Milk

7 09 2008

This afternoon, Micah brought me a bottle of bubble bath. He said “milk” and gave it to me.

“No Micah, this is soap. Can you say soap?”

He looked at me and said, “milk!” He then pointed to the word milk on the bottle. It was Lemon-Verbena Milk Bath.

“Micah, did you read the word milk?”

He smiled and again pointed right at the word. At age 18 months, he is smart enough to read the word milk, but foolish enough to want to drink the bubble bath.

 

Now that it is the fall and Asher’s back in school, we’re trying to spend more time during the week working on learning. I love the idea of homeschooling. For the first few years that Mark and I were parents, we thought a lot about homeschooling our kids. We imagined taking our boys to the zoo and learning about interesting animals. We talked about the books we would want them to read and how we would teach history and science. We dreamed of taking a year off of work and traveling around the world with our children, teaching them, and learning with them, as we went. We pictured curious, obedient, and playful children who made homeschooling a pleasure and a joy.

And then we tried to homeschool Asher last year. After a few months, we basically gave up. Asher and I were both miserable. I don’t know if we tried to do to much or picked the wrong curriculum or had too high of expectations. By December, I was ready to put Asher in preschool and planning on closing the book on homeschooling. Forever.

Nine months later, however, I think my heart is changing again. I am thinking more about the boys learning at home. They might go to school – public or private – as well. But even if they go to school, most learning happens at home and I want to be prepared for this.

I want to cultivate a deeper love for my children. I want to be patient with them as they struggle to build new skills or ask difficult questions. I want to enjoy the mess. I want to want to be that involved in their lives.

Sometimes I am easily frustrated with the boys and selfish with my time and enrgy. I am praying that God would change my heart in this area.

The last week has been very sweet, especially with Asher. While Mark was on his trip in Paris, Asher brought me breakfast in bed each morning. He kisses my tummy and talks to the baby. Last night we were looking at the ultrasound pictures of the baby and Asher said, “I love this baby as much as 80 trains.”

We have started to do more learning activities too. I often listen to NPR when I am driving and lately, I’ve realized that he listens too. Along with being more careful about what is on the radio, I make an effort to talk with him about what we hear. This week, we’ve been talking about the election. There is so much he wants to learn! Asher also has become interested in playing educational games on the computer. He is coordinated enough to use the mouse and we’ve found several websites he enjoys. Micah likes watching the games too. This morning we were working on the letter T. Micah was sitting with Asher and I and was repeating the sound “ta-ta-ta” as we sounded out words and sentences together.

This afternoon we talked about nutrition. We put food group stickers on a piece of construction paper and then wrote words and drew pictures to explain what each type of food does. We talked about how protein is the building blocks that make cells. I explained that there are different types of cells in the body. Together we drew blocks and cells. He then wanted me to draw a bone cell…

This is what could be great about homeschooling. Asher loves to learn and has interesting questions. At home, we can follow his lead. If he wants to learn about the different types of cells in the body at age 3, we can find a biology textbook. If he is curious about politics, we could hold a practice election or research the different candidates for president. If he wants to do worksheets on Monday, build legos on Tuesday, and then learn about fractions while baking cookies on Wednesday, we can do it.

I am maybe a little excited, especially because anything we do this year is just for fun…

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