We had a really fun school week that included a lot of outings and the beginning of this year’s art and music lessons. Here’s what we were up to.
Scholastic Reader: “This is Your Land”
Spelling: filling in the first letter of words that start with d or t and m or n
Spelling list: ten, pen, hen, land, sand
Printing: Ee, Ff, Gg, Hh, and Ii
Arithmetic: Addition and Subtraction with 1-digit numbers
Time math: Telling time in 5 minute intervals
Money math: adding groups of coins including quarters, dimes, nickels, and pennies
Music theory: introduction to pitch, rhythm, and volume
Art: we made egg tempera paint using crushed chalk, paprika,mustard powder, and blackberries and then used it to paint pictures. Our neighbors 4 year old granddaughter happened to be outside and so she joined us (that’s her arm in the picture, but I make it a point not to post pictures of other people’s kids online). After our project we looked at paintings by Giotto who also made his paint using egg. (Idea from our art book)
Brady has also been practicing his story telling skills using the felt board I made him for his 3rd birthday
And he made a yellow cake with chocolate buttercream (after reading through my cookbooks to choose a recipe)
We also went on outings to the Humane Society (where Brady’s Gramma got a new kitten), to play at McDonald’s, to the aquarium with Brady’s playgroup buddies
and to two parks
as well as the farmer’s market, and the library. Yesterday Brady and I set out to go to a garage sale that was supposed to be a bunch of retired teacher’s selling their school supplies, when we couldn’t find it we ended up at a couple regular garage sales near by and found these really cool phonics and math games.
We’ve already played the phonics one and, even though Brady is already reading, I think it will be a very helpful review and Brady is really excited to try the math one today after he finishes his bath, (he’s pretending to be one of the pigs from “The Pig’s Wedding” this morning and my legs were the mud puddle he rolled all over before declaring he needed a bath, silly boy).
Although handwriting is sometimes a struggle I think we are both really enjoying this new school year. The books we’ve introduced so far have really caught his interest and we’ve taken full advantage of the late Summer weather and made sure we squeezed in an outing almost every day. It’s so fun to watch his reading improve and I love seeing his imagination grow as he develops elaborate backstories for every matchbox car and builds towering lego structures. There are, of course, days when we butt heads (he’s 4 and asserting his independence and we’re both stubborn as mules) but I could not imagine sending him to Kindergarten next year. I am sometimes guilty of feeling “touched out” or overwhelmed, but I try very hard not to forget what a privilege it is to witness and participate in this. It might sound corny but he really is my favorite person (my husband, of course, is a *very* close 2nd) and I know this time with him is fleeting. He won’t always want to include me in his games, he won’t always insist on cuddles several times a day and I know there will be plenty of time for me to follow my other interests once he’s all grown up (which, at the rate he’s going, will be sometime next week). This is a tangent I didn’t really mean to go on, but I’ve had a lot of comments lately about whether I have a “real job” or if I “just” stay home. I know that a lot of mothers have to work and a lot of others want to and I am not judging anyone’s choices, but I don’t stay home out of laziness or because I don’t have ambitions of my own. I’m here because I want to be here and because I am lucky enough to have a husband and 2nd parents who believe in the importance of the job I’m doing. I see a lot of in-fighting between women lately and I know there are a lot of women who think the choice I have made is an anti-feminist one, but feminism is about choice and there is nothing anyone can say that will make me feel guilty or less-than for choosing this path. It is patriarchy that says my job is not valuable simply because it is typically feminine and it is an absurdity to say that teaching other people’s children is a noble profession while teaching ones own is not a “real job.” So basically what I am saying is yes, I am a stay-at-home-mom but there is nothing “just” about it.