Homeschooled Young Woman Succeeds in the Music World

My husband and I love the Internet show “Live from Daryl’s House.” It features a variety of musical talent who take turns visiting musician Daryl Hall (of Hall and Oates) and jamming with him and his band.

One of the best episodes of the show so far features a young woman named Kandace Springs. I was curious about her, so I did a little research and learned that not only is she a big fan of Ella Fitzgerald (as I am), but also that she was homeschooled. Good for her!

Check out one of the songs she performed with Daryl Hall on his show:

More Jobs Not Requiring College

My kids are grown and my grandkids are little, so college isn’t really an issue in our family right now. But for homeschoolers, it looms large, so I like to share news of what’s going on in terms of whether or not teens can or should go to college. Lately I’m seeing more articles about companies no longer requiring new hires to have a college diploma, like this one and this one.

I see this as a good sign. I have nothing against going to college; in fact, my college experience was a great one. But I think that requiring every potential employee to have spent six figures (probably borrowed) to get that diploma is ridiculous, and I’m glad to see the landscape slowly changing.

Run, Don’t Walk, Away from Public Schools

I’ve been accused of being negative about public school. It’s true, I’m guilty. When I was an inmate, er student, in the public schools, I thought it was a big waste of time. When I became a parent, I chose to homeschool my kids instead of putting them on the big yellow bus with the neighbor kids.

Public school was bad enough back then, but look at it now. Teachers complain that the students don’t listen to them because they’re allowed to be on their phones in class. Public school grads arrive at college unable to read at grade level or write a coherent paragraph. Meanwhile, political correctness and political bias run rampant.

Just recently, a Boston public school allowed a tombstone with the name of President Donald Trump at a school-sponsored Halloween event. On the other coast, a California school sponsored a scarecrow contest where one of the scarecrows was clearly meant to represent President Trump. This would never have been allowed in the schools I went to, as flawed as they were.

Of course, these specific behaviors, while condoned by the schools, are the fault of parents. But the schools allowed their behavior instead of forbidding it. While the institution of public schooling itself is one giant mistake, some of the families involved in the public schools are also problematic. How else can you explain parents who send their children to their local public library’s Drag Queen Story Time?

Run, don’t walk, away from the public schools (read John Taylor Gatto’s books for encouragement). If you’re not up for homeschooling, find a good private school. Don’t sentence your child to years in a failing system.

 

Scaring Kids in the Name of PC

My younger kids enjoyed watching “The Magic School Bus” on PBS years ago. I didn’t mind because it was mostly educational. But today’s version apparently includes scaring kids by telling them that a monster will get them if they don’t live the green lifestyle. Propaganda is alive and well in children’s programming. What a shame!

How I Escaped SmartPhone Addiction

I bought my first cell phone about 20 years ago. It was handy for letting my husband know where we were when the kids and I were out running around, but since it was a prepaid phone and minutes were expensive, I only used it when necessary and kept it off most of the time.

I was forced to upgrade phones once or twice over the years, but I never got into using the thing regularly, partly because of the cost and partly because I like being out of the reach of others for periods of time. I need that time to think.

Once smartphones took hold, I looked into getting one and rejected the idea pretty quickly. As a writer and therefore a reader, I can’t stop myself from reading; I was addicted to news sites on the Internet before I ever got a cellphone. Having the Internet at hand 24/7 in the form of a smartphone would be going in the wrong direction.

Of course, like the few others who don’t have smartphones, I’ve suffered through having dinner guests who rudely keep checking their phones, nearly been hit by drivers who are checking their phones, and have occasionally been interrupted in worship by the chirping, dinging or singing of some fellow worshipper’s phone. Sigh.

But I never really thought about how fortunate I am to have evaded the call of the smartphone until I read this article. The writer describes his phone addiction and his efforts to break it in detail. (He also makes me glad that I’ve always limited my time on Twitter.) It’s particularly poignant that restricting his smartphone use now lets him spend more focused time with his wife and kids, but they too are addicted to their smartphones, so one has to wonder just how meaningful his newly gained time with them can be.

Someone recently pointed out to me that I miss out on a lot by not being on Fbook. That’s true. I wish that others in my family weren’t so addicted to posting their entire lives online where others can see and I can’t. That said, I think there’s a special place in hell for people like those who created Fbook, who lure people in with a software program that lets them keep in touch with others so they can make a lot of money sharing and selling those people’s personal information to other companies. I don’t want any part of that.

As for smartphones, that article made it pretty unlikely that I’ll ever get one. His experience makes a compelling case for living your life without becoming a slave to perpetual notifications on a gadget.