Archive for the ‘Isaac’ Category

Isaac: And So the Sun Sets on 2

Tuesday, November 16th, 2010

trail marker at twilight

Three years ago today, Mandi and I welcomed our second son, Isaac, into the world.  In fact, I caught his rather large head.  He was four weeks early due to preeclampsia.  He was still seven pounds, 15 ounces and 20.5 inches long at 36 weeks.

It is hard to believe three years have now passed since that snowy November day. My little buddy is growing so quickly.

We took a walk Friday at the Salamonie Reservoir at sunset.  This is where we took this photo of a trail marker. We saw a lot of deer.  Of course Levi had to yell at them.

Happy τρίτος (third) birthday, little dude.

Have Your Cake and Eat Pi Too

Sunday, November 14th, 2010

Cupcakes of psi, pi and tria (3)

Mandi sure can bake.  Those are cupcakes with chocolate icing.  Isaac asked for an “alphabeta” cake for his birthday.  Isaac wanted a yellow cake instead of pumpkin cake, and Mandi offered white or chocolate icing.  Isaac chose chocolate.

The photo to the left has psi and pi on the top.  The bottom cupcake has “tria,” or the Greek word for “three” on it.  We had no idea Isaac would want Greek alphabeta cupcakes.  Isaac also helped Mandi put the ingredients in and counted with her while mixing them.

Children develop their own interests.  Isaac for now is interested in
helicopters and Greek letters.  I figure Why not? Not everyone agrees.  A couple of people on Facebook commented that his interest is weird.  The ironic thing is they spelled it “w-i-e-r-d.”  Any child-initiated opportunity for learning is a good thing.

A wise Chinese proverb says “Tell me and I’ll forget; show me and I may remember; involve me and I’ll understand.”

Isaac and an Innate Curiosity

Sunday, October 24th, 2010

Isaac sitting on a park bench

Isaac is almost 3 years old.  He is very curious about how things in the world work, sometimes to our chagrin–especially when it involves water or a piece of electronics.

Still, even through the headache and expense, his curiosity and interest is amazing.  He can operate either Mandi’s iPhone or my HTC Droid phone and get what he wants.  He can even remotely control (as can his older brother) our Mac Mini that runs our TV.  This is our second Mac Mini since Isaac helped the first one bite the dust.

Isaac repeatedly asks for  the”Alphabeta” video lately.  Here it is.  The pronunciation is off in a few places, but it is still fun (sounds a little like the 80s pop song “I’m Too Sexy”).  We are working to insure this curiosity is preserved.

Coolest Manipulatives Ever!

Wednesday, October 6th, 2010

I’m not a huge fan of licensed characters.  I don’t forbid the kids from watching cartoon movies and shows, but I won’t be decking out their entire rooms with a character or buying all of the accompanying toys.  Still, when I saw Toy Story KerPlunk! on sale for $4.25, I thought it would make a good investment.  KerPlunk! (the classic game or otherwise) provides opportunities to practice early math skills like matching and counting.  The concept is pretty simple: you poke 30 little sticks through a canister (in this case, a rocket) and pour in marbles (or aliens) on top of that.  Then, you role a die with colored sides.  Whatever color you roll, you remove one stick of the same color.  If any aliens fall out when you remove your stick, you keep them.  Whoever ends up with the fewest aliens wins.

The boys weren’t into the traditional rules.  They preferred to shake the daylights out of the rocket until all of the aliens fell out.  That was OK.  We still counted the aliens, which are pretty cool manipulatives if you ask me.  The space theme would make a great tie-in for some science activities.  As a bonus, we got to do some subtraction to figure out just how many of the little guys had gone missing (11, as it turns out).

Levi was pretty excited to “do school” today.  He chose a shirt and “tie” for the occasion.  He wouldn’t let me tuck the top of the tie (or mismatched old sock) into his collar, so he was forced to hold it up to his neck.  When he tired of that, he discarded it on the table.  This explains the stray sock in the picture.

Isaac and Learning

Tuesday, October 5th, 2010

Isaac having water while learning to count

Although Levi is the student that is going through preschool, it seems  that Isaac is enjoying some of the lessons.  We put some counting audio and videos on the TV to get used to numbers and counting.

Isaac surprisingly was following along with the counting.  He also enjoyed the bedtime stories Mandi read with him and Levi.  The real surprise was when he started repeating back the Greek “alphabeta” and the sounds of each letter without any prompting.  Although he is not “in school,” he is learning much along with his older brother.

We try to make learning fun and enjoyable.  It is amazing what children simply pickup without any prompting.  I am enjoying both of our boys as they are learning new things everyday.

The Write Start

Tuesday, October 5th, 2010

Today’s first “official” day of homeschooling cemented in my mind that Levi is not ready for a classroom.  He spent a couple of hours on self-directed Starfall while I worked.  He looked through some of their Greek myth e-books, including the Minotaur and King Midas.  I’m not sure how much he actually read, but he did pick out words here and there, and had the computer pronounce others.  I also printed him out a few pages of dashed letter As (capital and lowercase) to trace.  He copied the letters in the blank spaces, but he didn’t trace the dashed ones (Isaac did trace some of them).  Instead, he colored them in.  I attempted to model the tracing and even guide his hand, but he wasn’t having any of it.  Later, when getting dressed for bed, I noticed that he had written a very convincing E, I, and O on his thigh in ink pen.  Go figure. As with most things, he seems to want to do it his own way, and that’s OK.  I wouldn’t be surprised if he knew how to write all of the capital letters (albeit, not “correctly”).  I have seen a few, and he generally knows more than he lets on.   If tracing isn’t for him, we can try simple copywork instead.  I have to keep in mind that he is still very young, and that he may not be ready for much instruction at all.  We can put it away for a few days (or weeks) and try again with another approach.  Thank goodness we have that flexibility.