Saturday, October 02, 2010

Aiee, where did the time go?

Rob was away for almost two weeks. We did one Five in a Row book both weeks, or maybe for three weeks running, I'm really not sure now. It's "A Pair of Red Clogs" and it gave us a lovely excuse to watch Totoro again.

Turns out that although the children in Totoro wear shoes like the ones of the little girl's friend on the last page of the book, the father has clogs like the ones in the main part of the story. Yay for changing and developing cultures. It has led to some thinking about cultural influences and I anticipate some fascinating conversations when it percolates through. I was interested to learn that the children hadn't realised there was a link between Totoro and Clogs until they saw the father's clogs, and then they filled in all the gaps themselves. I think we need a better globe; they don't find the Van Der Grinten projection we have on the wall useful to internalise global locations, and our globe is tiny. I should start combing Ebay.

We also have a friend who had a book of Kanji and now the dining room wall is covered in them and Linnea keeps drawing first the character and then a picture to show what it means. Her favourites are Sun and Water. The Faber Castell brush pens we bought after trying them at a friend's are perfect for drawing them, too.

Because we read "Lentil" a while ago, we got some charcoal, and we used that the other day; most things went black and some things went grey, but that's what charcoal is for, so it was ok. I descaled the bathroom sink, too, because the charcoal dust clung to the limescale I hadn't noticed before; presumably this was easier than doing it after it was visible of its own accord, so that was nice.

We had friends over from Ireland for the first week of Rob's absence, and that was lovely. The children played together with very few all-out wars or inconsolable tantrums, and it was great to be able to talk to my adult friend in the peaceful interludes. That week we went to a birthday party and ERAPA too. The second week we stayed at home more, I think; the weather was a lot worse. It's all a bit vague.

Oh, but I have been putting all our MEP worksheets into ringbinders. It's interesting to see which worksheets they have repeated most often - found most interesting, I assume? - and the way they have both skipped all the most repetitive bits. I can also see when our old printer broke using only the MEP printouts to help, because we haven't printed anything beyond the first two sections of the first book. I hand-copied some stuff after that but mostly we didn't bother. We will now; Linnea in particular enjoys going over them, and trying a new one occasionally, and Emer likes to do little bits.

The anatomy/biology books are out again, muscles and nerve cells and cell walls and so on. I have a feeling Linnea is heading towards elements - she is digging down for the small stuff a lot lately.

And Astrid is just 10 weeks old. She has learned to bat things of her own accord, and seems to know that her hands are hers at least 75% of the time. It's hard to tell.

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