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    #119147 - 01/02/12 01:44 PM Re: travel grant? [Re: ABQMom]
    Orson Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 04/27/11
    Posts: 41
    I can't remember what you personally posted, but the majority of the responses were negative. Everybody is entitled to his opinion. I'm just suggesting that people in glass houses should maybe think before they throw stones.

    I was sincerely asking for responses to my questions, and the last few posters provided them without editorial comment.

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    #119148 - 01/02/12 02:28 PM Re: travel grant? [Re: Orson]
    Cricket2 Offline
    Member

    Registered: 05/11/09
    Posts: 2172
    Loc: Colorado
    Orson,

    I, too, hope that I wasn't one who offended. I think that this thread took the direction it did for two reasons:

    1) people don't know where you live or what the passion area is so they are at a loss to try to help you figure out either of the following: are there ways to get the cost down for this option, are there alternative options that might cost less?
    2) some of us, too, have not been able to do things that would be wonderful for our kids but are trying to give alternative options that might be good enough if not great.

    My dd13 is in the second spot. She's wanted to be a marine mammologist since she was three. She's had qualifying scores for Duke's Marine Lab program since she was 11, but we simply cannot afford the $3K-ish cost without giving up something else that our family needs more like clothes, a car that runs, etc. We are also not so low income (like free lunch qualifying) that she gets major financial assistance. We can get partial scholarships at times, but even half off is too much to justify.

    It seems like you're in the spot of either needing to find a way to get the cost down or finding an alternative. Unfortunately none of us has a good idea on how to find a funder right now, but maybe we can help with alternatives. I do understand if you aren't comfortable putting your location or the specifics of the trip out there on the internet, though.
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    #119152 - 01/02/12 03:58 PM Re: travel grant? [Re: Orson]
    CAMom Offline
    Member

    Registered: 08/13/08
    Posts: 748
    I think the problem that you're facing is that your child is quite young. So while there are research and travel grants that may be available, you will be hard pressed to find funding for an elementary school child. My son is 8 and we have battled age discrimination quite heavily at our local museum. Because he is grade skipped and subject accelerated, his age and grade do not match. It's been a rough battle some places to get them to understand.

    I'm sorry you felt criticized and as a homeschooling mom who quit a job as a vice-principal to stay home this year, I do understand the money and the sacrifice. I think the tone of your original post may have lead people to feel judged, however. As a family who has been to Disney several times, it's hard to feel called out by a stranger that our choice of where to spend our money is somehow more foolish than another's.

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    #119164 - 01/02/12 06:58 PM Re: travel grant? [Re: Orson]
    Sweetie Offline
    Member

    Registered: 06/05/11
    Posts: 669
    I never once critisized you for wanting to find a way to fund something not in your budget. I still think if you would state the interest and location of interest and name of the museum and vague area where you live I could be of help...say you live in the southeastern US...gives me something to go on....say he wants to go to the kelp beds of monterey bay...gives me other ideas and a general idea of how far you have to go. Unless his interest is in something embarrassing, I can't figure out why you won't give more details.
    _________________________
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    #119175 - 01/02/12 11:22 PM Re: travel grant? [Re: Orson]
    aculady Offline
    Member

    Registered: 12/31/10
    Posts: 1040
    Orson, I hope you didn't take anything I said as trying to discourage you. I really am trying to help you brainstorm ways to make this happen, but as someone who would currently find coming up with $2500 completely out of reach no matter how appealing the opportunity, I am also trying to help you find "good enough" substitutes in case you aren't successful in finding ways to bring the cost down or the resources up to something you can manage. I would love for my son to have been able to do a lot of educational things that he really wanted to do that I haven't been able to afford, so I know where you are coming from.

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    #119176 - 01/03/12 12:26 AM Re: travel grant? [Re: aculady]
    ColinsMum Offline
    Member

    Registered: 09/19/08
    Posts: 1898
    Loc: Scotland
    I was assuming that it couldn't be coincidence that I saw this just after this thread - a 7yo has successfully raised a large sum of money to enable him to visit a museum relating to his passion, with the help of the Pharyngulean horde. If it's not your son, maybe it'll nevertheless be inspirational - although I don't suppose exactly the same fundraising method would work twice in quick succession. Importantly, this child is a blogger; right there is a visible commitment to share the knowledge that results from the trip, which is very likely to increase people's willingness to give.

    I probably am one of the people you feel criticised by. For clarity: I do not criticise someone who would choose to spend their own money on such a trip, nor do I criticise someone asking for donations to it specifically or someone who makes such a donation. I would, probably, criticise a general educational charity that funded such an expensive museum trip for one child, because on the basis of what you said it would seem likely to be such poor value as to constitute breaking faith with the donors to such a charity. I'm sorry if this view offends you, but I don't apologise for expressing it: if you post on a public forum, you may hear opinions that offend you. I am in turn offended by your implication that by not choosing to spend my money in such a way I'm parenting my gifted child badly, but you're entitled to your opinion, and I'm entitled to disregard it, as I do.
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    #119177 - 01/03/12 04:30 AM Re: travel grant? [Re: Orson]
    Iucounu Offline
    Member

    Registered: 06/02/10
    Posts: 1457
    Orson, I just don't think such a trip is necessary to provide a high quality education-- and though it certainly stands to engage the student, I'm not sure it would engage him more when he shows a strong interest already. Of course wealthy parents are able to fund more expensive learning opportunities such as museum trips than poor parents. Still, that doesn't mean that children of wealthy parents wind up learning more, having more drive to explore their chosen areas as adults, or being more successful just due to the extra expensive items. (The comparison would obviously be to children of parents who provide plenty of learning opportunities-- just not luxury items-- not disadvantaged children who aren't adequately provided for.)

    I doubt the trip mentioned in the blog will make a real difference long term for that child. A fun, memorable trip is not an educational necessity, and seems more like a luxury item; I'd bet there are many successful researchers who didn't have such things growing up. There are so many high-quality learning materials available on TV and the internet these days, I really don't think your son will suffer without a cross-country museum trip. (This is assuming that the blog is not made by you about your own son-- nice find, ColinsMum. Hopefully this is all moot.)

    As an example, Wren mentioned astrophysics. DS6 is interested in this, and while a planetarium trip would be fun and exciting (and we plan to go back in the next year or so at a local museum), he learns plenty from books, TV (we recently killed the cable but have OTA PBS, plus The Universe and some other things on optical discs), the web, and planetarium software on our PCs. I doubt that children growing up, say, 50-100 years ago-- including all of the world's leading physicists of those generations-- had it so good in terms of available information and the ability to engage in self-directed learning. Is it the same as talking to a real-live astrophysicist, or standing next to a real working large telescope? No, but if I had to pick one or the other, I'd pick the premade information, both canned and interactive, plus home science tools in a heartbeat; and I don't think I'm shorting him by not wracking my brain over getting him into more exciting learning opportunities at this stage.

    ETA: I don't think it can be the same kid. You said your desired trip would cost $2,500, and that you wouldn't be able to go if you didn't find a grant or take a graveyard shift-- after the blogging mother had already gotten funds for the other trip, which cost less. Perhaps you got the idea from that blog? In any event, I think it does show that it's possible to do without saving up or working extra shifts.

    And I'd be happy to learn that you got to take that trip; I just don't think you need to worry if you can't provide it, and I personally wouldn't work longer hours, on a budget, to spend thousands on the ability to browse one time a museum collection behind the scenes. If I have anything valuable to contribute, it's my opinion that it might not be as important long-term as you think, so you might be able to relax a bit. I salute you for caring so much about your son that you'd experience stress over this.
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    #119182 - 01/03/12 07:33 AM Re: travel grant? [Re: Orson]
    Wren Offline
    Member

    Registered: 01/14/08
    Posts: 1682
    I think it is great that you started the blog. And, I also think that people should respect any parent's decision, since we are here trying to do what we think is best for our child.

    I like it when people share their own experiences, either what they went through, or their own child, so that other parent's can share and learn.

    Each kid is different.

    I think it is great that some showed some options so that Orson can check them out. Some kids run a lemonade stand at the beach each summer to raise money for something local and people are generous because they like the cause. I think that Orson's child could raise money stating his case. Do a creative Youtube, get attention. He might get on the local morning show and find a benefactor. Just make sure you have details on what you are spending the money on. Benefactors like that.

    Ren

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    #119456 - 01/06/12 05:11 AM Re: travel grant? [Re: Orson]
    Wren Offline
    Member

    Registered: 01/14/08
    Posts: 1682
    Just adding a short note. DD7 announced last night, at dinner, that she wants to be a quantum physist when she grows up.

    And it took me back to my own interest in science at that age, though astrophysics was my "destiny".

    I didn't even work in science, though my undergrad is engineering, just went right to Wall St. So whether you get to the coast or not, passions can change. Though there are the Darwins, who seem to keep on path from childhood.

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    #119489 - 01/06/12 11:02 AM Re: travel grant? [Re: Orson]
    jack'smom Offline
    Member

    Registered: 01/02/10
    Posts: 757
    Physics at higher levels can be boring and can attract some bizarre people. Not that your daughter won't do it or do well! But it's like you are saying that you studied engineering but ended up in Wall Street!

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