I have lots of odds and ends that I wanted to mention, which individually wouldn’t make full posts. Here’s a little of what’s been happening:
- My ruddy cat went missing. Since we installed the cat flap he’s not been wandering as much and he always comes in each day. Before going up to bed Monday night, I was thinking of setting his pouch out for him despite the fact that he hadn’t come in yet. But I knew Hubby would be home in about an hour and I figured MeMe would come in then and Hubby could feed him. But he didn’t come in, and he didn’t come the next day, or the day after. On Wednesday I rang the animal shelter, but they didn’t have any cats that met his description that had been brought in recently. I asked our next door neighbour, with whom MeMe has a nice friendship if he had seen him lately, but he hadn’t. By Wednesday evening I was getting a bit worried, and I thought my birthday (which is on Saturday) was going to be really depressing if that damn cat didn’t turn up soon. Thursday morning I got up and noticed the dry food bad been nibbled. Now, there’s another cat that occasionally comes in and sneaks a few bites, and I thought it might be him. A little while later, I heard the cat flap, and was MeMe, with a look on his face saying, ‘Whaaaaat?’ He then demanded copious amounts of petting. I happily obliged. He’s now lazing about on the bed as if nothing happened. Stinker.
- Esa’s playing soccer Saturday mornings and he’s loving it. Finally he has an activity! We’re hoping to add swimming lessons on Sunday mornings. I don’t want him to have a ton of activities, but I think 1 or 2 things will give him a bit of socialisation and extra exercise.
- Esa and I were both on a bit of a low ebb this week. It seemed like a huge effort to get our lessons done. His attitude wasn’t great, and on days when he seemed attentive, I was yawning and spacing out. I think they call this the February blahs.
- I’ve finalised (Ha! Is anything I plan ever finalised?!?!??!) our structure for science.
- We’ll read a 2-page spread from the Usborne The Story of Science each week and discuss it.
- For Natural History we’ll read a chapter from a nature book, currently The Burgess Animal Book for Children and sketch an animal from the story. (originally I was only going to do Natural History every 2 or 3 weeks, but that’s just not enough.) We’ll also read from Ranger Rick magazine as desired, go on nature walks when weather permits, and work on our nature journals (the sketches from the Burgess Book readings will be included; we’re using a loose-leaf format for flexibility).
- We’ll do one lesson from BFSU every 2-3 weeks. I couldn’t decide whether we should do them fortnightly, or every 3 weeks and then I thought, ‘Why do I have to settle on one or the other…we’ll do what suits us.’ Funny how we create these limitations for ourselves and it’s like an epiphany when we break free from them. On the weeks that we don’t have a BFSU lesson, we’ll read a science book from the library (currently reading How Things Work), do an experiment from one of our books, or whatever strikes our fancy.
- I’m loving art. In our ARTistic Pursuits lesson, we had to draw a picture from a photograph using watercolour crayons. I chose a Bee Orchid. Now, I have done very little drawing and consider myself someone who ‘can’t draw,’ but I was pleased with the results. I know it’s not great, but for me, it’s a good start. I also drew a picture of a cottontail rabbit and after some trial and error figured out how to shade the rabbit fairly nicely rather than scribble in the fur.
- I have decided to alter our focus slightly. This is actually a huge change, although I’m not sure how our studies will be impacted yet. Originally I wanted a curriculum that was very heavy on language arts. I think LA are hugely important and I’m saddened by the poor reading, grammar, vocabulary, spelling, etc. of society (including mine; I’m hoping to learn alongside Esa). I think it’s sad that there’s illiteracy, that those who can read choose not to, and that those who do read rarely choose good literature. I don’t care what profession Esa chooses, but I want him to be literate, articulate, and able to enjoy and understand great books. And I still want all that, and will work towards it, but I don’t think our curriculum need necessarily be top-heavy in LA. Esa loves history, science, and art. I want to focus more on math, and especially on science. He’s passionate about science and I want to nurture that. I think having a good LA curriculum, being surrounded by good books, and engaging in constant discussion will nurture that articulateness. And really, I’ve already seen proof of it. He loves books, has a great vocabulary, enjoys writing, and narrates beautifully. Too much curricula may dampen that interest.