I can’t go day-by-day like Melanie does, but, I do want to talk a bit about the school week.
(Reminder: kid would be in 5th grade in school, will be 11 later this fall. For context.)
This was a week filled with outside-the-home stuff. Homeschool boxing class on Tuesday, rock climbing Wednesday morning, museum art class Thursday morning and usual piano on Thursday afternoon.
The rock climbing, was at this park about an hour away. M and I had visited the park before, about a year ago, on a weekday on which we also found some of the covered bridges in the area.
I didn’t go down to where the class was being conducted – I stayed on top of the ridge, walked the trails a couple of times, read, and saw things:
The class on Thursday was at the Birmingham Museum of Art. The first hour was a lesson on Sumi-e, the second a guided tour of some of the Asian holdings.
The lesson was very well done, and included some remarks on concentration and mindfulness that are good for young people to hear.
The tour of the galleries was not what I had expected – I had thought it would be about fleshing out the lesson and focusing on pieces utilizing the technique, but it was just a general tour, and we had been to these rooms many times before (although, as always, new things were discovered!). I will say the the very nice docent’s account of Buddhism prompted a great internal struggle, because.it was just so wrong, I caught my breath. She said, in effect, This young prince was really bothered by how people treated each other and when he was meditating, he decided he should go back into society to teach others to treat each other with more care and concern.
I was thinking…Four Noble Truths? Eightfold Path….not to speak of the diversity of Buddhism. I mean, she introduced it by talking about panels expressive of Pure Land Buddhism, which, when introducing Buddhism, is not the right place to start…
I thought about saying something afterwards, simply because..well, if a docent said of the Renaissance art, “These show how Catholics worship Mary,” he or she should be politely corrected, right? As it turned out, we were in a rush at the end, I didn’t. Probably should have. Still might.
Just a word on some science, rabbit holes and education.
Last week, after studying classification and fungi, we made a mold terrarium: pita bread, cheddar cheese, parmesan cheese, a small dish of white unbleached flour, a peach section, slice of zucchini, slice of cucumber and piece of store-bought bread. Spritzed it with water, covered it with plastic wrap, formulated a hypothesis, stuck it in a dark cupboard and checked it daily. By this past Thursday, ten days, in, we declared the experiment done (and hypothesis proven correct – peach did start to go first). Lots of good mold, plus…maggots!
The maggots led to research on the life cycle of the fruit fly.
Which led to research on larvae and pupae in general.
Which led to etymology research on “larva” and “pupa” (which means, girl or doll…who knew? I would assume the sense of “girl” is of a “little tiny girl” since “girl” is puella more generally), and discussion of pluralization.
Larvae, pupae, and mold were put under the microscope.
Larvae and pupae were sketched.
Science with a dash of Latin and art. Giving in to the curiosity bug and letting it roll. It’s why people homeschool – or at least why we do.
(Didn’t photograph the mold terrarium – you should be grateful…)
Oh..and in all that time, trapped under wraps with molding rotting stuff, the store-bought bread (some sort of oatmeal flour) didn’t grow a wisp of mold.
That’s either reassuring or frightening, right? Perhaps a little of both?