Still too cold, still sick, even the cat is cranky. The only bright spot of the week is listening to Scooter Libbey's trial on Stimulated Boredom-burn, baby, burn.
Saturday, February 3, 2007
It's still way too cold to anything worthwhile, and we're both miserable with colds, so Oboy and I have spent the last few days wrapped up in blankets on the couch, taking turns being petty and demanding. All in all it's been fun, if not terribly educational.
Got my latest homeschool purchase in the mail yesterday. I'm so addicted to Paypal shopping now. It's just too easy, and if it's "educational", it's totally excusable, right? Latest purchase was a series of high school history project books from History Scribe. It's a fundamentalist Christian company, but I've gone through all the books we've gotten, and the bias is (mostly) tolerable. Even where they've gone over the edge, the questions are still interesting, and I can't wait to here Oboy answer them from the standpoint of a born atheist. We were reminiscing today of the time I had to carry 6 year old Oboy out of a Catholic church, crying and wailing "It hurts, Mommy, religion huuuuurts!" Got some interesting looks that day. The incense was bugging him, but it was riotously funny (to me at least)
Oboy is looking forward to doing the Age of Exploration book. I don't know how the drawing portion will go over with Oboy, but the small area for essays is a big hit. Oboy usually has so much information about a topic he doesn't know where to start to write about it, and just gives up, overwhelmed. He's quite happy to see how little is actually expected out of an academic essay for a grade 8 student. We both read through all the topics and essay questions last night, and spent a few hours debating cultural expropriation (started with a question on how the ancient Greeks might have felt about Rome adopting and adapting their religion and culture, but we wound up talking about the current European fad for "Indian" camps and aboriginal culture in general, and how a repressed culture can wind up as a fashionable hobby, and how freaking annoying that must be.
We've been listening to Richard Dawkin's newest book "The God Delusion" on Stimulated Boredom http://www.stimulatedboredom.com, an interesting listen, don't agree with everything he has to say, though, I don't think that fundamentalist atheism is any better than fundamentalist anything else, and any belief system that presents itself as the only answer has to be questioned and challenged. Anyway, been listening to the book on Stimulated Boredom's Live365 feed http://www.live365.com, but mostly I've been listening to great alternative stations, after my blues and funk binge last month, I'm enjoying some punk again. Oboy has discovered a love for The Decemberists http://www.decemberists.com/, while I've been obsessively listening to the Mountain Goats No Children over and over again, especially after I found this video on YouTube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CXrDIBl0CUI, despite the Lego, it's not for little kids.
Thursday, February 1, 2007
Today we went on our first homeschool field trip this year, what was supposed to be a day trip to the Forks http://www.theforks.com/
for a winter arts/culture fun day. What we learned mostly is...Winnipeg is being left behind in the global warming fun times. It was -42, doesn't matter what scale that's in, Celsius or Fahrenheit, it's just freaking cold. We mostly learned about hot chocolate and the glorious fireplace in the Atrium at the Forks. Oh, yeah, and napping has educational value, trust me.
What we've been doing this week:
Math-U-See (program he chose over a zoo membership, hope it's better than a roomful of monkeys!)
Writing Strands: first lesson, Following Directions, to maintain his perfect score in this regard, Oboy promptly ignored the Following Directions directions
Planet Project: started with Nasa Planet Quest http://astroventure.arc.nasa.gov/ but Oboy has decided he wants to design a planet with non-carbon-based life forms and is trying to figure out if he could possibly create a uranium-based life form
Arms and Armour history project: to put Oboy's extensive knowledge of arcane weapons and explosives to good use, by making it all sound edjymacashunal, ya know. I'll try to post this project when, and if, it ever gets completed (remind me to tell you all some time about the 1 paragraph Island assignment I gave Oboy in Grade 6 that turned into his own, pre-conquered, civilization)
Oboy is currently reading:
Classics of Strategy and Counsel, the Collected Translations of Thomas Cleary, Vol. I in his never-ending quest to conquer the world, or at least, play a really good game of Chess and Go
After screwing up my knee at work last week, and coming down with more infections than a pre-schooler now that I've finally got some time off work, I've been spending most of my time lying on the couch acting like Marie Antoinette, eating ice cream for dinner, and demanding (but not receiving) foot rubs.
To spend the time, and make me happy, I've decided to embrace my inner girl and have been knitting myself a new pink hat.
I'm reading The Science Book, by Singh, Tallack and Greenfield, that I bought for Oboy for Xmas, but it's got one page sections and that's all I've got the time for lately
Been trying to get through The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco, but have not time and no concentration for fiction lately. When I finally have some time to breathe, I will also finally finish Anansi Boys by Neil Gaiman, I love Neil Gaiman, and really want to get into this book, but just can't seem to dive in.
The Once and Future King by T.H. White