Who says science birthday parties are boring?

Ok, so I have to admit, this image (and train of thought) is from a few years ago.  I was a little skeptical when we heard that the kids were going to be making elastopolymers at the party.  ScienceBday.

As you can see in the photograph, they were captivated. I admit, I do not have the creativity to envision this kind of party and this was just one of the stations available for the kids to get hands on with science. It was a hit!

T,

Thanks for taking me with you. I love watching the wonder in your eyes.

Dad

Secret Adventures (if big brother thinks its cool, then it is!)

Little man,

As I loaded the dishwater the other night, I watched intently as the two of you gathered at the dining room table.  One would think that the two of you were

Big brother teaches little sister addition and subtraction.

Big brother teaches little sister addition and subtraction.

playing with the latest gadget, or building the coolest Lego spaceship.  Instead, what you two had in had were a pencil, a napkin, a keen curiosity, a desire to share, and a desire to learn.

Who says math can’t be cool? by Leslie Crawford

Little man, I have seen you go out of your way all the time to teach your sister.  As you can see, I had my old phone on hand and was able to capture this moment.  And yes, you two have turned our dining table into a table for arts and crafts and learning time, too.

I love math, I hope that love has passed on to you as well.  I love when you go out of your way to stump me with math equations you create.  (I win if I can solve them without the use of pencil and paper.)

If a child can learn to think math is fun, or for that matter, education is fun, what is their potential in life?  I was proud to see you working with her.  I see such great hope in you both.

–Dad

Asleep on the couch…

So it came to pass early today, on a freezing, drizzly morning, that Google notified me that my journey to drop my daughter off at school on time was off to a 5 minute late start. We hurried out the door and made our way onto the highway that was jam-packed with autos all rushing as best they could.

Dad! Carter!…

Carter

Flashback: Carter, a cute, cuddly plush toy that somehow survived my 7 year old’s childhood and was immediately adopted by baby sister.  Carter’s fur is no longer quite as plush.  He, it, survived the teething of two children and for the most part is still as cute as he was when he/it first joined our household 7 years ago.

I admit, I hate running late.  I hate being misdirected.  I hate dealing with traffic (as such, I take great pains to ensure my time on the road is minimized to the necessary minutes required for delivery and drop-off and employment arrival).  So when I heard those words I knew right then and there what had happened.  I cringed.  Then in the milliseconds between my breaths I went through every scenario that I knew a frustrated dad could go and none of them ended pretty.  So instead, I looked her in the eyes through the rearview mirror and I said, “Let’s go get him!” with a sincere smile and adventurous voice.

At that moment I saw the relief in her eyes.  She knew that her daddy was not mad, we exited the highway and got back on via  a turnaround.  When I quizzed her about where Carter might be, she said “asleep on the couch”.  Pulling up into the garage I entered our home and retrieved our sleeping Carter to the joys and smiles of a contented little girl.  Arrival time at school 8:44 (14 minutes later than usual).  Arrival time at work 9:12 am, no rushing, no dashing on the highway, only the feeling of contentment knowing that my little girl had a wonderful start to her day and so did I.

Really neat blog I ran across today…

So I ran across this blog today and it made me wonder about how I am when my little girl and I are out and about. You see, right now, she wants to spend every opportunity she can with me, whether its taking the garbage can outside, washing our dog, painting art work, you name it. It’s flattering. And I cherish every moment of it because I know that at some point in the future, this will go away.

But for now, we make up silly stories and we rhyme out nonsensical sentences no matter where we are. So, the blog that I have a link to below, looks at a daddy and his little girl on just such an excursion not unlike ones she and I have embarked on.

Love you A,

Daddy

What Little Girls Wish Daddies Knew by Tara Hedman

1. How you love me is how I will love myself.

2. Ask how I am feeling and listen to my answer, I need to know you value me before I can understand my true value.

3. I learn how I should be treated by how you treat my mom, whether you are married to her or not.

and 22 others

Continue reading

Technology -> Schools -> Our kids

So when I ran across the article below, it made me think back to the 2012-2013 school year, when a school district in the city I live spent the better part of $200,000 for iPads for an elementary grade level that was under-performing with their reading skills.

If I was a member of that school district, I would have some serious questions for the school board. I know that no amount of technology is going to teach a child the way a hands on approach can. I see that with the reading teacher for my children. The only technology she uses is a smart board that allows her to go through the photocopied, phonics worksheets she has created from scratch. It helps keep all the class on the same page and it allows for a succinct delivery of the decoding of the English language.

As Schools Jump to Tablets, Questions Linger Over Impact on Writing and Reading Skills.

Making a rhyme all the time

So if someone has asked me before the thought of kids had come in to my mind how my poetry skills were, I would have laughed. Aside from love endearing penmanship attempts that helped win over my love, I would have said “eh, ok”.

Here I am juggling around an active pre-pre-schooler and a first-grader and I find myself singing to them the silly songs I make up to emphasize an idea or a point. The thesaurus and I have become very good friends.

I ran across this blog (see link below) and the message there seemed to drive home an underlying plan that I myself had not written down.

10 Ways to Raise a Reader by Matthew Brown

Reading, reciting and singing Mother Goose rhymes to our children might seem old-fashioned today, but it is an excellent way to help children get ready to read. Nursery rhymes are more than just short stories or songs;

Baby’s Hungry: A Daddy’s Perspective on Nursing (and Nursing in Public)

The Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Studies

by Jay Parr

I was about twelve, riding the DC Metrobus home from school, when a woman started complaining loudly about another woman breastfeeding her baby on the bus. I didn’t see anything, so I don’t know if the nursing mother was covered up or not, but that’s irrelevant here. The complaining woman made her way up to the driver, a taciturn and tough-looking man who looked like he would as soon cut your throat as say hello (I remember him because he drove that route often). He focused on the afternoon traffic as the woman complained, until he came to a light and she demanded, “Well? Aren’t you going to do something?”

The driver looked out at the cross traffic for a moment, absently drumming his fingers on the fare box, then turned to the woman and shrugged.

“Baby’s hungry.”

I can’t say for certain that the woman immediately…

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