Wordy Wednesday

Spelling b….b….b…..bounce.

How do you get ready for the spelling test? Mine write out flashcards at school to help the process. It’s the American way.

When they bring them home. We have to learn them, but how? Dull, dull, dull.

We cheat. We spread them out on the carpet and bounce on the tramplene. We pretend it’s a game. I call out a word and they dive to retrieve the right card. They read it aloud from the card, which of course is even more cheating, because we’re sneaky like that.

Now my eye sight is poor. I’d have a hard time bouncing up and down and trying to recognise a card right down there on the carpet, not necessarily the right way up. I’d have an even harder time if the cards looked like this.

It’s not hieroglyphics nor wingdings.
GIVE

MADE

HAVE

SAME

FINE



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Baby Steps

We decide to debate the topic.

Are they ready?

Is this doable?

If not, how can we wangle the odds in our favour?

It's time for the school fund raiser, the Walkathon, where the children walk around the field for as many laps as they can manage. Each year we have attended. The first year we just attended and did not participate. The following year we attended and participated, in a manner of speaking. This year, it may be time to step up to the plate and tackle the sponsorship form.

We are already practicing our 'trick or treat' skills through modeling, social stories and kinesthetic learning. This would tie in quite well. Go to someone's house. Avoid being squished by traffic. Use path. Do not walk on grass or flowerbeds. Avoid hedges, think of them as walls not hurdles. Find and ring bell, once. Wait for homeowner. Greet homeowner. Do not run into homeowner's house. Verbalize request. Do not whisper or bellow. Stay on topic no matter how fascinating the door mat or light switches. Remember, frantic movement and speech confuses your listener. Do not talk to the wall, talk to the person. Listen to their answer.

“Maybe we should take them one at a time, that would help?”
“Yes, but there's also safety in numbers and it would muddle the ‘trick or treat’ practice. They're working much better as a team, one fills in the blanks for the other, as it were.”
“So we think we're ready?”
“Definitely.”
“So who will we visit?”
“Just the two houses.” Two tries. Two attempts. “Opposite and to the right only.”
“Deal. You'll phone them first to warn them that we're coming?”
“On the list.”
“How long is this evolution going to take?”
“Ooo 30 minutes?” 50 paces to each house.
“30 minutes for each house?”
“Approximately, we have to allow for the unknown.”
“The unknowable.”
“I don't need to remind you about clipboards and pens do I?”
“Huh! Far too easy, I can take that in my stride.”

New post up on “Alien.”


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Time to clean up your act

Around this neck of the woods where fine motor skills are in short supply, the management relies upon the use of liquid soap to keep hygiene at acceptable levels. Cleanliness for one of my boys, is a high priority, falling into the OCD category. My other chap is indifferent. I sometimes consider allowing the dirt to build up to the level where I can simply chip it off like a crust with a chisel, to save time.
Liquid soap of course is one of those new fangled extravagances of modern life, but I hadn't realized quite how insidious such shopping preferences can become, especially for one such as myself, someone “allergic to shopping.”

I decide to indulge my family. I ponder if I really want to squander this gift upon my unappreciative herd, but the thought of those beautiful bars of soap spending another year on the top shelf of my closet, makes me wince. It smacks of the 'best china' or 'parlour,' things that are only used on High days and Holidays, imposing an unnecessary paucity on daily life. I pull off the lid to be enveloped in wafts of lemon scent. It even smells clean, which is just how a cake of soap should be.
I am apprehensive in view of junior violent objection to cleaning solutions that involve fruit. I determine to choose my words carefully.

“What it is?”
“It is soap”
“Soap! Soap? It is not soap!”
“It is really. You use it to wash and get clean.”
“Er, no, I am finking dat you are making an accident, not a deliberately.”
“Why?”
“Because dah soap is er…..I dont know er……dis is not soap because it is being hard.” Oh of course, why didn't I think of that?
“I see. Well this is an old fashioned cake of soap, this is what people used before liquid soap was invented.”
“Cake! Cake? I am never eating it, it is terrible for me!”
“Ah, no, you don't eat it, you wash with it, just like liquid soap.”
“Not cake?”
“No that's just the descriptive noun, like 'pod' of whales.”

I demonstrate usage of the strange item to my kinesthetic learner. He makes no comment upon the lemon fumes, merely wrinkles his nose. “Here, you have a try.” I realize immediately that it's a large item to hold for small hands. I also realize seconds later, that it has a hitherto forgotten flaw as it shoots out of his grasp and skids into the other room, an erratic spinning top. He squeals with glee and chases after it. His delight alerts the others that something is afoot. I observe three children gamboling in my kitchen, as smears of soap begin to adorn every surface.

Junior has his own light bulb moment, stops abruptly and takes a marching step towards me. “You know, I fink dat it is fun to be playing wiv cake. We should be having dah chocolate soap because it is smelling nicer than lemon fruit stuff.”

Those moments of self generated problem serving reward us both – isn't that killing two birds with one stone?

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