Nearly all my 8th graders have smart phones and use them to Google everything. They love Google as much as I do. Google and the internet is like going to the library, only better because I can stay home. Most of my students are reading one or two years below their grade level. For many, graduating from high school is already a fading dream. I hope they are learning that educating yourself is about learning. I have shared a story from my family as it was told to me; true or not it has value. My cousin once read that Abraham Lincoln homeschooled himself and became a lawyer. This cousin had graduated from high school and had a labor
job. He wanted to be a lawyer and decided he would study at the local library. Several years later when he was ready to sign up to take the legal exam, the requirement for a college degree had only been in place for three months. Yes, I know it sounds like a rotten deal, but this cousin went on to be one of the most successful members in my family. He took a job where he learned to cut hair; later, owned a barbershop and employed many relatives over a few decades. He even authored a book and this story is in his book. Were my mother answering my text messages and her phone right now, I would site him here in my blog. I can’t recall his name and my deadline will not wait. The jest of the story is this: education is a great type of contingency plan and not finishing high school is not the end of learning.
Hakuta, K. (1999). A critical period for second language acquisition? A status review. Paper written for the National Center for Early Development and Learning (University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill).
Natheson-Mejia, S. (1994). Bridges between home and school: Literacy building activities for non native English speaking homes. The Journal of Educational Issues of Language Minority Students.
Skutnabb-Kangas, Tove. (1990). Language, Literacy and Minorities. London: Minority Rights Group.