Thursday, April 29, 2010
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
Monday, April 26, 2010
Key Terms: Earth, Stars, Sun, Moon
Goal: For the child to be able to identify earth, moon, stars, and sun when they see them.
Painting Earth on coffee filters.
I'd like to have a better picture of this, but Charlie got pretty annoyed with me for trying to make him use a paint brush (I have my nerve), and things got ugly. Allie has a full description and pictures on her site.
Made a salt map mixture and put it on a map of earth to make the land parts three dimensional. Charlie wasn't real crazy about making the map, but he liked checking out the finished product.
Earth in a Box
I took a cardboard box (mine was a diet coke box), cut out a hole, and taped a picture of earth inside. I waited until dark and then lit it up from the back with a flashlight. I also poked some other holes with a pen to represent the stars. Came out magical. Awesome for stimulating the visual cortex in those low vision kids too.
Play Doh Earths
I smashed together play doh to form little Earths. This project really challenged Charlie since he wasn't wild about play doh's texture.
Normally we do five projects with a unit, but allergies assaulted us recently and we just didn't have the energy to do a fifth project. If we had done one, I probably would have done something with glow in the dark stars or maybe made a mobile with the earth, moon, and stars on it.
Mr. and Mrs. God in the Creation Kitchen by Nancy Wood, illustrated by Timothy Basil Ering. This is a wonderful myth-style story of God and his wife creating Earth in the kitchen. Very creating and the illustrations are gorgeous. Might want to skip it if you're concerned your child won't understand that it's myth.
Friday, April 23, 2010
Well, Kim is right. It's time to stop hating our bodies and embracing them. As parents we owe it to our children to get rid of that sort of thinking. Especially those of us with special needs kids--we need to be emphasizing that there's more to people than the packaging we come in.
So go visit Kim and all the other brave women who are celebrating the skin they're in.
Me, looking and acting like a complete goofball. I really don't like post a picture of myself like this, but today I'm going for it!
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
"You never know who you might run into."
Yes. Well. Since the dawn of of my mommy-hood I've played pretty fast and loose with leaving the house. I figure there are people walking around wearing curlers in their hair--I'm not going to attract that much attention. Besides, most of the people I know have jobs--the kind that take place in offices.
Yesterday I was forced to admit that things may have gone too far.
I went out in my pajamas--a t-shirt that my mom bought me on a cruise, a pair of red capri PJ pants, and some slip-on tennis shoes. Nothing matched. Not even close. My hair was unbrushed and pulled back into a ball of swirly mess. I had no plans to leave the car--I was just going to hit the drive thru for my daily fix of Chick fil a.
Charlie was wearing a t-shirt and shorts in different shades of blue. No shoes. No socks. I really never let him go out like that, but he was cranky and ready to go and again, I WAS NOT GOING TO LEAVE THE CAR.
But then I remembered something.
You see, on Friday I dropped off a season of Monk at the library and then later that day they called and told me one of the discs was missing. I tried to bring it back that afternoon, but our library closes early on Fridays--please do not get me started on our library's bizarre hours. They're pretty much never open when you want them to be AND they lock their drop boxes when they're closed. What's the point of the drop boxes you ask? I'm wondering the exact same thing.
So I'm driving home and I remember that I still have that disc in the car and I start getting all twitchy because I hate it when I owe somebody something. Makes my skin crawl.
I figure I'll just run over to the library--it's early, no one will be there. Usually there's a lone librarian and a teenager trying to get on the Internet at that time of day.
Well, I was wrong.
No only was the entire library staff in attendance as I hauled my barefooted babe into the facility, but also the head of our parish's library system.
They were doing a giveaway of Jazz Fest tickets and I was asked to do the official drawing.
I was like Miss White Trash USA up there, y'all, shaking hands and introducing myself while STILL WEARING MY PAJAMAS.
My friend who works at the library Facebooked me later to tell me that it'll be up on the library's website in the next few days.
Next time, I'll just pay the late fee.
Monday, April 19, 2010
Sunday, April 18, 2010
Friday, April 16, 2010
Wednesday, April 14, 2010
Many thanks to Cristin who expressed a similar thought recently and made me realize that I'm not completely alone in this.
Tuesday, April 13, 2010
Diaper box car. Allie made one using paper and a full description is here. I made mine using paint because I have a lot of paint. I also flipped mine over so Charlie is sitting in the box--he doesn't walk, so he doesn't need to have his feet out. I was surprised by how much fun Charlie had in this thing. Dad pulled him all over the house.
Flying a glider. Basically, I bought a glider plane at my local craft store for a buck-fifty and then threw it all over the house and the back yard. Spent my time talking about how planes fly in the air and also flew it over his head several times to introduce that concept. If your child has slow or no tracking ability then I would think about suspending it from a string and letting them swat at it (with supervision, of course!).
Take a walk. Point out all the cars, trucks, boats, planes, etc. that you see.
Hey Charlie, can you open your eyes? Mommy wants this one for the blog!
Race cars. We did ours in the hallway. I would push them down the hall then exclaim over whether they went far or stayed near. He gave pushing them a try, but his movement made them go sideways instead. That's OK!
Sorting Cars by Color. Put two different color cars in a box, pulled them out and sorted them. Pretty simple.
Airplane mobile. I cut up shiny gift bags (three for a dollar at Dollar Tree), punched holes in them, and then tied them to a coat hanger. Hang it by their high chair or somewhere else. Charlie's former vision therapist said that items that move and are sparkly are best for triggering the visual cortext so this is especially great for kiddos with low vision/CVI. Again, always supervise your chid if they are close enough to touch the mobile.
Book We Enjoyed
I got a lot of stuff at the library and none of it ended up being that great. I actually got one book that was all about a guy who died on a train. Ugh! The best book I found for this Unit was actually given to us as a gift and it's called, Noisy Car from Bright Baby. I usually hate gimmicky books, but Charlie will sit still for this one which is nothing short of a miracle.
Again, testing is not good for young children, so just have fun and feel confident that the stuff is sinking in.
Sunday, April 11, 2010
I'd never spent one minute in a public school. I graduated from an all-girls Catholic school. We wore uniforms and nobody talked back. We never took a standardized test and you could actually fail out.
Born and raised in the very Catholic New Orleans, I'd spent some time with public school kids during what is called CCD class. Those kids were sassy. I was not sassy. Sassy gets you in trouble and I wasn't interested in any of that.
So you can see how being afraid of Sassy kids might be a bit of a detriment to a career as a teacher. I knew my limitations.
My junior year of college, things started to change.
"Service Learning" was one of the buzzwords at that time--I don't hear much about it now--and I found myself enrolled in a service learning class.
I sat there in complete horror as I realized that I have to develop a service-learning project and execute it in addition to the other course work. Seventy-five percent of the class dropped that very afternoon including this one kiss-up girl who kept exclaiming over how great the service portion was going to be.
But I'm not a quitter. Chicken, yes. Quitter? No.
We were assigned to the lowest-achieving school in Baton Rouge. I remember clearly one particular question when we interviewed the teacher and students about the school:
"What are your demographics--African American, White, Asian?"
"Well, White would probably be one."
"No, just one white kid."
Ahhhh . . .
Clearly, I was a fish out of water.
The project went well and I found that it was the best experience of the semester. I was still pretty certain that I would get locked in a closet at a school like that, but did enjoy interacting with students and reading their writing samples.
It was a start.
Picture of me in the Greenhouse during our Service Learning Project--we worked with the Agriculture classes and this was one of their projects--growing hydroponic tomatoes.
Saturday, April 10, 2010
This fantabulous purse created by Mz. Nadine.
Cute shoes from Walmart for me.
Cute shoes for Charlie from Payless. Can I just take a minute and sing the praises of Payless for kid's shoes? I've looked around and they've got the best stuff hands down. Most other places it's over priced and ugly or it looks like some cartoon character threw up on it.
Jenn's got a public blog again. Jenn and I both blogged over at MSN spaces years ago, but she had to go private after awhile because some students found her blog. Well, she's back and I couldn't be happier--she's smart, sarcastic, and one of the most self-less people I know.
Getting my Gazelle out of the garage. I know it's a dorky piece of exercise equipment, but I really do like it and y'all have me convinced I need to take care of myself a little bit more.
Azaleas. They are blooming like crazy around here and it's like Barbie's Dream Garden everywhere you look.
The Hipstmatic app on my iPhone. It makes your cell phone pics look all old-timey and cool. Most fun I've had with two dollars in a long time.
Picture of Azaleas and weeks taken with the Hipstamatic app. It even makes weeds look good!
Thursday, April 8, 2010
Tuesday, April 6, 2010
Saturday, April 3, 2010
Hubby and I on one of our first dates. Look at that skinny arm! I want to give myself a sandwich!