Thursday, September 13, 2007

School Daze

Tonight and this past Monday night, I attended the Open House nights at the schools of two of my sons. My oldest son, Cadet Airman WE (as his friends call him) attends Northwestern High School while my middle son, the Fullback (at least that is the position he is playing this week) attends Sullivan Middle School.

Monday night, I went to Northwestern High. Every time I go to that campus it is like going to a college. Northwestern has twice as many students as Wofford has now and four to five times as many as Hemingway High School where I graduated. Regardless, the night's visit brought back memories/nightmares of my own high school experience. There was something disconcerting about sitting there in that geometry class listening to the teacher speak about the tests, the work, the theorems. I remembered my own struggles in math. I was the kind of student that wanted to know why that pie thingie equals 3.14. Says who?

Chemistry class was next. As I walked through the door, there was the smell of the lab/classroom (you remember... gas and something strong). That funny smell brought back memories of balancing equations and listening to my teacher talking about the chemical formula for Crisco (no, I cannot remember the chemical name for lard). I was awaken from my flashback when the Airman's teacher gave me a formula study sheet that my son had missed picking up that day. It looked like Cyrillic to me. Did I know that stuff at some point in my life? Was the memory of those formulas purged from my mind when I stepped on a child's Lego in a darkened room on the night of February 24, 1998? I went to Sullivan tonight; the middle school was a marginally better experience. The school is still huge and my son is learning in 8th grade what I learned in 10th. My days of homework assistance are almost over. It will be tougher to bluff my way through it.

Of course, my discomfort was short-lived as I discovered that both of my sons do very well in school (even in chemistry class). All three of my sons are thriving in a superior learning environment...I guess they got something from their Mom!

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