Dual Credit

My eldest is in the process of applying to be able to take dual credit classes from the college. (They will count towards his college and his high school.)

I want him to take math. He needs a good math class and I know, literally, nothing in the level to which he has advanced. But I can get him a good math teacher. And that’s part of my job as a homeschooling mother, to know when I don’t know enough. (This time that was really easy.)

He can take another course as well. The college allows two classes per semester to be taken concurrently.

My question is, what should the other one be?

For several reasons, I was leaning towards a foreign language. I think a foreign language is good to know. He’d like to learn Japanese but that is not one of the courses offered at the school. My parents want him to take a foreign language, with the proviso that he can actually learn one. (My dad failed college Spanish. He could NOT get it.)

Then I read Confessions of a Community College Dean on requiring one year of language. He asks, “What’s the point?”

I took Spanish in elementary school (utterly useless except for counting), in junior high (okay), and in high school (exceptional because they let me opt out of the class with the tenured teacher and take the one who actually taught). I learned some. Then I took a year in college. I also took two years of Portuguese in college. Then I went to Switzerland, worked with a Spanish-speaking church for 18 months, and took courses in French. That’s a lot of language. You’d hope it would be worth something. In the last 20 years I’ve talked to a friend’s mother, a boyfriend’s mother, and passed my doctoral level reading language with Spanish. (Oh yeah, I also translated the ribald bits from Samuel Pepys with it.)

But I still think it’s important.

And I think, with the state of immigration right now, Spanish will become more important. I want my son to know what the people are singing, not to have to rely on the media for an actual translation.

So, I think, after vacillating back and forth, I want him to take Spanish. Now the question is, do I want him to take it this first year, when he could get two years of college Spanish while finishing up high school or do I want him to have an option on another class? I just don’t know.

I guess R and I will need to do some discussion on the subject.