Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Precious Moments and Tidbits

Over the past few days, the kids have said and done some things that I just had to share. So, I've been jotting them down in my planner so I wouldn't forget what I was going to share with you!

The first is one of those school moments when it all just seems to "click." Those are absolutely incredible moments!

Olivia and I have struggled a lot this year with creative writing. Organizing her thoughts in written form is not one of Olivia's strengths. In 1st grade I'd encouraged a lot of verbal response - summarizing stories, answering questions, etc. I'd also encouraged her to draw and make up stories to go along with drawings. But, I also knew she needed to develop tools to at least have the ability to write, even if that wasn't her preferred form of thought communication. So, we have struggled through this whole year trying to establish those skills. Until now.

A few months ago we ordered next year's curriculum for the girls. In Angie's language arts for next year, I found something called Diamond Notes (we had done something different for Olivia's LA last year). Essentially, it's what I learned in high school about organizing topics and supporting thoughts, only it's in a form that is perfect for early elementary children! It was a "now why didn't I think of that" moment!

We had been working through the Diamond Notes for a couple of weeks and were to the point of actually putting the thoughts together in paragraph form. Olivia had worked hard to create a topic sentence, three supporting sentences, and a closing sentence. I looked at her and said, "Now it's time to write a paragraph." She looked terrified - utterly and completely stressed. I said, "Okay, I'm going to take what you already have written and then I'll walk you through what you need to do to make it a paragraph." I copied all of her sentences into paragraph form, explaining what I was doing and then handed it to her. "There's your paragraph!" She just stared. "What do I have to do?" she asked. "Nothing! You've already done all the work!" The look on her face was priceless.

Then, she said something even more precious..."Can we do another one?!" She had discovered that it was easy! She'd discovered that she could do it! Suddenly, it wasn't terrible anymore. Now it was a very useful tool! YAY! I love those moments!

Last night we were sitting at the table eating supper. Olivia was listing all of the things that went into making supper, but she couldn't come up with the word "ingredients." So, we gave her the word. Meanwhile, Angie was curious if "Good Eats" was going to be on for them to watch before bedtime, but she was contemplating how to ask without Steven hearing (since he doesn't always get to stay up with them to watch). So, she said, "Speaking of ingredients, is there anything on tv tonight that talks about them?" Doug and I looked at each other, looked at her, and said, "Way to go, Angie!" Thoughtful kid! (Unfortunately, "Good Eats" was not in the evening plan.)

Speaking of Angie, we discovered something the other day that we'd never known before. Apparently Angie nicknamed her blanket "Bubbie" at Mother's Day Out! Doug and I never knew it because she never called it "Bubbie" at home! It was always "Blankie!" That child!

Steven's fun moment for the past few days is better shown in video. He came up with the idea that he could use Olivia's huge ball and his wacky stick to play baseball. He was pretty good at it, too! Check this out...
video

1 comment:

Luke said...

That totally gave me goosebumps! Love it [smile]. Those "a-ha!" moments are priceless.

~Luke