Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Studying Oceanography

 As many of you know, we are a home schooling family with a child that struggles with school. She is very intelligent but she struggles a great deal with math and reading. This has bothered me for a long time as I felt that I might not be doing my own job. However, I have decided that she learns things easily as long as she doesn't have to read the material on her own. It is easy to adjust to her learning style but it makes more work for me. I don't mind, but time gets away so easily. This year I wanted to try something new and we decided that science was the one subject that I don't like teaching, so finding an online science program was what I needed.

 After asking several friends and home school parents for ideas, we discovered a great free site online that teaches many subjects and has complete programs online. It is known as Easy Peasy Homeschool. This  site offers many high school subjects as well and you can go there from the link on the Easy Peasy site or from here. After looking at several science programs, I decided to use the Oceanography program from this site.

 Why Oceanography? Someone might ask. My daughter loves nature and she loves animals and although we have done many other earlier science programs with animals, I decided that I just would like to expand her knowledge of the ocean and the science involved with it. She was worried that it might be a hard class but so far she has enjoyed it. She has learned several new concepts and although we aren't learning about animals at the moment, we will. I am thinking that I will plan a field trip to the aquarium as soon as we are finished with the course.

 Currently, studying how an idea goes from a hypothesis to a theory to a scientific law has been interesting to teach. She understands that all things in science starts out as an educated guess but she finds it hard to understand why by the time it becomes a scientific law that it is still just not an absolute. Learning how variables can change experiments and results is slowly sinking in as how nothing in science can be absolute.

 The program has labs along with it and she is currently learning how to write a lab report and what information is important to an experiment and what is not. Tomorrow we will be doing our first experiment of the year and we are both excited about it as we will be building some sort of boat and seeing how different  things can affect how it floats. We will also be doing an experiment that she has had to personally develop and I am sure that will be a fun one.

 I would highly recommend that anyone who has children that are middle school age or older try this program. It is fun and very educational. It is laid out in a way that the child doesn't have to spend a lot of time on it, but it could easily be a longer period of time if the parent would add worksheets or extra writing assignments.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

"Molly"- Not the new girl next door

This is not my usual farm blog post, but something that I feel parents need to be aware of  in any home - rural or suburban- even inner city. Parents need to know that if their child is speaking of "Molly" , they are not talking about the girl next door. "Molly", also known as MDMN or ectasy is the new drug of choice among many teens and college students.

" Molly" is actually a purer form of ecstasy. "Molly" is a crystal or powder form of the drug, not the pill form. This drug was originally very popular in night clubs or 'raves', but many more cases of abuse of this drug are being seen all over the country. "Molly" or MDMA is a stimulant drug which can cause the heart to race and the blood pressure to rise. It depletes the brain of serotonin and can cause confusion, depression, sleep deprivation, drug cravings, and anxiety.Depleting this chemical can also cause the users body to not be able to regulate body temperature causing hypothermia, which can cause even more problems. There can be serious long lasting effects on the brain by depleting this natural chemical in our body.

This drug allows the user to feel emotional warmth, increased energy, euphoria, and empathy while taking it. These effects will last 3-6 hours and is usually taken with another drug to increase these feelings. Of course, it is never a good idea to combine drugs and the combination of drugs can lead to even more effects on the body.

The drug is a Schedule 1 substance since being labeled that in 1985. The drug was used in the 1970's as an aid in Psychotherapy, but was used without approval of the FDA. The drug is currently being used in clinical trials for PTSD - Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. These facts allow us to know that it must alter the mind or it would not be used in this matter.

Parents need to be aware of what their children are doing when they are not with them and they need to know to be aware of signs of drug abuse. Listen to your child's conversations with friends and if you hear the name "Molly" BE AWARE. This is a dangerous drug and please talk with your children about this drug. Make sure they are aware that this is not a new candy and that they have some knowledge of this so that they can protect themselves.

As parents we never think that our child would become addicted to drugs, but in these days and with all the "new" forms of drugs out there and so many with harmless sounding names, we just never know what our child might try when faced with peer pressure or something that they think won't hurt them.

Happy Homemaker Monday _ Feb. 6, 2023

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