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New meme - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
New meme
Let's see if anyone likes this little edu-meme...

List any five things that you have no clue about, and would like someone who knows to explain to you. Not things like "the meaning of the universe"--or judgmental things like, "G-d, why would anyone like that?"--but things like, "How the devil does library classification work?" These may be things you've seen people on your f-list talking about, or they may be shots in the dark to see if anyone reading knows.

Five things I'd like to know about (today):
1. Yu-Gi-Oh. Every day, a group of boys comes in and plays a trading card game about this. They seem very excited and enthusiastic. I haven't the first idea what they're doing.

2. Stocks. Oh, I understand the theory of publicly owned companies, but I don't know the mechanics of the thing at all. How do you go about buying stock? How do you "lose your shirt" in the market, or does that only happen when you've invested, er, "non-disposable" income?

3. Neo-pets. I don't know enough about this to say anything other than, "What the hell is a neopet?" I see the phrase all the time and it used to be a popular website--I'd find it left up on the computers all the time before we had automatic log-out. But I have no idea.

4. Abstract impressionism. I've spent time in galleries making fun of abstract impressionist art ("Ooo... a canvas painted totally in black! Must be a deep meaning!") Now, I don't think I'll ever like Jackson Pollack--in modern art, I'm more into surrealism--but I realized that I have no idea why he's considered a great artist, or what the thought process is. How do you know the difference between good abstract impressionism and bad abstract impressionism? If I sat down to make abstract impressionist art, where would I even begin? What's the idiom? At least with Georgia O'Keefe, another great artist whose work I don't especially like, I can see the skill involved in the rendering, even if the subjects kind of bore me. But I don't understand the basis on which Pollack is judged at all, and I really would like to. (Pollack just being an example I can think of; I mean it generally.)

5. Home-schooling mechanics. We got into this a little in the home schooling fanfic I did about Molly, but that's a rarefied atmosphere. In general, how does home-schooling work with mandated requirements? How does it work when applying to college? (Eg, how do you list your educational achievements on a college app?) What about extra-curriculars? Are there circles of home-schoolers who work together, or is it much more each-home-to-itself? It's a growing community that I'd like to do outreach to, library-wise (offering tours, getting out news about programs and such), but I don't know the best way to find and reach home-schoolers. (It's easy to find listings of schools and send out invite letters, after all--but getting the word out when there's not a system or listing is a bit difficult!)
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lonestarkate From: lonestarkate Date: May 4th, 2004 11:10 am (UTC) (Link)


In general, how does home-schooling work with mandated requirements?
Generally speaking, homeschoolers who have been in school/are registered as homschooling have 'reviews' by the Board of Ed people to make sure they are progressing. Some districts require standardised tests.

How does it work when applying to college?
Nicely. :) Home-school work gets translated into credits on a transcript. Most school require course descriptions as well. A GED is usually not required for home-schoolers.

What about extra-curriculars?
:) 4-H, Scouts, rec council, home-school groups, church groups, etc. Some areas have home-school groups that plan outings. And some districts allow homeschoolers to participate in the local school's activities.

Are there circles of home-schoolers who work together, or is it much more each-home-to-itself?
Both. Some people choose to work together, or trade tutoring. Others work completely on their own.

Many areas have home-schooling support groups. The website for Massachusetts Homeschool Legal Association is here. They have a list of home-schooling support groups. :)
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: May 4th, 2004 11:13 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: homeschooling

Home-school work gets translated into credits on a transcript.
Who keeps the transcript? Board of ed?

The website for Massachusetts Homeschool Legal Association is here.

Thank you! Bookmarking the site.

Many thanks.
lonestarkate From: lonestarkate Date: May 4th, 2004 11:19 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: homeschooling

Usually a copy gets sent to the school, and of course the home-schooler keeps it.

Generally speaking, home-schoolers do their utmost to keep away from the system; so unless a high school transcript is required to be filed, it isn't. :) That's the one of the great things about homeschool- no burecrats.

You're entirely welcome.
persephone_kore From: persephone_kore Date: May 4th, 2004 11:29 am (UTC) (Link)
1. I've seen fragments of cartoon episodes. That's about it. As I understand it, with any trading-card games of that sort, there are various complicated ways to have them interact, but basically different cards and combinations of cards have different values of certain, er, combat qualities? And you try to add up to more than your opponent. I may have that totally wrong.

2. Well, I use an online brokerage service and put orders in if I want them; I'm not quite sure how to acquire the services of a more traditional one. You say, basically, "I want to buy this many shares" and you can specify "immediately" or "if it hits price X" or assorted other things. And... well, I've lost money that way on some of my stocks (bought K-Mart... darn), and am waiting for some of them to go back up since they were meant as longer-term investments anyway and, well, things fluctuate. But you're quite right; really losing one's shirt only happens if you invested money you can't afford to lose. If you were depending on investment income and the investment lost value, if that sort of thing was your business, that kind of thing.

3. *coughs* A Neopet is a virtual pet. The site not only has virtual pets but a virtual economy (with stores, auctions, and -- yes -- a stock market, not that the companies really do anything) and a bunch of games, which are actually the least risky way to acquire the currency (neopoints). It also has intermittent plots, one of which I keep blithering about lately.

4. I have no earthly idea.

5. There are circles and organizations for it in some areas. When I was home schooled it was mostly just us; later on it picked up more, especially in the larger cities in the state, and I know there were organizations (that got together for extracurriculars, too) by the time I got through high school -- but I was only home schooled through fifth grade and therefore had a pretty normal college application process. However, home-schoolers are required to meet the state educational requirements (and we had a brief moment of... fun when they decided that you ought to have a high school diploma in order to teach your kids at home, as my mother has a bachelor's degree but skipped her senior year of high school), and while GPA and class rank might be of doubtful meaning, standardized test scores say just as much and you probably have a pretty good set of essay topics.

You might put up flyers, since quite a lot of home-schoolers are probably interested in the library anyway and some of them may already be in. I'm not quite sure how you'd go about looking up organizations, but there ought to be something online or in the phone book. A search on "homeschooling resources" and your city or state might lead you to contact information.
ladyaeryn From: ladyaeryn Date: May 4th, 2004 11:31 am (UTC) (Link)
Neopets - ah, my sister still does those sometimes, unfortunately. ;) Basically, they're virtual pets: there's a website you visit to acquire and name them, feed them, take care of them, earn money (points) or various items to barter with other NeoPet users to take care of them. If you don't take care of them regularly, they get sick, but for some reason don't seem to die. ;)

Yu-Gi-Oh: I know about just as much as you do - I do know our YA librarian actually hosted an after-school tournament for it at the library a couple of times, which proved fairly popular. Other than that? Eh.
lessthanpie From: lessthanpie Date: May 4th, 2004 11:58 am (UTC) (Link)
I know a litle bit about stocks. (Not really by choice; I just work here, but you pick stuff up.

Buying is pretty easy if you have a broker. You just tell him/her what you want to buy,and they'll process the trade for you. (You would usually have to pay fees on top of the price-per-share, because most brokers work on commission and there are other charges. Some accounts are set up differently, but that's TMI.) There are also websites where you're sort of your own broker, but I don't know a lot about those.

I think the way a person ends up "losing their shirt" is by buying with money they don't really have. You can get what's called "margin" to buy stocks. Basically, it's borrowing against the value of your account. If the value of what you own in the account becomes less than what you've borrowed, the difference is due immediately in cash. If you've borrowed more than you're able to pay right right away, you end up having to sell your holdings to cover the debit. If the market goes down really quickly and you can't get full value for what you have to sell, you could end up with nothing.
volandum From: volandum Date: May 4th, 2004 12:24 pm (UTC) (Link)
Essentially, the cartoons, as mentioned by others, are one aspect of Yu-Gi-Oh. They contribute a plot for fanfiction, for instance, and notable characters. The trading card game involves using monster cards on the playing 'field' which can be enchanted to help certain types of monsters with special magic cards. The object is to rob the opponent of all of his starting eight thousand life points by destroying his monsters so that you can attack him directly. There are magic cards with divers effects and trap cards which counter almost every possible action. Of course, there are other complications, for instance the limit on the deck of 40 cards, and the rule that one loses if one cannot draw a card when that is required.

I must add that I do not play Yu-Gi-Oh, and have watched very few (say 0.5) cartoons. If you're looking for detailed information, as far as I can tell, the official site is at http://www.yugioh.com/, although it's somewhat difficult to navigate.

I have a question:

The Hippie movement. When did it originate, and why? What did it achieve? How did its decline come about, and why?
kizmet_42 From: kizmet_42 Date: May 4th, 2004 01:38 pm (UTC) (Link)

If you work in a library, you probably know homeschoolers

All of us use them to some degree or another.

If you want to reach homeschoolers, my suggestion is to watch what school age children come into the library during school hours. Unless cutting class by spending time in a library is now cool, I suspect that you'll be looking at homeschoolers.

Alternatively, if there's a local homeschooling group that you find out about, contact them about how you can help them. Let me tell you, we loves our librarians (and not just because my husband is one) and their willingness to work with us.

If your library offers a teacher card (for extended due dates, massive quantities of books checked out, etc.) then post something that homeschoolers are permitted to get the cards. I've had to educate two systems about the necessity of homeschoolers having teacher cards - both offer them now without hesitation.

I had a librarian today offer us a program on foreign land slides at the library. Since I'm doing the US this year, I won't be taking her up on it soon, but I'll pass the idea along to some others who'll be interested. That word-of-mouth is pretty much the best way to reach us homeschoolers.

Kizmet, who lives in a state that requires annual local notification and annual nationally-normed test scores for proof of homeschooling
fernwithy From: fernwithy Date: May 4th, 2004 01:51 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: If you work in a library, you probably know homeschoolers

Unless cutting class by spending time in a library is now cool,
Heh, never gonna happen. :)

Unfortunately for the issue of spotting our homeschoolers, we do serve as a library facility for a local charter school whose in school library isn't good enough for accreditation. So we have kids who come during study periods. And oddly, because of the internet, we do get some truants, which we aren't allowed to report... or, well, we're allowed to report them, but they're only allowed to check on specific kids, and we're not allowed to check and see who's on the computer except by library card number, and we're not allowed to share information that we obtain via library card numbers, including names of probable truants.

What we have that a lot of classes take advantage of are tours of the library and orientations to various resources that we have here. I've done this with a school class of three (all the students who could be bothered to come in on a "boring" field trip day), so a few sibs being homeschooled wouldn't turn any heads... it's just a question of letting people know that it's open. The summer reading programs and so on as well are largely publicized through school visits, especially since we lost our duplicating budget and mailing budget (grrr).
narcissam From: narcissam Date: May 4th, 2004 03:16 pm (UTC) (Link)
I don't know what the thing is in your state, but here in Canada, the government provides some amount of funding for every kid educated. Therefore, homeschoolers regularly register with school boards, often not in their immediate vicinity, but school boards that offer support to homeschoolers. There might be similar arrangements about. If there are, it's very easy then to contact the board, who have channels for directing people like you to make contact with homeschooling groups themeselves.

I was homeschooled for quite a few years. Actually, I've done most every form of schooling under the sun. And *most* homeschoolers I've met are very determined to meet standards, do extra-curriculars, work together with other families etc. Some of the most highly motivated parents you will ever meet take up home-schooling, so they can give their child the best that they can, instead of a middling education.

Though, of course, there are the people who home school because their kid got expelled from every junior high in the district...

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