Thursday, February 28, 2013

Saturday, February 23, 2013


 It's just fun to say: Fibonacci. Never mind that it's all about a fun sequence of numbers to figure out:  0+1=1, 1+1=2, 1+2=3, 2+3=5....0,1,1,2,3,5,8,13,21,34,55, and on and on - it's also all about spirals, making spirals, finding spirals, seeing these numbers repeated everywhere in's a brilliant way for someone like me to get completely geeked out about math.  How come I didn't know about it until I was in my thirties?? I suppose it could have been that I wasn't really paying attention, but you'd think I'd remember something like that.

We've played with Fibonacci before (there is a funny book about him from the library, called Blockhead) and looked for the numbers in nature, but this week we looked at Vi Hart's video on spirals. We are loving Vi Hart right now. So of course we had to play some more*...


*keeping it real: While Ani loved the idea of looking for spirals all over the house, she quickly grew SUPER frustrated trying to trace them out on a pine cone (a la Vi Hart) - which I found a little challenging too - and didn't even WANT to try to draw one.  She yelled about it a whole bunch.  We let it go.  Eliza drew a cool spiral, after figuring out the numbers on graph paper, and days later I managed to coax Ani, with a piece of cheese and a few games of Nim, into figuring out some of the sequence and talking me through drawing it out on graph paper, and then she wandered off to do something with the rest of the beans while I totally entertained myself by lining up the different colored beans in their boxes: 1,1,2,3,5,8...well, that's as far as I got, 'cause that's already a lot of beans!

Friday, February 22, 2013

Celebrating a proud moment...surviving her second piano recital!!

Ah, this girl was nervous.  But she gave herself a pep-talk, sent herself an encouraging email (!), and came up with a funky outfit to combat the nerves, and she was not disappointed!  She played her piece with poise, and sank back into her seat beside me with relief coming off of her in waves.  She said it was easy...I suggested that she might write her future self a note about how she was know, for the next time.

proud sister!

Monday, February 18, 2013

art happens!!

Ok, catching up on the art around here - we'll start with the aluminum prints Ani and I made a couple of weeks ago now!! They're the same process as these, but we made them with the intent to turn them into printing plates, as seen here.

We are big fans of The Daily Monster and have been wanting to try our hand at making some ourselves.  India ink, soda straws, paper...GO!

Eliza turned hers into valentines for some of her tougher buddies.

Ani's many-eyeballed creature
 Finally, this weekend we had a friend over to riff on an idea she has for a mural...watercolors in the living room...

...and watercolor all over faces.

...and bellies?!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

the bits I missed...

Because of the way we do things here - a certain amount of planning and "scheduling" (to please my need for order) (Dan - stop laughing. I do have a need for order, it's, well, just not the same as your need for order...), and then a willingness to follow a flow where it leads - I find that the record-keeping that other homeschooling families might do, the grades, the checklists and finished curricula, comes more in the form of keeping track of what actually happened around here.  I obsessively write down the conversations, the book titles, the card games and art shows, and it grounds me to have a little evidence of What We Do.  This blog is also a part of that, of course...and so, the bits I missed from this week....

While Eliza had dance rehearsal, Ani and I got out for a short hike in the sunshine, finding animal evidence everywhere - tracks, woodchips - and stopping to soak in the winter beams when they came through the trees.

the kitchen floor is still a preferred place to play

Eliza rescued an abandoned bike that our old neighbor found, and discovered that it fits her perfectly, just when she was longing for a new bike.

Within inches of the doldrums securing their hold on my spirits, we made it out to the community contra dance; it was the best decision I made all week!  We almost didn't go; I was tired, Dan was working, I didn't think I had that kind of energy to expend on being with other people.  It had been a week of feeling let-down and disappointed and I was not handling it very well.

Oxygen (and a string band) to the rescue! It was so lovely, as always...

giving each other the eye, doing the "gypsy"

dancing with a favorite partner

I love that our science study - the periodic table of the elements and sooooo many tangents, like the stories of some of the scientists who discovered elements - has started to crop up in creative play.  Don't know why I'm surprised; it's how the girls often absorb and interact with life.

Dear Einstein - i hear you are a great scientist and you live right next door!  We should get together and talk "science" soon.  Sincerely, M. Curie

more play - not an "assignment"
 We also discovered a game in the closet that I've had for years and thought too dull to get out, but too "new" to toss without giving it a shot.  Turns out it suited Ani's love of putting things in their proper spots, and she talked through and filled in the entire table, with side comments but no help from me.  She's picked up so much from the past month and a half of playing with the elements.

 And one of my favorite moments of the week, sitting in my big girls' boredom with her for a bit and just being company until the idea to work on the gnome hat she's knitting in coop bubbled to the surface, and then I got to hang out and mend, with her feet in my lap, while we listened to stories of the Old Testament (Jim Weiss), which lead to a search for Bill Cosby's Noah skit online (voom-pah voom-pah voom-pah), a big favorite of mine from childhood.

Finally, there has been a lot of this:

Clementine, Ivy and Bean, biography of Marie Curie, books about extinct animals, old-school Nancy Drew (I think this has finally caught Eliza's imagination enough to pull her far enough into the book that she doesn't want to stop!! She is a notorious one-chapter and leave it kinda girl.)...many hours "lost" in good.