Flip fantasia!

After Moomin’s school choir concert — in which 50 kids sang Nickelback’s “Rock Star”, “Time After Time”, “I’ll Stop the World”, and (again) Bohemian Rhapsody — I tried to get him to think of some very silly songs for adaptation for a kids’ choir. He was underwhelmed by the Langley School Project version of Space Oddity, and didn’t think that Sleater-Kinney’s Words and Guitars would translate well to choral adaptation. I disagree, it would totally rock and has great lyrics.

Anyway, after that I was treated to this improvised dance to Cantaloop:

After the first minute the dance gets amazingly interesting! I like Moomin’s improvisations very much. At some point I couldn’t resist dancing a little bit with him so it’s rolling shaky-cam time.

First day of fourth grade

first day of fourth grade
Originally uploaded by Liz Henry

“Mom, I like Mr. Rockclimber. He’s nice. But I am a little bit *suspicious*.”

“Oh really, how come, did he crash into your car or something?”***

“No. What? Actually, he did not TEACH. He just TALKED. Talk, talk, talk. All about what we were going to do. Talk, talk, talk, talk. I wonder if he is going to actually teach us anything.”

“Did he talk about anything interesting?”

“Well… maybe about himself. But he’s supposed to TEACH.”

How well I remember hating that first-day syllabus reading and policy declaration jawing from every first day of school all the way through college! Talk, talk, talk! OMG, give us a handout and get on with the job!

On the other hand, as a teacher of college freshmen I realized that only about two people in the class would read the handouts, so it was best to read everything out loud to them. Boring!!!

And as a student, did I keep those handouts and refer to them? NO! I lost them as promptly as possible. I was horrible. Even when I had them, and they were read out loud to me, did I follow their rules? We all know the answer to that one…

Moomin is very excited to think what he will learn this year. To me he seems more alert and interested in the world and in various subjects. His electives, or as they are creepily called here in the land of ultimate capitalism and anxiety about social class, “enrichment”, will be Dragons, Sailing, and Gardening. But first… a little brush up on the basic math facts as we seem to have drifted off into Arty Superhero Gamer Land and forgotten our 6 + 12s and our 4 x 9s. I say “we” on purpose. I am bad at remembering my basic math facts and sneakily use a calculator, write things down, or type “bc” at my Unix prompt to do the simplest arithmetic.

I was so proud of Moomin and felt all emotional as Rook and I stood there with our Parent Club donuts watching the kids file off into school. The mystery of what they do all day! Don’t you wish you could do a Freaky Friday and try out fourth grade for just a day or two?

***Mr. Rockclimber and I had a little fender bender in the parking lot last year… I sure hope his insurance didn’t go up from it.

Pledge for our Mathathon!

Through his school, Moomin is participating in the St. Jude’s Hospital Mathathon. He will have a workbook of math problems, and will have 1 week to do up to 250 problems. I pledged him 50 cents per problem!

playing "multiplication madness"

If you’d like to pledge, please send me an email and let us know how much you’ll donate per completed math problem. I think we would also need your full name. The sponsor form asks for 5 cents per problem as a mininum. You would have to then snail mail us a check for the amount in mid-April, with the check made out to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

Moomin says:

You should pledge for my Mathathon because the school wants to raise money for the hospital for kids who have cancer. I pretty much really like to do all kinds of math problems, and I’m pretty much hoping that there will actually be some challenging ones. Like some challenging multiplication. I’d like that!

very nice park guy took our picture