For years, I carpooled kids who talked about government and physics. I saw the education my kids were receiving as superior to my own in many ways. I defended their education against criticisms leveled at today's schools here on a2k and on abuzz. It was easy to feel confident when your own system is good and when you have placed two children in a private school that is even better.
Well, from what I can see of the schools I've taught in and visited - the education is there for anyone who wants to access it.
My daughter just isn't an academic sort of being. It's not that it's not offered to her, it's just that she isn't all that interested.
And I have to say that I think that's true of a lot of kids (who don't have learning disabilities).
If they wanted to learn - it's there for them to learn- but they have to be interested enough to want to learn it - simple as that.
Another thought I had was those Reader's Digest Condensed Books. Do they still have those?
I didn't read them instead of full-length novels or classics when I was growing up, but I read them along with. Like, if I hadn't been to the library and had nothing to read - they were a fast, easy read - and interesting a lot of times.
They did a lot of mysteries and stuff that I'd never have read otherwise.
Maybe that's an option for your class - at least as a starting point.