Friday, January 21, 2011

Pinewood Derby and Dyslexia

Now what do those 2 things have in common?

Wednesday night was LM's and D's Pinewood Derby. Honestly, I have gotten to the point where I just don't enjoy it anymore. We usually put the car assembly off until the last minute, which stresses me out, and our kids have never really had very fast cars. In fact, a few years in a row I had 2 of 3 boys get last in their dens. Add to that, the last 2 years H was out of town and missed it altogether. So I was not real thrilled about this year's race, which was LM's last (he's a Webelos II).

I was struggling even more with my attitude after finding out that H had not gotten the boys' cars cut before he left on his mission trip to Mexico, so as of Tuesday morning, the day of check-in and weigh-in, my boys still had nice blocks of wood. H arrived home Monday night, spent Tuesday morning recovering, and finally started cutting 2 pinewood derby cars around 2pm! He told me to bring the wheels and axles and pick him up at the shop on our way down to check-in. When the boys and I arrived at 6pm this is what we found.

(excuse the blurry photo)

Yep. That would be 2 pinewood derby cars in front of a heater trying to get the paint to dry in time to leave! I didn't panic, though I wanted to!

While the paint was drying H gathered up supplies for installing the wheels and weights when we checked in. Then we were on our way!

We arrived right on time for the Webelos to check-in and H installed the wheels and weights for LM's car. Added a little graphite and to said wheels and LM was off for a test run or two. Everything went smoothly, except LM didn't like the color of his car. He had asked H to paint it black, but for some reason H was sure he had said purple! After a little bit of gentle prodding I convinced him to be happy with his car, purple paint and all, and go check it in. By that time D had the wheels and weights on his car and took it for a test run down the track. Everything looked good so he checked it in.

Now here is where the dyslexia comes in. Both H and LM have dyslexia. So when my mom gave me a flier about a free dyslexia presentation with Susan Barton, H and I both wanted to go. But of course it was the same night as the Pinewood Derby. We prayed about it and knew we needed to go hear Mrs. Barton. And we were so blessed! We gained a lot of valuable information which could help both my husband and my son! My parents were willing to go to the big race.

When H and I walked in my parents door we were greeted by LM saying, "Dad, I won the pinewood derby. And I got best sportsmanship too." I was in shock! And D pops up with, "And I got 2nd!" Again. Shock. We missed it. The year we procrastinate the longest and miss the entire race our boys shine! Ahh well... at least my mom took a few pictures for me.

So here is LM chugging the milk (he doesn't even like cow's milk).

The 1st and 2nd place finishers.

The Champion!

I am so proud of both boys. This is the 3rd time in the last 4 years that one of them has been awarded best sportsmanship.

And I will add, I'm sorry I missed it. But I was truly blessed learning how to best teach my son to read, write, and spell, which will be far more reaching than a pinewood derby win.

Thursday, January 20, 2011


Why is it that some private Christian schools, and even some homeschoolers, feel the need to educate to the state standards? And why so much emphasis on standardized testing? As believers, shouldn't our education goals be to honor Him? Shouldn't we be seeking His will for the education of our children? After all, "...the Lord is the God of knowledge..." (1 Sam. 2:3)

It just breaks my heart to see so many believers striving to educate their children the way the world says they should be educated. God has made every child different, with their own talents and abilities.

This is heavy on my heart right now because the Christian school that LV attended in K and 1st grade, and where my mom teaches, seems to me to be striving to live up to the foolishness of men. And I see my mom suffering because of it. What she has to offer her students is undervalued, and sometimes even frowned upon, because it does not meet the "standards." The board makes all of their decisions based on what that public school's standards are. As if secular humanism is so much more beneficial to these students than a love of learning about all of God's creation in an atmosphere where each child is seen as the unique person that they are.

Granted, they are not teaching evolution, but when did the school become a business instead of a ministry? And since being run as a business, why have they struggled more and more financially?

Education is not the end all be all of our existence. And we would be negligent, even disobedient to Him, if we ignored it. But a close walk with the Lord and Godly character are so much more important! We need to make our top priority that which is eternal. The world may not understand it. But we as believers should expect that.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011