My Mom says that when she was a girl they used to tie a string around the leg of a June Bug and swing it around over their heads -- they make a great buzzing sound! No, I've never personally tried this -- my boys aren't bug lovers -- but it sure makes you realize how creative kids used to be in making their own fun in the days before TV and video games.
We did have an interesting bug experience the other night, though. We had gotten home very late and I was sending the kids off to bed when I discovered a moth trapped in a spider's web in our bathroom windowsill. It was still struggling and I noticed a tiny spider diligently working to subdue it. The moth was probably 20 times larger than the spider but was clearly doomed -- it was so interesting to watch I just had to call the kids in to observe for awhile! It's one of those things you see on the nature programs but so much more interesting to see up close for real. My tender hearted 7 year old wanted to free the moth but I pointed out that the spider wouldn't have anything to eat if we did. But the funny thing is if I had found either of these creatures in my house separately I would have killed them on the spot!
This happened at the end of a day filled with wonderful learning. My 9 year old started the day challenging me to a game of Scrabble (nearly beat me, too!) -- that counts as spelling. Then he helped Dad sort out his toolbox. He wanted to put all his sockets in order of size, so TJ had to convert the fractions to figure out the relative sizes. They were in quarters, eighths, sixteenths, and thirty-seconds, so he was -- in his head -- deciding which came next. Like 5/16 is before 3/8 but after 9/32. (I never would have thought of this, but it's a great real-world way to teach fractions! Anyway, that was math.
Then the boys watched their favorite art program on PBS -- Mark Kistler. They have their own sketch pads and art pencil set and draw with him everyday -- that was art. Then Dad took them with him to the golf course -- that was phys ed. We went to the hot air balloon show that evening to see the launch, a good lesson in thermodynamics, and had to decide how best to spend their allowance at the carnival part of the festival -- math and economics. Then God had a science lesson waiting for us when we got home! And all on a day we didn't "do school" because it was Dad's day off -- isn't homeschooling wonderful?!!
Susan writes about herself and her family...
"I am married to Mark, the most terrific husband and father on the planet. We have two wonderful boys, TJ and Jonny, whose only teachers have been their parents and the Lord. We also have Sarah, our miracle baby daughter! Although I've not completed any education past high school (and I was a lousy student then), I feel the Lord has been preparing me my whole life for the job he created me for -- Homeschooling Mom! A lifestyle of learning isn't just for the kids, it's for the parents too!"
Sue Yerty is a member of our HomeschoolingBOYS email group. She can be reached at email@example.com.