Innocence

Somehow, fortuitously, I stumbled across this band from my past:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WoqHBjH-Kk4

This is more recent song.  Check it out.  The band has a beautiful, inquisitive, sometimes melancholy tone, infused with hopeful Christianity.  Worth a listen.

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I love homeschooling.  Here is what I love about it today.

We were at our homeschool academy today, as we are every Wednesday, and both M and A just took off for their classes and left me in the dust!  They each seem to have found a passion, for now.  I wonder if we had the schedules and rigor of school and homework would they have had the space and time to find these passions?

M has developed a real love of chess.  He played last year in the same homeschool academy, but he was only 6 and had real challenges with attending to the game.  (Consequently he lost a lot.)  What a difference a year makes!  He is actively engaged in each game he plays, and has even won a few games this year.  Often after dinner he pulls the chess set out and we play a few games before bedtime.  He is even asking to play in a tournament!

A has joined a drama class for the preschool set.  We have long suspected there is a hidden (or not so hidden) performer inside her, but this fall she was plagued with tremendous separation anxiety.  I wasn’t so sure how this semester at the academy would go, since this is her first time taking classes there.  Well, I needn’t have worried.  Two other parents have sat in on the classes and later told me how A just blossomed!  In fact, she learned her lines for her plays (she will be Little Red Riding Hood and Mama Bear) in just one day.

And the best part is that this is school.  We don’t have to squeeze this in after a day at school, or on a weekend when everyone is tired.  And this wonderful creativity and strategic thinking is validated for my children every day!

That is what I love about homeschooling today.

“A”-isms

Found this draft I forgot to post:

We have a profound thinker on our hands.  A has come up with a few doozies this past week.  Here is a sampling:

M, A and I were sitting on the couch reading a touching but incredibly sad book about a young girl and her relationship with her grandfather.  It is written in the form of letters, sent back and forth between the two, and chronicles the grandfather’s illness, the birth of the girl’s brother, her family’s financial crisis, and finally the grandfather’s death.  The language here was so deliberately vague that neither M nor A realized what had happened until I explained it.  M looked a bit sad, but certainly not overwhelmed.  A, on the other hand, said, “You should throw that book away!”  “Why?” I asked.  “Because the grandpa died?”  “Yes!  They should never write books about dying!”  Poor kid.

Later that same night we read a book based in ancient China, and somehow the patriarchal nature of the society came up, and I explained that many cultures felt that male children were “more special” than female children.  I took great pains to explain that our society did not think this way, and made sure that the kids knew that men and women could be different, but both were very important and neither was necessarily better than the other.  Whereupon A says, “Well, girls are more important than boys, anyway.”  Me: “Girls more important than boys?”  A: “Yea, if you have a bunch of girls, well, they can have babies so that there are always more people.  But if you have a bunch of boys, you just have a bunch of boys, and no more people.” (Piture A shrugging her shoulders.)

I think we have a very sensitive, budding feminist on our hand.  But one with not a good sense of slang, for today she said, when M was bugging her: “M, knock it out!”

Book Review

Well, thought maybe this blog needed some focus, and so I decided to review a book I am reading, chapter by chapter.  HA!  Where in my brain is the little synapse that fires when I am over committed???  Did I miss out on that vital piece of anatomy by virtue of faulty DNA?  Apparantly, yes.  The first installment is due in March.  The book?  “Creative Home Schooling: A Resource Guide for Smart Families” by Lisa Rivero.  I’m actually a few chapters in, but I tend to read fast and miss some details (a new phenomenon, due either to an aging brain, or oxygen starvation due to the extreme cold here in this northern clime) so re-reading, and blogging about it will help me to solidify the details, and apply them to our current family situation.  I’ll say this:  If you’re homeschooling or living with fast learners, this book is a great resource.

On other fronts, I am presenting a case study (co-written by my friend and colleague, SV) in a poster session at the APTA Combined Sections Meeting in 2 weeks.  I am beginning to get extremely nervous for many reasons, not the least of which is that I have nothing to wear.  I don’t want to stand in the poster hall for 90 minutes looking like a dork.  I am hoping that Tuesday night I can nip over to the mall, which is conveniently across the street from my office and also is the place where I catch the bus home, and grab a nice, clean cut blouse to wear, oh, and maybe a pair of shoes.  And maybe I can even do this in the 25 minutes I have between the time I leave work, and the time I have to get on the bus.  And maybe not.  This is me, who is anything but decisive, especially if there is a deadline involved. Hmm.  Perhaps I’d better go scour the closet for a backup plan.