Monday, May 04, 2009

a.m. musings (containing olm)

It's the middle of the night. I woke up about something, and was immediately wide awake.
:) Here's what you get.

* * *

Maddie gets sassy. Not because she's emotional... just because she has all these large (everyone is bigger than her, including the dog), volatile people around her. So once in a while she'll shout, Just Because. She doesn't mean it, really, she's just doing it for fun. It's most amusing.
(That's not to say that she doesn't shout when she means it, too, mind you.)

* * *

Like all unschooled kids (and others that are happily learning to read) Trev is more and more interested in reading things -anything!- around him.
Voluntary things (born strictly out of inquisitiveness) that are steadfastly bringing him to the official title of Reader.
Yesterday we were sitting on the couch -not reading, just talking- and he came up with, "Mom.... 'night' has a g in it. That doesn't make sense! It looks like niggt."
"Yup. Lots of words are spelled that way. Sight, right..."
"Flight, fight..."
And on our conversation went about the strangeness of things like 'through' and 'laugh'....
It amazes me, this natural process of reading. Never once have we sat down with the rules, never have I said, "Okay, 'o w' says 'ow', (because it doesn't always) and we've never discussed that 'don't' is don't, and not dont", etc. Yet he knows. Just by being read to, he knows.
It's so amazing! Yet again I think that schools are just a way to keep one on the straight and narrow... something that tries to mimic a life well lived.

* * *

Lately when I think on our days in an assessing way, or when in my mornings I have time before the babes awake to think about cool ideas and places that I want to share with them, I think in terms of "Discover" and "Create".
This seems to be my measuring stick, lately.
Not that I necessarily want to (or do) judge or grade every day or moment, but under the natural conditions of "I'm a Mama, and I get to help these babes prepare for a happy, fulfilled life" it seems that these two categories are my preferred Subjects.
If our days contain a single Discovery, and/or we have Created something, then I am satisfied.
And if you really look, most moments in a child's life are about one or the other.
Pretty cool.

* * *

I feel happy it's May. That means lots of steady mild temperatures and an open front door in the middle of the night. Like now, for instance.

....The birds are beginning to wake up, now. Time to decide if it's gonna be Sleep or Up....


  1. It's the time of year for reflection I guesss.

    I've been thinking about how Owen has spent his days this year and I'm pretty impressed with his natural desire to learn, find out, ask questions, investigate.

    He taught himself to read and with that has come some very inuitive spelling and punctuation and grammar. Not taught directly, not stripped of the context of the interesting story....

    So much just makes it way into his juicy brain with very little "instruction" from me :0)

  2. Sounds to me like you and the kids are having a fine old life!! Creating, living,discovering yourselves, keep on having fun x

  3. We are in that same 'why the english language is sort of crazy' discussions lately too. Last night was known. Why is there a K there? Good questions, and I love seeing where they go from there! :)

  4. Trev was all over that one a few days ago. I think it was know.

  5. Pete Seeger says it great in his "English is Crazy." I used to tell people we "unschool" and then have to deal with their confused expressions, launching into difficult descriptions of child-led learning versus curriculums... Now I just say we explore the world together and leave it at that. After all, this is just the beginning of a lifetime journey of exploration.

  6. Really cool observations. DS is still young (2 1/2), but we've made our plans to homeschool him known to friends, one of whom is a retired school teacher. As she clears out her home, she continues to give us lesson plans, flash cards, etc. I have a hard time refusing them because I know it's important for her to find a good home for pass on her teaching legacy. But I don't think they will be used. And I'm sort-of happy about that (except for the excess stuff in my house). April was a very long month. I'm so glad it's May, too. :-)

  7. Too many wonderful ideas to address. Great post.

    Nettlejuice, I love your description - exploring the world together. Someone close to me who is a very overwhelmed homeschooling mother says she unschools (but doesn't help her kids along the journey, saying that 'learning to find the resources is part of the process' - even if the kid is four years old), so saying I unschool is a negatively loaded phrase with family. I think I may snipe your phrase.

  8. I think Maddie and Kyan are a lot alike. Maybe that's why they like each other so much:)

    I love the part about learning to read. We've talked occasionally about the spelling of words and how you say them, but for the most part Damek knows what it says due to seeing it lots and hearing us read it to him. It's not something we have to sit down and "learn" per say, it just is.

  9. I keep a journal next to my because because I so often, too, wake up in the middle of the night with very specific thoughts!

  10. This is my first time visiting your blog (found it through Crafty Crow). You totally inspire me. When I think of what I want for my little ones, Discover and Create are the perfect words to describe what I wish for their days to be filled with --- not just now in their young lives, but always. You write and live beautifully. Thanks for moving me!

  11. Tanya-
    What lovely compliments!
    I thank you most sincerely.

  12. Discover and Create - great way to describe effective learning! That is how I learn, and as a home educator I want my kids to grow the same way.

    I'd like to lobby for a change of terminology - from "homeschooling" to "home learning".


Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts!