Wednesday, January 30, 2008

a great resourse for math!!!

www.radicalmath.org

go there now!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

moose turd pie


sydney is obsessed with utah phillips and is particularly found of the song "moose turd pie." my girlfriend lives next door to us and a few months ago sydney decided to make a little gift for jessica to cheer up her boring and mundane day. she made jessica a delightful moose turd pie and lovingly left it on her doorstep. how sweet is that?

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

the overprotective unschooler

so the other night my girlfriend, jess, mentioned something about me brainwashing people. hail was walking by and said, "she brainwashed me."

me: no, i didn't. i gave you the information and then you made your own choices. i have always let you make your own choices and you know it. would you rather be like everyone else? (insert my getting defensive tone)

h: no, but you did shelter me.

me: HOW???

h: mom, i have never even had lucky charms!

me: but you have had frosted flakes and cocoa pebbles.

h: but mom, the other night john was going on and on about lucky charms and i had to admit that i had never tasted them. even john has tasted lucky charms and john has never been to school and his mom is a hippie! i am 18 years old and i have never even tasted lucky charms because you wouldn't buy them. and what about the night i was at mike's house and he asked me if i wanted a hot pocket. i didn't know what a hot pocket was. you know how embarrassing that is?

syd: what's a hot pocket?

hailey has grown up in protests and rallies and hanging with my friends and going to fest. she has traveled the country with me and spent her childhood hanging out with musicians, artists and assorted freaks. she has been taught that she controls her sexuality. she has had boyfriends and girlfriends and both at the same time. she has had her hair every color you can think of and has always been allowed to paint and write on her walls. she has not had a bedtime since she was 8 and never been forced to eat food she didn't like. she has read bust and bitch since she was 13...and she is sheltered.

when i pointed this all out she did admit that people are fascinated by the life she has led in her 18 short years. she admitted that she has lived more and done more than anyone she knows, but she thinks she would like to try some lucky charms.

i wonder if she is ready for them. i wonder if she is mature enough to handle the lucky charms and not get sucked into the corporate brainwashing they are sure invoke. will she be able to handle the sugar high? it is so hard to just let go and trust our children.

my little girl is growing up.

being a parent is so complicated.

my kids are insane.

hailey is getting a box of lucky charms for solstice.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

an amazing resource

you should all go to www.teachingtolerance.org right now. if you have a little homeschool group you can sign up as a homeschool group leader and receive all kinds of great teaching tools including a free subscription to their magazine and free dvds and vhs videos. there are materials for for k-6, middle school, high school and college so no matter what age your kids there is something for you. there is also a ton of free web based teaching tools including a lot of stuff on sexism and gender. they have a fantastic list of links too.

go there now!

your kids could spend the entire year just soaking up the stuff on this sight. and it isn't boring or stuffy.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

you can't make a rocket out of salami and gun powder

Sydney (age 9) is completely addicted to the show Myth Busters. Now, first I must make the official disclaimer that we haven't had tv for a few years now. We are a family that has tv for a year or two and then doesn't have tv for a year or three and either way works with us. I recently decided to try tv again because there was a good deal on it if you bought the internet/phone/tv package and because Syd seems to learn very well from that medium as did her brother when he was that age. So yes, for now we have tv. Okay back to my story. So Syd is sick today and has been watching Myth Busters all day. I asked her if she just watches that show all day long. She informed me that no, it is only on one or two days per week. I asked her if when it was on would she watch it all day. She said yes. I asked her if she was learning anything from it. Of course, she says. When I questioned further she hesitated and said, "I am learning science." Spoken like a true unschooler! When I asked for examples she again hesitated and then proudly announced that she has learned that you shouldn't put a jawbreaker in the microwave. Why? It will explode, der. She also informed that she has learned that you cannot make a rocket out of a salami and gunpowder.

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

BTW



Baby Felix is one! (That filthy foot at the bottom belongs to Syd)

Monday, July 30, 2007

Don’t Let My Cat Eat My Wasp


I have been doing a poor job of blogging. I keep wanting to, but then I don’t do it for whatever reason. I keep making it more complicated than it needs to be. I am used to the privacy of livejournal where I can just let my guts spill and not worry. This is different. I am trying to get used to it.

Anyway, lately I have been feeling all gushy about our unschooling lifestyle. Today, for example, Syd found a wasp with nonworking wings. She gently coaxed it onto a small, upturned basket and then offered it a little measuring cup of water and some sugar. She was fascinated as she watched the wasp eat the sugar and then drink the water. This led her to experiment with different things. She came in excitedly wondering what would happen if she offered it honey…and blackberries…and cereal…and...on it went. As she went to gather the different potential wasp foods she yelled, “Hey mom, don’t let my cat eat my wasp, please.” No problem, Syd.

She came back in from picking some blackberries wondering out loud if she could keep the wasp as a pet. She concluded, on her own, that the wasp was a wild animal and needed to be free--injured or not. She took it into the backyard to set it free, but was afraid that it might not be from a local hive (I think she was confusing wasps with bees, but she will figure that out soon enough) and was worried the other wasps would kill it. She set it down and kept a close eye on it. She reported that it “wiggled its butt all around and I think it means it was calling its friends.” Maybe. Maybe not. Either way, she was learning in a concrete and lasting way. And the good news is that the wasp’s wings were not actually damaged. After a bit it just flew off. She decided that its wings must have been damp because after some time in the sun it took off. This was her observation and logical conclusion.

Later tonight or next week or in two years she might actually look up wasps and learn a little more, but for today the lesson is over and she owns what she learned. It won’t fade when the test is over because there is no test. She learned about her wasp because she was interested and it was fascinating to her. She wasn’t forced to learn about wasps by some expert somewhere who has decided after much research that at age 9 children should know about insects. She didn’t have to fill in some stupid worksheet on bees and wasps. She didn’t have to answer the questions at the end of the chapter. Nope. She just learned because she actually wanted to and she will retain whatever was important to her. I would be willing to bet that soon this child that is addicted to documentaries and nature shows will round up one on wasps and bees and fill in the gaps of her knowledge.

But for now she is outside swinging the hose around while Sophie, the dog, tries to catch the water in her mouth. And our unschooling day continues…