I thought I was too tired to blog today, but then Pamela goes and ruins it for me by doing something wonderful. She was upstairs and I called her to come down, so we could finish reading. She sneaked off to the porch very mysteriously while I got out the books. I walked over to her, sitting in a rocking chair, writing intently. Without my asking a thing, Pamela looks up and announces, "I'm doing a poem marathon." I had no idea what a poem marathon was. After she finished, I learned that a poem marathon is copying all the poems you learned last year on one sheet of paper. She had gone through the trouble of going through her language art's folder from 2006-2007 to find all of her copywork sheets! She wrote the following ten poems for her celebration:
"Growing Up" by A. A. Milne
"Daffodowndilly" by A. A. Milne
"The End" by A. A. Milne
"Cradle Song" by Alfred Lord Tennyson
"Pirate Story" by Robert Louis Stevenson
City by Langston Hughes
"Big" by Dorothy Aldis
"Two Friends" by Nikki Giovanni
By the way, we started The Story of the Trapp Family Singers today, and Pamela is thrilled for she adores The Sound of Music. We came across an interesting word combination that reminds me of how the brain learns. At the 2006 ChildLightUSA Conference, Dr. Carroll Smith said something that has stuck with me. For knowledge to be stored into long-term memory, the child must connect it to previously learned knowledge. Clearly, Pamela will be connecting new knowledge about Maria von Trapp to what she knows from the musical. While whistling and running up the stairs were familiar troublesome behaviors, Pamela narrated that Maria slid down the stairs [bannister] and jumped over chimneys on the roof! Near the end of the passage, Maria talked about carrying a guitar and leather satchel. Up until a month ago, the words leather and satchel meant very little to Pamela. We have learned a great deal about the making and uses of leather from The Brendan Voyage and the meaning of satchel because of a chapter by that name in The Winged Watchman. To take the whole thing full circle back to the poem marathon, we came across the word afloat when Tim got his leather boat, The Brendan, afloat for the first time and both of our minds leaped to "The Pirate Story." This is why we have not done formal vocabulary lessons.
For a better view of the poem marathon, click the pictures.