Tuesday, September 7, 2010
Rant #328: High School Daze
Today is a big day in my family's world.
Today, my son goes to high school for the first time.
He is not the first one of my kids to go to high school--my daughter was a freshman all the way back in 2002, I believe--but now I guess we have completed the circle. Two kids, two kids into higher education.
My daughter pretty much breezed through high school, and I don't mean that as a positive. I think she was bored, at this point, with education. And I don't mean to make a pun with this description. I just think by this time in her life, she really wasn't that much into education, and she basically got by in high school, doing what she had to do to get in and get out in four years.
Once, she went to college, she returned back to the overdrive mode, and did very nicely.
My son is a different story entirely. He has to work hard for everything. He has a learning disability which holds him back quite a bit. I have helped my daughter with various educational questions she has posed me, but with my son, my wife and I really have to work with him--and his grandmother works with him, too--and it is difficult.
For him to reach high school is just another notch on his belt of achievements.
If you have never been confronted with a child with a learning disability, it is something that can't be explained in a paragraph or two. The only way I can describe it in just a few words is to imagine a person who needs glasses but doesn't have them, or needs a hearing aid and doesn't have them. When they go to school, without these devices, they might be able to get some of the stuff thrown at them, but because they can't see or hear properly, a lot of it goes out the door.
Kids with learning disabilities go through this every day. They have to learn to learn differently than others. And that's what makes it such a difficult task to go up the ladder from grade to grade.
And add to that going to a new school. Remember your first day of high school? It can be a dizzying day. The school is so big, you don't know where your classroom is each period, and there is a lot of hustle and bustle during the first day.
It is so different from the other schools you have gone to, and for the first time in your life, you don't feel like a "kid" anymore.
Oh, I know my son is going to make it. His teachers have told us from kindergarten that he has the drive and the will to succeed. He wants to learn, it's just that he has difficulty doing so.
But he will succeed. He will see to that, and my wife and I--and yes, his sister too, even though she lives 300 miles away from us, as well as his grandmother--will help him.
So, I wish him a lot of good luck today. Those high school years can be the best time of your life, or the worst time of your life. There seems to be no in between. I hope for him that these are days he fondly looks back on.
And I know he will succeed. My wife and I are proud of him for what he has already accomplished, and there is no reason to think that he won't continue to do as well as he can now that he is in high school.
Posted by Larry at 3:56 AM