Monday, April 8, 2013

Follow Me Monday: Toto

This post won't be as personalized, because I was unable to take pictures of him most of the day because I was having bizarre iphone problems. So forgive the narrative and stock photos...

Today was an unusual day for Toto because he had to do STAR testing for the first time ever. As he is in second grade, and we are homeschooling through a public school charter, he is required to take these state tests just like all the other second graders in the state. He was not anxious at all, probably because I didn't tell him about the test till the last minute and because his Dad told him the test was to check what he knows to see if Mommy is doing a good job as a teacher. I joked that if my API scores are high I am going to rank myself the best public school on the block! :)

We arrived early to the testing site so he and Sweetpea were able to settle down for a few minutes before being led off by the proctors to their testing rooms. He took a tupperware and a water bottle in with him, that's all. No pencil and no book to read if he finished early. He was Mister Cool, Calm, and Collected. When I picked him up at about 1 pm he was giddy, said the test was very easy and that he finished early. I told him that smart, good-looking, and confident was a potent combination with the ladies and he thought that was very funny. He is only eight, remember, so jokes about the ladies make him giggle, not blush. He is not worried about going back tomorrow at all. I will be very curious to see how he does. It always seems like he does SO little, but yet he does very well whenever he is actually tested on something. He's a natural-born unschooler. He has decided that his "project" a la Project-Based Homeschooling will be Panther Jets (which was one of the WWII jets that Mr. Trapnell talked about last week.) 

He came home from the STAR testing and watched the video "A Natural History of the Chicken" on Netflix with Sweetpea, while they had all 3 chicks out in the family room on the couch with them. It is also available from

They figured out that they need to put old towels down on the couch before the chicks come out for a "field" trip because one of the chickens had an accident once on the couch. Did you know that chickens don't pee? I did not know that. He is surprisingly gentle with the chicks and is handling them quite a bit each day. These are going to be the most loved chickens ever. 

He watched some cartoons while I drove Sweetpea across town to her Little Flowers meeting, and by the time I got back he was fully dressed in his uniform and ready to go to his Little League game. I was able to watch the beginning of it, and the tail end, but missed the middle due to driving other kids around. He made a good play while covering 3rd base. He hit a single one time, and another time at bat, with all the bases loaded, I held my breath hoping he would have one of those life-changing moments when he made a hit (no matter how weak) and helped his team get some runs in. But, alas, he struck out. He is not a good baseball player (compared to the other boys) because he is the smallest and weakest on the team. But he has a big heart and is the most enthusiastic so it kind of makes up for it. The Coach enjoys working with him because he is a good listener and fun to have on the team. He is still young enough that just being a good team player is enough. In another year, the teams will get more competitive and I don't think he'll have as good of a time. They won't let him play "down" even though he is so small. We even had to provide an original birth certificate so that he could be on the team. {I found it ironic that the Little League has stricter citizenship controls than the public schools.}

After dinner, he watched some more TV and then finally put his mask on at bedtime without a huge fight. He has such a bad underbite the orthodontist has him in an expander and a head gear mask at night, but he hates to wear it. We have had so many fights about it over the last year I am sick of it. So when he does put it on without a fuss, it is always a good day.  

You can go see what other homeschoolers are doing over at

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