Cursive writing may still have some value
As a former Biology teacher, I feel that while cursive writing (called “joined-up” writing in England and “running” writing in Australia) is becoming less and less useful in the computer age, it might still have some value.
True, those proponents of cursive claim it is valuable for reading the original U.S. Constitution (although you can find it in print in many history or political texts), taking standardized tests (although a majority of students taking the SAT now print their essays), and for writing love letters (well...no argument there, but you really need a good fountain pen, and quality paper that takes the ink). However, those do not appear to be particularly pressing arguments.
Yet, the practice of cursive may have some value with improving manual dexterity, and in improving pattern recognition, both valuable skills in most jobs, and especially in the sciences. Such skills are not easily taught, nor easily learned.
During the time I taught science, I discovered that many of my students found difficulty deciphering some of the fonts (typefaces, actually) that I used when projecting notes on the screen and occasionally I used “script” or “italic” fonts for emphasis. (They had extreme difficulty with Olde English typeface and I quickly stopped using them.)
As for problems in spelling, grammar, and punctuation, those were serious problems while I was teaching.
When I assigned research papers, the students were informed that they would be graded on those as well as the quality of their research; and indeed I spent a great deal of time and effort grading each and every paper.
I even prepared handouts on basic sentence and paragraph structure, and how to write a summary, as well as a detailed handout on how to write the research paper. (I know of no other science teachers who made such an effort.)
It is true that computer-based word processing is an essential skill, and should be taught in elementary school (although there is a serious need for keyboards designed for small hands) but not at the expense of cursive. Else, how would the kids be able to pass notes in class?
Local preschool owner thanks community for help after fire
I would like to thank all of the daycare providers for stepping up and helping all of our families and us in our time of need. We hope all of our families will come back as soon as we are back up and running.
Thank you to our Lake Stevens community for all of your love and support. We are so happy and honored to be a part of this community.
Thank you so much from me, my family and my staff.
We will be back.
Lake Stevens Daycare and Preschool
Walking along 20th Street is safer with lower speed limit
We do not agree with Michael Turners suggestion that the speed limit be raised to 45 mph.
If you live along this street and are walking, or are trying to get into/out of your driveway, or have shcool age children walking to and from the several schools in this area, have to listen too the vehicle noise you will find that 45 mph is to fast and that 35 mph is quite adequate to move the traffic. There are other routes Mr. Turner could take so that he does not have to travel our street.
Thank you very much City of Lake Stevens for keeping the speed limit at 35 mph.
Ron and Sherryl Talley
Drivers need to be aware of walkers in Lake Stevens
I wonder just how many citizens know how to walk on these roads in Lake Stevens?
The law says to walk on the left side of the road unless there is a sidewalk or a place designated to walk.
I have run into so many that don’t know this and if you see someone walking on the side of the road and no other place designated to walk, give them a break.
If no one is coming toward you get over a little bit. Don’t try to see how close you can get to that person.
Food Bank near the Senior Center is a great idea
I read with interest, Donna Foster’s letter regarding the Food Bank and its need for a larger location. The Eagle Ridge Park area would be a great place for this service.
Since many food bank recipients are also low income senior citizens, why not have it close to the Senior Center, thus making it easier for older adults to take advantage of both services.
And how about this for another idea? Let’s ask the Senior Center Board to offer use of the kitchen at the Senior Center so the School District Culinary Arts students could prepare a low cost luncheon to the public once a month?
There is such a service and training opportunity in Marysville and it’s great.
Now, we would have three organizations that would be collaborating to serve our community.
Please … Mayor Little and Lake Stevens City Council, give this serious consideration. Senior citizens, low income families, and students learning a trade are all part of our community. They deserve support.
Public needs to be more informed about Education Department
I was dismayed, no, appalled, reading your Other Reader’s comments two weeks ago. As a former high school science teacher, I knew the public is generally unaware of the importance of the U.S. Department of Education, but I didn’t realize how badly misinformed they were.
The Department of Education (from their website): “1. Establishes policies related to federal education funding, administers distribution of funds and monitors their use.” In fact, each K-12 public school in the country receives federal funding (“ADA”, Adjusted Daily Attendance) based on how many students attend classes each hour of every school day. This means that if a student skipped my class, but attended the other five, the school loses that hour’s ADA for that student. In reality, if the fed did not fund public school, there would be none, or extremely few. Perhaps your Other Reader would like to see the U.S. set back to the twelfth century, to a time when only the wealthy could afford to send their children to school, or to hire the necessary tutors.
The USDE also states, “2. Collects data and oversees research on America’s schools.” As reported in 2009, based on a study of students at age 15 from 33 countries, the US ranked 33rd in Reading, 27th in Math, and 22nd in Science. Korea, Finland and Japan consistently lead the nations in education. Why can’t Johnny read? Why can’t Johnny get a job with Boeing or Microsoft may be the more pertinent question. Believe it or not, there have been some improvements in the last twenty years in US education, and guidelines from the USDE, based on research in education are behind most of those improvements. But, there’s still a long way to go.
The USDE also, “3. Identifies major issues in education and focuses national attention on them.” This is just one of the ways they get things done. Then again, your Other Reader might prefer the masses to be uneducated, kept in the dark. It makes them easier to rule over.And, the USDE, “4. Enforces federal laws prohibiting discrimination in programs that receive federal funds.” This has been particularly important in bringing some sections of the nation out of the “Dark Ages.” Why, some of my best friends are...
It was Thomas Jefferson who stated that a free public education was essential to keeping the people free, happy, and capable of making informed decisions when they vote. Yes, it does mean we have to levy taxes for public education, and issue bonds, so, technically, it’s not free...the money has to come from somewhere. Of course, there are certain parties who believe they should rule over us, who would like to take us back to the twelfth century...
Join local firefighters to help kids this holiday
The holiday season is upon us, and underprivileged children in Lake Stevens need your help once again. In the spirit of community service, Lake Stevens Firefighters will host the seventh annual Tips for Firefighters Dec. 4, 5:00 – 9:00 p.m. at Ixtapa Restaurant in Lake Stevens.
There is nothing sadder than the thought of an excited child waking up Christmas morning to an empty stocking. This year more than ever, children in our community are in great need. Parents are struggling to get by while making difficult economic decisions. After paying for rent, putting gas in the car and food on the table, many will have no money left for gifts. This year we have the opportunity —and the responsibility—to provide hope to children in need.
Tips for Firefighters is a charity program with a simple goal: to provide gifts for the underprivileged children in our community. The men and women who protect and serve our community will be working for extra tips while bussing your table as you enjoy a fine Mexican dinner at Ixtapa. All of the tips collected will be transformed into holiday presents for needy kids.
With your help, over the past six years Lake Stevens firefighters have provided Christmas presents to well over 250 children in our community. Take a moment to think about the impact this has on children that would otherwise have a gift-less holiday.
Please join us once again Dec. 4 at Ixtapa in the spirit of celebration and giving. Together, we will provide a memorable Christmas for the most vulnerable children in Lake Stevens. If you are unable to attend, please consider delivering a donation to any Lake Stevens Fire department stations. Checks can be made out to Local 3235.
Lake Stevens Fire
Sewer District rate increases are unreasonable
I have some fundamental concerns over the decision by the Sewer District to once again raise our rates.
I am fully aware of the need for the new treatment plant as a result of the increased connections due to our growing community.
However, I wonder how much of this bill developers or new residents are contributing to the new plant?
Mill Creek is a prime example of passing the bill onto new developers/residents to the tune of $8,000 per household. I did some checking into this issue and found that comparing Lake Stevens Sewer to Snohomish Sewer is not a fair comparison.
Snohomish has fewer than 3,000 sewer connections while Lake Stevens has 10,000. Perhaps a more accurate comparison would be Marysville at 13,000 or Lynnwood at 9,000 connections.
Their rates beginning January 2011 will be $73.55/bi-monthly, and $66/bi-monthly respectively. This is roughly half of what we will pay.
In addition, many districts charge by use. Yet our sewer district charges a flat rate. It isn’t fair that a small household is paying the same amount as a large one.
I am astounded that the rate increase between 1998 and 2016 will be 445 percent. That is an increase of 25 percent per year. Other districts have made steady increases of two percent per year. Does this seem reasonable?