Wednesday, April 05, 2006

by yon bonnie banks...

DD has a "cultural project" due tomorrow. Each student had to choose a country, and then put together some kind of paper thing (poster, book) and a presentation about that country. DD chose Scotland, I'm sure because she had just seen a Mystery Hunters show on Discovery Kids about the Loch Ness Monster. (This Nova site was our Loch Ness resource -- it's very good.) So a good part of the day was spent helping her put it all together, and now I've got the last batch of Scotch shortbread cookies in the oven for her to bring and share.

She made a book with six pages, covering the map, facts about the people, the main jobs people do there, sports, and of course, the Loch Ness Monster.

She worked hard, but it irks me that she only finished it the day before it was due. As with DS1's big projects, there was a lot for me to do, too, including sitting on her to do what needed to be done, and resisting the temptation to do any of it myself. There's a fine line between helping and taking over.

Now I know more about Scotland than I ever have, and no doubt I'll never forget any of it, either, since I had to go over it, and over it, and over it with DD for her presentation. Sadly I noted that Scotland's population is declining, although recent waves of immigration have mitigated that somewhat. I like the idea of Scotland, with the wild highlands and the fertile lowlands, with fish and game in abundance. It seems a lot of that flavor has been preserved, at least from what we read. It really does sound like a nice place to visit. And as a half Scots-Irish girl, I'm not surprised to find that learning more about it really does make me want to go, someday.

1 comment:

nina said...

Interestingly, I was planning a trip to Scotland this spring. My ex husband and I spent many months there while he was working on his dissertation some thirty years ago. The reason I had second thoughts now has to do with the weather. It is so darn cold and rainy. To the bone. I switched to Siciliy at the last moment. Sunny Sicily. Rainy Scotland.

But that notwithstanding, I have to say that your post reminded me of the many many school projects that our kids do that clearly require substantial parental involvement. My parents never did that! I'm not sure they knew anything about my schoolwork. These days, parents are asked to do so much of this at home! It hardly seems fair for any number of reasons. Worst for me were the science projects. At the school science fair, my girls were the ones who had to make do with celery or carnation stalks turning the color of the food die in the water while others had dads (almost always it was the dads) build them spaceships and who knows what else. I swear that's why both daughters went into the social sciences, following the humiliation of these fairs.