Monday, February 05, 2007

Day 17

We’ve had a run of spring-like days and our snow is slowly melting. Today I was able to chip the last of the ice off our driveway with the shovel and the big axe.

Yesterday, Kevin spent a lot of time catching up on various house To-Do’s that have gone undone for a long time because he was finalling MiniGolf Mania. The front door is repaired and weatherstripped and he tried to fix the icemaker in the fridge with a little success. It still leaks though. He changed all the lightbulbs that need ladders, changed the air filter, and so on. Of course, it was Superbowl day too; no one in this house TOO interested in the outcome but watched the game nevertheless. I made pizza, talked to Liam on the phone, read and so on.

Clare slipped on the melting snow when she was out for her walk yesterday and came in pale and shaken. She had hit her wrist on a stump and was in pain. We put coban on it and then today became an unexpected “out” day since we had to bring her to the doctor; which is a 20 minute drive away. But fortunately the doctor didn’t think she needed an X-ray, which would have been a 120 mile round trip and consequently rather a burden on all of us. Instead she got a removable splint which she has to wear for a couple of weeks.

Because of this we didn’t get everything done that I had planned but we did the basics — household cleaning time and the 3Rs. I made it to the library and picked up another Caroline Lawrence Roman mystery — the boys are enjoying these. I am remembering how I used to organize supplementary things around the older childrens’ “core” reading when they were this age — middle school — and it seems to be working for these boys too. It is something like strewing but organized strewing. There is no obligation for them to read these extra books and do the extra things but usually they like to and it gives me a measure of how motivated they are in the more obligatory readings.

So: Sean did Key to Algebra, Quia Latin, Our Life in the Church, and read a chapter of St Athanasius.

Kieron did Quia Math and Latin, Credo I Believe (I read it to him and we discussed — he was a bit distracted since I was hurrying to get out the door). He matched Rummy Roots. It would have gone better if I had been able to do it with him; as it was, he was a bit confused by the whole thing.

Aidan: Handwriting without Tears, pattern words (sight words he can match to the correct thing, based on his interests, like: FIRE, KITTY, AIDAN, DADDY, WHEEL). He also pored over his alphabet book and played with the Leapfrog Fridge Phonics which I dug out of the closet for him and Paddy. Both did this, actually.

Paddy has been asking me to read the books his grandma has made for each of the kids. She puts photos of various episodes in their first year of life with simple captions on sturdy matte (is that the word for the heavy cardboard that backs pictures? All the kids love these and it gives them a time-capsule view of recent history. My mother in law would have made a natural Montessori homeschooler — she has wooden toys, puzzles, little games, and “word/picture” books around her house, while my mom would have been very Charlotte Mason. I grew up on fairy tales and children’s classics with beautiful illustrations, poetry, folk and classical music, and well chosen art around the house.