Sunday, January 26, 2014

A Trip To The Library

Georgia has another research assignment for school.  This time it's a project of her choice about any one aspect of the American Revolution / Constitution and it's for her social studies class.  The project isn't really a research paper - although research has to be done - it's more of a craft project.  Each fifth grader has to choose a topic, learn enough facts that they can present the subject to their class and they have to create an object or a poster that represents the topic.  

This particular project is supposed to be completed by the fifth grader themselves, but we know from past experience (Henry had the exact same assignment three years ago) that the parents at our elementary school can sometimes get carried away with their "help."  When Henry was a fifth grader, you would not have believed the projects the children brought in:  there was an actual log cabin made with sticks found in the local woods and stripped of their bark, sanded to perfection and whittled to fit together into perfectly wind-resistant walls.  There was also an almost life-sized replica of the liberty bell and a bust of Benjamin Franklin's head that could have held pride of place in any museum in Philadelphia.  

I was impressed by all these projects, but annoyed when Henry received his grade for the assignment and was told that his low score was due to his apparent "lack of effort."  Henry's effort had been great;  it was Gordy and my effort that had been lacking, and isn't that what should happen at this age?  Shouldn't kids being doing their own projects?  Should my child get penalized for doing his own work?

I'm ready to get off my soap box now.  

Georgia didn't want to do a project about Paul Revere.  And she had no interest in Ben Franklin or The Liberty Bell.  She wanted to do something about women in the Revolution, but rejected the idea of doing a project about Betsy Ross.  She spent some time looking up Revolutionary Women on the computer, but the topics were few.  That's when I suggested that she do her assignment on Abigail Adams and how she wrote multiple letters to her husband, imploring him to include women in the Declaration of Independence and in the Constitution.   Georgia was intrigued - especially when I got to the part about Abigail Adams famous "remember the ladies" quote and how Abigail wanted the men to guarantee equality for women at the beginning of our nation.  

And with those words, my friends, another feminist was born. 

The girls and I went to the public library on Saturday to do some research (and to get away from Henry who had started a project of his own and was acting like a bear at home).

Sadly, our library didn't have any books on Abigail Adams in the children's section, but through inter-library loan, I think we'll be okay.  Georgia did find one or two books that we thought might help and she happily posed with one of them by the stacks.

Okay.  Perhaps I'm exaggerating a little bit.  Maybe she was a little annoyed at having to pose at the library.

Smile, Georgia.  Mommy's putting this on the internet!

On the other side of the library, Josie was looking for a little entertainment reading.  She was also looking for her good friend Dorothy, whom we almost always see when we are at the library.

Sadly, no Dorothy.  She was probably at dance class or perhaps we just missed her.

We weren't in any huge hurry to get back home to Henry and his English assignment, so I let the girls take their time looking for books.

I followed them around and snapped photos - trying not to use my flash so other library-goers wouldn't think I was strange.

I like to take photos of our life, but even I thought that photos in the library was a little crazy. 

What's a person to do?  If you need something to write about on your blog, you need photos!

I'd call our trip to the library a great success.  Both the girls found multiple books to read over the next two weeks, we got a few books for Georgia's research assignment and ordered other books from local libraries (that will hopefully make it here on time to be of help) AND we gave Gordy plenty of time to talk Henry off the ledge and get him to start his English project before we got home and had to help with that hassle, too.

See?  A success!


Anonymous said...

We had gotten our Revolutionary War books too!!
Can't believe we missed you :)


Guymons said...

i like the striped pants! and even thought the book bag was on top of them somehow in the last picture....haha...just kidding.

I love the library!

I dislike projects!

I am angry for you for the "lack of effort" comment made by the teacher. I have seen science fair projects by 2nd graders that are OBVIOUSLY made by parents, which have won blue ribbons! WHAT?!?!?!!!

One time, William did a science fair project ALL BY HIMSELF, which was so ugly and sloppy....we didnt enter it into the "fair" because I knew it wouldnt win....then it got really high scores....I think the judges at that fair could tell that he did it and that he learned from it. Should have entered that one....haha. (here you choose to enter when you turn it in, doesnt really make sense, but thats how they do it).

Bradley is in the middle of a biography report and I can tell he's really doing it and learning because every so often he just randomly spouts off John Bidwell interesting facts.

kikssimplelife said...

these two young lovely ladies are sure loving the library :)

Martha said...

Trish - bad luck! How much fun would it have been to have gone looking for Dorothy and then FIND dorothy!?!

Martha said...

Diane - Aren't those striped pants wonderfully-Brady bunch? Tis the season for school projects!

Martha said...

Kiks - thanks so much for stopping by and for leaving a comment! My girls do love the library, although I'm not sure they liked their mother taking photos in the library! Stop by again soon.

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