petmoosie: (Science)
Beyond the goal of teaching the curriculum. Is there a set of actions that we want all children to have experienced? Are there values that we want to share?

Another blog was talking about overnight field trips (8th grade). Those are boondoggles from one point of view (particularly here). We have all the resources to provide everything locally with no need for an overnight trip.

On the other hand, an overnight trip provides a world of experiences that are unique to the experience of having an overnight trip with your classmates.
petmoosie: (braids)
T is watching TV with Emily. I am thinking about my students. And other random educational stuff.

I was thinking of different games that used mathematical skills.
Monopoly, The Numbers Race, Hearts (card game), Bridge (card game), Legos (spatial skills), Poker (card game), Backgammon, toy cash register
Some of these are much more expensive, others require more from the children in terms of cooperative play and organization (particularly the cash register).

Emily's school could use more activities for indoor recess days, and there are always complaints that the children aren't learning enough math.
petmoosie: (lizard)
i spent a while gazing at my own naval (or psyche) today with the help of my sister.

I got a form from my employer stating that my reported wages in 2007 were wrong. After reading carefully, it was only the wages reported to the IRS, not those on my W2 that were wrong. So I paid correctly, just the IRS may flag my return for review. If they do review it, I send in the letter from my employer with my signature on it. Since I am currently avoiding finishing this years taxes, I have most of the rules in my active memory that apply in this situation.

T emailed me a statement from his benefits manager that allows us to claim money saved last year on this year's dependent care expenses. This is a miracle due to our problem with not finding our previous babysitter. It has to be a change in the law, right? I wonder if it went in with the stimulus bill. It makes some sense, if you assume that Q4 of 2008 was the worst for jobs, but that isn't so.

petmoosie: (braids)
My friend had her first baby. Her husband was supposed to pick his mother up at the airport. He called me at work (he was my coworker) and asked me to pick her up and gave me the flight number and airline. I wrote a sign with Mrs. (very Polish last name) on it and went up there.

I picked her up at the gate (I believe), and brought her back to the hospital neighborhood. She wanted to get flowers, so we circled the hospital, stopping at two garden centers and finally finding a florist. We got to the hospital and went to the front desk and asked (yes, this is before HIPPA, why do you ask?). No patient by that name. We tried the maiden name, she was discharged this afternoon.

So we went to the apartment (one-bedroom apartment). My friend, the wife, was sitting in the non-bedroom room holding the baby. My friend, the husband, was in the bedroom far away from the door in the bed. He called out, "Hi, mom, I'm very sick here." or something similar. The grandmother said, "I've seen you sick before, I want to see the baby". And my friend, the wife, and I started laughing our heads off.

Turns out that my friend, the husband, had gone out to eat the previous night, when his wife and child were snug in the hospital. He went to a buffet nearby. Apparently, he had the wrong food item, because about an hour after he returned, he felt really ill. Really, really ill, in need of a bathroom ill. He made a mess in the bathroom attached to her mother and baby room. She tried to clean it up without using abdominal muscles (but it was impossible). He was sent to the emergency room and barred from the mother-baby unit. When he arrived (on a stretcher, I think), the emergency room asked him questions to check him in. "Where are you coming from?", he answered with the room number of his wife in the mother-baby unit. They were very confused by this answer. They were either expecting his address or the name of the place where he had gotten sick.

His wife and child were discharged before he was, although the wife was forbidden to drive. He managed to drive one block away from the hospital and then she drove the 6 or 7 blocks home.

Babysitting

Dec. 1st, 2008 10:01 pm
petmoosie: (together)
I made my first ever bottle of formula today.  Baby girl (daughter of friends) was the world's most fussy baby. I did manage to supervise her 5 year old brother and my 6 year old daughter and get food for everyone (well, baby girl drank formula).

I really hope that baby girl sleeps for my friend tonight. They are driving to the funeral starting tomorrow night.
petmoosie: (Default)
Red State citizens.

Very Catholic home-schoolers

Crazy energetic young teachers

and people much like myself or the people who are reading this.

In fact, most people seem to have more energy than I do, stay up later, wake up earlier. Hmmm. 10 hours of sleep for an adult is not the average???

petmoosie: (Default)
That Emily is pretty nice and fun to be with today.

That T and I managed most of this cooking without killing each other or cutting or burning any important body parts (actually fairly little was cut or burned).

That my parents are out of town.

That my compost pile is doing well. (I really love composting).

That T is so helpful.
petmoosie: (shoes)
It's not just me failing to advertise well for my daycare provider. This economy is making it harder and harder to run a daycare operation. I am relieved that it's not my fault and saddened that it is so hard for my provider.

It's a deep relationship, even though it is founded on economic needs. This is the person I trusted to take care of my daughter when I couldn't. The provider gets very attached to the children and knows so much about their likes and dislikes, their quirks, and the children love the provider.

Elsy was a great provider. She helped the children play together, to love each other and to trust one another. She kept her operation small and took the children to parks nearby. She helped Emily nap with all the toys that Emily brought for security. She liked to play outdoors in the backyard with the children, swinging them on the swing, blowing bubbles, and knocking on the doors of the toy house.

We will miss her. But at the current rate, I have no work for her. When Emily is not in school, I am home for her. My job has slowed down so much, it is practically non-existent.
petmoosie: (braids)
Charles Murray suggests getting rid of the SAT.

His argument has a few threads.
1) Achievement tests do the same job of predicting first-year college performance.
2) Test preparation doesn't work, but gives the richer students more confidence.
3) Achievement tests won't be used as a badge for the higher-scoring folks to insult the lower-scoring folks.


On point 3, I would comment that "I went to Harvard/MIT" is just as powerful a challenge as "I got a 1600/2400". Although, you will probably be spending more money to claim the former.

On point 2, sort of. A good test preparation company is going to spend a fair amount of time on content rather than techniques. It's like sharing my background with the students. Unfortunately for political correctness, my religious background does come into play.

Point 2, again. I only did one free test preparation course. My company does them and some of the teachers volunteer for them more than others. Better teachers. But they are up against a big, big wall.

Finally

Aug. 17th, 2008 05:09 pm
petmoosie: (Default)
The deathtrap in the back yard is DOWN!!!! There is so much room back there, now that we have taken it down and several bushes.

School starts in a little over a week.

The summer reading program ends on Thursday. The theme for this summer was bugs (and Emily is currently playing with a bug).

Emily's birthday (and the party) is a little over 2 months away. I am hoping for a beautiful day and having many (most) of the children play in the backyard most of the time. Even though we don't have a play structure.

My friend quit his job to be a stay-at-home dad. I had that as a secret for nearly a month and I am glad to be able to say it out loud. Their new baby is very cute.

So the summer hasn't been half bad.

Impulsive

Aug. 12th, 2008 08:40 pm
petmoosie: (Default)
There is a reason why I have a tendency to apologize AFTER I do something. I am impulsive.

T put the label on it.

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