You'll Never Think of Graham Crackers in the Same Way

"I am telling you what he said...."
My sixth-grader comes home on Friday asking for help with his science project. He is to do a report on Sylvester Graham, the inventor of the graham cracker. Nicholas has never asked me for help searching for information before.

And boy, am I glad that he did. I hopped online and goggled the name...

It would seem that Mr. Graham was something of a purist and followed a vegetarian lifestyle; he believed that certain foods caused impure thoughts which could lead to excessive self-satisfaction and coupling for reasons other than procreation. 

"Birds do it; bees do it..."
There were some other things, but the first thing I noticed was this article on Snopes.com.

To say that I was shocked could be an understatement.

Being the over protective parent my husband accuses me of being, I looked up the information and fed him the main ideas. Some articles are riddles with specific words while others were general. Given last week's google search for images, I have learned my lesson when it comes to just letting him have an all-access pass to the internet.

After we'd gathered all the facts that he needed to complete the project, I asked him if there were any words that he had seen that he had a question about.
Wouldn't you know it? Sexual.

I don't consider myself a prude, but there are some subjects that I don't want to talk to my children about. These include but are not limited to:

  • the existence to Santa (of course there is!)
  • what we do behind closed doors (storks, cabbage patch, moses basket on porch..take your pick)
  • what we do ALONE behind closed doors (shaving my legs..out in a jiffy!)

After I gave myself a pep talk, I laid it all out on the line. I explained it all to him. Frankly, I should have done a better job of this last year when he had puberty class. 

Now I have to do it all over again with the 11-year-old. Because that puberty class? They only talked about hygiene and body hair. I had to give permission for that? Please. They can learn more on prime time TV.

However, I did not tell him about Santa Claus. I figured it was the least I could do for the boy since he'd just heard his mother utter words like sex, making a baby, and masturbation.

Got milk?

  I did email the teacher and let her know that I thought the ideals of Sylvester Graham may be a bit mature for sixth grade especially since her instructions were "google it." I am curious as to what she'll say.

One last thing is certain, I'll never view graham cracker quite the same.


rajean said...

Gives teachers & parents pause to tell your kids to google it. Had.no.idea. 

Glosmommy said...

I haven't had that talk with my 5th grader yet either.  Did the school offer a class this year? I didn't see anything come home.

Chele said...

I'm still in shock! LOL. No I will never look at Graham Crackers like that again. I also agree with the struggles of talking to your kids about sex.... ugh. I honestly had that taught to me in school not by my parents. I didn't end up too bad although I have 4 kids. haha. Anyhow thanks for sharing this, it's an amazing and disturbing that our kids might be looking up a subject like this for a report. I'm wondering if the teacher even knew the story behind Mr. Graham???

heather said...

Well, according to her email, the information I linked to her, all off the first page of google, has recently come to light. She was confused and embarrassed. I don't think another child will be assigned this inventor.

I have tried to be open with my kids when ti comes to sex. With my daughter it was easier. My boys? Not so much. Weird.  

heather said...

Yes, they had it last Friday I believe. Darrin didn't bring a paper home. I am not sure which teacher was responsible to for passing out the forms, but he never got one. I just wrote him a note. But don't worry..she didn't miss anything. All they talk about is body changes and keeping themselves clean. 

heather said...

 The power of google is awesome but scary at the same time. He typed in "cool semi truck" to find an image (a post for later this week) and saw a person that had been hit by a truck. It was real and gruesome. 

facebook-1359322570 said...

I saw this on your FB page and had to read it. He was really something, wasn't he? And I know I'll never think about Graham Crackers the same way either!

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