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February 11th, 2014
thesmithian

'The issue is how, not whether, to invest more in preschool, mindfully preventing learning disparities before they emerge. Poor youngsters enter kindergarten already four to six months behind their middle-class peers in oral language and preliteracy skills. Nor is the issue whether the nation can afford to lift poor children: Americans spend more than $53 billion each year on their pets, far more than family and government outlays for child care and preschool.'

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February 1st, 2014
thesmithian
What if it had been your child, Cate Blanchett? Louis CK? Alec Baldwin? What if it had been you, Emma Stone? Or you, Scarlett Johansson? You knew me when I was a little girl, Diane Keaton. Have you forgotten me? Woody Allen is a living testament to the way our society fails the survivors of sexual assault and abuse. So imagine your seven-year-old daughter being led into an attic by Woody Allen. Imagine she spends a lifetime stricken with nausea at the mention of his name. Imagine a world that celebrates her tormenter. Are you imagining that? Now, what’s your favorite Woody Allen movie?
February 1st, 2014
thesmithian

The story of the Florida School for Boys is so painful…because difficult and delinquent boys are so easy to forget about. They are, in our time, the least among us, the most vulnerable, and the easiest to victimize. But this is precisely why the state of Florida should put the remaining old men on trial for crimes committed so long ago: to ignore such crimes is to compound the sin. We should not confirm the principle that some among us can be raped, tortured, or killed without repercussion. These dead boys, whose lives were discarded, should not be forgotten again.

more. about the

fifty-five bodies…found in unmarked graves on the grounds of the former Florida School for Boys, in the panhandle town of Marianna.

January 19th, 2014
thesmithian

Studies of mindfulness programs in schools have found that regular practice—even just a few minutes per day—improves student self-control and increases their classroom participation, respect for others, happiness, optimism, and self-acceptance levels. It can help reduce absenteeism and suspensions too. A mindfulness practice helps reduce activity in the amygdala, the brain’s emotional center responsible for fear and stress reactions.

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December 28th, 2013
thesmithian

Somebody has to document not only wars, but political crisis, economic crisis, not only for now but for history. Somebody is going to wonder, “what happened to these I-don’t-know-how-many people killed in Syria because of toxic weapons,” or “how many refugees were there?” When your children read a history book in fifty years, Syria and Afghanistan are going to be chapters. The economic crisis in the US will be a chapter. We do it because it’s important. —Rodrigo Abd

December 16th, 2013
thesmithian

…only 30% of the nation’s fast-food labor force currently falls into the 16-19 age range, while 31% are 20-24 and the rest are 25 and older. More than a quarter of these workers are raising at least one child. Nearly 85 percent of non-teenage employees have already earned their high-school diploma, while approximately one-third have at least some college education.

more.

December 11th, 2013
thesmithian

beyonce:

Houston, Texas December 2013

Photographed by Rob Hoffman

[look of the hour]

Reblogged from I Was Here....
November 14th, 2013
thesmithian

'…child porn bust in Toronto…has led to the arrest of 341 people and rescue of 386 sexually abused children around the world…'

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November 12th, 2013
thesmithian

'…boys’ voices are changing…a lot earlier. Medical records tracking puberty through history do not exist, but…research suggests that the age of puberty for boys has dropped, on average, 2.5 months a decade since the mid-1700s. That would mean that boys are sopranos for a shorter time.'

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November 3rd, 2013
thesmithian

…what to make of the rise of child warriors in a culture desperate to keep children innocent? Neither bad seeds nor suffering victims, “The Walking Dead’s” Carl, “The Hunger Games’” Katniss, and now Ender Wiggin face death and win. They sometimes act violently in their own defense, and often do so without remorse. They are not innocent, but neither are they evil.

more.

…what to make of the rise of child warriors in a culture desperate to keep children innocent? Neither bad seeds nor suffering victims, “The Walking Dead’s” Carl, “The Hunger Games’” Katniss, and now Ender Wiggin face death and win. They sometimes act violently in their own defense, and often do so without remorse. They are not innocent, but neither are they evil.

more.

October 24th, 2013
thesmithian

On Oct 4…Avonte Oquendo walked out of his school in Queens in the middle of the day. He’d first approached one exit, where a security guard, with a degree of diligence that will long be debated, asked him where he was going. He didn’t answer; he couldn’t. Avonte is severely autistic, and, at age fourteen, unable to speak or use language. The school was supposed to be watching him. But the guard…one way or the other didn’t stop him from then leaving through a side door. Anyone who’s seen him since is not telling.

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October 18th, 2013
thesmithian

Jimmy Greene had been a jazzman for most of his 38 years…He had dozens of albums…played with…Freddie Hubbard. He was a scholar, too, teaching jazz at…university…Greene’s 6-year-old daughter, Ana Márquez-Greene…was a student at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut…the day a gunman killed Ana along with 19 other children and 6 educators. “I don’t know if we’ll ever feel whole again,” Mr. Greene said of his family, Nelba Márquez-Greene, his wife, and their son, Isaiah, 9, who was also in the school that morning but was unharmed. “I still cry every day — we all do. I don’t know if there’s a day when we won’t.”

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