Posted by: ginki0 | February 2, 2015

Snow Adventures and Rambling

One of the things I love best about homeschooling, besides the flexibility, the time spent with my kids (even when they drive me batty!), and the fact that I get to avoid bureaucracy, is cultivating the sense that learning is everywhere for my kids. Today was a snow day since we had a large winter storm blow in over the weekend. After playing in the snow (and another failed sledding attempt), we came in and Bugs learned some cooking safety and self control while helping to make hot chocolate. After we finished our hot chocolate, we hung out in our den, where we like to spend a lot of our time. Bugs was playing his Human Body app, so we started. Talking about what he was seeing there, and he spent quite a lot of time playing with the nervous system. He also gleefully told me all about the digestive system, and we touched on the circulatory system.

While he isn’t yet what we’d call a self starter he has glimmers. He enjoys playing with his Khan Academy app at bedtime before Lights Out, and seems to really like watching Sal’s videos. They stick, too! I have to read him the math questions because his reading comprehension isn’t there yet, but he has a pretty solid hold over finding areas of shapes now. He had a questions where he had to find the largest area given lengths and widths for three different rectangles, and that was easy because the largest had the largest length AND width. When he had to tell how much bigger the largest was than the smallest, after reminding him how to find the area, he did so for the biggest, and then took away manipulatives to make the smallest. Then, instead of counting the smallest (like I was expecting him to), he just counted what he had taken away to find the different. For a six year old, that’s pretty good.

He’s still got some issues with pooping, but they are a whole lot better. And because we’ve been taking him to a psychologist, we’ve discovered he has trouble with social communication. Knowing that, we can explain things to him that you wouldn’t normally think you have to explain. (His doctor thinks this is brought on by his very-probable-ADHD.)

We’ve had so many fantastic conversations, from gravity and centrifugal effect with regard to the orbits of planets, to discovering how lift can counteract gravity by using paper planes. He even experimented with different wing lengths to observe how that affected lift. I just want to keep this wonder and curiosity and love of learning!

We were in line to get ice cream just yesterday, and the boys were interacting with a lady behind us, who as it turned out was a teacher. Bug makes “spiders” with his hands, using his pointer finger as a head and the rest of his hand all crumpled up as the rest of the spider, and he was showing this to the lady. She very nicely asked for some personal space in a way I will likely emulate to remind him of this social rule in the future. Then it went downhill, as she learned that he was showing her “spiders” and decided it was a good idea to argue with him about the “proper” way to make spiders! They’re finger spiders! Needless to say, Bug wasn’t backing down.

Times like that make me thankful for our homeschool group, where Bug is accepted for all his many quirks by the other kids. He knows he’s a little different, but he isn’t bullied or shunned (unless he’s obnoxious, and then the shunning is short lived). I’m grateful that he has the time to learn the self control and social rules he will need to fit in to the community at large, but also time to build up his self confidence and his defenses so he doesn’t need to worry too much about what others think. He may not be homeschooled through high school- who knows?- but regardless, I just hope that the skills we work on now will grow and make him stronger so that when he encounters the cruelty people often think of when they think of kids he can emerge relatively unscathed. And for now, when he occasionally gets that hint from kids he interacts with while out and about, at least he has many friendly kids at homeschool group he can fall back on to reassure him that he still a pretty cool person to be around.

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