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About Florimell

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  1. If your son is interested in an academic job, he might also check into what the actual work experience is like post grad school. My experience is in the humanities and while I enjoyed grad school and loved my tenure-track job at a well-regarded smallish state school, I have no regrets leaving it. The horrifically low pay (in a very high COL area), the decreasing # of tenure lines/increasing service workload, increasing research/publication expectations with virtually no funding, shift to a business-like mindset in the administration of the college, etc. made my decision to leave an easy one. It's a long way out for your son, though, and in truth, even if I had known these things, I would have still taken the same path anyway.
  2. Florimell

    Modern Poetry Anthology Ideas

    Any of the major poetry anthologies (Norton, Longman, etc.) have volumes of modern poetry. The Norton anthologies of British, American, and world lit, for example, are all broken up into 6 volumes, so if you just want modern poetry, you could get the last one. The current editions are expensive, but I am sure you can find used recent editions for much less that would meet your needs.
  3. St. Norbert College in De Pere, Wi (near Green Bay) also might meet your requirements. It is a Catholic college, but has a very diverse faculty and an open-mindedness that you might not expect. The tuition is about $10k/year less than Lawrence and they offer generous aid. The campus is small, but beautiful -- new library, new sports facility, new science building, some new dorms, etc.
  4. Florimell

    Electrical engineering resources ?

    If your DS has Snap Circuits, you might check out these snap wires that allow you to connect Snap Circuit components to breadboards, which he can then use with an Arduino or other circuits with standard components.
  5. Florimell

    Electrical engineering resources ?

    DS10 has the MAKE Electronics book. He got a ton of components for his birthday a few years ago and he has been able to do pretty well with it. He is also working with DH through Elements of Computing Systems (and definitely needs guidance with it), though he has spent a lot of time independently with Inform 7 (interactive fiction programming) and Python. Has your DS checked out the Arduino? It is pretty inexpensive and there are lots of options for that as well.
  6. Florimell

    adult novel 'clean reads'

    They aren't mysteries, but my kids liked Black Out and All Clear by Connie Willis, and To Say Nothing of the Dog is good too. LeGuin's Earthsea trilogy (the first three books only) are kid-friendly, as are the Gifts/Voices/Powers trilogy. Robin McKinley hints at adult content, but it is not explicit (at least I haven't come across anything in the ones I have read).
  7. Florimell

    Favorite Easy Non-Dairy Christmas Treats

    I don't know how you define "easy" but here are a few we make for my sister who is dairy free Meringue Mice or Meringue Mushrooms Coconut Biscotti (there are others too that use oil instead of butter) Phyllo dough cups with pie filling
  8. Florimell

    Favorite "Fun" math books?

    We are working through the Moscow Puzzles and Patty Paper Geometry and both DS10 and DD8 are loving them. We also have This is Not A Maths Book (1 and 2) and Amazing Maths Projects You Can Build, which are fun too.
  9. Florimell

    Ideas of where to move

    Thanks again for the suggestions! I think we're going to plan some trips this spring and summer to check a few of these places out -- Minneapolis and Cincinnati are both on our list, but we have many more to consider now.
  10. Florimell

    Ideas of where to move

    Thank you for all the great suggestions -- some are places we have considered and others are new places to research. I know we're going to have to make compromises. Right now, we live in a great, old house that has been completely renovated and has a ton of character. It is in a decent, established neighborhood in an area with a very low COL, but that's about all the place has going for it. DS plays piano seriously, composes, and plays violin for fun. He would love to find a chamber ensemble. With location, as in most things, it seems that you get what you pay for. I think we're realistic about what it would cost to move into a comparable house in a larger city -- we just have to make sure it's worth it :)
  11. Florimell

    Ideas of where to move

    We currently live in a small city in the upper midwest, but it is no longer a good fit for us and we are looking to relocate to a slightly larger city that has more of what we want and need. We could go pretty much anywhere, but here is what we are looking for: Reasonable COL and relatively easy homeschooling laws Thriving downtown that is walkable and has a nice variety of good restaurants/coffee shops/etc. Opportunities for a very serious young musician (great teachers, concert opportunities, small ensembles in which to participate; more than just competitions) Cultural activities An intellectual environment (i.e. a university with great public lectures and things) Prefer cold/snow to HOT/dry and like to have all four seasons (we like the midwest in general, just not where we are) A nice homeschool community (I would love to find a math circle, running club for kids, and things like that). Great library Nice public parks, access to hiking trails and water of some kind (near lakes, rivers, etc.) Any ideas or suggestions would be appreciated!
  12. In my former life, I was a professor of Renaissance literature and taught Shakespeare, but to college students, not kids. I chose to do Midsummer Night's Dream first with DS10 -- it was accessible and DS found it funny and interesting, through I could walk him through the text and annotate it as we went. Even so, I would say that he got only a very small fraction of what there is to read in the play. He asked to read it, though, and I was willing to oblige. We will go back to it again one day to pick up more pieces. I agree that any of the light comedies would be fine to start with if you are set on having them read Shakespeare. While some kids might be able to work through the intricacies of the plots of the tragedies, they would miss so much of the richness and complexity (and possibly come away not liking them very much) and be reluctant to try them again later when they are ready. If your kids have a strong base of knowledge about Rome and the main figures of Julius Caesar, they might like it, but it isn't exactly a kid-friendly play. On the whole, though, I think that there should be no rush to get to Shakespeare. The language is difficult, the plots are complicated, and the characters are hard to pin down. My kids are precocious, but even so, I don't plan to do any significant work with the plays until they are at least in late middle school and possibly high school, and then we will pick only a few plays and study them in depth. Until then, we'll work through things that are more accessible and relevant for them right now.
  13. How old is your DD? Hobby Lobby has supplies for candle and soap making (boil bags, wax, oils, molds, etc.). It is a fun, simple process and can be done periodically.
  14. Florimell

    Hands on fifth grade math

    Though they don't exactly address the topics you mentioned, my DD, who just started BA5 a month or so ago, is really enjoying Hands-on Equations, Patty Paper Geometry, and various sections from the upper level Gattegno books (she loved Miquon when she was younger, so I was happy to find these books that went further).