December 7, 2011

Weird Science, Handwriting Help, and the Janitorial Staff

I've been so busy with my whole hand made only Christmas list that I haven't been blogging much.  Partly because I've been busy making the stuff, but more because when I make something cool, I want to blog about it and I can't since most of my gift recipients are also readers.  Total bummer.  Today I worked all afternoon on what I thought was a very thoughtful and beautiful piece of textile art for my bestest girl friend and Joe took one look at it and burst out laughing.  Then he said,"I wouldn't actually give that to anyone if I were you."  He's still alive, but now I'm second guessing my gift making and totally stumped on what to do for the friend who was to receive the hideous gift I was so proud of.  Okay, on to what I can share with you!

We are studying the human body in our science right now and this week has been bones and muscles.  I used to think this was a lousy, below grade level sort of curriculum, but now that Hannah Jane is a grade level ahead of her same aged peers, the content is very fun and interesting!  I've learned so much.  It's got me wondering if we have an unusually rigorous curriculum all of the sudden, if schools are just expecting way more these days, or if my school was totally lousy because I had never heard of half of this until I got to college and the other half I just learned right along side the kiddos.  Now that I've said that, I'm embarrassed to give a list of the cool random factoids I never knew in case I'm the only one who missed it! 

Today we were talking about bones and cartilage.  Hunter and Haven immediately connected the content back to our fish study and kept yelling out, "Cartilaginous  Fish!" every time I mentioned cartilage.  We've learned that babies have more vertebrae than adults  because some of them fuse together as we age.  We never saw exactly what age they fuse, so we sat around the bar and pondered the fact that all 4 of us could very well have different amounts of bones in our spine.  That blew Hunter's mind.  He tried to count everyone's back bones, but didn't give us a definitive answer.


 We were learning about the little cartilage pads between the vertebrae and how they absorb a little shock for us when we jump up and down and keep our bones from grinding together.  The kids weren't seeing why that was so important, so I came up with a little off the cuff demonstration.  I sent the boys out to the garden to get a couple of large rocks and asked Hannah Jane to fill a baggie with craisins.  I grabbed an old towel to protect the kitchen counters and set about demonstrating why a cushion is important.  First I dropped one of the large rocks on the other. Ouch!  Then I put the baggie between then and did it again.  Not as bad of a sound.  The kids jumped up and down to feel how their bones don't bang together when their spine compresses on impact.  Then they each had a turn testing the craisins and rocks in different motions.


Hunter would contort himself in some random way and Hannah Jane and Haven would make the rocks and craisins imitate his motions to see if the cartilage is really necessary.  They all agreed that having your bones grind against each other when you move, or slam into each other when you jump would be no good.

In other news, the boys' handwriting progress has been excruciatingly slow and although Hunter has been using the Zaner Bloser series for a while now, he can't seem to make his letters between the correct lines on that annoyingly lined kindergarten writing paper.  Haven can't either, but he's 4 so I cut him a little extra slack.  I came up with a plan a long time ago when Hannah Jane was learning to write sans workbook and just didn't think to introduce it to the boys because they have the luxury of real handwriting books that Hannah Jane never had.  But what do you know?  Momma knew best!  LOL!  I seem to have outmaneuvered even the great Zaner Bloser and my little trick has got the boys writing legibly on the correct lines!


I decided that the problem was in the amount of lines on the page and not being able to discriminate between the spaces for making letters and the spaces between the spaces for making letters. Their handwriting is more legible on college rule notebook paper than it is on the kid paper.  So what I did was put a dot in each of the spaces that are not for writing in - the between spaces - then I had the boys color those spaces in blue all the way across the page.  Then we talked a little bit about how only a few letters like to get their feet wet, like p, q, g and so one.  All the others need to stay between the other lines.


Haven is a forward thinking little guy who is sure that by the time he's grown up, no one will be writing by hand anymore and it is a nuisanceto hold a pencil.  He actually said, "Mom, I only do school on the computer now.  I decided that and the government says it's okay.  So I'm not doing handwriting."  Nice try, little man, but I called the government and they assure me that pencils are still very much in use.  So he was extremely grumpy about having to participate in this silly wet letters thing.  That said, once those in between lines were filled in with blue, his handwriting was a lot better!

After this we had a talk about backing up before you spray.  Now he stands a good 6 feet away!

Last but certainly not least, we've hired a new janitor!  LOL!  Haven is obsessed with the spray bottle and he'll clean anything to get to use it!  He ran through an entire bottle of my Melaleauca cleaning spray in about a half hour, but I didn't mind one bit because all the footprints and hand prints were off the walls the kitchen floor was clean, and I quit Melaleuca months ago and still have gallons of their non toxic concentrate to spare why not let him go crazy doing the work I'm too lazy to do?  I am going to make him his own bottle of cleaning solution from kitchen products, though.  I know they claim it's the kid friendly, all natural cleaner but I really only trust it if I make it myself.  I mean, he's not licking the walls clean, but a full bottle in a half hour?  You know his little rag was saturated and so his hands were all over the stuff.  A little baking soda and lemon juice dilution would do the trick and he'd still get to do all that fun spraying.


Hannah Jane got a little jealous and said, "Oh, Haven, brother.  You are working so hard!  Let me help you for a while.  I'll spray and you can use the rag to wipe."  He protested, "You just want to do the fun part.  that's not helping.  If you want to help, I'll spray and you can wipe."  When she backed off  her offer, he shot me a look like Did you see that?  I've got her number.  She never did get to spray.  But she did get to water the plants, so she got over it.

That's all the news from the past few days!  Now it's off to Culture Club!!!

1 comment:

  1. Janitorial services become very popular and in demand all over the world. It is important to follow a cleanliness dictum.













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