Well after a busy couple of weeks we are all finished. Good bye high school. Caleb will be spending the summer working at Camp Fire both for pay and volunteering. He will also be enjoying his new computer and his free time before he heads off to Air Force, September 3.
Friday night we attended the Summerlin awards night and it turned out to be a very special evening.
For the first time Caleb received an academic award and this time he actually received two of them. He received a certificate for Engineering III and for Probability/Statistics Senior.
He also received the First Place Citizenship Award for community service.
But the big surprise of the evening was when they announced a new award which was inspired by Caleb’s commitment to community service. This new award is the Geraldine O. Watson Award. Ms. Watson is a retired educator who has continued to be involved in the schools and her community. There will be one large plaque mounted at the school to which more names can be added but the first entry is Caleb Mathre – 1599 hours. Caleb also received an additional smaller plaque to take home.
As a parent it was very moving to see him being recognized for this achievement. But I know none of this would have been possible without the his involvement in Camp Fire. They provided not only countless opportunities for service in several areas but they also provided outstanding mentoring and encouragement for Caleb as well. He is looking forward to helping out this summer and hopefully he can be in the inspiration for other Camp Fire youth.
The Silver Garland Awards is a program to recognize outstanding Polk Country High School Seniors in 11 categories Twenty-five school can nominate students. The award is for service to school and community. It is not a talent search nor scholastic competition. It’s purpose is to alert young people to their future responsibilities as community leaders by recognizing the dedicated students who selflessly serve others. In all of Polk County there were only 193 nominees. Caleb was one of 20 students in the area of Science.
And while he didn’t win we are very proud of him for being one of the nominees. I am also proud of the fact that he had such a great attitude even when he didn’t win. Most of his service has been through his involvement with Camp Fire and I want to give a shout out to all they have done to help my son grown into such a wonderful young man.
It was very inspiring to see such a wonderful group of young people who have gone beyond the basic requirements to truly serve.
The best part of this neat homeschooling moment is it was brought to me by my public school son. We prayed and thought hard before we made the decision to let Caleb apply for admission to Summerlin Academy a military based charter school in a school program. Now as he approaches the end of his high school years I think that letting him go was really the very best decision we could have made for him and for the rest of us as well. This child has had an interest in a military career since he started 6th grade. He has always thrived when kept challenged and busy. This has been a very great fit for him.
I pick him up from school almost everyday. That short ride home gives us a chance to talk and for me to find out about his day. These really are special moments because there is something about discussion in cars that sometimes open up all kinds of doors to sharing. Okay so on to my special homeschooling moment. The other day when I picked Caleb up in school he said it drives him crazy at the number of times a teacher uses an expression in class and people have to ask what it means. We talked about how during his time homeschooling we would as a family and one-on-one have discussion on a variety of topics. He talked about how when we didn’t understanding something we learned to look it up. When we had an interest in all kinds of different things he was encouraged to look up and find out more. He said how great it was that he learned to pursue his passions even if they are “popular”.
I told him thank you for those words. Sometimes it’s nice to get some validation for what you do. You might not always see the success. It might not be something that can be measured on some kind of “academic” chart. But those seeds you plant, those learning opportunities, those discussions, well they do bare fruit. And sometimes you get to find out exactly how it ended up.