Wednesday, November 07, 2007

braving the elements

I told the kids to pretend that we were Pioneers... and to be brave...

You see, it rained ALL day during our outing to Old Sturbridge Village yesterday. It was "Homeschool Day" and we all learned so much during our six-hour visit to this old, historic village...

I got to thinking about a quote from Maria Montessori about the developmental stage of toddlerhood (and to me, childhood in general)-
"Help Me Do It By Myself"
In essence, we are to train/teach/guide/show the child how to work at a task until they can do it by themself. Self sufficiency is the end goal.

It was evident that children of the 1830s were just that. We were told that children as young as 4 years old would begin learning to sew/mend and help with farm/household chores.

Ugh, and here I am thinking it too hard for my kids to put their blocks away in the appropriate toy bin. Sad. Very sad.

Sophia sitting down to "tea" at the Bixby House. The table was labeled as to where each dish and piece of silverware would be set for a perfect and proper tea party! Very "Sophia"...

Sophia and Nicolas in front of the Blacksmith Shoppe- Nicolas especially liked all the hammering, pounding and blazing of fire.

Elias playing his "drum"- he seemed to turn an 1830s kitchen into a musical experience.

Sophia on the otherhand really got into character and began running the kitchen as any strong fronteir woman would have done- "stack the wood", " sweep the floor", "get the chickens out of the kitchen"!

Resting in the sitting room of the "Parsonage". I LOVED this wallpaper and these chairs.

This was the "Fitch House" and its theme was children and play. Elias enjoyed tucking the "baby" into its cradle and covering it with a blanket... adorable!

The amazing thing about the day is that not once did the kids tell me they were bored, argue with one another or "act out". They were using all of their senses and their whole body and mind to take in this experience. Their minds were engaged and they were using their hands to do new and important things. The older pair took their turn at splitting wood. You could just see how proud they were of doing WORK.


Anonymous said...
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Nesting Momma aka Donna said...

wow, what a great day! I just love exploring with the girls...It's amazing how much they can and will do on their own when given the opprotunity. T my 4 year old has a new little sewing machine, without a needle, learning the basics. She is so focused and careful,mindful. I am amazed.
ps at
I have a fun kids worship CD giveaway going on!