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Learning in Freedom

Welcome to Learning in Freedom, a blog all about the learning adventures (and mishaps) of the Allen family. My four children are unschooled, following their interests and passions every day and living the lives of their choosing. The purpose of this blog is to share our every day lives (and my not-so-humble opinons) with anyone interested in stopping by. We hope this will give a glimpse of how natural learning unfolds from day to day......

Friday, June 09, 2006


This blogging thing is great, but it's really just slices of life.
We get to ignore the bathroom breaks, loading the dishwasher, folding more laundry and just talk about the stuff we like.:) It's more fun that way, and only a part of the day to day reality. It helps me remember the meaningful things, the stuff that acts as glue in our relationships and lives together.

Today, Jalen and Sierra got off to a rocky start. There was more than one screaming session and I finally scooped Jalen up in the "story" blanket and sat on the couch to cuddle...hoping to avoid more disturbances and give Sierra a break. We snuggled and he started pointing to various squares, talking about the image or colors. He surprised me by noticing there was a mixed color and he knew that red was the color it took to alter it. There he goes, not learning things in linear order again, he knows mixes before he can really name all the colors consistently!
Red, orange and "lellow" were his faves today.

A breakfast of crepes and fried potatoes started an interesting discussion about food you could put inside of a crepe; ~potatoes, ~eggs/salsa/potatoes/cheese, ~ice cream, ~Dippin' Dots and PICKLES! ugh.

I got an email from a friend that read about our friendly snake in the garage. She shared a link about TN snakes (thanks Teri!) and we identified it as a black ratsnake. Perfectly harmless as we previously thought. When you give a kid some snake identification charts, he's going to want a google search to go with it (that would be Jared)! So off we went onto sea snakes, learning that their venom really isn't as deadly as we thought, since they can only inject a very tiny amount most of the time. We also learned there is an anti-venin available, and there are 32 species of sea snakes. Reading about the Pelagic sea snake led to a definition search (what the hell is "Pelagic" anyway?? I was sure it had been in science class at some point, but ???) Pelagic was "of the open ocean" or anything relating to the ocean. Pelagic sea snakes drift along in groups in the open ocean, hence the name. Cool. We talked about why they might have evolved to have the lidded nostrils, flat tails for swimming and ability to shed the excess salt that enters their bodies.
So much for boring old Tennessee black ratsnakes, we were onto the feared Sea Snake and that's where we stayed.

Sierra has taken to watercolor painting lately, enamored with the swirly colors and thick paper. We got her own paper at Michael's yesterday and she joined me in the art corner tonight while I wrestled with a difficult project. Jalen eventually wandered in and filled a cup with paint. I am usually gifted with several creations in the course of his art explorations.

Watched some Naruto with Jared, annoying him with many questions.:)
Another friend recently attended an anime convention with her daughter and we spent quite a bit of time perusing the pics this week and oohing and aahing over our favorite characters (thanks for sharing those Joyce and Kat!).
One of my favorite shows--Avatar--was well represented with an awesome "Ang", right down to the arrow on his bald head. Too cool!

As I was cleaning the kitchen tonight, I noticed a fly had gotten stuck in the honey (can't imagine who would leave a lid open around here) . As I pulled it out, he tried to fly, so I stuck it in some water and gave it a swirl to rinse the honey. The poor thing was pretty wet and tired, but we laid it on the window ledge to let it dry for a bit. Sierra wanted to go watch fireflies, so we took the fly outside with us. After a minute more on the deck ledge, away it flew. She was thrilled that we saved it. I'll probably be killing the darn things babies all summer! They tend to get annoying when you live across from a cow field. sigh.

I went to water my plant (picture a potted plant atop the kitchen cupboards, that trails down to the sink) and Sierra says "that's your Rapunzel-let-down-your-hair plant!"

Witty (adjective): 1) combining clever conception and facetious expression.


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