It seems like summer is such a busy time for us, with so many special activities and trips going on, and naturally, so much learning occuring. That's why it's always funny to me when people start asking in August if we're getting ready to "start back with our studies" again. I usually say that we never stop learning!
Anyway....... here are just a few of the things that have been keeping us busy since my last post.
My husband and I took our youngest son canoeing on the Peace River, pictured above, because it is supposed to be one of the best places in Florida to search for fossilized shark teeth. Joseph NEEDED to find some more to add to his collection. So, after some internet research, and construction of our sifting screens, off we went into "the wild". We only saw 2 other boats during our entire 4 hour trip down the river. It was peaceful, alright! We were all quite relieved that we only saw one small alligator sunning itself, but were pleased to see many birds, turtles, and fish. Best of all, we came away with about a dozen shark teeth and a few other fossils! This was not even the best time of year to be fossil hunting, so we are already planning to return when the river is nice and low.
Our downstairs guest bathroom has also been busy quite a bit too, LOL! That's because it has been taken over as a laboratory. Angelica and Joseph named it the "Non-stop Lab", made a sign for the door, and created their own lab shirts on which they draw a picture of each experiment they've done. There are also safety rules posted, like "Long hair must be tied back to keep it out of the experiments." The inspiration for many of their experiments came from the book "Mad Professor", but they also create their own experiments like comparing how different materials soak up colored water, and which glue makes the best "goo". Results are recorded in the "lab notebook." I don't think I could have come up with a more fun science curriculum if my life depended on it!
As if we hadn't done enough in July, we also celebrated our oldest son's 16th birthday. Part of the celebration included driving him and 5 other friends to see The Warp Tour in Miami. While the teens were outside rocking and sweating, and then soaking in the rain, the older and younger crowd went to the Miami Science Museum. There we were able to see an amazing collection of some of our favorite things, dinosaur fossils, from China no less! Of course the biggest draw for my kids were the hands-on exhibits, especially the "conservation of angular momentum" exhibit where my kids took spinning around in circles to the extreme. We also really enjoyed the electricity demonstration and the planetarium show.
Oh, and before July could end, we squeezed in a trip to Maine to visit the Grandparents and many cousins. We had lots of elemental fun - earth, fire, water, and fresh air. :)
So now you know why I laugh when people ask if I'm getting ready to have the kids start "school" again. That was only some of what we did in one month of this summer! Phew! Here's what I envision when others talk of getting ready for school........