IN THIS ISSUE
Homeschooling Teen Profile: Reid Barton
Homeschool Friendly College: Mitchell College
College Bound Reading List: Two Years Before the Mast
Poem: "Chicken Scratch," by Rasheeda
New Column! Teen Culture Today: by Juliana
Calvin's Political Column: by Calvin
The FUN Column: by Alannis
Anime Reviews: by Xbolt
Career-of-the-Month: Park Ranger
Homeschooling High School: Building Teen Character: Part-Time Employment
"America. Republic. Socialism?!" by Carly Anspaugh
E-Mail Etiquette: Tip-of-the-Month
Plus a whole lot more!!!
Be Somebody...Be Yourself
Preparing For College
ACT & SAT Information
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REMEMBER TO RECYCLE
SAT WORD OF THE MONTH
ARCHAIC - "ar KAY ik" (adjective) Belonging to an earlier period; ancient; obsolete.
Example: Theodore, a carpenter who avoids using modern power tools, enjoys working with the archaic tools passed down to him by his ancestors.
Synonyms: antique, bygone, forgotten
13th Annual Bill of
Rights Essay Contest: "Freedom and Civic Virtues"
Each year, National
Foundation for Women Legislators' (NFWL) and the National Rifle Association
co-sponsor an academic scholarship for seven high school juniors and
seniors. Winners receive a $3,000 award and are given the opportunity to
attend NFWL's Annual Conference. At the conference, the scholarship
recipients will have the opportunity to learn about public policy, receive
leadership training, and network with lawmakers from all 50 states.
Several winners said their experience through the program strengthened their
passion for public service. It is important to note that in order to
enter the contest all applicants must be sponsored by a woman legislator from
their respective state. Sponsoring legislators of the awardees will receive an
NFWL travel scholarship to attend the Annual Conference in exchange for their
participation in the entire conference with their student.
This year's essay topic
is entitled "Freedom and Civic Virtues" in which applicants are asked
to describe how moral principles and the U.S. Bill of Rights shape the role of
young adults in civic engagement and politics.
DEADLINE: Friday, July 30th, 2010 by which time essays must be received
or postmarked to NFWL.
CONTACT: The NFWL
office at 202-293-3040, ext. 1005, firstname.lastname@example.org
|The Fun Column
Strange but true
Sharks existed BEFORE trees!!
A record - setting Box of Chocolates had 90,090 CHOCOLATES INSIDE!!
The world's oldest pet Goldfish lived to be 43 YEARS OLD!
Abracadabra used to be written in triangles to keep EVIL SPIRITS away!!
Octopuses have 3 HEARTS!
Calculators are MORE powerful than the world's first COMPUTER!
What get wetter and wetter the more it dries?
Answer: a towel
What can you catch but not throw?
Answer: A cold
Look at this picture, then look at the corner of your computer screen. The picture moves when you look away doesn't it!! Sneaky picture!
April 23, 1564 - April 23, 1616
The anniversary of William Shakespeare's birth and death falls on the very same day - April 23. Shakespeare was a great poet and playwright whose way with words profoundly influenced the development of the English language. People quote Shakespeare all the time without even realizing it! He invented many colorful expressions which we commonly use today, such as: all that glitters isn't gold, break the ice, fair play, foul play, good riddance, it's Greek to me, heartsick, laughing-stock, leapfrog, love letter, mind's eye, piece of work, pomp and circumstance, snail-paced, tongue-tied, too much of a good thing, and wild-goose chase. For more of Shakespeare's sayings, see: www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/phrases-sayings-shakespeare.html.
Celebrate National Turnoff Week
April 19-25, 2010
Turnoff week is not just for kids! And it's not just for TVs either. The goal is to limit recreational screen time, spend more family time together, and boost physical activity. So turn off the TV, pull the power cord on your video game system, and give the computer a break!
Visit http://www.knowledgehouse.info/njfktv.html for more information.
Are you a homeschooling teen? Do you have your own blog? You know you excel in your field of thought, right? ;) Would you like to get more visitors to your blog? Let us add your blog to our Homeschooling Teen Blogroll at http://homeschoolingteen.wordpress.com ! You can write about anything you want in your blog, as long as it adheres to the standards set forth in Philippians 4:8. ("Whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.") In other words, keep it nice and keep it clean! Take a look at a few of the blogs that are already there, and be sure to contact us at email@example.com to add yours to the list!
Oh! What horrid handwriting
Minds are befuddled
Eyes are all muddled
That not even the brightest minds dare to decipher.
Homeschooling Teen magazine is pleased to introduce another new columnist - welcome Juliana! She will be writing on Teen Culture Today: insight to the world around us...
Taking a Stand
As most of you by now have noticed, the main thing on the news has been about the passing of the Health Care Bill. I am not going to get into all the political details but I do want to make some comments on the bill and what you can do to make a difference. Now before you send up red flags saying "I can't make a difference!" or "What can I do?" let me explain myself.
The Health Care Bill has been the major push in the Obama administration. Since his election that has been one of the number one topics in the news. The Health Care Bill pushes for reform in many areas, some which aren't that bad but some that are totally against Christian values. One of which happens to be the funding of Abortion with taxpayers dollars. Now I don't know about you but, that includes my money and as a Christian I am totally against that aspect of the bill. With that in mind I started thinking of ways that you and I as Christians could help to influence the political world around us. The Bible says in Proverbs 14:34 "Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin is a reproach to any people." That verse speaks volumes about our country. In the days when the laws of our country were carried out to reflect this verse, we prospered. Contrastingly, in the days that our laws have been turned around to not reflect the ideas of the Founding Fathers and this verse, we have slowly been turning away from God. This fact is evident in our world today. The Bible teaches that everything is God's Creation, even the unborn child. The day that we start to publicly fund Abortion will be the end of another aspect of our Godly Nation, which is dying faster than we can blink at times.
So what can you do to help? You can write a letter to your congressmen. You can either support their decision and thank them for what they are doing in our nation or you can try to persuade them to another view in which you think is the best decision for our country. Now don't whine and say "But I'm too young! They won't listen to me!". I promise you, if you make your point strong and assuredly, they will listen. I encourage you to take a stand and try to help influence what is going on in our country, starting right in your home town. David took a stand and look where he ended up. He became King and was called a "man after God's own heart"! Nothing is impossible for God and he uses little things to change the world in a big way!
Further Reading Suggestion: You can find more information on how to take a stand by reading "Do Hard Things" by Alex and Brett Harris. It is wonderful and I encourage you to read it. - Juliana
"The man who buys cheap laughs once but cries many times. The man who buys expensive may cry once but laughs many times."
- Old Proverb
E-mail Etiquette Tip of the Month
The Return Receipt feature of your e-mail software should only be used for important issues where it is critical to knowing the other side opened your e-mail.
This feature if overused or used for general day to day communications can be perceived as intrusive. Make sure you use your discretion when utilizing this feature.
Keep in mind opened or received does not necessarily mean the party actually read your e-mail. Also, in most e-mail programs a request for a Return Receipt acknowledgement can simply be denied.
This E-mail Etiquette Tip is provided as a courtesy by: http://www.NetManners.com
Please share your story! If you are involved with an amazing project, volunteer in your community, have a special interest that you're passionate about, possess a unique skill, talent or ability, or have accomplished something positive and extraordinary for a person your age or in your situation - be sure to tell us about it and we will feature you in our magazine! Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
|You can be a Homeschooling Teen reporter or columnist! Please send information about what you like to write about, the reason you want to take on the challenge of a monthly column, and an example of your work to: email@example.com |
Are you a cartoonist and would you like to see your work published in this magazine? Please write and tell us about the type of cartoon you create, (single pane, strip, etc.) the topics you cover (current events, humor, homeschool life, etc.) and send us a sample along with your name and age. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Calvin's Political Column
This article was originally posted on http://teensforliberty.com
Sunday night [March 21] we saw the final version of the Democrat's version of Health Care Reform pass the House, and now the President will sign it into law. We fought hard, but we lost the battle. We learned a few things as well. First we learned that there is no such thing as a pro-life Democrat. Democrats like Bart Stupak and his so called pro-life constituents in Congress voted for this bill (which will provide taxpayer funded abortions), after promising that they wouldn't vote for anything that supported taxpayer funded abortion. Their excuse is that the President will amend this bill with an executive order, something that he does not have the authority to do. By the way, executive orders are themselves a violation of the constitution, but that is a subject for another day. The point is that we have seen the corruption present in the Democratic majority (not that the Republican minority is much better, because it is not). It is becoming more and more apparent to more Americans that the leaders that they elected are frauds. They do not stand for the ideals that they say they stand for, and the mask is coming off. They are becoming more and more bold in their assault on our country. It is now time for us to take the next step in our defense of this nation. We must vote them out of office in November, and we must replace them with long overdue servants who will make the tough and politically incorrect decisions that will turn our country around. We must start keeping our politicians accountable by voting them out when they don't do exactly what we want them to do. Furthermore, we must be extremely careful when replacing our nation's leaders. Too often we have allowed ourselves to be tricked by candidates who promise us change, and we don't take the time to make sure we know exactly what kind of change they advocate. This is exactly what happened for those who supported former Senator Obama when he was running for President. He promised them change, and boy did they get change.
Lastly, we must remember the words of Winston Churchill, who said: "Those who do not learn from history are destined to repeat it". We must know our history, and we must learn from it. History has shown us time and time again that socialism does not work. Yet we elected President Obama, and now he has succeeded in passing into law a government takeover of our health care system and 1/6th of the economy. 1/6th! We must learn from history. If we do not, then we will surely fail. -Calvin
Calvin is fourteen years old, and lives in Granbury, Texas. He is a devoted Christian, and regularly attends church worship services. Some of his activities include following political stories, reading, playing air soft and video games with friends, and doing school work. Calvin owns http://teensforliberty.com, a political site for American teens and young adults interested in politics.
Anime Reviews by Xbolt
Strawberry Marshmallow (Ichigo Mashimaro) is another school life comedy, all about comedic situations rather than an overall storyline. However, instead of high school girls, this time we have elementary school girls. And one college girl.
Nobue Ito is the eldest of the group. (By far. She is twenty.) She is Chika's older sister, but all the girls call her Nobue Onee-chan. (Big Sister Nobue.) She usually holds the final authority on things. She smokes a lot, (which isn't good for your health either,) and often 'borrows' money from her sister to buy cigarettes. Her weakness is the girls doing something cute. Nobue is defenseless against the powers of cute girls.
Chika Ito is twelve. She is more sensible than the other girls, and is very good at cooking. Cookies especially.
Miu Matsuoka is also twelve, and a troublemaker. Miu likes saying random things out of the blue, and playing pranks. However, she is often interrupted by Nobue, ending up out for the count face-down on the floor.
Matsuri Sakuragi is eleven, and a very timid glasses-wearing girl with a pet ferret named John. She is often the subject of Miu's teasing, and resorts to crying and hiding behind Nobue.
Ana Coppola is an eleven-year-old British girl. She moved to Japan from Cornwall, England five years before the series started, and has forgotten how to speak English in the meantime. Matsuri befriends her, and they try to learn English together.
Overall, I have to say that my favorite character is Nobue, as she's really the only character I can relate to. You know, being a college student and all. But unlike her, I don't have four silly girls following me around everywhere. I doubt I could stand it.
And now for the prelude to Strawberry Marshmallow: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aokbeRYRf-I
I guess this was a trailer or something that aired before the series. It's kinda cute, kinda funny.
Visit Xbolt's blog: http://blog.xboltz.net
April is Confederate History and Heritage Month
April is an important month in America's history. It is the month when the Civil War began (April 12, 1861) and ended (April 9, 1865). The Great Locomotive Chase, where Union spies attempted to steal the Confederate Locomotive "The General" and destroy rail lines and bridges, took place on April 12, 1862. Confederate General Joseph E. Johnston surrendered to Union General William Sherman on April 26, 1865. Thus, the month of April has become to be known as Confederate History and Heritage Month.
The tragic "War Between the States" claimed the lives of hundreds of thousands of brothers, uncles and husbands. They were enemies on the battlefield, but after the war, the men of blue and gray sponsored reunions at such places as Gettysburg. The soldiers told war stories while the United States and Confederate flags flew side by side.
Even before the end of the Civil War, women's groups were decorating graves in the South where most of the Civil War gravesites were located. This is how our national Memorial Day originated. In addition to the May holiday, April 26 has come to be recognized as Confederate Memorial Day in many Southern states.
Efforts to mark Confederate graves, erect monuments and hold memorial services were the idea of Mrs. Charles J. Williams. She wrote a letter that was published in Southern newspapers asking the women of the South for their help. She asked that memorial organizations be established to take care of the thousands of Confederate graves from the Potomac River to the Rio Grande. She also asked the state legislatures to set aside a day in April to remember the men who wore the gray. She died in 1874, but not before her native state of Georgia adopted April 26 as a legal holiday.
The South can be proud of their men and women who served this nation from the Revolutionary War to the War in Iraq. It is important to also remember those men and women who defended their homes, families and states during the Civil War. Among the gallant women was Captain Sally Tomkins, CSA who was the first woman to be commissioned on either side. She took care of thousands of soldiers in Richmond, Virginia until the end of the war.
Those who served the Confederacy came from many races and religions. There was Irish born General Patrick R. Cleburne, black Southerner Amos Rucker, Jewish born Judah P. Benjamin, Mexican born Colonel Santos Benavides and American Indian General Stand Watie who was born in Rome, Georgia.
Confederate Memorial Day is officially observed on or around April 26 in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi. Although not an official state holiday, Confederate Memorial Day is often observed on April 26 by historical organizations and local custom in other states as well, including Arizona, Louisiana, Texas, and Virginia. To find a Confederate Memorial Day event near you, log on to: http://confederateheritagemonth.com
Source: Confederate History Month Series by Calvin E. Johnson, Jr., Chairman of the National and Georgia Division Confederate History and Heritage Month Committee of the Sons of Confederate Veterans.
College Bound Reading List
Two Years Before the Mast
By Richard Henry Dana, Jr.
In 1834, 19-year-old Richard Henry Dana, Jr. went from being a Harvard student to a common sailor. This book is a detailed autobiographical account of his two-year trip, sailing from Boston to California around Cape Horn and back again. Dana didn't go on this voyage because he was passionate for life on the sea, but as a result of doctor's orders since prolonged study at Harvard had damaged his eyes.
However, this was no pleasure cruise and Dana had no idea what hardships lie ahead of him. Nevertheless, he was able to successfully adapt from studious landlubber to able-bodied seaman. Also to his credit, despite his education and class - which in most cases would have put him far over the master of the ship - Dana never considered himself above his mates or his duty. He later became a lawyer and spent the rest of his career defending seamen pro-bono in court, and was instrumental in getting the first laws passed giving sailors legal rights and protections.
This book has two distinct appeals - number one, it is a compelling account of life aboard a 19th-century sailing ship. It was the first lengthy account of a sea voyage ever published by a sailor, making it a classic in maritime history - one that even influenced Herman Melville. If you like books and movies such as Treasure Island, The Sea Wolf, The Old Man And The Sea, Horatio Hornblower, and Master and Commander, you will like Two Years Before the Mast.
The author uses a lot of nautical terminology: furling, reefing, climbing riggings, standing on yardarms, and all the duties a sailor had. Some editions of the book include a diagram of a sailing ship with all of the rigging described. If you're not familiar with sailing jargon, this will be an important feature, as the names of the various parts of a ship are constantly referred to in the text. But regardless of how much you know about sailing, the image of clinging to life ropes 100 feet above deck during a blizzard at Cape Horn is hard to beat for an exciting story!
Secondly, this book is a fascinating historical account of 19th-century California before it became a state, when the entire West was Spanish. In fact, it's the only account of Mexican California written by an American. Thus, much of American history can be learned from this book, including a lot about the social and economic conditions in the U.S., in Mexico, and on the high seas at that time, including a detailed description of the little-known cow hide trade in the days of the California missions.
The author's stops along the coast at early San Diego, San Juan Capistrano, San Pedro, Santa Barbara, Monterey, and San Francisco provide remarkable insight into the settlements and inhabitants of early California. Many of the landmarks that Dana described still exist, although their surroundings are quite different. For example, when he first visited San Francisco, it had one building. After the Gold Rush, when Dana returned to San Francisco in 1856, it was a city of over 100,000!
A replica of Dana's first ship, "The Pilgrim," is harbored at Dana Point, well worth visiting. The city was named after the headland of Dana Point, which in turn was named for Richard Henry Dana, Jr., author of Two Years Before the Mast, in which he wrote about the area. At that time it was known as Capistrano Bay, and Dana called it "the most romantic spot on the California coast." Dana Point is approximately one-half way between Los Angeles and San Diego, bordered by the cities of Laguna Niguel and Laguna Beach to the north, San Juan Capistrano to the east, and San Clemente to the south.
Since Dana wrote his journal in the 1830's, it is refreshingly politically incorrect without being racist. This book was listed by National Geographic as one of the "100 best adventure books" ever written. It's a vivid account of the relationship between man and sea, a timeless portrayal of human endurance, and an informative historical work all in one. Recommended for teens and adults ages 13 and up.
Send your book reviews to: email@example.com
CiRCE Institute's Lost Tools of Writing Essay Contest
(Co-sponsored by Institute for Excellence in Writing)
High school students, don't miss this opportunity to win a prize of up to $500!
Teachers and Parents, don't miss this opportunity to show off your student's work!
ABOUT THE CONTEST:
Education and Liberty are themes as American as baseball and apple pie. Yet, much of American literature, and most of American pop culture see the two as antithetical. Some people seem to see school as a barrier to liberty. In the 2010 Lost Tools of Writing Essay Contest, students are asked to consider the relationship between education and liberty. Are they indeed opposites? Or can one fulfill the other? Can a person be free without being educated? Can a person be educated without being free?
You decide. Then persuade us.
FINAL REGISTRATION DATE:
MAY 1, 2010
FINAL SUBMISSION DATE:
MAY 10, 2010
Students, grades 8-12
ESSAY FORMAT AND REQUIREMENTS:
▪ Each essay must be between 900 and 1100 words (3-4 pp)
▪ Each essay should be double spaced
▪ Per the registration instructions below, each essay is to be submitted via email.
1ST PLACE: $500
2ND PLACE: $250
3RD PLACE: $100
HOW TO REGISTER :
Send an Email to firstname.lastname@example.org with
your name, address, grade, and phone number included in the body.
HOW TO SUBMIT:
Please attach your essay to an Email and send it to
Email David Kern via email@example.com
School: Helpful Tips
Character: Part-Time Employment
By Rachel Paxton
teenage years are a crucial time in a child's life. They are not children
anymore, but they are also not adults. During this time the choices they make
may have an effect on them for the rest of their lives. It is the parents'
responsibility to guide their teenagers in the right direction by helping them
make responsible choices and building their character to the point that when
their teenagers move out of the house they are on the road to being responsible
adults and have the tools they need to succeed in life.
a number of ways that parents can help teenagers build their character. One way
is through part-time employment. Having a job provides many learning
opportunities for teens.
- It teaches them what it takes to make a living,
and that it is hard work to earn money to pay bills.
- They have the opportunity to learn to manage
their own money and make choices of how they will spend it.
- If parents gives their teens the responsibility
of paying for some of their own bills (e.g., car insurance, gas, clothing,
cell phone, lunches out, etc.), then teens will realize they will only be
able to have these things if they pay for them and will have to decide if
it is worth it to them or not. Their priorities suddenly change when it is
their money they are spending. They don't necessarily have to pay all
their own bills, giving them a couple of expenses to take care of will
teach them to pay their own way and make responsible choices with their
- Working is one way for teens to learn to get
along with and work along side other people, a very crucial step in
character development. How many adults do you know that can't get along
with other people! Teens learn that you won't always like everyone you
work with, but that it doesn't matter. You still do your job and have a
good attitude about it, treating others as you wish to be treated.
- The process of looking for a job requires
teenagers to take a good look at themselves and their abilities, helping
them to see what kind of people they want to be and what they ultimately
want to do with their lives.
- Job experience is the first step to building a
successful resume. Any jobs a teen has will look good on college
applications and be a stepping stone to future employment.
course, all this sounds great but in reality can be difficult to put into practice.
The first job our daughter had she got laid off from because she and her boss
could not come to agreement on the hours she would work. After she started
working there he changed the hours he said she could work and it conflicted
with other activities she had. It was very hard for her to feel like she was
"fired" from her first job. We had to talk through a lot of the feelings she
had towards her boss and some of the experiences she had at that job. But
because she chose to honor her boss by showing him respect when he didn't
necessarily deserve it, he gave her an excellent reference for her next job.
of months later she did find another job that was much better than the first
one, and she had many great learning experiences of working with others and
learning to serve others even when it was very hard work.
can't just throw their teens out into the workplace and expect everything will
go great. Issues will arise that need to be worked through with the parents'
help, but this is where the learning occurs, and character development begins!
Welcome... Homeschooling Teen is a free e-zine for homeschooled high schoolers and young adult alumni. Published once a month, each issue is full of fellowship and fun, human interest and humor. Much of the content is written by other subscribers, and there are many opportunities for readers to participate - whether it's writing book or movie reviews, sending in original short stories and poems, or submitting favorite websites for the links section. Additionally, in each issue we feature a profile of a different Homeschooling Teen subscriber and/or a famous homeschooled teen. Write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Go Fly a Kite
Kites aren't just for kids. The Wright brothers used kites extensively to test their design ideas in the years leading up to their first successful airplane flight. Sometimes they even flew their full-size gliders as kites to do additional tests. Building and flying kites is a great way to learn about aerodynamics. As you are flying a kite, you can actually feel your kite reacting to the wind through the changes in tension and motion of the string. In general, a fair day with low cumulus (cotton-ball clouds) indicates a good kite-flying day with a gusty breeze. High cirrus (wispy clouds) forming parallel lines tell of strong winds at high altitude and a change in wind direction. A sky full of nimbostratus (a blanket of thick clouds) may not look like the perfect day to fly a kite, but it usually means a pleasant, even wind from a fixed direction. Today's kites are designed to fly in various wind conditions. So it's important that the person flying the kite has an idea of how to estimate wind speed. This can be done by observing the effects of wind on tree leaves, flags, litter, smoke, hair, and clothes, then translating these observations into estimated miles per hour using the Beaufort Wind Force Scale. In general, the best time to fly a kite is when wind speeds are 4-12 mph (flags flutter, bushes shake, and leaves move). But if you're serious about kite flying as a hobby, one of the best instruments you can invest in is a wind meter. In fact, I would caution you not to make numerical estimates of wind speeds if you have not used an anemometer to verify your estimations. It is okay if the estimates are for your personal use, but be careful to qualify your observations when sharing them with someone else.
The following is a general reference guide:
Typical Wind Speed (Beaufort scale) = Suggested Type of Kites
2 to 3 mph (light air; smoke drifts slowly, leaves move slightly) = Zero wind and ultra light kites
4 to 7 mph (light breeze; wind felt on face, flags flutter, leaves rustle, wind vanes move) = Ultra/light wind kites, most large foils and large power kites
8 to 12 mph (gentle breeze; flags stand out, leaves move constantly) = Most kites fly, low wind range of most box and cellular
13 to 18 mph (moderate breeze; tree branches move, dust and papers blow) = Considered the upper wind range of most standard kites
19 to 24 mph (fresh breeze; small trees sway, many whitecaps on water) = Upper to top wind range of most specialized kites (at these wind speeds the experience ceases to be fun)
25 to 31 mph (strong breeze; large trees move, telephone wires whistle, umbrellas are difficult to handle) = Vented sport kites, heavy wind kites, smaller power foils
Each kite design has a recommended wind range. It is a good rule of thumb to avoid flying any kite above its recommended wind range. Keep in mind that it can also be dangerous when trying to fly a kite in its top recommended wind range, especially when the wind is gusting high. Always stay away from other kites, kite lines and kite fliers, as well as overhead power lines, trees, and roads. Remember, safety is the first mission in flying; whether flying an airplane, the Space Shuttle, or a kite!
Visit this "kite site" made by Jen Chan as an Independent Study Project for a Physics course: http://www.skratch-pad.com/kites/
Homeschooling Teen Profile:
Reid Barton - Mathematician and Computer Scientist
A resident of Arlington, Massachusetts, Reid W. Barton is the son of two environmental engineers. Officially homeschooled since third grade, his mathematical and computer science abilities were evident from an early age. In grade three, he was tutored in game theory by a computer science graduate student. When he was only 10 years old, Barton obtained the maximum score of 5 on the AP Calculus examination.
Barton began his formal mathematical studies in middle school, while also taking part-time classes at Tufts University in chemistry (5th grade), physics (6th grade), Swedish, Finnish, French, and Chinese. Mentored by MIT computer scientist Charles E. Leiserson beginning in eighth grade, he honed his abilities on CilkChess, one of the top computer chess programs. Later, while a student at MIT, Barton worked with Leiserson and contributed to the CilkChess program.
Barton graduated recently from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and is currently a graduate student at Harvard University in mathematics. He won the 2005 AMS Morgan Prize for Outstanding Research in Mathematics by an Undergraduate Student, awarded jointly by the American Mathematical Society and the Mathematical Association of America. Barton is also a Putman Fellow, one of only seven four-time winners of the annual mathematics competition for undergraduate college students (2001, 2002, 2003, 2004).
In high school, Barton was the first participant to ever win four gold medals at the International Mathematical Olympiads (IMO) for pre-collegiate students (1998, 1999, 2000, 2001), and he was one of four perfect scorers in 2001. That year he also placed first at the International Olympiad in Informatics (IOI), earning his second IOI gold medal with a score of 580 out of 600, 55 points ahead of his nearest competitor. In addition, he is the only person to have won both the IMO and the IOI.
Barton competed on MIT's ACM International Collegiate Programming Contest team, finishing fifth and second at the 2003 and 2001 World Finals respectively. He was on the 2nd and 5th place MIT team at the ACM International Collegiate Programming Contest, and reached the finals in the TopCoder Open (2004), semi-finals (2003, 2006), the TopCoder Collegiate Challenge (2004), semi-finals (2006), TCCC Regional finals (2002), and TopCoder Invitational semi-finals (2002).
Besides his academic achievements, Barton is an accomplished pianist and cellist, performing in Chamber Music Society groups. He is an avid bridge player who also enjoys playing intramural soccer and hockey. Barton spends his summers teaching younger students at various academic training programs such as the Mathematical Olympiad Summer Program.
Barton's favorite mathematical formula is related to the "polar moment of inertia," used to predict an object's ability to resist torsion. Barton's favorite book is "Gödel, Escher, Bach" by Douglas Hofstadter. (The 1979 Pulitzer Prize-winner examines common interdisciplinary themes in the lives and work of logician Kurt Gödel, artist M. C. Escher, and composer Johann Sebastian Bach. At a deeper level, the book expounds on concepts fundamental to mathematics, symmetry, intelligence, human thought and creativity. Hofstadter's great achievement in "Gödel, Escher, Bach" was making abstract mathematical topics accessible and entertaining, enabling readers to visualize difficult mathematical concepts in the spirit of Lewis Carroll.)
In 2008, Barton published a joint thesis, "Generalizations of Kempe's Universality Theorem," with Timothy G. Abbott under the advisement of Erik Demaine at MIT. Professor Demaine is a famous homeschooled mathematician and computer scientist in his own right: http://www.famoushomeschoolers.net/bio_demaine.html
Can you guess what movie this quote came from?
"This entire proceeding is an outrage. All I've heard from these 'witnesses' is mindless contradiction!"
(Answer: Nicodemus, in The Passion of the Christ)
National Poetry Month
National Garden Month
Keep America Beautiful Month
National Kite Month
California Earthquake Preparedness Month
Confederate Heritage Month
National Humor Month
Stress Awareness Month
Autism Awareness Month
Zoo and Aquarium Month
National Week of the Ocean
National Library Week
National Playground Safety Week
National Park Week
National Turnoff Week
National Volunteer Week
Passover (March 29-April 6)
April Fools Day (April 1)
International Children's Book Day (April 2)
Easter/Resurrection Day (April 4)
Earth Day (April 22)
Internet Evangelism Day (April 25)
Arbor Day (April 30)
Click here for more April holidays: http://www.knowledgehouse.info/month_04.html
Career-of-the-Month: Park Ranger
Don't want to work inside all day? If you're a park ranger for the National Park Service, you could spend much of your workday outdoors at one of nearly 400 locations around the country - including some of the most beautiful and historic sites on earth.
NPS is one of the most visible and beloved of all Federal agencies. Since its founding in 1916, the National Park Service has been dedicated to the preservation and management of America's outstanding natural, cultural, and historical resources so that all may experience our cherished heritage. From the Statue of Liberty to the geysers of Yellowstone, to the vistas of the Grand Canyon and the volcanoes of Hawaii, the NPS is part of the fabric of America. And you can be part of this important mission!
NPS offers a broad range of job opportunities in a variety of exciting and rewarding assignments across the nation. The NPS has approximately 16,000 permanent employees and hires up to 10,000 temporary and seasonal employees each year. Additional support is provided by 125,000 volunteers annually.
PERMANENT JOBS WITH NPS
The NPS seeks qualified, highly motivated people with backgrounds in academic disciplines or trades for permanent career opportunities available nationwide. Park rangers work as law enforcement officers, nature experts, or both. They protect national parks and other federally managed areas by investigating complaints, enforcing laws and regulations, performing searches and rescues, and helping to direct forest- and fire-control efforts. These tasks are usually handled by park rangers working full time, year round.
NPS offers employment opportunities in a broad range of career fields:
· Biological Sciences
· Community Planning
· Cultural Resources
· Financial Management
· Fire Management
· Health and Safety
· Human Resources
· Landscape Architecture
· Maintenance and Facility Management
· Natural Resources
· Park Police
· Park Ranger (Interpretation)
· Park Ranger (Protection)
· Park Site Interpretation
· Physical Sciences
Benefits of Working for NPS:
· Work for a leading conservation agency
· Serve America
· Live and work in beautiful, scenic places
· Do interesting and meaningful work
· Comprehensive life and health insurance
· Excellent vacation and sick leave benefits
· Family friendly work policies
· Flexible workplace opportunities
· Leave sharing program
· Flexible work schedules
· Tuition assistance available
· Transit benefits available
· Great retirement benefits
TEMPORARY AND SEASONAL JOBS WITH NPS
Every year, millions of people visit our national parks. To meet the needs of visitors and help manage and protect park resources, the NPS hires approximately 10,000 temporary and seasonal employees annually. Experience gained from seasonal and temporary work often leads to permanent employment. While seasonal and temporary positions are available in a range of career fields, most jobs are in the following categories:
Visitor Use Assistant - As a uniformed employee of the NPS, you serve as a front-line representative of the agency and frequently you are the first and only contact the visiting public has with an NPS employee. You work at an entrance station, visitor center, campground or other visitor contact station, collecting fees and providing answers to visitor questions about recreational opportunities, interpretive services, and concession facilities and services. You distribute maps and brochures, provide directions through the park and inform visitors of potential safety hazards. As you're responsible for collecting fees and following accountability guidelines for handling government funds, you must pass a required background investigation. You operate an electronic cash register, perform open and closing shift functions to verify money collected and stock sold. Other duties may include a variety of visitor services such as traffic control, radio dispatching or back-country patrols.
Park Guide - Would you like to practice your public speaking skills? As a uniformed employee of the National Park Service, you deliver interpretative programs to educate visitors. You independently present a variety of talks and briefings and respond to visitor questions. Your presentations are generally short and concern park orientation and visitor safety. You explain the area's natural, cultural and/or historic resources, recreational opportunities, concession facilities and services, availability of campgrounds and hiking trails. You provide information on current park events, projects, and policies, as well as updates on issues affecting the natural, historical and/or cultural preservation of the area. Park guides work in or near the park visitor center or visitor contact station, and at auditoriums, campgrounds, trails, or in the field. Other duties may include visitor services such as fee collection, traffic control, back-country patrols, and administrative tasks.
Park Ranger - Do you like working directly with the public? As a park ranger for the National Park Service, you (1) interpret and explain park resources to visitors; (2) facilitate visitor enjoyment of the park and its resources; (3) help ensure visitor behavior that protects park resources and gain friendly compliance with the laws and rules for safe use of the park; and (4) encourage visitors to develop a sense of stewardship of park resources. You research and present interpretive programs, and present a variety of formal and informal programs including orientation talks, environmental education programs, conducted walks, demonstrations and campfire programs. You tell visitors about park facilities and resources such as visitor centers, campgrounds, historical sites and auditoriums. Other duties may include gathering information for reports, compiling statistical data, assisting with search and rescue efforts or helping to combat wild-land and structural fires.
Biological Science Technician - You have a direct impact on managing the resources of our National Parks by collecting essential field data. You collect samples and record all data collected. You work in the field, laboratory, or typical office setting. You install, operate and maintain tools, traps, and sampling, monitoring, photographic, and laboratory equipment. You use a variety of computer programs to compile, store, and report data and resource management information, including natural science research and long-term monitoring projects. You also maintain and organize computer databases and prepare correspondence, reports and other documents.
Seasonal Maintenance Positions - Maintenance work is vital to the safe and efficient operation of our parks. Throughout the country, park units call on trades and crafts personnel to maintain and construct trails, roads, housing, visitor facilities, utility systems, signs, furniture, and so on. As a maintenance worker, you perform skilled and semi-skilled work in a variety of trades. Trail maintenance work normally requires the ability to lift heavy objects in a variety of terrains.
Volunteers-In-Parks (VIPs) work side-by-side with National Park Service employees and partners in parks from Maine to Hawaii, from Alaska to Florida, in big cities and small towns, even in remote wilderness areas. Anyone can be a VIP. Individuals, couples, families, students, and organized groups can volunteer. Those under 18 years of age may volunteer with the official, signed permission of a parent or guardian.
Volunteers-In-Parks play an ever-increasing role in national parks doing a variety of jobs. Many volunteer opportunities are available that require a wide variety of talents, skills, and abilities. Here is a sampling of volunteer activities that may interest you:
· Working at an information desk answering visitor questions.
· Presenting living history demonstrations in period costume.
· Building fences and boardwalks.
· Giving guided nature walks and evening campfire programs.
· Assisting with preservation of museum artifacts.
· Assisting in routine repairs and upkeep to buildings, utilities, and trails.
· Designing computer programs or park websites.
· Serving on a bike, horseback, or beach patrol.
· Working as campground hosts.
· Staffing visitor center information desks, writing articles, and taking photos for newspapers and brochures.
· Assisting with wildlife camera monitoring projects, spring surveys, cultural resource assessments, exotic weed identification and removal, litter removal, installing wilderness boundary markers, and documenting backcountry campsite locations.
As a VIP you will represent the National Park Service, work in unique settings, preserve our country's natural and cultural legacy, and help visitors discover the resources, meanings, and values found in our national parks. Based on your job assignment, you may wear an official volunteer uniform which will be provided. Park housing and reimbursement for out-of-pocket expenses may also be available. You will be covered for worker's compensation in the event of an injury while on duty and, in the event of property damage or personal injury, you will be covered for tort claim liability. Volunteer time can be counted as work experience for future jobs, but does not count towards Federal Civil Service time if you should later become a Federal employee.
VIP positions can be highly competitive depending on location and type of activity. VIPs should be in good health to successfully carry out their duties and responsibilities. A medical exam may be required for some volunteer positions. Some opportunities may also require a background investigation due to increased security. Contact the park volunteer manager/coordinator if you have questions or see what volunteer opportunities are available by visiting http://www.nps.gov/getinvolved/volunteer.htm and selecting the park of your choice.
Internships are rewarding, career-building experiences. Working as an intern is an excellent way to explore a career while gaining valuable experience and new insights. A summer job doing the kind of work you may be considering for a career can open your eyes to the various opportunities that this kind of work holds, help you better gauge your own skills and desires, make valuable contacts, and even consider new options. Internships are administered at the park level or in various NPS centers and offices. Therefore, there is no centralized list of available internships. If you are looking for an internship in a park, we suggest that you select one or more parks that interest you and contact them directly by telephone or mail.
If you are interested in an internship dealing with cultural resources - such as history, archeology, museum curation, or historic architecture - you may want to check out the Cultural Resources Diversity Internship Program. Cultural resources and historic preservation work - the job of identifying, documenting, preserving, and interpreting the varied aspects of human culture - involves many skills. The CRDIP is an opportunity for undergraduate and graduate students to explore the field of cultural resource and historic preservation. Each summer and academic year, the CRDIP offers paid internships with National Park Service park units and administrative offices, other federal agencies, state historic preservation offices, local governments, and private organizations. Intern hosts provide work experiences that assist interns with building their resumes in this field. Learn more about the CRDIP at http://www.nps.gov/history/crdi/internships/moreNPSinternships.htm .
Additional internship programs that provide students with ways to explore their career options in the field of cultural resources, historic preservation, public history and heritage preservation are listed here: http://www.nps.gov/history/crdi/internships/internotherprog.htm.
The National Council for Preservation Education features regularly updated internship opportunities for the preservation industry and allied fields: http://www.preservenet.cornell.edu/employ/intern.cfm
The Student Conservation Association (SCA) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit educational organization that operates three volunteer programs: the Resource Assistant Program for young adults, the High School Program, and the Conservation Career Development Program. Resource Assistants serve in areas administered by NPS, BLM, and other federal, state, local and private entities. Resource Assistants serve as volunteer seasonal staff, working side by side with other professional staff. They are not paid, but receive funds to cover travel, a subsistence for food and housing, and a uniform allowance. High School Program crews consist of six to ten volunteers and their leaders performing conservation maintenance tasks. Leaders are experienced in all aspects of outdoor living and conservation work. Most groups are co-educational, and have an equal number of young men and women. Some 2,600 high school students and young adults are placed each year. The Conservation Career Development Program fosters conservation career opportunities for minority youth through service, counseling, and educational grants. For more information about the Student Conservation Association, visit www.thesca.org .
For more information on working as a park ranger, write to the National Park Service, 1849 C St. NW., Washington, DC 20240; call (202) 208-6843; or visit their Web site at www.nps.gov/personnel. NPS job openings - permanent, temporary, and seasonal - are posted at USAJobs, the official employment website for the United States Federal Government. For a listing of current openings, go to www.usajobs.gov, click on Basic Search and type in "NPS" to find a complete listing of our job opportunities and application procedures. Hint: Check back often, as new positions open regularly. You must be a United States citizen to be eligible for employment.
Experience your America and build a fulfilling career by joining the National Park Service! Become part of their mission to unite our past, our cultures, and our special places, to establish important connections to the present, and build a rich and lasting legacy for future generations.
Homeschool Friendly Colleges
Mitchell College is a private, coeducational institution offering associate and bachelor degree programs in the liberal arts and professional areas. Located in New London, Connecticut, on the former estate of Alfred Mitchell, the college has a unique waterfront campus overlooking the Thames River and Long Island Sound.
The descendants of the Alfred Mitchell family have been the college's principal benefactors since its founding in the fall of 1938. While the college closed briefly in 1943 because of World War II, regular classes resumed with the fall of 1946. In the 1950's, Mitchell College became known as one of New England's leading two-year colleges.
Focusing on student asset development rather than deficit management, Mitchell College is dedicated to providing a challenging education in a caring and cooperative environment for all students, including those with untapped potential and those with diagnosed learning disabilities. At Mitchell College, not only do the faculty members possess graduate and postgraduate degrees in their field of study, but they are also experienced and trained educational professionals who are well-versed in the area of working with students who have different learning styles.
Small classes with a student/faculty ratio of 12-to-1, personalized attention, a caring and supportive atmosphere, and academic programs that combine classroom instruction with practical "hands-on" learning through required internships, are just a few of the many hallmarks of a Mitchell College education. The college is notable for its Criminal Justice, Pre-Law, Business Administration, human development, early childhood education, Sports Management, and Pre-Allied Health programs.
The college also offers one of the nation's premier academic programs for students with diagnosed learning disabilities and/or ADD/ADHD. The Learning Resource Center offers three levels of support services to students with disabilities: Comprehensive Support (Level I); Enhanced Support (Level II) and Entitled Support (Level III). Level I and Level II supports are available on a fee-for-service basis to students with documented learning disabilities and/or ADHD.
Mitchell College has an extensive array or assistive learning equipment and software. Some of this adaptive technology includes: Assistive Listening Devices, Kurzweil Reading System, Screen Reading Software, and Voice Recognition Software. Learning and Writing Specialists work with students one-on-one in scheduled mentoring sessions to develop skills and strategies for their academic progress. In addition, the Academic Coaching for Empowerment (ACE) program pairs students with individual LRC coaches to assist with their academic success.
Mitchell College embraces the C.A.R.E.S. model, a framework enabling students to understand and nurture five principles which provide meaning and a sense of purpose to one's life. Mitchell's community of scholars, mentors and role models is committed to nurturing these values both inside and outside of the classroom:
C = Citizenship (promoting such virtues as moral maturity, commitment and respect)
A = Achievement(establishing expectations and goals and ways to reach them)
R = Respect(celebrating a world of differences and fostering a sensitive understanding of cultural variations)
E = Engagement(involving the student in learning opportunities beyond the classroom)
S = Service(becoming involved in one's community and giving of oneself for the betterment of others)
The "Dawn and Ric Brill Duquès '64 Academic Success Center" at Mitchell College is a learning facility dedicated solely to student academic success. Home to the Learning Resource Center, Tutoring Center, Career Center and Academic Advising, this brand new state of the art facility sits high on the middle of campus overlooking the water. The building has space designated for meetings with learning and writing specialists, classroom instruction, tutoring, testing, study, relaxation, reflection, and research.
The Mitchell College campus also offers such amenities as on-campus housing (including four multi-level, dormitory-style buildings and four residential river houses), a cafe, ice cream shop, a preserve area known as "Mitchell Woods," a beach, and multiple playing fields. Mitchell's sports teams compete in the New England Collegiate Conference. The intercollegiate sports that they offer are: men's baseball, basketball, cross country, golf, lacrosse, sailing, soccer, and tennis; and women's cross country, basketball, sailing, soccer, softball, tennis, and volleyball.
Mitchell College's Admissions Office operates on a rolling admission basis. There is no set application deadline. However, priority is granted to those applications completed prior to March 1st. Students seeking campus housing, financial aid and/or learning support should apply early as these resources are limited and may no longer be available to late applicants. The Summer Transition Enrichment Program (S.T.E.P.) is a four-week optional intensive summer program for incoming freshmen. S.T.E.P. enables students to transition into their fall studies by strengthening their study skills, improving basic academic skills, and identifying their personal learning style while earning college credit.
Kevin M.R. Mayne, Vice President for Enrollment Management & Marketing at Mitchell College states, "...we believe that everyone is unique. We all have special talents and abilities and we also each approach learning in a different way." Likewise, the college recognizes that many students come with a variety of college level learning experiences that occurred outside the traditional classroom, and these may be evaluated for possible credit. In addition, credit by examination allows students who have already studied the subject matter of a course offered at Mitchell to earn credit for that class by passing an examination which covers the course material.
In the same spirit of non-traditional learning, Mitchell College welcomes homeschooled students. Home educated students who wish to apply for admission to Mitchell should follow the guidelines listed in Admissions Requirements and Procedures for Home Educated Students. Required documents will include a personal statement such as an essay or other form of personal expression (poem, artwork, PowerPoint, etc.); a letter of recommendation from a non-family member (e.g. previous employer, clergy, supervisor during volunteer experience, etc.); a copy of the "Declaration of Intent to Home School" as filed with the local Board of Education; homeschool transcript as well as transcripts from any high school and/or college attended; and a letter from the primary teacher certifying completion of high school and date of high school graduation. Mitchell College does NOT require an official high school diploma, General Education Diploma (GED), or SAT/ACT scores.
Mitchell College participates in the Advanced Placement Program (AP) administered by the College Entrance Examination Board (CEEB). The CEEB offers examinations in: art history, biology, chemistry, English composition, English literature, French, German, history, Latin, mathematics, physics, Spanish, and studio art. The college will grant credit for AP exam grades of 3, 4 or 5 in any of the above subject areas.
Approximately 800 students currently attend Mitchell College, 85% of whom live on campus. 55% of the students are female and 45% are male. The majority of the students are traditional college age, 18 - 22 years old. Of the total population of Mitchell's students, 5% are international and come from more than 18 countries.
An Open House is a great opportunity for future students and their families to come and spend the day exploring all that Mitchell College has to offer with presentations, campus tours, interviews, and lunch. Junior Days will be held from April 20 - 22 (for current HS Juniors only). Their Fall Open House will be October 11th. For more information, call 800-443-2811 or visit www.mitchell.edu
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How to Save a Tree
by Betty J. Munis, Director, Idaho Forest Products Commission
Everywhere I turn, someone is telling me to "Save a Tree." I hear it from my banker, my insurance company, my computer, at the grocery store and the coffee shop. I hear it from the guy on TV promoting an Internet business, the news anchor reporting on how to save the planet, and from movie stars who like to talk about environmental issues.
This whole "Save a Tree" thing smacks of green-washing. They want us to see them as environmentally responsible and feel good about buying their product or idea. They want us to believe they care about forests and if we care too, we should "Save a Tree" by not using tree products.
But how does one really "Save a Tree"? Trees are living things with life spans. They sprout, grow, compete, mature, decline and die. To imply that you can "Save a Tree" by not using wood products is just wrong. It's a sound bite designed to make you feel guilty when trees are harvested for the products you use.
Trees are a great resource that should be used. They're renewable and can be sustainably managed. Healthy, growing trees take in carbon dioxide and give off oxygen. Wood products hold carbon over long periods of time. They are energy efficient and can be reused and recycled. Trees help fuel our economy with wages, taxes and purchases from businesses and employees.
Moreover, trees are abundant. In Idaho alone, they cover 40 percent of the state which is more than 21 million acres! Idaho has millions of acres of wilderness and special areas off limits to logging. We also have some of the most productive forestland in the nation. Where it makes sense, we should harvest, use and replant trees.
If you care about the environment and want trees around in the future, you should support harvesting trees, using wood and paper products, and replanting trees for the future. You should buy tree products from places like Idaho where laws protect the environment and require reforestation when trees are harvested. You should support the professional people who work in the forest products businesses. They, too, care about the forest.
Loggers, millworkers, truckers, manufacturers, foresters and forest landowners are part of a sustainable business that keep forests working and growing. They help ensure that forests remain places that support wildlife, provide clean air and water, sequester carbon, and contribute to the economy.
What else can you do? Support using wood products in local buildings and bridges. Learn more about our amazing forests and support forest education and research. Look into natural resource careers. We need bright minds and talents to meet future challenges.
And the next time someone tells you to "Save a Tree" by not using wood products, be bold and ask them "Why?" Explain that not using forest resources is a lose-lose deal. We'll lose the environmental and economic benefits of producing forest products. We'll lose forestland to other uses and reduce our opportunities to enjoy these special places. We'll pay more to fight wildfires in overcrowded forests. We'll miss out on the tremendous opportunities renewable trees hold for the future.
We must make thoughtful choices because not using trees won't save trees. Instead, "Save a Tree" using trees, replanting trees and keeping working forests working.
Homeschooling Teen Readers Write:
America. Republic. Socialism?!
By Carly Anspaugh
America, going once going twice, is she gone? When our forefathers were founding this Nation, it was intended to be a place of worship, a living church service, where each man was responsible for his own actions and beliefs. They had the freedom to base our country on such ideals because of one simple word. Self-government. When self- government is applied we can live in a productive, healthy, Christian, nation. When it is ignored, we still have the same word, just without the freedom-oozing prefix, leaving us with a dry pasty, government.
Why, does the word government, make grown men shiver? Because, it is being misused globally, the purpose of government is much smaller, than we would think it to be. We picture a horde of things associated with the government, such as taxes, laws, fines, rules, regulations, checks and balances, senates, a big house with little security guys running around and so on and so forth. What if I told you, that all of this is unnecessary? You guffaw and throw rotten vegetables at me and call me a rebel.
But, the truth is government, is
actually option 2. We passed up option 1 blindly and that is, self-government.
If we were to be responsible and accountable to our Heavenly Father, we wouldn't
need someone telling us what to do and imposing penalties, if we don't. We can
do that ourselves you know. Why do we need someone else telling us? The
purpose of government, which our nations founders realized, and tried to uphold,
is simply this: to be God's servant, and to restrain evil.
Our constitution was and is still a
revolutionary document. It was based on the principle that man is born a
sinner, and dies a sinner, and that we can only be redeemed through the blood of
Jesus. Other countries around the world and throughout history believe that man
is good, or is perfectible by law and government and rules, and all of those
droll things previously mentioned. The first step to self-government is
realizing, that we need to be governed. A lawless nation is like a 4 year-old
nursery that needs a nap. It's a mad house. But, the law doesn't have to
imposed by a man with a white poufy wig, but rather, in your own heart.
Founding Father and educator Noah Webster had this to say: "The moral principles and precepts contained in the scriptures ought to form the basis of all our civil constitutions and laws. All the miseries and evils which men suffer from vice, crime, ambition, injustice, oppression, slavery, and war, proceed from their despising or neglecting the precepts contained in the Bible."
The founders also believed that Men had "unalienable rights" as stated in the Declaration of Independence. But what they realized was that these rights were given by God, not by whoever was in power at a given time. Therefore, the rights remained solid and unchanged from ruler to ruler. They saw that they had no right to try and take God's place by imposing selfish laws among and upon the people.
Our country's founders knew the importance of two simple questions. They saw that all of humanity, throughout the ages, had to eventually ask each one of themselves this. Who is God, and who then is mankind? They saw that if these questions were answered in a humble, righteous manner a nation that was fruitful and productive could arise. They knew that when one had settled upon the answer that, if the answer be true, government would be needless.
They knew not only "who" was God they knew God. They knew that they were mankind and that, no matter how high they climbed the rusty dilapidated ladder of government, they would always remain so. They struck upon the idea, that there really is nothing special about someone whose face is on a dollar bill, except for what's inside their heart, and all men have hearts. Who made the standard that because you're a duke, or baron or king that you're better?
So we now know the Forefathers answers to "Who is God and who then is Mankind?" Lets take a look at modern day government.
President Obama says, "If you're walking down the right path and you're willing to keep walking, eventually you'll make progress."
While that may sound noble on the very thin surface, who is that statement giving glory to? Who does he put his faith in when he says, "You'll make progress?" That is really just a shallow statement, with no faith in God.
He also says, "The United States is not, and never will be, at war with Islam." Little does he realize that the whole reason why He can say that is due to the Freedom of Speech principle based not on Islam, but on Christianity.
Can you see how these statements clash with the one by Mr. Webster? Can you see how Obama is putting his faith in men whereas; our Christian founders clearly saw the foolishness in that? Obama and most liberals don't realize that Federal government is actually option 2. When one thinks that the federal government is supreme to all else then they lose the sense of accountability we have to our Lord. They are the highest point of authority, who is there to tell them what to do?
When the sense of accountability is lost, the leaders can then do what they think best, not what God tells us is best. They can subdue the people of their nation by controlling how much money they spend and make; by how they care for their sick, and by how they protect themselves. This is a ringing a bell? It has happened many times before in history. When a nation ceases to realize God's ultimate authority and presence in our lives than they crumble and fall into the grasps of humanism, socialism, communism, feudalism, and ultimately they become a pagan land seeking to please it's own selfish wishes and desires.
Our leaders today don't see that the more they struggle for power, the more they lose it. They don't realize the necessity and value of self-government. Do they see the importance of having humble answers to the two main questions, which installed them in high governmental positions in the first place? Who Is God? Who then is Mankind? Are they certain of their answer?
When a nation, realizes that the answers are in the questions, we will be able to apply self-government and become a peaceful, productive land that seems fantasy. Who is God? He is God. Who is mankind? We are mankind, and both will always remain so.
Carly, 15, has been homeschooling her whole life, and has two younger siblings. She lives in Traverse City, Michigan, where she enjoys dancing - Ballet, Pointe, Ballroom and Celtic.
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