Friday, February 19, 2010

When Kids Teach Themselves...

I love has fostered a constant environment of learning around our house...nearly everything we do - even the 'fun stuff' (not that education isn't fun...but the non-school know what I mean!). 

But the coolest part about it is seeing my kids choose activities that foster learning themselves.  Like when they are given TV time and they choose to watch "How Stuff Works" on Discovery Channel instead of Hannah Montana.  Or they do their Spelling City games for FUN during free computer time instead of playing their favorite mindless game. 

The other day La La was playing outside for quite some time, all by herself.  Every time I'd glance out I'd see her cavorting amongst the pine trees.  Later she came in with a tupperware filled with nature's goodies and asked us all to gather about so she could tell us of her findings. 

She spread out her wares before us...a sprig of pine needles, a pinecone bud, pincones of varying sizes, some closed, others open, and one that was shriveled and old.  She deducted the steps of the life of a pinecone from her findings and was largely correct. 

Later she 'hid' her tupperware of findings outside on the deck to keep it away from her younger sister.  When she brought the bucket back in, she was amazed that the previously open pinecone was now closed.  She wondered aloud why that may be.  Enter Google (because I didn't know the answer!) and we discovered that pinecones open as they dry out and close when they encounter moisture.  Pinecones were ancient barometers! 

Learning that wasn't even part of the lesson plan...I LOVE IT!!! 


  1. That is cool! I've lived around pine trees all my life and never knew that that was why the cones opened and closed. Go figure. Great post!

  2. I never knew it either Julie! The things we learn as homeschooling moms! :)