Friday, June 18, 2010

progress report week: science

As hard as it might have been to write a progress report about reading the other day (because reading happens day in and day out around here and I long ago stopped gauging my kids' reading ability, since they are capable of reading pretty much anything), I think that science might be an even harder topic to quantify. (Hm, I think that might have the makings of a good joke....)

Our entire lives are science -- every minute of every day the kids are making observations and discoveries about the world they live in, the way things work, the ins and outs of living organisms, the chemistry and physics of life. Whether or not I choose to label it as 'science' is entirely beside the point. They are learning either way and there's nothing I can do to stop it, even if I wanted to.

Even in the formal portion of our science curriculum, there is a great big blurring with art, since most of our artistic digestion of the Nature Stories (which comprise the aforementioned curriculum) was done via watercolor painting this year. I find that nature just lends itself to art, don't you? That LIFE (and hence, science) lends itself to art. It's just screaming to be acknowledged, interpreted, recorded, seen through the lenses of our own unique eyes. (And look, it lends itself to poetry too, which in itself is art. Or is it writing? Or reading? You see my problem with this?!?!?!)

Even their play is science -- here they are with their friend Fluffy, playing -- ok, well, building -- or rather, creating with legos at an exhibit at the Springfield Museums (where there is currently a lego-based sculpture exhibit, which deserves it's own post when I get a chance....but anyway, right back around to art again!). But this isn't in the art museum, this is in the science museum where lego robots are observing and recording the weather as we speak. Science. Art. Life. It's all the same, I tell you!!

But anyway, back to the "progress" part of this report. This academic year we spent gobs of time at both the Springfield Science Museum and the brandy-new CT Science Center, and the oldy-but-goody Children's Museum, where we got more than our money's worth out of our memberships to all three places. We saw a multitude of planetarium shows, we looked through telescopes aimed at planets and nebulae, we participate in classes and programs on matter, chemistry, geology, ecology, biology.... we got hands-on experience with high-tech science equipment, and we sifted through pond muck for dragonfly nymphs. We built robots and wired circuits and sent paper helicopters soaring up to the ceiling. We got up close and personal with insects, slugs, earthworms, reptiles, birds, and mammals.

We had a rollicking good scientifically artistic (or artistically scientific) time.

And we don't plan on letting the good times stop anytime soon!

1 comment:

Hyper Bueno said...

Hi Harvest Moon, I loved this post. I look forward to teaching my child(ren?) with a similar hands on approach and exploring life at the same time. I am sure that your kids are personable and outgoing from going to so many functions at your local museums. I look forward to reading more!