Today held one of those endearing moments that often happen between a parent and a five-year old child. It started with us missing the bus this morning despite being at the end of the driveway at the right time. Lately the bus has been coming earlier so as 8 minutes passed I figured I’d go inside and call the bus garage to make sure I was correct.
For safety I had my daughter come halfway back on the drive. As I was calling she went on the lawn and was exploring the animal tracks in the snow. She is now able to identify rabbit tracks, so after I verified we did indeed miss the bus she told me there were loads of tracks on our yard. I told her that was cool and that we had to leave quick.
We got in the van and drove to school. It was a nice brisk, sunny morning brightened by the snow. We have a general rule that there is no video and only low radio for drives to and from school. This allows us to talk. It has taken about a year and a half for some great dialogue to occur but now it has and it is excellent! Perhaps another day I’ll share the story of the bull on the road. We talked about what her day was going to look like and then I asked her what she wanted to be when she grew-up. She thought for a moment and said ‘I want to be a Mom. A Mom that works at an amusement park and brings her kids to work’. Chuckling inside I told her that sounded like a great career.
But that is not the really funny part of this story. That happens when we arrive and we are walking into school. As we are about to enter the school I see that she is holding and looking at something in her right hand. I though it was something but hoped it wasn’t what I though…so I asked her ‘Elisabeth what is that you are holding in your hand?’ she says ‘rabbit poop’. Holding a straight face I asked her where she got it from and she said her pocket. I said when did you put it in your pocket and she says ‘this morning’ and adds ‘there was lots of it’. I said you have to toss that before we enter the school and then wash your hands because it is dirty. She did this with no problem but did state that the rabbit poop was just solid grass.
As I was waiting outside the bathroom another parent came by and I told her the story and we both laughed. The amazing part to me was that she knew what it was. I probably told her what it was two years ago at a visit to zoo or science museum, but if so it is remarkable that she remembered! It would also be amazing if she had deducted that the ‘poop’ she had held in her hand was from a rabbit.
After school we had fun telling Mommy about this. We also discussed why you had to be careful in picking up any animal poop without proper training and the possible diseases or viruses it may carry.Another great learning opportunity with the benefit of a laugh for us.
Thanks for making our day Elisabeth!
So as it was getting la
I just came across this post on the Tutor Doctor corporate web site today. Titled ‘Fun March Break Activity: Geocaching!‘ I thought I’d share it here since it sounds like a great activity for anyone.
If you are looking for fun activities for your family this Weekend or during the March break, then geocaching can be a rewarding pursuit for the whole family. Geocaching is a fun scavenger hunt which gets the family outdoors and moving while teaching valuable lessons in navigation.
What is Geocaching?
Geocaches are containers which participants have placed in natural spots. The exact location of the geocache is posted on the geocache website. Currently there are over 2 million of these containers through out the world. If you want to participate in geocache hunts, simply register enter the area you are going to and download the GPS coordinates of a geocache near the area. This is also a great way to break up long holiday road trips. Find the location of geocaches on your road trip route so that you can stop and find geocaches along the way.
Show your students how to operate your GPS device. Load the co-ordinates of the geocache into the device and then let them navigate to the spot where the geocache is hidden. You can also download the geocache app so that you can use your smartphone to find geocache locations.
What Do I Do When I Find A Geocache?
Geocaches are watertight containers which contain a logbook and other items. When you discover a geocache, let your students fill in the logbook with their names, the date and time when you found the geocache. Its then customary for you to add an item and remove an item. You can leave family-friendly items that are not potentially dangerous. No food or liquid items are included as these attract wildlife. Leave toys, flashlights, camping equipment, pictures, books, stationary etc.
Fun For The Whole Family
Geocaching is appropriate for students of all ages. Seek out level 1 and 2 geocaches for younger students and beginners. Older students will enjoy the higher level caches which often require climbing or hiking.
There are geocaches to suit people with different interests too. Earthcaches lead participants to interesting natural phenomena rather than treasure chests, puzzle caches require you to solve the puzzle in order to find the cache and event caches will lead you to interesting events in the area.
You can enjoy finding geocaches or you can spread the geocache love by making geocaches of your own. Creating a geocache requires some maintenance as the owner must check that no inappropriate items have been added and that the geocache has not been moved. Read geocache submission guidelines here.
Geocaching is a great way to enjoy the outdoors as a family. You and your students can get some fresh air, learn to use maps and GPS co-ordinates and get moving too. Geocaching is a really fun activity for people of all ages and interests.
Space will become one of the most important sources of resources for Earth and become vital in our development as a species in the universe. Learning about space is a frontier that growing exponentially day by day as more and more entrepreneurs and private industries begin to make plans and take steps to industrialize space. Today, Friday, Feb. 15, the asteroid 2012 DA14 will fly extremely close to Earth, but poses no risk of impacting our planet. This is a great opportunity to help your children and/or students learn a bit more about space and the opportunities it holds for their future. In the USA seeing the asteroid at its closest approach to the earth will not be possible. However, it may be visible to backyard telescopes if you know when and where to look Friday evening.
Discovered last year, asteroid 2012 DA14 is about half the size of a football field and will approach within 17,200 miles (27,680 kilometers) of Earth when it flies by during its close encounter.
According to Space.com there will be many webcasts that you can watch as asteroid 2012 DA14 flyby online. Space.com also has some links to surprising Facts About Asteroid 2012 DA14 and a video of the asteroid’s mind-boggling $195 billion worth. Note: NASA will provide a 30-minute webcast on its NASA TV channel beginning at 12 p.m. EST (1700 GMT/9 a.m. PST) and will offer live commentary during asteroid 2012 DA14′s flyby.
Last week my children found St. Nicholas booty in their booties, well sneakers and boots to be exact. Carrying on the tradition I grew up with in a Catholic household, our children know St. Nicholas Day. This day as described by the St. Nicholas Center celebrates the life of St. Nicholas, for both religious and secular societies worldwide. Pretty well known, our modern day Santa Claus has his roots here.
Isn’t roots, what traditions are all about? Whether you are marking Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza, Ramadan, or another holiday during the year, traditions are the true gift that keep on giving. I know many people who are hard pressed to come up with their holiday traditions when asked. I think that some things have become so mainstay, that these dear people have forgotten that some of what they do is a tradition in and of themselves. —-Think Christmas tree or cutout cookies!
I came across some good articles (Article 1, Article 2, Article 3) that look at what holiday traditions bring to our families and tips for starting some new ones. What I like best about traditions are their grounding force in our lives and how they help us teach cultural and familial identity. Our children get a little bit more of their Polish, Czech, Italian, and Irish heritage during the holidays, than other times of the year. Let’s face it, not passing down or sharing in time honored traditions just means they are lost! Two of the blog spots talk about creating new, modern traditions. Article 3 even goes as far as to suggest 50 winter holiday traditions you can select from!
What I particularly love about many of the suggestions are their emphasis on giving back to the community and the less fortunate. They are also full of some fun ideas for meals, entertainment, and wise gift giving. As you celebrate the holidays with your family, I hope that it is filled with new and old traditions. Know that what you are choosing to do to mark the holidays has a lasting impact As my children checked their shoes for evidence of St. Nicholas this morning, I look forward to the day when their children are doing the same….
Perhaps it doesn’t matter that Black Friday is fast becoming obsolete as more and more retailers are opening on Thursday. To me it does matter. Now instead of spending some time with the family on turkey day it means we will be busy looking through the mountain of ‘black ads’ and planning our shopping strategies for that Thursday evening. Plus, there will be a number of family members who must leave early since they work at a retail establishment. All-in-all the quantity and quality of the time interacting will be diminished. Hopefully, we’ll be able to overcome these new limitations and fit in a few group games and still share some laughs as a family. It is times like these that a child learns a great deal about their family members, family history and their self. This helps build the child’s values, self understanding, self worth, and develops their roots. The memories of Thanksgivings long past are still with me. Thankfully my parents were able to provide the time and opportunity for these memories to be built.
We truly hope YOU and Your Family get to spend some memorable time together this Thanksgiving!
Sometimes, when your schedule is crazy, the only thing to do is add more things into it to keep your mind off how stressful everything is! A great local event (that ends the 17th) is Buffalo Navy Week. Last night we took a trip down to the beautiful Buffalo waterfront and got to see a few of the ships that have docked, including the very majestic 1812-era tall ship. While school makes it difficult to get to many of the events, which occur throughout the day, there are a lot of events planned for Saturday that families with school-age children can take advantage of.
Have you taken a trip down to the Buffalo waterfront to enjoy Navy Week yet?
There are lots of cliches that try to convey the idea that if you want someone to do something, you should do it yourself first. Lead by example, as it were. We often tell the young people in our lives that learning is a life-long endeavor, but how often do we as parents, educators, older siblings, or other family members demonstrate this kind of behavior?
I’m not suggesting that adults aren’t constantly in the process of learning new things. In fact, I’ve found that as an adult I’m more aware of the learning opportunities in my life than when I was a child. However, I don’t think that adults necessarily take the time to discuss the role learning plays in their lives as explicitly as they should.
So the next time you head to a work training or a new exercise class or even read a new book, talk to a child about it. The next time at the dinner table you ask your child how his or her day at school was, offer up your own answer in response. By making education a discussion where everyone participates in the exchange rather than a monologue where a child is forced to recite what he or she has learned, maybe we can make learning a more fully-integrated part of life.
This coming Saturday, the Buffalo Zoo will be hosting the Wild About Wellness Health Fair from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. Admission to the Wellness Health Fair is free with regular admission (which means that for zoo members, it’s all free). While the event focuses primarily on physical health, Tutor Doctor WNY firmly believes that it’s just as important to keep your mind strong as it is to keep your body strong! With that philosophy in mind, we’ll be offering activities for the kids as well as information for parents, guardians, and older family members on what Tutor Doctor can offer your child for the upcoming school year.
We look forward to seeing you there!