Friday, May 27, 2016

Week in Review: Dogs, Hogs, and Jumping Rope

We started Teaching Hearts Training Minds by Starr Meade, a book that teaches the Westminster Catechism. Each chapter focuses on one question, and each chapter is divided into a week's worth of short readings. Each night I read the question (What is man's primary purpose?), and the answer, and by the fourth evening, Gemma was able to answer the question without my help.

She's still reading Pippi Longstocking to me. 

She abandoned Magic Tree House Sabertooths to start Magic Tree House Leprechauns in Late Winter, because my child has an obsession with leprechauns.

We're reading Life of Fred: Dogs, which has a bit about animal shelters and euthanasia. Whoa! I was not expecting that. And not on the same evening that I read aloud the part in Little House in the Big Woods when Laura's uncle comes to help Pa butcher the hog. Eek! Killing dogs. Killing hogs.

Gemma: "That's so sad. I would never kill the family hog."

This from the child whose two favorite meat products are bacon and sausage.

She was clearly paying attention, she clearly understood the text, and she had an emotional response to the text. When she makes comments like that, I consider them a pre-Year One form of narration.

Gemma pulled up her carrots.
There were three in total and, as you can see, they were tiny...
...and delicious.

She learned to jump rope.
We tried this at the beginning of the week. She quickly became frustrated and cried, "I'm NEVER going to learn to jump rope!" Even so, she didn't want to give up. I had had a long day at work, and her emotional intensity was too much, so I told her she was done for the evening and we would try it again another day.

At the end of the week, she happily grabbed the jump ropes and asked if I would take her outside. I was not looking forward to it. But, of course, I took her outside anyway. Instead of trying to teach her to turn the rope and jump, like I had at the beginning of the week, I told her to put the rope down in front of her and step over it. Then I told her to turn the rope over her and let it land on the ground. She did this all the way down the sidewalk and around the corner to the little store. She wanted to show the owner how she could jump. She did, and he applauded, and she jumped all the way home. 

Just as we were approaching our apartment, she turned the rope and jumped, without stopping the rope in front of her. It was an accident. And she was so excited!

So, if you're wondering how to teach your child to jump rope, try teaching them what seems like the backwards way. Stepping then turning. :)

We're going strong with piano. Gemma is working on "Come and Play," "Good King Wenceslaus," and "Holy Spirit Hear Us."

Gemma finished a round of swim lessons. 
She didn't learn to side breathe, which is what she needs to be able to do to graduate from Minnows, but she's signed up for two more rounds of Minnow lessons. She'll get the hang of it eventually. :)

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