We need that money for dog food

Both of my children were very excited to bring home the paperwork pertaining to some gifted enrichment program available in connection with the university. Happy little geeklets that they are, the idea of spending even MORE time doing math sounded pretty awesometastic to them, and they were absolutely crushed when I told them we wouldn’t be enrolling.

The cost is $350 for three months. APIECE. So, $700 if I wanted to enroll both kids. I’m sure it’s a wonderful program, but I explained that I just don’t love them that much. And besides, they’re already in the (free) gifted program at school! They don’t want to wear out their giftedness before they even have a chance to take the SAT!

Finally I had to tell them to quit their whining and get their extra learning the old-fashioned way that God intended—playing computer games. I’m pretty sure there was some muttering after that, but I’d stopped listening. (Probably because I never got to go to expensive enrichment programs when I was a kid, and I have the attention span of a gnat.)


  1. Flea

    Psh. Music lessons. Cheaper, build character and discipline, reinforce mathematical principles.

  2. Flea

    Did my comment not post? How rude!

    I was saying *ahem* that music lessons are cheaper, build character and discipline, as well as reinforcing mathematical skills and abilities.

  3. Paula

    Please let them know that they are not alone in not being allowed to attend the enrichment program at the local University. My son didn’t go either (much to his dismay!) and would you believe that in spite of that he took the SAT and ACT at 12 and is entering the Early Entrance Program (at 13) at our local University. He was absolutely positive that he would not be accepted and that it would be ALL OUR FAULT because we would not pay for “enrichment”. He too was forced to gain his “enrichment” for free elsewhere! I do have to say that I do so love having a child that LOVES to learn!

  4. Tracy

    I think that you and Paula are very blessed to have eager children that love to learn. My daughter’s high school days were just about the death of me. Thank goodness those days have passed and now, it’s college. Oh joy.

  5. Jan in Norman, OK

    I’m assuming it’s the same university at which Otto teaches. If so, is there a faculty discount? It would have to be a substantial one, though; $350 for three months sounds excessive. Someone must be trying to fund their graduate assistants or pay for their research through this.

  6. Lori N


    Flea – music lessons are only slightly cheaper in our area…at $25 a lesson that’d be $300 for 3 months – for a spot in a GROUP lesson.

    Luckily child one gets all the enrichment she’s interested with a library card and child two is still young enough to be happy with kindergarten!

  7. laura

    My child came home THRILLED, her poem was published in an EXCLUSIVE publication, which we could purchase for $moneyIdidnothave and 99 cents. That was ten years ago and I’m so glad they didn’t die from the disappointment of having such a loser mother.

  8. MomCat

    We did that when my daughter was in 5th grade, and she reported back that it was glorified babysitting. Now we focus on summer programs that have been extensively vetted.

  9. wafelenbak

    Enrichment is great and all, but there comes a point when kids just need to be kids. I am quite confident they will reach their full potential with your guidance as is. :-) (or perhaps they can get jobs as dog walkers and put the money towards it??)

  10. Half Assed Kitchen

    It sounds like Monkey and Chickadee are sufficiently enriched as it is. :)

  11. Katie in MA

    It is RIDICULOUS what they think they can get out of us these days! My daycare is charging a $150 annual registration fee – per child. That is more than a week’s tuition for one child and more than TWO weeks tuition for the other one. Yes, they want me to fork over all that money for the privilege of…continuing to give them my business. Seems like with the attrition problems they’re having, we should get a discount each year if we don’t leave.

  12. dad

    If my memory serves me correctly, you were not identified as all that gifted until you got ready for college (albeit at 15). I am sure nobody ever, ever told us you were gifted at math. I know, you were distracted by something shiney. Also, since almost every one of your costudents had at least one parent with a Ph.D. I suspect that you were surrounded by classmates from an atypical gene pool of “gifted” constituents.

    The good news is: you turned out OK.
    Congatulations. Now work on your attention span.

  13. Ani

    Geez, $350??? An interesting way to implement “Community Outreach”. I’m gonna go with previous poster and suggest some grad student and/or prof is looking for a salary supplement.

  14. natasha the exile on Mom Street

    Does your Dad not see the shiny things? Is it like seeing dead people and only a few of us are afflicted?

    I think that *they* always put extra shiny stuff in the math classrooms, by the way.

  15. Sheila

    I got roped into teaching one of these University classes when I was a university student. I was woefully under qualified to wrangle a classroom of precocious 7-10 year olds, and boy howdy, they knew it. I’m not sure what their parents paid for the privilege of those Saturday morning enrichment classes, but sadly, it was probably too much.

  16. mamabird

    My attention span is that of a fruitfly.

  17. Anna

    Gotta love Dad. :)

  18. Brigitte

    Yeah, I’m sure SOOO many families, especially in your school district, can afford that. I wonder how many people actually take them up on that “deal?”

  19. Nicki

    I understand completely. My little gifted indentured servants bring home countless opportunities a year…the Duke TIP, Young Leaders Conference (I think that one was Wake Forest), and now the chance to travel through Europe over the summer. It’s a good life lesson that they can’t have everything they want. It’ll make them work harder to achieve what they really want…and BUILD CHARACTER. (At least that was the party line when I was a kid facing disappointment that I have no adopted to pass on to my own.)

    Don’t beat yourself up too much.

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