Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas!

We are enjoying our first Christmas in our new home this year. The boys went sledding for the first time this season, only a couple inches but I guess it was enough for the sledding hill. They also had fun following a snow maze Jacob worked on. Jacob and I are recovering from mild colds, but otherwise all is well. I have been working on a December update in my head but that probably won't be until January to recap some of our FIAR adventures. Tonight is the Christmas pageant at church (W will participate dressed as an angel, he is quite excited.) Better get started making some cookies for Santa. :)

Merry Christmas to you and yours! Here are some Christmas stories we have been enjoying lately.


Thursday, December 9, 2010

Happy birthday to C!

C turns two years old today! Happy birthday to my little guy, he is really no longer a baby. I am taking some pictures and trying to get a last minute photo nice enough to mail out in some Christmas cards. The boys are looking forward to seeing their cousins this weekend. Today Auntie Julie is over to visit, and tomorrow C has a doctor's appointment for his 2 year checkup.

Yesterday was our Little House homeschoolers book club meeting and it was great to visit with our friends and talk about the books. It is a monthly group and we are going to work on a quilt as a group project over the winter. I think we will start reading Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder soon for storytime in the evenings (a chapter or two at a sitting). It'll make for nice winter reading with the boys as it is getting really chilly here in NH!

W has been reading The Birthday Box by Leslie Patricelli to C as it is very appropriate for birthday time reading. C received Tubby by the same author for his birthday, and it is so adorable. He also got a basketball hoop (little tikes size), puzzles and clothes. We made an ornament with his hand print to add to the tree, and baked some birthday cupcakes. Santa also sent video messages to Will and Caleb via Portable North Pole's web site. It has been a fun day.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

When One Plus One Equals One

The other day W told me that sometimes one plus one equals one.  I was a little skeptical, but I've been helping him understand addition by showing him that it is a process of putting things together.  I've been emphasizing the process of addition because I don't want math for him to be what it mostly was for me and most children: meaningless manipulation of symbols.  I remember some half-hearted attempts at making math meaningful in school by making us solve contrived word problems or insisting upon units.  One teacher would become upset if the class answered "what is 3 pigs plus 3 pigs?" with "6" instead of "6 pigs". 

In any case, I asked W when it might happen that one plus one equals one.  He replied that when he attaches one toy to another toy, he has one toy.  I liked that example.  I suggested another by taking two glasses of water and pouring them into a third glass, showing that one glass of water plus one glass of water can equal one glass of water.  The best example was then suggested by Beth: if you add one herd of sheep to one herd of sheep, then you have one herd of sheep.  I was happy to see W developing an understanding that our answer depended on how we performed the addition, as well as what we were interested in counting. 

So there you have it.  Sometimes one plus one equals one.