A World without walls
everyday life while homeschooling overseas
Did you know that there are Jr. Ranger programs at the National Mall in Washington D.C.? Well, I didn't...until today! We were walking downtown to the Main State building (to get new passport photos and update Devin's stuff) and we walked past the Lincoln Memorial. As we were nearing the monument, we noticed a small ranger station (kiosk-esque style) and noticed that it said it was the Department of National Memorials and Parks... Hmmmm... So, we went to the information person and Voila! we are the proud owners of three Jr Ranger booklets! Luckily, we still have almost 2 weeks left here, so we can do them at our leisure and learn a TON about the monuments at the National Mall! Super cool! This will fit perfectly into the mini unit we're doing while we're here about the founding fathers/presidents/United States! Josh is Uber excited to add another badge to the hat (just wait until I get his Jr Ranger post up! What a hat he has!)--Andrew and Claire...not so much. But, they're going to learn things anyway. The Jr Rangers tend to have a lot of writing in them, and while I think it's important for the littles to do some writing, I think over-doing it is not a good idea. So I ask them questions or tell them cool stuff and they answer everything orally and I write it down. That works for us and they retain it better and are having a blast, so I have no problem with it. We learned all kinds of things about the Lincoln Memorial and the Vietnam Memorial today. The best thing about all of these Jr Ranger programs is that we learn more about the parks/memorials than we would otherwise. We seek out the rangers and ask them all sorts of questions and the kids are genuinely interested. We go on hikes that we wouldn't otherwise do. We look at memorials more thoroughly and with a more observant eye. It is such a great program. Everyone should do it. Seriously.
We didn't finish our Jr Ranger today, though. We got to Main State, the kids and I got our photos taken, then Devin had to wait to get his badge. We waited...and we waited...and we waited...and an hour and 40 minutes later he was done. Man, it was hard to keep 4 energetic kids occupied in a hallway for that long. We survived...barely. Then we had to run (literally) to the car as our time for parking was almost up! The kids were troopers and ran right along with us (well, Peter and Andrew were in the stroller and Devin pushed them. They whooped and yelled about how fun it was to go so fast! Ha!) and we made it just in the nick of time! Whew! It was HOT, and while we were hoping to float around and see some more things and find some cool D.C. t-shirts (always important when we're here to update the cheap off-the-street-vendor-touristy t-shirt), we just decided to sit in the A/C and go home with a quick side trip to Target to get some ice cream! Good times.
On another note: I love watching the Olympics. I can't help tearing up a bit as I watch cyclists tearing down the road, or synchronized divers execute something I couldn't even dream of doing. It's inspiring, even with all it's craziness and hype and politics. The people who compete are amazing and ALL of them deserve our awe. They're all Gold Medalists in my book.
Who Am I?
As a Stay At Home Mom of 4 wonderful children, I have the amazing opportunity not only to home school them, but to do so in many different places! I am married to the most amazingly wonderful (and handsome) man in the whole world! Together, we seek out, every day, that Joy in the Journey that makes life exciting!
by Dan Brown
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