[AKA DuannaLee Petersen-Griffin]
This blog is dedicated to my writing career as a novelist.
My parents married during the Great Depression, in 1937. I was the fourth of five children. My father had a vagabond lifestyle, caused by work being so hard to find during the depression and war years. My life was one of wells, outhouses, jackrabbit stew, handmedowns and barefootedness. I felt free and happy, especially when my father wasn't around. (His violent temper was to be avoided.) They divorced when I was nine. In thinking back on my childhood now, I realize how much I loved school but hated always being the new kid. I loved learning. Back then, in the mid-to-late fifties and the sixties, parents were not involved. All teaching was done in the classroom, the responsibility was the teacher's and the student's. There was no homework for a parent to supervise (or do for them as often happens). When my mother married again, we moved to the San Francisco peninsula. What a shock! Big city life was so different from the rural and small town ways I was used to. The very first homework I had was in 6th grade, a team science project. That was a flop, trying to meet up after school when your parents won't allow it. In junior high there were rare special assignments as homework. Then came high school...and homework. I see no need for homework before high school, and then only some. My children's teachers goofed off in the classroom (I saw first-hand as a teacher's aide and PTA president) and then sent the real work home for the parents to teach. Who needs that? Why would anyone think a child needs to be bogged down studying day in and day out? They need to learn skills around the house. They need to play. They need to relax or nap. They need to have other activities, like piano lessons or scout meetings or soccer practice. No wonder teen depression is such a problem. Let them have a life!
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