Schoolhouse Rock!

On Friday morning I was doing my best to get back on the exercising track. I wrote my post for the day while walking on my treadmill, managing to fill an hour of walking with plenty of writing and information-gathering. I followed it up with a trip to the local community center to try out a Silver Sneakers Yoga class.

In the past few months I’ve become so damned inflexible and out of balance that I can’t manage to put my right leg over my left knee without a great deal of pain. So…old folks yoga, until I’m flexible enough for the regular yoga.

As I returned I saw that my next door neighbor was having a garage sale. I love garage sales, but I didn’t go over, after all we were heading for Oceans of Fun.

Dave did, though, and insisted that I come and see what was for sale before we left for the day. I’m glad he did, I found a brand-new unopened yoga kit (mat, block, strap and DVD) for just $5. Dave discovered two huge boxes of DVDs, some of them never opened, and we both went through them finding some great movies…AND…

Schoolhouse Rock!

Growing up in the 70s, Schoolhouse Rock played in between the cartoon shows. They were all musical and full of the basics – like multiplication tables, grammar, and the basics of American Government. My two favorites?

A Noun is a Person, Place or Thing

I’m Just a Bill

Of course, Conjunction Junction was also a great song…and so many others…

Is it any surprise we happily and eagerly paid the $2 for this brand-new unwatched copy of the complete set?

We took off for Oceans of Fun then, spending nearly five hours in water adventure and sport – and everyone ended up with sunburns, which led to a discussion later about WHY our skin gets burned and how we can avoid it (yes, we used sunblock and no, we didn’t get everywhere – obviously).

Emily fell asleep on the way home and didn’t wake when we carried her inside and put her in bed. Just when I was convinced she might sleep through the night, she appeared at 8:30 rubbing her eyes, but wide awake.

A little bit of sunburn doctoring, food in her belly, and our companionship – and we all sat down to watch Schoolhouse Rock. Emily was enthralled…and we took turns singing along to our favorite tunes. What a great end to a beautiful day.

Conjunction Junction, what’s your function?
Hooking up words and phrases and clauses.
Conjunction Junction, how’s that function?
I got three favorite cars
That get most of my job done.
Conjunction Junction, what’s their function?
I got “and”, “but”, and “or”,
They’ll get you pretty far.

[spoken] “And”:
That’s an additive, like “this and that”.
“But”:
That’s sort of the opposite,
“Not this but that”.
And then there’s “or”:
O-R, when you have a choice like
“This or that”.
“And”, “but”, and “or”,
Get you pretty far.

[sung] Conjunction Junction, what’s your function?
Hooking up two boxcars and making ‘em run right.
Milk and honey, bread and butter, peas and rice.
Hey that’s nice!
Dirty but happy, digging and scratching,
Losing your shoe and a button or two.
He’s poor but honest, sad but true,
Boo-hoo-hoo-hoo-hoo!

Conjunction Junction, what’s your function?
Hooking up two cars to one
When you say something like this choice:
“Either now or later”
Or no choice:
“Neither now nor ever”
Hey that’s clever!
Eat this or that, grow thin or fat,
Never mind, I wouldn’t do that,
I’m fat enough now!

Conjunction Junction, what’s your function?
Hooking up phrases and clauses that balance, like:
Out of the frying pan and into the fire.
He cut loose the sandbags,
But the balloon wouldn’t go any higher.
Let’s go up to the mountains,
Or down to the seas.
You should always say “thank you”,
Or at least say “please”.

Conjunction Junction, what’s your function?
Hooking up words and phrases and clauses
In complex sentences like:
[spoken] In the mornings, when I’m usually wide awake, I love to take a walk through the gardens and down by the lake, where I often see a duck and a drake, and I wonder, as I walk by, just what they’d say if they could speak, although I know that’s an absurd thought.

Conjunction Junction, what’s your function?
Hooking up cars and making ‘em function.
Conjunction Junction, how’s that function?
I like tying up words and phrases and clauses.
Conjunction Junction, watch that function.
I’m going to get you there if you’re very careful.
Conjunction Junction, what’s your function?
I’m going to get you there if you’re very careful.
Conjunction Junction, what’s your function?
I’m going to get you there if you’re very careful.

Weekend Homeschool Log

Around here, we take learning opportunities as they present themselves. Or should I say, I get the heck out of the way and let Emily work her learning magic? On Saturday evening she wandered into my office where I was sending an email to a friend about an upcoming field trip to Missouri Town and announced, “Mama, two times two is four.” She has asked to watch Schoolhouse Rock several times throughout the weekend. Obviously, she was on the Multiplication Rock section at the moment.

“That’s right, Emily. Two times two IS four.” A few moments later she was requesting paper and asking to borrow the hole punch.

Language Arts, Mathematics, and Foreign Language – Continuing her stated goal towards learning how to write, Emily practiced writing numbers. She had some difficulties with 6, 7, and 3. These were remedied by my modeling how it was done and her then repeating them. She took the corrections well. If a number was wonky I would direct her attention to the list of numbers on the white board.

There was no frustration, simply curiosity and determination. That in itself was fascinating.

Simply listing the numbers of 1-9 was not enough, however. Which meant that we soon branched out to 11, 12, and on up to 20 – in English AND Spanish. With only 1-10 on the board, I asked Dave for help and he came in and we listed 11-20 on the board while practicing our pronunciation of the numbers in Spanish and looking them up when we disagreed. Dave learned Spanish from both a Latin American Spanish speaker and a teacher from Spain. I’m teaching Latin American Spanish, not Castilian, so I wanted to make sure it was accurate.

Emily enjoyed the attention and our companionship and worked for a while longer on her numbers before wandering off for another dose of Schoolhouse Rock.

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