Friday, September 17, 2010

Good Stuff

We were walking through the Field Museum yesterday and every other exhibit heralded a remark from one of the boys on something they'd just read in Story of the World. "I just read about that!"

Justin had to stop walking near the jade exhibiti to explain to me the differences between the dynasties of China and how long each one was, etc... It took him over 10 minutes! I nearly cried.

When Evan finally got to see the Lions of Tsavo and explained to me why they were maneless, I smiled with pride.

We spent over 5 hours at the Field Museum and never even got to do my favorite sections on the Americas and Native Americans. THAT'S how long it takes for my kids to read every plaque, investigate every diorama, discuss every cool exhibit, and watch every interactive movie. I told the kids we'd have to go back again soon so that we could go through those sections. Justin remarked,

"Really? But I practically have the entire museum memorized!"

HA. If that truly were the case, I'd be sending him to college today. But it is somewhat true that he knows much of the museum's information. And THAT? That is why I love homeschooling. Having the chance to become familiar with the educational information at top-notch museum sounds like a pretty damn good way to learn, don't you think?

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Chicago Free Days!

One of the BEST parts of homeschooling are the free days at museums!! We went to the Museum of Science and Industry yesterday (it was free all week) and had a BLAST. Hardly anyone there, and we used the parking lot off of the Space Center which has hourly parking so we saved a ton on parking $. The kids loved the Coal Mine exhibit which we hadn't been to before. I forgot how neat it was! And they never tire of the Idea Factory for children.

The new Weather exhibit was also really cool. Justin especially enjoyed the interactive choice stations where he had to put out forest fires and create avalanches and such. Corinne just loved all of the buttons and knobs that made stuff react. DON'T miss the light box room!! We spent a good 10 minutes in that tiny booth listening to the speaker and watching the world change around us with the absence of certain lights.

The best thing for me at Science and Industry is that there aren't a whole lot of extra charges once you enter. Other museums charge an arm and a leg for all of their shows and such which are what make the museums interesting to begin with! It's frustrating with 3 kids to see everything we can't do when there are additional charges of 5 or 10 bucks a person just to see a movie...

ANYWAY. Hope you can take advantage of some of the empty spaces at the museums this September. It really is the best time to go!!

Free Days in September 2010:

Museum of Science and Industry:
September 13, 14, 20, 21, 27, 28

Adler Planetarium:
September 13-17, 21 & 28

Field Museum:
September 15, 16, 21, 22 (We're thinking about going on the 16th!)

Shedd Aquarium:
(free general admission only)
September 13,14, 20, 21, 27,28

Friday, September 3, 2010

First week in Photos...

Grade 3 and eating bacon. He's apparently on the Atkins diet. Doesn't he look thrilled to be starting school?!?
Bedheaded preschooler who just couldn't figure out the "P" in sign language for this pic and opted to do her age instead...
6th grade! How did THAT happen?
Quietly reading a new Avatar the Airbender chapter book.
Exploring our new Math U See blocks. Looking forward to actually doing some MUS work soon!
No photo collection would be complete without one of my kids mock-stabbing someone/thing. Such sweet children...
Sigh. What is up with the silly faces?!??
Evan's been doing really well this week! I am so impressed with all that he's retained.
Little Miss Unschooler. She likes to work when no one asks her and wherever the mood may strike. It's nice that she can just do page after page of reading and math work, with very little instruction, and get it CORRECT!
Some new modeling clay led to an impromptu art break. 1 hour of art for Justin is like 3 months for other kids. I was AMAZED and was definitely not going to stop him so that he could start on his math! Go Art!
Evan's Blue Man Group. Only it's a solo act.
Justin's art is.... a ball of death! Fabulous.
Corinne's clay creations included hearts, food, people, a frog and a princess with long, green and yellow hair.

One of the best things she's been doing this summer has been beadwork. She makes necklaces, bracelets, "dream catchers" (I use that term loosely. Think outside of the box, here), etc. She's gotten really good at making complex patterns, threading the beads, and tying knots.
We now need more beads, though. We're running low!
Each of her babydolls got a teeny, tiny bracelet, too.
Oooh La La!