The a.m. consisted of Algebra 2 videos which introduced us to “row echelon form” to solve systems of equations, nothing too practical unless one of my students become an engineer or mathematician. You never know. It is great brain exercise, though, and rather fascinating that someone was able to come up with the strategy of finding solutions for “x”, “y”, “z” or sometimes even more variables for multiple sets of equations. I would rather learn piano, personally, to keep my brain sharp, but this what I need to do right now, to be of any use as a math mom.
A visit to the craft store was squeezed in to replenish supplies for Halloween arts and crafts, and to provide a past-time for the younger two while I was gone for the afternoon, as I was setting out on an adventure with Sabrina to the University of Southern California for a tour and informational workshop on campus.
USC is a neighbor to the California Science Center, to which I am indebted for hands-on science instruction over the years, as I know I have mentioned before. We love science, and have supplemented our sit-down science instruction with visits to aquariums, natural tidepools, “magic shows” to illustrate the awesomeness of chemistry, countless trips to the library for illustrated animal science books, botanical as well as zoological gardens, and the annual science fair which is a favorite in our homeschooling crowd. Here, in this subject, I am a student along with my kids, as there is so much awe and wonder in discovering new things in science.
Getting back to USC, it is a lovely campus, a small community within a huge metropolis. Being a private institution, funds have blessed this campus with lush gardens, extravagant fountains, beautiful architecture, and courtyards. When we were visiting rival UCLA recently, the tour guide pointed out that USC is not on the “safe side” of town, but that is forgotten amidst the hustle and bustle of students riding their bikes and boards down the main corridor of campus. I took notes, mainly on financial aid, and we both took a perfectly lovely tour of campus. Sabrina decided she will apply.
Afterwards, the empty gas gauge led us to the gas station which was right off campus, where we decided to reward ourselves with soft drinks while the gas was pumping. Waiting in line to pay for the drinks, a rather big, scruffy-looking man singled me out and said in a not-so-sober voice, “You’re looking mighty fine. How do you stay in shape?” Maybe he was looking at someone else? Or maybe he was looking for a hand-out? No. He was looking right at me as he continued, “You’re looking really great. Life’s been good to you mam. How do you do it?” Feeling a bit uneasy, I was baffled as to what to say, muttered a thank you, gave him my blessing, paid for the goods, and left. Life has indeed been good to me, I thought, and I should never forget that, as I reflected on some of the misfortune and poverty so close to the heart of our city of angels, Los Angeles.
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** Note to the Reader- Today’s narrative is part of our family’s school journey from a few years ago, during my eldest daughter’s senior year in high school, a rather emotional year, with its many ups and downs. Every day’s blog entry coincides with a day from that special year. It can be read from the beginning by selecting the “Ring the School Bell 180” category on the side bar. Commence with the narrative, “The School Bell- What comes to mind when ‘you’ hear that bell?” and follow along with us day-by-day through the school year. Hope you will join us!
May God shower blessings on your family as he has on mine. Annette