Sunday, October 24, 2010

The Requested Massive Follow-up

Some conclusions I've drawn from the articles, Kenny's comment, and my responses to said comment:

  • I am incredibly glad I didn't post the original rant. Blogging when angry is never a good thing.
  • Parenting is difficult. It takes lots of training to be a doctor, but anyone can be a parent, and there isn't any required training at all for that. There's books you can read, and classes to take, and your own parents and other people you know to learn from, but every kid is different and there's no way to prepare for that. I read some article in which the woman said "I am not a homemaker. I am not a housewife. I am a Mom," meaning that was her profession of choice. It's a job, and it's a job that needs to be done well, and while there are many very, very good parents in the world, it scares me that there are some not-so-great ones too.

Kenny's comment was a heck of a lot shorter than the 6 articles I wrote on originally, so I think I'll just go with direct quotes and responses.

"This is an interesting post linking to interesting articles, so I think I have quite a bit to say, sorry? First off, I am unsure that Nerdfighters provide the best examples of "typical" students."

I don't mind at all. And that's a good point. Unfortunately, I haven't anyone else to compare to, since all of my friends are either nerdfighters or would be if they knew about it or are a lot like nerdfighters even though they don't want to be one. I think I wrote something like "all the teenagers I know well enough to speak about in regards to this."

"One thing that multiple articles did was imply that students becoming more family dependent/oriented was a bad thing. I think this comes from our "frontier mentality" as a culture (I assume you are in the US, the articles were from the NYT at least)"

Yep. I hail from central NC, although I got the articles from "Old People Insulting Young People," not the NYT itself. There's a house in our neighborhood in which three generations live, and I know some cultures are very big on extended family sticking together, whereas the general outlook here seems to be more of "We raise you, and now you're grown, so go off and do your own thing and hopefully do well for yourself and we'll see you at Christmas." I don't know anyone with post-college kids very well, so I don't know if that's actually the case. I know my family finds regular communication and get-togethers fairly important (of course, all of Mom's immediate family lives nearby), and while my dad doesn't call his parents and siblings terribly often, they always talk for at least an hour when he does. If a family functions as a support group for "emerging adults," then I think that's a good thing. It's only when they start interfering with things (like you mentioned regarding move-in day later on in your comment) that it starts to be a problem. 

"In regards to my students, while some show a shocking sense of entitlement, and many have a serious disrespect for academics, almost all of them have been respectful people whom I have been privileged to teach."

Case point: Sometimes my dad's manager brings in donuts to share. One week, he didn't, and the team asked him why he didn't have donuts for them. He said "because people get a sense of entitlement really fast." The same goes for my computer programming class- our teacher offered to buy bagels (although we had to pay) twice out of the whole 7-8 weeks we've been in school, yet every week someone complains about not getting them.

"I found this Wednesday I was startled by the realization that I could buy a new computer without consulting my parents. And I haven't lived in their house for more than a couple weeks at a time in over 6 years. It seems reasonable that others more connected would have a harder time unlearning childhood programming."

That's interesting, and very true from what I can tell. It reminds me of some of Kristina Horner's blog posts when she was finishing up college. I think my most difficult bit of "programming" to unlearn will be to not relate anything interesting that happened during my day to my parents. All my life, they've expressed interest in "what (I) did at school today," and now it's at the point where they don't have to. Anything of note that I don't mind telling them, I do. They're interested, and (as you can tell, based on the number of posts on this blog), I like sharing.

"Regarding high school friends, not much personal experience there, didn't really have any to keep, but I did observe that people who left campus most or all weekends did not make as many ties in the campus community."

*struggles to phrase agreement without sounding sarcastic* This year's the first year since we met that my best friend and I haven't seen each other almost every school day. She doesn't check her email much (of course, it's marching band season, so there's a reason for that), and can't talk on the phone much due to, well, marching band and homework. It's been strange, but it is true that due to not being in classes with her, I've talked to other people more. Normally, "outsiders" get ignored in the face of a friendship formed in the past.

"Well, there is my veritable manifesto on the subject. I'm a bit sick, so hopefully the ideas made it safely from my brain, through the tiny chicken eggs, and out into the Internets."

It made sense. Get better soon!

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