Monday, February 26, 2007

We're Back on the Dino Again

Despite a short-lived fling with space, Colwyn really only has one obsession in his life again.. dinosaurs. We finished painting the planets (although Doug and I are still arguing over whether Venus is blue or red.. anyone know for sure?), but I still haven't been able to convince Colwyn to participate in gluing them to the display board. I even printed out little labels--they're still sitting on my printer tray. So for now, I have several half-planets taking up way too much space on what I call my Homeschooling Counter of Clutter. Here's a picture, just for the hell of it.

You can see our huge number of crayons, the bowl of polished stones we use as math manipulatives, the real math manipulatives (multicolored bears), our globe, a few workbooks, lots and lots of paper, our Dino ABC book, the states puzzle, some tongs, scoops, magnets, eyedroppers, magnifying glass, dustpan, lots of puzzles, a few board games, play dough, and the poor planets. For those of you with a good eye, you'll also see a book written by Doug's aunt.

You won't see the dinosaur fossils (they're hiding behind the stones), the majority of our craft supplies (they're on the bottom shelf, in drawers), or the two books on science experiments we just checked out from the library. We got Mudpies to Magnets and Flash! Bang! Pop! Fizz!. The first book I had heard about on MDC, but the second one was recommended in this book, which lists tons of great books. We haven't tried any of the experiments yet, but I've flipped through the books and can't wait to start.

Back to the dinosaurs.. last week we did a lot of activities with those ever-present reptiles. I drew a picture of a triceratops skeleton and cut it into pieces (tail, spine, ribcage, back legs with pelvis, front legs with shoulder blades, and skull) and Colwyn glued it back together on a piece of cardstock.

We've also been sorting his toy dinosaurs a lot. We'll sort them into herbivores and carnivores, or we'll sort them by species. Colwyn always wants to sort dinosaurs that we only have one of (like parasaurolophus), so we usually have a few T. Rexes stand in. He's also been playing this strange game that I think he picked up from Charlotte. He'll ask you to be a dinosaur and roar, and then he'll say that he's a race car and vroom loudly. When he vrooms at you, you're supposed to act scared. If you can fall over backwards, even better. Colwyn recently saw Charlotte and Mary acting out a scene from Cars, so I think that's where he got the idea.

Yesterday we took the kids to the Aquarium. I had a feeling it was going to be busy, and it surely was. It's funny, each time we go, the kids find something else to be totally fascinated with. This time, they spent a while looking at a tropical fish tank that had a unicorn tang in it. When we went outside to look at the seals, we noticed that there were some turtles in what we call the "sick fishy room." There was a big sign next to the window explaining how some baby turtles don't start swimming south soon enough, and get sick from being in the cold water off the Cape. They drift around until someone rescues them and brings them to the Aquarium. After getting nursed back to health, they're brought to Florida or some other warm place. Colwyn was quite taken with them, and loves telling everyone how the turtle doctor is going to make the turtles better, then bring them to Florida to see his Grandma and Lang Amma (although his stories include the turtle doctor running up to us and saying, "Oh my goodness!" even though we didn't actually see any staff in the "sick fishy room").

Last week we went over to Jen's house to play with Calvin and Miles and bake bread. The kids played really well together. Colwyn stuck with the trains mostly, but Lachlann had fun playing "tag" with Calvin and Miles. We kneaded the sourdough bread for a while, and after it was done, had a delicious snack.

Today we had everyone over here. Colwyn and Lachlann got to play with Calvin and Miles and Thomas and Aidan. Colwyn is definitely warming up to his new friends.. both Colwyn and Lachlann cried when they had to leave. I hate to see my boys sad, but I'm so glad they like the other kids. They all play together nicely, which is great because it lets us moms chat rather than breaking up fights or chasing the kiddos around.

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