Friday, December 18, 2009

Gingerbread Boy

Yesterday Aidyn and I made a giant Gingerbread Boy from scratch. He donned his imaginary chef's hat and helped me add ingredients to the bowl, mix them up, and taste the dough afterward. When our dough was finished, Aidyn and I kneaded it until it was ready for baking. Then the two of us spread the aromatic dough in a boy-shaped cake pan. Baking the Gingerbread Boy filled the home with such a warm, sugary smell that I wish we could have bottled! Once our creation was finished, we pulled him out and decorated him. After making the frosting, I spread some for his eyes, smiling grin, arm and leg sleeves, and buttons. Aidyn delicately placed gumdrops for his eyes, nose, buttons, and sleeve decorations. He was quite a handsome Gingerbread Boy when we were finished. And tasty! I'm glad that Aidyn is becoming more dextrous with baking: he's cracking eggs better, stirring better, and exhibiting more patience for our goods to be done. Most of all, I am proud that he is excited to work with me on kitchen projects.

We have also been listening to Franz Joseph Haydn this week, our fourth composer. Aidyn has definitely adapted to the music and enjoys hearing it. His favorite so far, according to him, is Bach.

Additionally this afternoon, I bought Aidyn a blue pocket chart (finally!) and some alphabet, word, and picture cards. The uppercase and lowercase letters were all jumbled, and, surprisingly, Aidyn asked if he could help me fix them. I laid all the lowercase letters on the table and pulled one capital letter at a time. "Will you find the uppercase G?" I'd ask. He looked through the sea of letters and produced lowercase g. He matched the whole alphabet and was only stumped by a handful of letters; for the most part, he can identify most of the letters. After I hung our letters on the chart, Aidyn pointed to several letters, unprovoked, and said their sound. Pointing at V, he said, "That one says Vvvvvvv," and then pointing at S, "That one says, "Ssssss," like a snake. "There's Z for Zorro and Zurg," he noted. His favorite phonic game is when I ask, "what does U say?" and dramatically pretend to punch his tummy. Equally dramatic, he groans, "Uuuuh."

I am excited about this new phase in Aidyn's learning. He's become such a verbose motor-mouth. He asks so many wonderful questions, makes great observations and deductions, and has a pretty wide vocabulary range, surprisingly me daily with certain words he knows. "Jerry is exercising for he can have big muscles," he said today. Yesterday he informed me, "I can be a (sic) archer and shoots my bow and arrow on a hill." "Can we build a tobaggan for me for I can go doooown the hill in the snow?" he asked, while I had no clue what a tobaggan was. I thought he was just making up words. When I asked him what a "tobaggan" was, he answered, "a sled that you can get in and go 'weeeee' down the hill real fast."

I've made plans for next year's curriculum, still keeping it fun and explorative, and I cannot wait to see what journeys we go on!

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