Thursday, October 4, 2012

7 Snippets

1.  Family Day in Nashville.  Last week we all (everyone, including Dad!) went to Nashville for a family outing to the Adventure Science Center (our membership was about to expire) and to the Frist (our local art museum).  Ronin was really excited because she was finally big enough to try the moon walk simulator.  I was really excited because we recently learned about the moon landing so it was a nice way to finish off that little study.  Here's Drayken appearing in his very own television program.  We even got to saunter over to the International Grocery store.  We picked up Japanese rice noodles and some Polish chocolate.  At the Frist, the kids enjoyed screen printing and checking out some paintings of mostly natural landscapes and beaches in England. 

2.  Paying Attention to Drayken.  While I was (briefly) baby-sitting full time, Drayken was neglected.  He was the one kid who was happy to just sit with headphones and use the iPad all day long. 

Sure, he didn't actually mind this.  In fact, I believe he quite liked it.  But let's face it.  After a few days of this, a mother starts to a. miss her kid and b. reflect on how he should be doing something else with his days.  I know he learns a lot while he's using the iPad.  He watches Diego and Dora and he learns a great deal about animals from their programs.  He plays the multitude of games that we've found for free.  He is certainly engaged and learning.  But all day?  Not something I'm comfortable with.  Now that I'm NOT baby-sitting full time, I made a promise to myself to engage him in other types of activities.  So I've been planning little tiny unit studies based upon books we check out at the library. 
Here he is gluing together a tree that he made during our "Where the Wild Things Are" wild rumpus party. 

He has made it abundantly clear that he loves loves loves the activities that I'm planning and he's asked to read the books again and to do the activities again and again.  I feel that I've been rather successful with this endeavor.  It takes little to no planning on my part but the rewards are so very fruitful. 

3.  Art Appreciation.  Hunter has recently discovered just how much he loves to look at art, particularly paintings he says.  It kinda all started when I checked out this book and he spent days pouring over it.  Shortly after that, we spent some time a local art festival and Hunter wasn't interested in leaving until he had seen every single piece of art available. 
While I continue to introduce new artists every week (we are studying art history through "the Simpsons" right now) and I bring books of art into the house from the library, I am still planning to go ahead and buy this homeschool curriculum as part of his Christmas.  Since we have to use curriculum now, why not buy curriculum that directly relates to his current interests?

4.  Epcot study.  We are currently learning about the different countries respresented in the World Showcase at Epcot as we prepare for our trip to Walt Disney World later this year.  Each Sunday we are coming home from church to enjoy an authentic meal from the country we are studying.  We do color sheets for the book we are making (which we will take to have signed by cast members from each country).  We read books.  We watch youtube videos.  We listen to music.  It's insanely fun.  And I'm learning as much as the kids seem to be.  Maybe even more.  Can you believe that until a couple weeks ago I didn't realize that Morocco was in Africa? 
The kids enjoyed their spicy butternut squash and eggdrop soup from China.
And when we learned about Japan they loved the Japanese style fried rice, the seaweed snacks (something they have regularly anyway) and miso soup.  They especially loved the special "marble soda" from Japan that our friend Julia brought to them.

5.  Cat.  Finn has recently brought Hunter a lot of joy.  He took it upon himself to start reading books about cats to learn more about him.  He spent many hours a day outside cuddling and enjoying his kitty.  He had me snap this photo of the silly guy being lazy on our porch swing.  There is no doubt.  Hunter loves this cat.  But now Finn has been missing for about a week.  We've not seen him since last week around the time of the pirate party.  And let me tell you... this boy has a broken heart.  

6.  Flowers for Frannie.  Saturday Hunter had the opportunity to play a hillbilly son of the "bad guys" in a local Christian family-friendly film.  He was really excited to be able to put a movie on his resume and he had a lot of fun shooting his scenes. They were so sweet to him.  Today he even received a thank you card from the director and they have honored him by making him the actor in the spotlight on Facebook this week. 

7.  Karate. Our church has started its Karate ministry again and I'm so excited that Hunter is able to participate now.  And he LOVES it.  I mean really really loves it.  After his first class he came home and started showing his moves off to everyone.  And then he graciously spent his entire evening teaching the moves to me and his siblings.  He said that he was hoping he'd like it and feel like he was as good at it as he is at theater.  So I feel like he has found one more thing he can call a hobby.  Believe it or not, he and his sister are both considering basketball in the winter!

Now you can link up your own 7 Snippets post over at Christian Unschooling!
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