I had sick kids last week. Actually, I still do, though this week it’s different ones who are sick. As much as it stinks to be nursing four of them at the same time, it makes the rest of life easier. I’d rather get it over all at once.I
Friday I canceled “school” (for the kids that meant no math, writing, or foreign language) and just read to them while they laid around on the couches or floor feeling sorry for themselves.
(An aside: my kids should really think about getting a different mother who’s more sympathetic. They say, “My head hurts,” and I say, “Well, not as much as it would if you had meningitis. Here’s some non-aspirin pain reliever.” They say, “I’m dizzy.” I say, “Well, don’t stand up so quickly. Drink some more water.” They say, “I feel like I’ve been sick forever.” I say “It’s just a virus. Imagine if you had _________________ [horrible disease I saw in the office last week].”)
We finished Secret Water, Arthur Ransome’s 6th Swallows and Amazons tale which has the children mapping an estuary, being stranded by the tide, and playing explorers and savages. (His books always take a bit to get going– he has to set up the adventure, and the characters– but then are totally worth the ride.) Now my kids want to map the lake where we camp in the summer, so I need to figure out how to teach basic surveying and map-making. Suggestions?
And then when my voice couldn’t hold out any longer, I pulled out some Lemony Snicket as performed by Tim Curry (let’s be honest, it’s all about Tim Curry). They laughed and listened from their sickbeds while I reorganized school supplies. I found all our geography puzzles and located all the missing alphabet puzzle pieces, so now I can make puzzles part of our curriculum again without digging in the bin for the missing letters.
I’ve started asking the younger ones (O-age 9, and M- age 7.5) to do more reading. They had been reading a chapter each of two books daily, but it didn’t feel like enough to me. So now we’re setting a timer: 10 minutes for each book. Little by little I’ll increase the time. For J (age 11.5) I had put a whole bunch of classics on his Kindle, and now he’s reading Oliver Twist. It is helpful that he can look up any word that causes his reading to stumble. I don’t require him to look up every word, but he’s been using several Dickensian words this last week.
But I need to figure out how to fit more exercise in. I know, I know, it’s the weather. But seriously. In January I ran 43 miles. In February: 30. I gave up my yoga class because it was too stressful (to get there). The children are swimming, so that’s good, but we need more outside time.
How did your February turn out?