Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Happy Inauguration Day!!!

WooHoooo!!!!!! First and foremost, CONGRATULATIONS and WELCOME President Obama. I know many of you are not as thrilled as I am but I am very hopeful for a time in our country's history when everyone can work together for a change and not just bicker about right and left.

Secondly, yeah, I know... two months. I'm not even going to apologize or promise to do better. We'll see if do or not. ;)

Cameron and Cassia started a new venture today. They joined an Odyssey of the Mind team. It is the only homeschool team in our region and it's our group's first time doing it! Exciting stuff! Our coach though, had coached another team before and is VERY enthusiastic about the whole thing. She really seems to know what she's doing and I'm really looking forward to it. I had to laugh though when we walked into her house today. She is the first person I've met who really lives up to that homeschool stereotype. Their garage had been converted into a schoolroom with posters and charts all over; science projects half completed here and there; boxes of manipulatives and toys neatly stacked ALL over the place; Christian posters and paintings all over the house; lots of little chairs and desks; a carpet with the United States on it; and even a plaque with the School Rules printed on it (which her son made sure to read to us so we knew them!). It was very quaint and picturesque and I'm actually surprised that it's taken me so long to meet someone who schools that way!

If you don't know what it is, Odyssey of the Mind is a problem solving competition where multiple teams work on solving the same problem and then present their unique solution through a skit or other presentation. The winning teams can then go on from the regional competition to state, national, and international competitions! (The K - 2nd grade teams don't actually compete but still get to present at the regional competition.) Through this they learn problem solving, teamwork, budget management, public speaking, etc, etc, etc. Uniqueness is rewarded and the adults must stay strictly hands off.

We had our first team practice today and I know the kids learned oodles of stuff. They learned how to brainstorm ideas and then voted for their favorite ones. They learned to not criticize ideas that were different and to not be too disappointed if their idea wasn't chosen. Then they had a little acting lesson and acted out a strange little song using a mystery emotion which the other kids had to guess. Cameron took to it instantly and everyone guessed his emotion, proud, right off the bat. Cassia, surprisingly, was a little shy and the coach, MomH, had to perform the song with her. The crowd got it in two or three guesses, but it was a tough one: love! The best part was that there is one boy on the team, T6, who says he'll only be a part of this if he doesn't have to perform. We agreed that he can be the "behind-the-scenes" guy. While the other kids were acting out the song, he was in charge of picking who would go next. Well, when everyone was done he was having so much fun that he announced "The only one who hasn't gone yet is me!" and did his own version of the silly song. He had a moment or two where I thought he might freeze up and change his mind, but he didn't and he had a lot of fun doing it too. Yay! Maybe he will change his mind and want to be a part of the performance too.

After practice we headed to a friend's house to pick up some farm fresh eggs. It was our first time there and OH, what a lovely place they have. The chickens were, dare I say, adorable and there was something very soothing about their clucking. I really never anticipated that one! Their feathers were absolutely gorgeous too. We fed them some corn, collected a few freshly lain eggs, chased down the family ducks, and then finally settled in to taking over the backyard, lol. They had a zip line (which Cameron was too heavy for and pretty much hit the ground as soon as he jumped off the ladder, lol) that was a huge hit and a neat plank swing in a neat old tree. The weather was gorgeous - sunny and mild - and the time to leave came all too soon. No one wanted to go.

We finally arrived home to relax with K'Nex, Old School Sesame Street DVDs, and computer time (depending on who you were). It was such a nice day that I was inspired to blog while our BBQ'ed chicken legs and home fries cook. Maybe I'll even keep up the habit. It is the dawn of a new era, you know. :)

1 comment:

G said...

About time! ;)

I was THRILLED yesterday - historical events in my lifetime, plus I can't wait to see all the changes I am sure are coming.

I still haven't met anyone with a school room like that. We tried really hard to set up a school room, etc., but we drifted away from it constantly, so have gone back to just homeschooling everywhere. Odyssey of the Mind sounds interesting, and I'm glad your kids are enjoying it.

Have a good week!