These are random musings of my life journey, the people, animals, places, and events which have woven, and continue to weave, a tapestry that is me. We all know there is no real destination, only the ongoing experiences which blend together, creating the trail. Each step gives a glimpse of what is to come, without allowing me to see the end result. It is exciting. I have a home base that is mine, that gives me a place to rest. This is it. This is where my heart is, no matter where I journey...................

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Tuesay Trivia

It's back to school time. The kids are either back in already or will be very soon. I remember when I was a kid, school didn't start till the day after Labor Day. Period. Now days, it starts anywhere from the first week of August to that old Labor Day standard. So here are some facts related to school to tickle you brains....

“The difference between school and life? In school, you're taught a lesson and then given a test. In life, you're given a test that teaches you a lesson.”

Tom Bodett, (1955-), American author, voice actor and radio host.

First, SUMMER'S OVER, but not till we know about it....
Sol + stice derives from a combination of Latin words meaning "sun" + "to stand still." As the days lengthen, the sun rises higher and higher until it seems to stand still in the sky.

The Summer Solstice results in the longest day and the shortest night of the year. The Northern Hemisphere celebrates in June, but the people on the Southern half of the earth have their longest summer day in December.

The Celts and Slavs celebrated the first day of summer with dancing and bonfires to help increase the sun's energy. The Chinese marked the day by honoring Li, the Chinese Goddess of Light.

Pagans called the Midsummer moon the "Honey Moon" for the mead made from fermented honey that was part of wedding ceremonies performed at the Summer Solstice.

Ancient Pagans celebrated Midsummer with bonfires, when couples would leap through the flames, believing their crops would grow as high as the couples were able to jump.

Midsummer was thought to be a time of magic, when evil spirits were said to appear. To thwart them, Pagans often wore protective garlands of herbs and flowers. One of the most powerful of them was a plant called 'chase-devil', which is known today as St. John's Wort and still used by modern herbalists as a mood stabilizer.

And now ....
$7.6 billion: The amount of money spent at family clothing stores in August 2008. Only in November and December—the holiday shopping season—were sales significantly higher.

71%: Percentage of children 3 to 6 enrolled in kindergarten who attended all day, as of October 2007.

23%: Percentage of elementary through high school students who have at least one foreign-born parent in October 2007. Five percent were foreign-born themselves.

9.9 billion: The nation’s total apple production, in pounds, in 2008, up from 9 billion in 2007. The chances are good that the apples your children present to their teachers or enjoy for lunch were grown in Washington state, which accounted for more than half of the nation’s total production.

7.2 million: Number of teachers in the United States in 2008. Some 2.9 million teach at the elementary and middle school level. The remainder includes those teaching at the postsecondary, secondary, and preschool and kindergarten levels.

$14,915: Average tuition, room and board (for in-state students) at the nation’s four-year public colleges and universities for an entire academic year (2007-08). That is more than double the corresponding figure in 1990.

School grades in Australia are called years. Primary school is from year 1 to year 6; secondary school is from year 7 to year 12. A 6 year old begins in year one, while an 18 year old finishes school by year 12.

The school day in Brazil runs from 7 a.m. to noon, and students typically go home at noon to share lunch with their family. Lunch is the most important meal of the day. The average class size is 30 or more students. Most schools do not have a computer in the classrooms, or have only one or two computers for 30 students to share.

Students in China also have great access to computer technology, with a computer to student ratio of 1:2. Chinese language and math skills are tested at the end of each year. Math is typically taught by drill, which means students are repeatedly taught the basics of math until they are able to demonstrate comprehension.

Costa Rica was one of the first nations in Central and South America to offer free public education. On average, there are about twenty-eight students in a classroom. Students are required to wear uniforms during the nine years of their formal education, from ages 6 to 15, and supply their own lunches and snacks. Students then begin college at age 15.

The school day in France typically runs from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., with a half day on Saturday, although students do not attend school on Wednesday or Sunday. The school year for this country in the northern hemisphere stretches from August to June, and is divided into four seven-week terms, with one to two weeks of vacation in between.

Most Japanese schools run on a trimester schedule. The academic year begins in April and ends the following March, with breaks for summer, winter and spring separating the three terms. Uniforms are required and there are extensive rules for hair styles, shoes, socks, skirt length, make-up, accessories, and more.



  1. I for one is ready for Sept 2nd when one of my lovely children will stop saying I am ready for school the other is asking if he really has to go back but the downside of this is I will have evil dog detail. Oh well at least my house will be quiet again and food will stop disappearing. Very interesting trivia

  2. Did you know that cursive is no longer taught in school? To me, that's unfathomable. I use cursive all the time- I can't print fast enough. I will never give up my habit of writing in a paper diary, and it just wouldn't happen if I could only print. I don't understand it.


  3. I DIDN'T KNOW THAT!! Betty, what is the reasoning about that?


If you have something to say about it, just stick out your thumb, and I'll slow down so you can hop aboard! But hang on, 'cause I'm movin' on down the road!!! No time to waste!!!