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Michigan, United States
a registered yoga teacher, and a Thai/Yoga Bodywork practitioner.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Of Mice and (Ancient Greek) Men

We have begun Ancient Greece. I have learned (re-learned?) that the city-states were basically different "countries" but because they all spoke Greek and had similar customs, we group them together as one nation.

We read Wise Guy (Socrates) and What's Your Angle, Pythagoras? A Math Adventure.  

Socrates was an ugly, working-class guy who walked around barefoot and was considered to be wise by claiming to know nothing. He was accused of "corrupting the youth" and disrupting the public by getting people to ask questions. He was sentenced to death. Now I'm curious how much of his story was borrowed for later religious figures. (My kids don't get homework, but I create homework for myself quite often.)

On one page, Socrates is portrayed walking through a marketplace, marveling at "all the things I don't need."  He was a man who supposedly lived a simple life. This resonated with Nate. The next day, as we talked about the tendency to always want more (video games, vacations, "stuff"), Nate recalled that line, quoting it with a grin. For a teaching parent, that's the equivalent of a gold star.

Madelyn has progressed into her longest chapter book so far: Nutmeg and Tumtum.

It's a book for "3rd grade and up" but the author used adverbs like Julia Child uses butter (almost every where). No one merely speaks. They speak "accusingly" and "incredulously" and "anxiously." She's reading it aloud to me, and though she can pronounce most words, this liberal use of adverbs and adjectives has her stopped up at least once per page. The story is precious, though, and has us both hooked. An added benefit to her reading aloud is that she uses different voices for the characters.

Were she on her own, reading in a classroom, she would have breezed past many of these words or given up in frustration. So--another point for homeschooling!

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