Tuesday, June 26, 2012

"Flying" Into The Great Unknown & Other Happenings

This past weekend Pumpkin helped dad and they worked on a tractor for one of dad's friend's.  Fireball Coyote helped me by doing the running around, cleaning, cooking & "staying out of dad's way."

After doing that all weekend, Monday started out with watching the DVD Brigadoon again.  Then looking at the books from the library about Scotland and the U.K.  Then the boys watched a DVD they chose, Kung Fu Panda 2, they watched it four times!

On Saturday, while Fireball Coyote and I were "running around" a lady from a local church asked if he'd be interested in attending their VBS.  The words "touch a plane" came out and that was all she needed to say.  The boys had never done "touch a plane" before and were excited and nervous to go.  They put on their 'brave faces' and went it alone, last night and tonight.  Fireball greeted me yesterday afterwards by saying, "I want to come tomorrow too!"  He had two kids from his baseball team there and one homeschool group friend.  Pumpkin, however, has no friends there.  I am proud to say he still wants to go and I hope he sticks his neck out a bit and talks to someone tonight.  He didn't last night and got the "most well behaved" treat.

Today we also went to the free movie, Rio.  It was ok, not a fav of anyone's.

Tomorrow the library & a play-date followed by VBS and more to come this week.

(  The answer to how much a fish eats to equal 1 lb. of fish we eat is ~ 1 1/2 lbs of food.  )

Friday, June 22, 2012

Unschooling (to us)

On Monday, June 18th, I had an interesting talk with the boys, mainly Pumpkin, about our unschooling.  I asked if they were enjoying unschooling and Pumpkin replied, "No. We don't do anything.  I just wander around all day."  Interesting, I thought.  So we talked.
 I asked him, "When you are playing your games on the computer what are you learning?"
"You aren't reading the directions, spelling words, and learning new words?  Aren't you doing some math problems when you play games, too?"
"Well, yeah. I guess," he said.
  "Well that's language.  Math.  Science.  History.  Also you learn how a ship was built and a clarinet, right?"
  "See you are learning, but in a different, interesting and fun way. When you watch your tv shows, repeatedly, it gets into your head and you are remembering it more and more."  "You tell me what you are interested in and we get all the information you want.  I see it like a firework," I told him.  "You get a spark and see how far it goes till it shines.  You were interested in the salamander you found.  You set up a tank, researched it, then it faded. Ssssssssss. Boom."
"Oh, O.K.  I see now."
"Let's see what other ways we can look at things and what we are learning, ok?"
I also added, "If you want to go back to the 'schooling' we were before let me know and you & I can."
"I'm still thinking about it, " her replied.  (I don't think he'll go there yet.)

Fireball Coyote of course is loving unschooling.

On Tuesday, we went to the local movie theater and watched the free movie  Diary of a Whimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules.
Pumpkin was talking about all the differences between the book and movie, he liked the book better. ;-)
Later, (Much later) that night they joined me in watching a great old time movie, Brigadoon!  They enjoyed it and starting asking "20 questions" about Scotland.  The next day we were heading to the library for "Scales and Tails", so we got books out.

On Wednesday, we did the summer reading program event, "Scales and Tails"
& got books out on Scotland and England, too. (for the olympics)
Petting a Blue Tongue Skink from Australia. 

A Sinaloan Milk Snake & Ball Python.
They touched the Python.
A Rose ? Tarantula.
They couldn't touch it, but he walked it around
and showed the fangs.  The poor guy also had the hairs
that the tarantula kicked off in his throat for 3 weeks! YUCK!!!

Petting "Kip" the Chinchilla.
For every one of our hairs they have 20!

They touched the tail of an American Alligator. 

Keila, a Moluccan Cockatoo.
The boys really enjoyed meeting all the different animals.  They wanted to go to the 2 pm showing at the other library, too.  We watched our PBS Nature, Nova and Incredible Giants line up.

Thursday was a cleaning day for all and the boys "did their thing."
Wild Kratt's on PBS.org and other sites.

Alphabetizing his own mad dictionary.
 In addition to writing on the card if it was a noun, verb, adj., etc. :-)

Then a rousing game of Uno.

 Today, Friday, we had a homeschool group tour at Stumphouse Tunnel and Issaqueena Falls plus Walhalla Fish Hatchery.
We arrived an hour before everyone else, so we headed under the falls.

A tricky spot.

Hanging out under the falls. 
Was started around Civil War and never was finished.

The temperature is a constant 56*, nice & cool on a hot day!

Sadly they closed the first gate.  We use to go back a lot further.
(Not sure if the local university is making their Stumphouse  Tunnel Blue Cheese again.)

A mom found a crayfish.
 Lunch, then off to the hatchery.

Inside the hatchery building.

Growing big and strong.

"What do you do if one jumps out?" asks Fireball Coyote.
"We put them back in the tank," said Cody.
(Fireball Coyote asked this since there were some on the ground
 that were being stepped on, all ready dead.)

The covered part is the Broodstock area.

A male rainbow trout with a BIG kype.

Jumping out?!?

When you walked by any fish area they all jumped over each other thinking you were going to feed them.
Wonder if Pumpkin can think of some subject areas he learned about today.  hummmmm.

B.T.W.  ~ A parent asked a question of how much pounds of food = 1 pound of fish.  Do you know?
She said that (I think it was) 5lbs. of feed for a cow = 1lb. of meat.
 (Hint - a fish is less pounds of food.)
  Any guesses?

By, Pumpkin

Monday, June 18, 2012

A wonderful time in Asheville NC

My uncle came to NC for a visit with a friend of his and we got to hang with him for a day.  :-)
The boys had a little history lesson of Asheville and experienced a new town.

Started our day with a random act of kindness.
The boys were fascinated with the parking meters and noticed one was expired.
My uncle put a few coins in to give them some time & they happened to walk up when they were done.

We went to The Grove Arcade walked around and ate lunch at Carmel's.
Pumpkin was reminded of a Latin lesson.
 He commented on how there were shops below and housing above the street.
We both liked the set up and thought it would be cool if it was apartments instead of offices.

The boys were fascinated by the mailbox and it's chute.

The pigeons ate Fireball Coyote's pizza crust.

A LARGE drum we saw in a store.

The 'famous' "Flat Iron".

The Elizabeth Blackwell M.D. bench.

The center of town.

Fireball Coyote was tired walking around after awhile, so we hit he park.
On the way there we got a bit lost & past 
Norfolk Southern's roundhouse.
Fireball Coyote was excited.
"I've ALWAYS wanted to see a roundhouse! And it IS round" he said.

This park was a race track back in the 1960's - 1999.

There is a bike path (outside lane), a walking/ running lane (inside track), in-line skating, beach volleyball, playground and more!.

Time for a group picture.

Try #1.



Got it!

When we were in town we popped into a toy store, Curio's. The boys chose Hex Bugs and are LOVING them!

These are the Hex Spiders.

They also got Hex Nano's. 

Both boys built an arena for them.

That is OFF the table too!!!

In addition, a Melissa&Doug U.S.A. License Plate Game Travel Gameto play on our road trips.  They even played it on the hour fifteen minute trip back towards the house! 
The boys did not want to leave Asheville or our uncle.  We had such a GREAT time!  Thanks Uncle!
Love ya!