Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Week 1, day 3

The kids are starting to recognize and enjoy the daily routine of school. We got started right about 10am, and looked at catechism question 4 (Q: How can you glorify God? A: By loving him and doing what he commands). We read the story of Adam and Eve's sin and eviction from Eden, and talked about how they stopped glorifying God when they disobeyed him. I thought it was neat how the story and the catechism question tied together. Both kids are starting to really remember our memory verse for the week.

Today there was no disagreement about the calendar: it was warm, clear, and sunny. Amusingly, the temperature reading on Monday, which was deemed "cool", was higher than yesterday or today, which were both deemed "warm". P seems inclined to read the temperature backward, starting with the F of, say, 76.6F, which then confuses her because she knows there should be 2 digits before the decimal. She's getting there, though.

Before I could get them started with the scheduled language arts activity, P demanded "another page from the book with the baby elephant in the bathtub." I was utterly clueless for several minutes as her frustration level mounted, and finally realized that the book of handwriting worksheets including the one I gave her yesterday had precisely that picture on the front cover. I gave her the option of doing all the capital letters on that page (she'd done the lowercase yesterday), but she asked for a plain sheet of paper and wrote a pattern of letters: FfFfFfF... Just as good as a handwriting worksheet, I'd say. We then played "I Spy" with this week's letter, identifying at least 5 objects in their room that started with that letter, and then branched out to general "I Spy." P did her copywork while E just watched; he wasn't interested in writing anything himself. He did write an E with several extra horizontal lines while P was writing her letter pattern.

Today the kids demanded another nature walk, and only under extreme protest did they agree to limit the walk to the area surrounding the lake nearby and not the bayou. After E's coin lesson from Slow and Steady, Get Me Ready, we put on our shoes and headed across the plank bridge to the lake. They didn't draw as many things today, but P and I noticed a turtle burrowing itself into the mud, we played a bit more I Spy, and headed to the far side of the lake. There P hypothesized that the sitting ducks we saw were sitting on eggs, and decided that they were silly for sitting so close to where people might step on them. We walked to the edge of the pier, tiptoeing around the large quantities of duck droppings, and didn't feed any of the hopeful ducks or geese. We noticed a school of sunfish swimming around near the geese - apparently geese either don't have a taste for sunfish, or don't have a chance of getting any. The kids then decided that we should play hide-and-seek, which was made more difficult by the lack of any hiding places which weren't trees. However, when I did find a pretty good tree to hide behind and E couldn't immediately find me upon opening his eyes, he became distraught and I had to emerge to comfort him. As the game of hide-and-seek was winding down, I saw, sitting on a sign, a lizard that had a red skin flap under its chin. We watched it for a while and noticed that every time it moved, it did several push-ups and then extended its skin flap a few times. Thereafter it remained essentially motionless until it ran to a new position and repeated this routine. P drew a picture of it in her notebook, complete with red skin flap. As we were leaving, the duck which had been accused of laying eggs in a foolish location got up and waddled away, making it clear that it had not in fact been sitting on eggs in the first place. Thus observation was used to eliminate a faulty hypothesis, which I explained to the kids, though not in those words.

After lunch, I wrestled with evil computers in an attempt to print out another colouring page for the kids. After several restarts, I finally accomplished my goal, and we went to the library. We checked out 2 books on volcanoes (P's request) and one on basic geography. We read these books until it was time for P's ballet lesson, during which time Ari takes E fishing. The colouring pages kept the kids busy while I was cooking dinner. This afternoon we also performed an experiment from another library book, on the behaviour of oil and (food-coloured) water with and without the addition of soap. Obviously, the non-soapy mix separates, but the soapy mix retains some water mixed with the oil when it separates from the remainder of the water. This is only discernible due to the addition of food colour to the water, but I thought it an interesting result. I'm not sure the kids fully grasped what was happening.

Tomorrow is going to deviate from our standard routine, because Community Bible Study starts at 9:30 am, and both the kids and I are registered for it. I'm not sure how much school will happen after CBS, but I'm not going to stress about it if nothing happens - it's been a productive week so far.

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