Battleship

We went to tour the USS Alabama battleship in Mobile, AL.  The boys LOOOOOOVED it. After we left, which was way too soon for their liking, but Granny was developing a cold and it was quite windy and I was carrying the baby the whole time, going through the little passageways and up and down flights of stairs and was growing weary, SORRY boys!!!!, they had me read the statistics and tour information three times while they listened with rapt attention!!!

Could there be such a thing as battleship schooling??  haha

While we were there, we had to follow signs so it was good number practice for the four year old.

They learned about the difference between knots and miles per hour, tons and pounds, so metric and standard measuring systems. They learned about World War Two. They learned about horse power and range. So there is math, history and physics right there.

 

 

 

 

Story Time

We went to story time at our library. It was a picture book about Mexico. We talked about fiestas, comida, Aztecs and Mayans, temples, ruins. Mariachi music played. We made sombreros and maracas and received wooden peg dolls painted like a Mexican girl.

We played Minecraft, navigated the computers and DVD players, checked out massive books on spy gear, Captain America, battle.

We played with the kids at BK, played more video games, watched The Secret Life of Pets, got bow and arrows at Dollar General, perused Goodwill, opened the door for a man in a wheelchair and helped some people pick up lots of pony beads when they were spilled.

We came home and ran a lot outside, took baths, dressed in our suits and went to the Mexican restaurant to have dinner with Uncle John. James went home to spend the night with Granny.

Freddie did math challenges on Khan Academy and wrote some passages from the book, Ultimate Spy.

Science Center

Today we went to the city with my mom and grandma. We started out early; I drug everyone out of bed. We met at a gas station and mom bought chips for the kids. We traveled down the road a bit and ate at Cracker Barrel. Mom bought toys for the kids: walkie talkies for the boys, a doll hairdressing set, and a stuffed puppy for the baby. At the Science Center, the first thing we did was a gravity exhibit where the kids had to turn a human hamster wheel to send a ball up a huge marble run.

Next we arrived for a “Dino Chat” and talked with a dinosaur expert about fossils, prehistoric eras, evolution, relation of birds to dinosaurs, DNA, genetic code, cloning, archaeology, skeletal structure common to all Animalia, prehistoric animals commonly mistaken for dinosaurs, ie. pteranodon. They had a space where we dug for fossils.

We went to a tornado exhibit and an earthquake one, saw beautiful geodes and fossils preserved in amber.

Then we went to the math exhibit, the main reason for our trip. There were too many interactive games to count, one with a simulated arm to practice working in space, an elaborate music machine that let you hear the difference in quarter beats, sixteenth notes, etc on trumpets, snares, cymbals, synthesizers, all playing together. Video games, snowboarding, a rock wall, too much to even take in at once. Mom bought us a family pass so we are definitely going back.

THEN we went to see the documentary “Mysteries of China” at the OMNIMAX.

 

T.V. Treasure

Science: Last night our plans to go watch a movie didn’t pan out. Daddy took off work early to go with us and we started down the highway. It was 22 degrees and the snow was coming down. He turned to me and said, “I’m thinking this isn’t a good idea.” And I knew he was right. We thought quickly about what we could do instead. We decided to go watch T.V. together, to watch with the kids what they wanted to watch. As soon as we had decided, shouts came from the back seat, “How about Nickelodeon, can we watch some Nickelodeon??” I had been hoping we would watch a movie together, but the point of the evening was to spend time with them, entering into the same world, so we agreed. A demonstration of force and motion ensued when our van slid past the driveway on the very slick highway.

Socioemotional: First we watched two episodes of The Loud House, which was quite entertaining. Then we watched two episodes of Henry Danger, which had my oldest and I laughing heartily together. It was wonderful. There were so many valuable lessons presented throughout the course of the programs. Accepting your friends and family for who they are and not trying to change them, how family helps each other out, identifying con artists, sacrificing our immediate wants for ultimate good.

Math and History: We came home and did a worksheet and an assessment from Saxon 2. And began reading about how New Amsterdam became New York in our book, This Country of Ours by H.E. Marshall (which I love).

Literature: Amy has also rekindled an obsession with Little Red Riding Hood. She wanted me to read it to her, I found the version by Charles Perrault online and read it while she cowered beneath my back into the chair. Then we found a YouTube version of the story and she has been watching different versions of that. This led to Rapunzel and American Girl and Frozen toy videos.

P.E.: The kids have been playing in the snow constantly. Making snowballs, putting them in the freezer, prompting conversation on states of matter and physical properties of matter.

Socioemotional: Lots of Caillou.

Mom’s mental health has been improving, by the way. Yesterday I joyfully cleaned my house, joyfully did the dishes. I feel very calm and unrushed, almost zenlike, helping the children put all their winter clothes on and off, anticipating their food needs. I feel joy. Joy is rising. When I wake up in the morning, I am calmed and relieved to remember the direction we are taking. It soothes my spirit.