Saturday, September 15, 2007

A Day in the Life: First Day of School (Part Two)

Playing: With the school boxes.

Last week, on high school lovely lady's first day of school, the rest of us went not-back-to-school shopping. I looked for good clearance deals on school supplies, and the fine young gents each chose something special for his school box.

Two-year-old gent chose a Batman Color Wonder set. Cool. Four-year-old gent chose a box of giant sidewalk chalk. He was sorely tempted to switch to a Superman color wonder set, but decided to stick with his novelty item. The chalk doesn't fit in his box very well, so the next time I came home from the store I had Twistables crayons. He was delighted because he'd been fascinated by his brother's Twistables, and besides, his chalk was outside in the back yard. First grade gent finally got his Twistables colored pencils. Last year he agonized over the choice between the giant box of crayons and Twistables. He chose the crayons, and he's been waiting a whole year to add Twistables to his box. Now he uses them for everything. Lovely lady did not choose because, as I mentioned in our previous first day of school post, she's too grown-up for nearly everything. Once we got home, she changed her mind about being too grownup and asked for some pretty colored pencils.

After our morning nature outing and lunch I thought our school day was over. The outing was certainly all I had planned. Instead, each of the fine young gents hauled his school box to the table and they settled in for an hour of coloring. They decided that they were school puppies, Blueberry, Blackberry and Fluffy. Fluffy looked at his math book and decided to do a few pages of math for fun, then worked a shape puzzle.

Blackberry, age four, colored with his own twistables then traded with his brother, then traded back, and little Blueberry ("I a bwoo puppy!") colored Batman.

Reading: A pirate book. When the fine young gents aren't puppies, they're pirates. "Yaarr! Hah !" I hear all day long.

Listening: Suzuki Piano School, Volume 1.

Blackberry puppy had his first piano lesson last week. He is so delighted by his teacher, Miss Melissa, that he wrote her a love letter: "Tolly loves Miss Melissa." It's on the bulletin board in her studio. Because the Suzuki method is initally based on learning to play by ear, one of my parent jobs is to play the piano CD for the fine young gents at least once each day. The CD opens with four different variations on "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star," each variation repeated twice for a grand total of Twinkles eight times in a row. I have days when I think my ears will cringe right off my head if I have to hear a Twinkle variation one more time, and the lovely ladies usually leave the room, but the fine young gents don't seem to mind.

The rest of the week went swimmingly. Tuesday was our first regular school day, and it was peachy, smooth as silk. Wednesday was rocky, especially for lovely lady, as we all negotiated our new routines. Thursday was right smack in between, and Friday we zipped through the morning's work, went on a science field trip to the pond, and started our first art study: Van Gogh and sunflowers.

I can already tell it's going to be a good year.

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