We’ve been maintaining a really solid rhythm in our more academic subjects, doing a little bit of math and French (reading and writing) every day. Zahra and Noah have even stayed on top of their piano practice and theory workbooks. And whereas we had lost that good rhythm before, now I felt we had tipped the other end of the scale, stuck in a rut of workbooks and a let’s-get-this-done-so-we-can-move-on-with-our-lives attitude. Blah. Time to switch it up again.

So today, we forgot about math. We forgot about French, and we tackled all that “other stuff” that seems to have been pushed to the back burner lately in favour of our extracurriculars: the Nook, Robotics Club, etc. Zahra and Noah put the finishing touches on their maps of Canada. We started these way back in the fall, adding a few lines once a week, tracing the outlines with a fine point Sharpie, and today, we coloured them in and mounted them on card stock. Yea!

We watched two five-minute videos online: one from the Minute Nature YouTube channel that we follow, and the second about Marc Chagall, from the Grande Bibliothèque’s online collection. Chagall is an artist I fell in love with while living in France, and when I saw that Montreal’s Museum of Fine Arts has a large special exhibit on his work, I decided to do a unit on Chagall with the kids. We’ll learn more about him at home through books and a documentary, we’ll visit the exhibit, and we’ll even have a Chagall-inspired painting class with an artist friend of ours!

Next, we once again played with the parameters on Zahra’s wildlife camera, fine tuning our method. Zahra set up the camera in the forest behind our house, and we’ll check it tomorrow morning. Fingers crossed that we catch a fox or raccoon in action!

While we ate our snack, I read aloud to them from our current book, The True Blue Scouts of Sugar Man Swamp. It’s conversational tone and immersive setting make it an easy read-aloud. It’s a little slow moving, but the humour in the book keeps us going.

The kids took turns practising the piano, and then Zahra worked on a song she wants to perform at the Nook variety show. Get a sneak peek by clicking here.

Here’s another sneak peek:

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That’s a new subscription box in our family. It’s Think With Art, and it comes from the same Canadian company as Creation Crate. When they offered me free shipping, I decided to give the 3-month subscription a go. It’s mostly for Leila, and I think we’ll have a lot of fun exploring this first box this weekend. I’ll let you know how it goes!

Jill, Chloe and Gabriel came over for lunch, and then we tried to do a bit of history. I bought The Story of the World used, and it came in the mail last week. I had borrowed Cindy’s copy in December and done the first two chapters (“What is History?” and “What is Arcaheology?”) with the kids. Yesterday, we continued with “The First Nomads”, and so today, I quizzed them on what they remembered. The activity book suggests a colouring page of a man operating a shaduf, but I knew my two would not go for that—so I asked them to build a shaduf instead. They were initially interested but started fighting and went their separate ways. Later, Noah came up to me with an idea of how to build one—and as I type this, Zahra is sitting behind me trying to make one out of Lego—so I think they’ll regroup this weekend and finish the project.

Leila didn’t have time to go through her art box this afternoon because she had a play date with a friend from school. Emilie has come to our house before, and she’s the sweetest thing—all smiles and giggles. The two of them are so cute together—they walk around holding hands. When I picked Leila up later, she came home with this picture Emilie had drawn for her. Loves.

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