…we’ve learned, exercised, etc. around here lately:
1. We started our balloon planters…
We used old seeds that would probably not be good for our garden and not nearly enough dirt. We also compared the sizes and shapes of each of the seeds and talked about why some seeds are small even though the end plant is just as large as those with bigger seeds. The germination rate for these is around 7-10 days so we’re hoping to see some sprouts in a week.
2. We read Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle’s Magic. Victoria and I took turns reading since I kept having coughing fits. It made me smile because on one hand she is growing up so much and does such a good job reading (voices and all) and on the other hand she giggled like a little girl at some parts as she read them.
(Jack wanted his picture taken too)
3. We did Time4Learning. The company contacted me recently and asked if we’d try it for a month free and write a review about it. So far neither I nor the kids are big fans, though I can see why others would like it. I’ve been having the kids do a half hour of various subjects every so often and they’ve learned about things like roman numerals, fractions and Vikings.
4. We explored parks.
5. We’ve been following the flood dangers in Fargo and other areas, discussing their causes and ways to prevent them and talking about dams and erosion. Yesterday we stopped at a park in Windom and looked at the way the rushing river has cut a path around the dam to get through despite it. We talked about why it happened and how they could have reinforced the area better to prevent it, plus why they needed to dam it to begin with. Victoria noticed slabs of concrete all along the banks and asked about them, so we had her brainstorm why they might be there. Then we took a look farther down the river at the banks where there was no concrete and saw the effects of erosion (tree roots exposed, huge chunks of the hillside gone…).
6. We went to HS swimming in Mt. Lake.
7. Anna wrote a short story about a girl who was raised by deer and then finds her father.
8. The kids did various worksheets. Jack did a second grade one and aced it! Not bad for a kindergartener!
9. Daryl taught the kids that light travels a foot in a billionth of a second so they technically see people the way they looked a billionth of a second ago (at one foot away) and not now. We also talked about how stars are so far away that we see them as they looked 25 years ago (Victoria pointed out that 25 years refers to the Vega star and not all stars, since they’re all different distances– thanks kid and quit reading over my shoulder!) and we talked about how much time it would take to see people from various distances.
10. Reading, reading, reading. Victoria and Anna continue to devour novels at a ferocious pace. Jack picks up their books and reads a bit in them just to feel included but he’s also reading picture books, magazines and ads. Some of Victoria’s recent reads that she recommends: Coraline; All Alone in the Universe; Diary of a Wimpy Kid; Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret; Hank the Cowdog (series) and Scat. Anna is still a big fan of the Enclyclopedia Brown books and is also reading many of Victoria’s when she’s done with them.
As for me, I’m still sick and seriously wondering if it’s pneumonia or walking pneumonia that I’ve been battling all month. Nights are the hardest. I have coughing fits and feel like I’m drowning, and wake up exhausted. I am still embarrassingly weak and just plain hurt. I dutifully took all of my antibiotics (my doctor thought it was probably a cold that led to a bacterial infection but she didn’t run any tests other than to rule out the flu) and I’m also taking some supplements a friend sent me, but I just can’t seem to get over this. If I’m not better by Monday, I’m going back to the doctor even though I hate to think of the cost (I have lousy health insurance and a high co-pay). I suppose I should turn this into a learning experience and teach the kids about respiratory illnesses, huh?!
Right now things are lovely and quiet though. Alex is napping and Daryl just took the older kids to the library for a bit. It’s gray and cold outside, but it feels cozy and nice inside and things are even starting to green up a bit out there. Plus, we’re not in danger of the floods or blizzards that are menacing much of the country right now. Sick or not, life is good.
And with that, I’m going to go rummage for food, throw a load of laundry in and glare at my dining room table until it cleans itself.