Wordless Wednesday – Outside!

 We finally have the cows out to pasture yesterday. It was so nice out, that I had the boys do their homework outside! Here’s a few snapshots I took:
 

George loves his "lawn mower."

 
 

This is one of EJ's favorites!

 

It's time for the cows to head to pasture!

 

EJ knows that anytime you deal with cows, you need to have your "rubby" boots on.

 

Junior may be our "foster" dog, but he's the best!

 
 

And he's terribly patient as well.

 

Big Bro is working hard on his homework!

 

Figuring, figuring, figuring...

 

Good thing he has all 10!

 
 
 

Excuse me, but do you have a license for this thing?

  

Notice the red tab in the window? Dad made sure they were driving legally! Ha!

 

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Ag Book of the Day – wrap-up

Today will be my last Ag Book of the Day post…until I decide to do it again! (That’s my perogative, as author, since this blog is about the only place that I have control! LOL!) I tried to feature an agriculture-based children’s book every day that the boys had school in April. It coincided with their April Reading Month theme of Cultivating Reading.

It was a fun month, and I loved some of the new books that I was made aware of, plus I’ve found a few others that I really can’t wait to add to my collection. And it was such a popular theme, that I’m sure I’ll do a week here or there, as I find new books to add to our collection.

Since I missed a few days, due to George’s little break he decided we needed, I’m going to feature three books today. Enjoy!

1) “The Life and Times of Corn” by Charles Micucci. With corn being such a big newsmaker lately, I wonder how many kids actually understand what it’s all about? This book goes into the actual history of corn, and how it’s used today. It gets great reviews, and I can’t wait to add it to our collection!

2) “Pigs” by Gail Gibbons. Who can live without a book about pigs? And I LOVE the illustrations!

Pigs

3) “How Do Apples Grow?” by Betsy Maestro. Probably for an older child, at least first grade or so. But when you’ve been asked a million times how or why we have apples, this book is a GREAT tool! Goes through each step and the seasons of a tree. Love it!

And, since I’m wrapping up my Ag Book of the Day month, I’m going to throw the best one in as last. Because I know that our farm has this book at the top of our list, and although we don’t refer to it nearly often enough, it’s always there with the answer when we need it:

Cultivating the future

I love my school.

Now, to clarify, I don’t ALWAYS feel that way, but who ever does? My sons attend the school that I graduated from…in 1995. In fact, they have had some of the same teachers that I had. Talk about a strange feeling, sitting across from your first-grade teacher, talking about your son! I still can’t call any of them by their first names.

This month is reading month. The theme??? Cultivating Reading. WOOHOO!

The whole month is focused on farming, agriculture, animals, etc. What a great opportunity! And you can bet I’m going to do my best to maximize it!

My plan is to shine the spotlight on a favorite ag book of ours, at least a few times a week. Now, as a disclaimer, I haven’t received approval or monetary donations from any of the authors…in fact, they haven’t a clue that I’m even doing this. I don’t know any of them personally (at least, not to my knowledge). But these are books that my family loves, and that we read together.

I’m an avid reader. I LOVE to read. I received a Kindle for Christmas and have already put over 100 books through it. (Hmmm…I may need to seek help.) I’ve been trying to instill in my children the same love of books, and so far, so good. Let’s hope it keeps rolling that way!

Today at school was “Hats off to books!” Day…or Hat Day. Scooter wore one of Boss Man’s farm caps, Big Bro wore a Cat-In-The-Hat hat. It was a Monday, and they were excited about school. Who could ask for more?

My book of the day?

It’s a great farm safety book, and one that we’ve read TONS of times! Plus, many county Farm Bureau’s sponsor safety days or safety camps, that reiterate what is taught in the book. It covers everything from ATV’s to cows to grain bins.

Do you have a favorite that you think I should check out? Something you’d like to see a spotlight on? I’d love to get more farm-favorite story books in our ever-expanding library! Tomorrow is Flannel Shirt Day – “Every which way with books.”

April is going to be a GREAT month!

First grade drama

Last night Scooter came home from school in tears. To clarify, this isn’t unusual. Scooter is a very sensitive boy…which makes him an easy target at school. And he’s a very large boy, which makes him a very big target at school. (And I don’t mean obese, I mean being 5 feet tall, 90 pounds at the age of 6, wearing a size 12 pant, size men’s 6 shoe and almost the same size cap as his dad!)

Big Bro (left) and Scooter when Scooter was still the little brother.

I’ve been seeing a lot of articles lately on bullying and the like, and I know exactly what these parents are going through. I watch it with my children frequently. But last night was rough, even by Scooter standards.

Big Bro on his tippy toes to take a pic with his big-little brother after a wrestling match.

He was upset because he says that no one in his class likes him. Come to find out, it’s because of his lack of getting smelly stickers on his papers. He thinks that means that his classmates don’t like him, that his teacher doesn’t like him, that school does not like him. We talked about it at length, I tried to explain to him that the stickers had nothing to do with how much people liked him and everything to do with his attention and detail in his schoolwork.

But for Scooter, school is merely a social event. The work is just the fluff he goes through to be able to socialize and be amongst the people. And that is also why any discouraging comments or remarks are exceptionally hurtful.

I was afraid when he started school that his personality would be his biggest stumbling block. He LOVES people…and I mean loves! The good news: he doesn’t share his love with other students. He tries to be mindful of their personal space. The bad news: most teachers enjoy having a student that is excited to see them each day, a student that wants to start and end each day with a hug and a thank you…but when you have a teacher that doesn’t enjoy those things, that’s when times get a little rough.

We’ll muddle through this, the best way I know how…but if you have any suggestions, please, don’t hesitate to throw them my way!

Vocabulary for today’s third grader

A few months ago our oldest son, Big Bro, asked why he didn’t have any stepbrothers. He didn’t think it was fair that he only had one mom and dad and no “extra” family members.

The outburst took me a bit by surprise. I didn’t know if I should be apologizing to him that his father and I have decided that whatever it took, we were going to make our family work. Or if I should be chastising him for taking our family for granted. Well, I went with option c: I told him how lucky he was to have a family of people that loved him, no matter what.

I was wondering where all of this came from then, but now I have an idea. My son just brought home some vocabulary words and work that he did last week. The lesson was titled,”Me and My Family,” but the four vocabulary words were: family, divorce, values and sibling.

Wow.

Out of all the words that could be used to describe family, divorce is in the top four? Perhaps this is part of the problem with today’s society? Maybe if we start giving children outs at such a young age, it just becomes second nature.

Well, I was a little proud in the fact that Big Bro didn’t know how to use the word “divorce” in a sentence. I know he knows what it means, but it’s not part of our daily vocabulary, and I’m not planning on using that word regularly. It cost him 3 points on his paper, but it was the only one he got wrong on the whole lesson.

I’m thinking that maybe he should have got extra credit.