Because all experiences are valuable.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Student, Teacher, Baby Mama

Oh! He did it again. Tonight he sucked me into watching Baby Mama, with Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. Actually, this is a really cute and fun movie. Reid and I love movies. Greg Kinnear is always great, too.

What does this have to do with anything? Not much! But then again, if you have followed my blog for long, you know I usually manage to make it all mean something anyway. I've been pleasantly surprised at how the concepts in my Anatomy and Physiology class have overlapped with my Gen. Chem/ Intro Biochem class, and even how concepts from my statistics class have found their new frames of reference in my world. I've always been "good" at education. That sounds like a poor sentence, but it reflects a truth. The pursuit of knowledge is like a sport in some ways, like a game, even. It takes dedication, practice, desire, and some level of innate, genetic talent. I think it probably takes having had educationally supportive parents as a foundation, even years later.  It takes an interest in the sport in general. Have you ever seen a great football player who didn't follow football avidly, or a great golfer who didn't know the lie of every great green?

Being a good student is like that. Every new thing I learn becomes part of a huge web of "stuff I know." It all connects. I can't stop it. I think it is likely annoying to a lot of people, because it is hard for me to keep it all in. The stuff just pops out all over. I'm like a Build-A Bear with too much stuffing in the head. (But wow I have the cutest little clothes!)

I spent some time with Reid last night going over the Central Limit Theorem. He is doing a statistics unit in math. I'm really glad I have been doing the same thing in my class at Brenau, and that I have a superior instructor. His level of knowledge makes him well-qualified, but what makes him a superior teacher is his genuine desire for his students to understand the material, and its usefulness and value. I don't know why so many of the teachers my sons have had just seemed to want to present the material in the approved testable manner. (don't get me started on No Child Left Behind.)  Because David Cook cares that I actually learn the application of statistics to the world, I was able to teach my son. How is that not the greatest thing? Yesterday, my friend Frank spent hours working with his daughter, Skye, on her homework. (Her magnet school seems like a real bear. I'm not convinced a child really needs 12 hours of education a day. Ever hear of the law of Diminishing Returns?) Guy calls Jason sometimes for help. Guy helps me with my chemistry, and I in turn teach whatever I can learn outside of class to my friends Abby and Melissa. My friend and lab partner Brittany teach each other in anatomy lab. One of us always knows the correct answer, and why it is correct.

In Baby Mama, though a comedy, the two women could not be more different yet, as is common in movies, they each teach the other something about how to be a real human being, while learning together what it means to become a mom. Sometimes being a mom means planning a nice dinner of Lobster ravioli, fresh broccoli, smoked salmon and garlic bread for a tired and stressed teenager. Sometimes it means yelling at him to do his German homework. (Reid!! do your German homework.) Sometimes it means threatening to take way his phone if he doesn't stop texting and go to bed, or allowing your "baby" 18 yr old to go his own way and live his own life (someone named Guy is currently skipping class tomorrow to go to Florida, Lol.)
This is not new material. This is not groundbreaking stuff. But it is my life, and my journey, and it makes a pretty good movie, full of lessons and setbacks, and even the occasional happy ending.

Guy and Reid at class of '85 gathering

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