Education is certainly one of those topics that can live forever. From the heart-wrenching, earth-shattering choice of that first kindergarten, (OK, I'm kidding.) (Sort of.) to a great place to learn how to trim the hedge, or understand Proust, we've got more learning resources than ever before.
I'm a fan of learning resources and will be tossing them in here. Since this website is in flux (it's brand new), there are education links scattered throughout. Starting today, 1/21/04, I'll be bringing them together on this page. Some of the information will be a bit redundant because it's in other categories elsewhere.
[Updated in 2009]
Thinking about education for your child
The overview page gives you an overview of the different educational philosophies that are out there as you begin thinking about putting your child into his or her first preschool. These are nice, but I'd also like to refer you to a page on Values from a lovely preschool teacher, also known as the Ooey Gooey lady.
Speaking as (now) the mother of a four year old, I'd say that the teacher and class size are two of the absolutely most important things to bear in mind. Do not be seduced by big names and a long waiting list! Find a place where you think your child will make friends and feel great. And incidentally, statistics have shown that teacher: child ratio is a huge factor in a child's success.
How this section works
The links to the left are current. As of 2009, my son is in second grade, so the notes about preschools are pretty old, and the notes on things like dyslexia are pretty current. Some of the pages to the left are placeholders -- I haven't had time to dump the information that I've collected into them. If there's anything that you want to see added, or if you personally want to own or edit one of these pages, go for it! Email me at moretoastplease at Yahoo dot com and you can have your name up in lights! Or just email me anything you want to see up. Please remember that this entire website is pretty much a data storage center for me. It lets me find my information on all sorts of topics. As such, it's limited, but hey.
The Homeschooling page describes local and online homeschooling resources.
This can be rough. I'm not talking about your typical, type A parent who claims that his kid's brilliant every time he turns around (and there are soooooo many of those around). I'm talking about people like the parents of two year old twins: one of whom has taught himself to read already and who think that it's "a little creepy." Giftedness can mean a lot of things. IMHO up to about 150 is just bright. Over that, though, and the brain's pretty darn different. I get the feeling that I'll end up with enough information on this for my own Gifted Page.
What we're doing to educate our 4 year old
I was going to put this information into a Word document and then I figured I'd make it into a web page so that I could have live links. Then I thought "hey, what the heck, why not be narcissistic and post it to the world." So here you go. I pulled my four year old out of his five day a week school this year (after three weeks!) and my husband and I just got together to use homeschooling resources and plans and our own brains to tickle his brain and teach him what we want to teach him while we have him at home. So here is our homegrown educational plan. This is our first brainstorming pass.
Actually, we left him in his "big name" play-based school with 32 kids in it for two days a week right up until March, but we finally found what we wanted, and pulled him out of there. Now he's in an extremely small, loving daycare (so it doesn't END every term... yay!) preschool with only 10 kids. It's structured, with plenty of free play, and they are learning to say the days of the week in spanish and italian, to learn their letters, and to work together and be part of a community. Perfect. (4/05)
Education and Education Philosophy (General, Not just Preschool)
I just stumbled across a very interesting stie called Adprima. LOTS of education stuff. Check it out.. Here's an article called, "Generation Y Wants to, Like Teach" that talks about how students entering educational programs lack content. Real content. Like who people in history are and what they did.
Higher education links
apropos of nothing...
Here's a link to the Goethean studies website at the Rudolf Steiner college. Weird, huh?