefit of the doubt. I mean, I wasn’t even born when this event took place, and I know I’ve changed a lot since I was in high school. Continue reading “Can a bully be forgiven?”