For those of you that don't already know, I run an after-school daycare. For the most part it works out perfect. I get to make art and jewelry during the day and spend the afternoon with my kids and a few extra kids come along for the ride. Everyday is bring your kid to work day for me. Between all the different kids, I've got a new perspective on schools. So, I started daydreaming about an imaginary school.
Disclaimer, I know NOTHING of actually running a school. The budget alone would, I'm sure, make this not possible. But it is interesting.
First, it would go year round. Summer break would only be a week or two at the most. And the hours would be 8 to 5. This is where I lost most of the kids. It's a shocker, I know. But I said, "Wait! Hear me out. No summer break and a longer school day, but no homework!" I had their attention again. Also, the extra time in school would not equal more math, science etc. I would bring back home economics, wood shop, ceramics, metal shop, etc. All the maker classes. Now the kids were really listening.
The current school lunches would definitely be OUT. Those things are gross. All kids would be a home cooked meal everyday, because they would be the ones cooking it. One of their classes would be cooking, and they would learn by cooking lunch for themselves and the rest of the school everyday. The menu would be varied to show kids all the different cuisines around the world. Parents would be encouraged to help out there too. They would learn cooking skills that they may not already know and learn about new cuisines as well.
Much of the food would be grown in the garden, also tended to by the kids. Teach them how to grow their own food. Even if they have no desire in the future to ever garden, at least they would know where their food came from. Including the eggs, because of course there would be chickens.
Woodshop/metal shop can focus on items that the school needs, from lamps to desks. Kids could design and build their own desks with their own personality to it. But also jewelry and sculpture. Not everything has to be utilitarian. I love it when it can be both.
Computers would definitely be a huge part as well. I am all for kids getting back into making things from scratch, from a loaf of bread to the desk they sit at. But computer are the modern world, and we need the kids to be prepared for it. But computers would be integrated into the school system as well. Tie everything together. The things computer programmers can do is amazing. And Arduino projects would be beyond awesome.
No penalties for going on vacation. If you've got the opportunity to go on a big family vacation for a few weeks, do it! If possible, I would try to do Facetime calls or something like that, so the class could get into it as well. See the world! Turn the trip into an opportunity for the entire class to see something new.
Teachers would get paid well. And would never need to buy school supplies with their own money. Ever. There would not be one teacher in front of one class. Multiple teachers per subject per room. Small class sizes. More opportunity for one on one.
Music. Theater. Art. Math. Science. Robotics. History. Anything. Learn anything. Everything. It all ties together. Grow the veggies. Learn how to prepare them. Clean up. Compost the waste back into the garden. Use and Arduino system to manage the garden's water levels and soil composition. Build the flower beds after working out the square footage needed for each crop to be able to get the required amount of food for the school. Manage the budget for all of that as well. Learn the history of farming and gardening. Learn the science regarding the soil.
So, I kept going on and on about this imaginary school of mine, droning on at this point, and I was expecting to see glazed over looks over all the kids faces. Nope. They were still all listening, excited even. I thought for sure I would have lost them with the no summer break and longer school hours. They just replied with. "Yeah, but there is no homework, right?" That's how much they HATE homework. They would willingly give up their summer break if it meant no more homework. And there are chickens, they do adore those chickens. They thought it was cool how all the stuff worked together and they get to learn stuff like woodworking and cooking.
That was a few months ago that I dreamed up my imaginary school. And the kids now will randomly say, "I'd go to your school." Most of the time, that comes when they are doing their homework. They REALLY hate homework.
Thanks for listening to me rant. Here is a picture of my chickens.
I have started so many projects, and even managed to finish a few. But that has left me with a ton of random bits and pieces all over the house, yard, garage... Anywhere I can shove stuff. So, I decided that I needed to use some of it. After all, I need more space for the more stuff that I will inevitably get.
So I challenged myself to only use what I already had laying around. So, this is my free table for outside. I made it counter height, figuring that I will use it during backyard bbq's as a drinks table, or something.
Let me know what you think!
Last year my I come home to from girlfriend/yarn/wine weekend to find 4 baby chicks have been added to our family. So stinken' cute!
Sadly, the darker one didn't make it. We learned A LOT about chickens that first month. We tried so hard to get it to the right temperature on the thermometer, without looking at the chicks to see how they were acting. They were on the far side of that box trying to just get away from the heat. Poor thing.
The slightly larger one at the top turned out to be a boy...
His immense size should really have given us a clue. He was such a sweetie. I debated keeping him for about ten seconds. Coincidentally, that's about the time in between his crows. Nope, I'm out. And I am sure that my neighbors appreciate that we didn't keep him. We found a local guy that would take him. So, we packed him in the pet carrier and off he went. Although we seem to have come home with 4 more chickens.
To my neighbors that have to listen to their "egg song" during the day, I am so so so sorry. Let me know if you need some eggs.
In the meantime, we are madly building them a chicken coop and chicken run.
And it's still a work in progress, but at least they are safe now.
Today a made a new pair of earrings from my Etsy shop and, I'm sure you're shocked, but they are chicken earrings. I may need to seek help at this point.
But did I mention that they weed the yard for me??
For all the items in my shop, I design them in the computer, cut them out of wood with the laser and then I hand paint them. This video shows my process for hand painting them.
I've always like the painting "Son of Man" by Rene Magritte. I don't know much about the painting or the painter. But I wanted to painting something for my husband, and this popped into my head. I painted this a couple of years ago and it still makes me giggle.
Here is the original
I signed up for a SketchBox subscription and had some fun with watercolor. I've never been a big fan before since there is no undo button, and it's a bit harder to fix mistakes. With acrylic paint, you just wait for it to dry and then paint over it. But I have to say, I had a lot of fun with these. It came with water color pencils, plus my Mom had given me some watercolor markers for Christmas. I've been doodling away.