Archive for May, 2009

Behold-

May 27, 2009

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The clubhouse is finished!!!! Isn’t it beautiful!? And HUGE! It was made by my dad aka Granddaddy or Dee. It has screens so the kids can get a nice breeze minus the mosquitoes and bees. The many windows were a request from Alex. Granddaddy had to make the door special because it is an odd size. It even has a lock which Alex is especially fond of.

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Alex’s favorite thing to do thus far is to sit and read in his clubhouse. Note the pictures hanging on the wall. Mee-maw and Grandaddy came over on Sunday and hung those up. My mom made the table you see out of sea glass she collected. Alex appropriated the table but he will need to give it back as soon as I get him a replacement.

Thinking

May 17, 2009

Food for thought

I have been trying to decide what to do about history next year. I like what she has to say (except for the whole bible bit).

May 15, 2009

What a nice day we had. We went to the beach with my mom and collected an entire bucket full of things to look up, compare, and contrast. I hope I can go by the library this weekend to get a few reference books. It was so much fun to watch the boys. Alex was yelling and laughing and having a grand time! No one was there either. Always a good thing when you have young kids 🙂

After the beach, we ate lunch and headed over to my dad’s where we went out on the boat. I believe that was Ian’s first trip out ever!

Mama said there’d be days like this…….

May 13, 2009

And when they start out like this you can find me hiding with the laptop and coffee. The kids have been thrown unceremoniously outside. Sometimes I worry what the neighbors think because invariably my children start to whine after a few minutes and I basically ignore them. Do other kids do this? What is not fun about playing outside?

We have been taking a building class this semester. Yesterday, was a cumulative project of sorts where there were to build a city out of recyclables. Here is Alex’s:

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It is not a city though. It is a Water and Electricity Plant. Here is a part of the conversation we had (I was helping out in the class):

Alex: “The water goes from here to here and then out through a tube here”

Me: “Would you like to add the tube ?”

A: “No, it is invisible.”

I got that ‘invisible’ line for every addition or detail I suggested. LOL. Gotta love it. It reminded me of that book where the kid draws an invisible sailboat during class or something and the teacher is not impressed. LOL

Reading

May 11, 2009

I was going to try to count up how long Alex reads independently, I read to him, and he reads to me today. I lost count but suffice it to say it is a ridiculous amount.

He usually wanders off at some point in the morning and reads for a half hour or so. He reads in the car, when I am putting Ian down for a nap, and usually in late afternoon he picks up yet another book. I read to him first thing, during meal and snack times (not dinner), bath, and while Ian is asleep. He reads to me daily but it is not for all that long. I may increase it some. I try to read to Ian alone also and he will wander over to listen to those stories.

I sort of panicked today when I started thinking that at some point I will be reading to Ian to ‘teach’ him not just enjoyment. At some point we will study prehistory for example and how in the world am I going to fit that in!? Alex will have his own course of study and because of their age difference I doubt it will be all that similar……thankfully that is a long time away and I am sure it will work out. Makes you wonder how people who have lots of children manage.

I have been thinking a lot about next year, what classes and sports to take. It is hard to find the balance between too much and not enough.

Writing

May 10, 2009

I have been reading The Read Aloud Handbook (which is really good btw). He states that he finds it interesting that parents are afraid to “force” children to read for fear they will grow up hating it. Interestingly enough we have no problem “forcing” children to brush their teeth and , as he points out, it isn’t as though once they move out they quit doing it. I do not have this problem with Alex with reading. But I do with writing and that is *exactly* how I was thinking. He would say “I hate writing” and I would back off for a bit. So over the weekend we all got new journals and I explained that writing is an important skill and the only way to get better at it is to jump in there and start practicing. Today was our first day. He drew a great picture of the life cycle of a frog and, after some encouraging, wrote a sentence. Yep we have tadpoles! There are hundreds upon hundreds at Woodstock Park if anyone is interested. When he was done writing he said, “That was fun.” LOL. Incidentally, the author of said book changed his terms from ‘forcing’ children to read to ‘requiring’ it of them. I am thinking we will wait a few weeks and then choose one story that he has written, proofread, correct, adn copy it over neatly. What we will be do with that, I have no idea….

Alex and I spent the afternoon giggling over Calvin and Hobbes. I forgot that I bought the book weeks ago. It is hilarious! He is so into comic books, I was thinking he might get a kick out of it. Another really good book about a child who fools around quite a bit is A Near Thing for Captain Najork. The first sentence is something like “Tom was fooling around with his chemistry set one day and invented a jam powered frog.” Watching Alex learn, it is amazing to me how much time is wasted in school. I feel lucky to be so involved in the process.

May 9, 2009

Wow. It has been a while. I know it is lame, but I keep falling asleep! When I put Ian to bed, I am out. LOL. Days are so busy. I am going to really have to sit down and decide which activities are worthwhile and which ccan be put off for a while.

So what have we been up to? I have been impressed with Alex’s experiments. He decides what he wants to do, puts it in action, and follows up. He has been doing a lot with freezing things. We are working on our math still and nearly done with the first book. We have done a lot more in art. Here are some nature prints we did:

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I got the idea from The Artful Parent. Ian and Alex had a nice time making them. I was amazed at their detail!

He started carrying around a sketch book for a few days. He was drawing everything! He stopped now though. His inspiration began with the eagles at Botanical so perhaps we will watch them again. It is fun to watch them!