Monday, August 6, 2007

Homeschool Humor

We were driving home past unfamiliar places with another homeschooling friend, an 8 year old girl. We passed a huge place that burns coal and generates electricity, and creates a lot of white "smoke" in the air. My kids know it is a power plant, but this little girl didn't know what it was.

"That looks like a lava mountain," our friend said.

"You mean a volcano?" my daughter asked.

"Yes," our friend replied, "is that what it is called?"

"Well," my daughter said, " a volcano is called a volcano, not a lava mountain; but that over there is a power plant."

"Oh," our tongue-tied friend said, "it looks like it's about to corrupt."

(Nancy from IL)


I overheard my 7 year old daughter talking to the neighbor girl. The neighbor girl was telling my daughter that she didn't have to go to school that day because of parent-teacher conferences. My daughter asked her what that meant and the neighbor girl explained it was when her Mom talked to her teacher. "Oh, we have that in home schooling too," replied my daughter. I was a bit puzzled until my daughter added, "My Mom talks to herself all the time." (Kelli from CA)
My oldest daughter is deaf in her left ear. Consequently, when things are too loud, she only needs to plug her right ear to block out the sound.

One day, I found my 2 year old standing in front of the stereo plugging just her right ear. (Her hearing was perfectly normal.)

"What are you doing?" I asked this little one.

"It's too yowd," the two year old responded.

"Well, honey, shouldn't you plug both ears then?" I asked.

"This is the way Sarah does it," she replied.

Which was true, as I well knew. Not knowing quite how to tell a two year old about ears that don't work, I let it go. The two year old continued to plug just one ear for several years afterward, proving to me just how strong an influence an older sibling can have! (Nancy from Illinois)


A little friend was talking to me about her family. She was recalling to me about the time when her brother was born, and she informed me that her daddy had cut all of their "extension" cords. (Nancy from Illinois)


When I first started homeschooling, I read the books that said in effect 'your toddlers will learn amazing things right along with your older kids.' I thought it may be true for others, but how much can a little kid actually assimilate? One of the ideas I used in my homeschool is turning our kitchen table into a constant source of geography by putting a world map on the table and a clear piece of plastic for a tablecloth over it. Messy housekeeper that I am, I had a very hard time keeping this clean and we have since had the map decoupaged onto the table. I walked in to find my two year old sitting on top of our kitchen table. I walked up to him ready with my outstretched hand to swat his behind for being on the table (an infraction he'd been spanked for before). As I approached, ready to strike, he pointed and said in his baby voice, "Look, Mama, Staylia!" I hesitated for just a second when he said, "Cocodiles. Staylia." As I diverted my attention from his rear end to the map...low and behold...he was pointing to Australia. My ready swat became a "Goooooood Boy!! That is Australia. Crocodiles DO live in Australia." From that day on I was a believer. Even MY youngest children benefit from our homeschool. (Jenn from Indiana)


I was at Walmart the other day with my two sons (8 years and 2 months) when I picked up the movie Yours, Mine and Ours on the bargain shelf. (For those who don't know, the movie is about a family with 18 children!). When I went through the check-out line, the cashier commented on how cute the baby was and how nice it was that he had a big brother. When we got to the movie, she said - "Oh, that's a great movie. But isn't that crazy? 18 kids!" I said, "Yeah, we only have six - he has four sisters!" Boy did her jaw drop! :) (Anonymous)


We'd been homeschooling for about 5 years when our third child was just about to start kindergarten. By this point, I was beginning - yes, just beginning - to feel pretty comfortable about homeschooling, most days, and was looking forward to adding our little boy, and eventually, our baby girl, to the mix. We had gradually converted our dining room to a makeshift school room, which included two little old-fashioned desks for my older daughters, while I used the dining room table for my "teacher's desk".

One day, as we were chatting about school, my son said pensively, "I think I want to go to a different school when I'm big enough for school, Mama." My heart sank. "Really, Johnny??" I tried to sound neutral, but my overactive imagination was already brewing up possible reasons. He doesn't like homeschool? He feels the pull of peers already? Could this be a sign from the Holy Spirit that this child will need something different, and we'll have to investigate brick-and-mortar schools for him?

I tried to prepare myself for whatever reason he gave, and said, "OK, Johnny, why do you think that?"

"Well, Mama, I think in a bigger school they'd have more desks for the children, and then I could have my own desk."

A desk! Needless to say, within a very short time we'd made a trip to Office Max, purchased student desks for the older girls, rearranged the dining room, and put Johnny and his little sister front-and-center in their own little school desks. It's now two years later, and I haven't heard another word from Johnny about going anywhere else for school! (Mary-Eileen from Wisconsin)


Recently, my five year old daughter was working on memorizing the ten commandments. She had memorized the first five (through "Thou shalt not kill.") perfectly. I had prepared myself to explain the sixth to her - "Thou shalt not commit adultery" by explaining that husbands and wives get married to each other and stay that way until they die - i.e. that they can't get married to someone else... So we started working on the 6th commandment. I read it to her and she recited it back. Then I asked her if she knew what it meant. To my surprise she answered "yes." She went on to explain, in a very serious voice, that "You're not supposed to yell at adults." (Alicia from WI)


My 3 year old son thought that St. Michael, St. Raphael and St. Gabriel were the three HarkAngels as in Hark the Herald Angels Sing. (Alicia from WI)


I was taking my son to his therapy session and it was raining and I didn't bring a book bag with me. I walked him in to his class, but on the way in I had my hands so full that I put the cell phone down my shirt and promptly forgot about it. Usually I'm all by myself, but there was a gentleman sitting across from me when the phone rang. I pulled it out and had to explain that "I had my hands full." (Therese from VA)


My four year old daughter had been sitting in on our lessons and my seven year old was memorizing the Act of Contrition. Well, she memorized it too. One day she was at her uncle's house and she starts saying, "Uncle Chris, Uncle Chris, I can say 'Oh my God'." Her uncle told her that that wasn't a good thing to say. But she persisted and said "But my Mom said I can." Her dismayed uncle repeated "NO, that is not good." But again she said, I can say it. Listen, "Oh my God, I'm heartly sorry........." And Uncle Chris had a good laugh. (anonymous homeschooler)


My three year old son recently asked for some lined paper without any lines on it. (anonymous homeschooler)


My friend's five year old daughter was learning to tell time in her Kindergarten workbook. The lesson was a fairly easy one where all the pictures showed clocks at the top of the hour. She was answering the problems aloud to her mother...ten o'clock, twelve o'clock...but when she got to three o'clock, she gave the answer as "Divine Mercy" time! (Jodi from VA)


My five year old daughter was talking to her daddy about ears (she had recently watched a PBS show about music). She eagerly explained that there are even bones in your ear, like the drumstick. (Alicia from WI)


My daughter had often heard stories about St. Lucy's Day, particularly from the "American Girl" stories about Kirsten. We talked about making St. Lucy's Day buns for several years before we finally got things together one year when Jacinta was six or seven. She was very excited about the big day and spent lots of time making a beautiful paper wreath with paper candles. We picked up some saffron at the grocery store and worked busily in the kitchen the night of December 12th. Since I had been a little disorganized about the timing, I had to stay up late finishing the baking but assured Jacinta that I would wake her up just before dawn so that she could bring Daddy the buns and some hot apple cider before he got up for work. We even "cheated" on the hot apple cider by picking up some powdered apple cider mix that dissolved into hot water. I finally went sleepily to bed at about midnight having filled a platter with charming pretzel shaped sweet breads with a nice glossy finish. Jacinta must have been pretty anxious about catching Daddy while he was still in bed, for we were gently awakened at about three in the morning by a nightgown clad little girl in a paper crown eagerly offering Daddy a St. Lucy's Day bun (with no plate) and a half cup of very lukewarm apple cider. =) (Alicia from WI)


I don't know if it is habit or the fact that he doesn't hear the rest of us when he is praying along; but my son still recites the St. Michael prayer pronouncing that Satan and all the other evil spirits are "...crawling about the world..." seeking the ruin of souls. Make no mistake - crawling is quite a feat for a worm! (John from WI)


When my children were young Abe Lincoln by Ingri and Edgar Parin D'Aulaire was one of their favorite books. My three year old daughter was making sand-castles in the back one day. While they looked like a collection of sand-hills to the untrained eye, she was kind enough to elaborate on their construction. "This sandcastle is like Abraham Lincoln's house," she explained, "because it has bear-skin rugs." (Alicia from WI)


When my second child was three, she started swim lessons. At the end of the lesson, the class always played "Ring Around the Rosie". My daughter insisted on singing at the top of her lungs for all to hear, "Ring around the Rosary..." (Christine from WA)


When our third child was six, I sat down with him for some schoolwork. We went through math, Phonics, science, religion and a small amount of some other areas. He was very excited about joining in with the older two children.. I realized how excited he was when he was in the bath that night and announced, "You know, Mum, I feel nine." "Do you?" I replied, "How come?" "Because I can read and do maths so good that I don't feel six any more, I feel nine!" Lana (Australia)

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