Do a sheet of 100 math problems. I had written a little computer program
that churned these out. He hated it, and they were a pain for me to
Mouse Math or some other kid math software. For older kids,
Spiro Math program is more of a challenge.
five faces, a cow, a picture from a comic book, a copy of a picture in
an art book, a deer in three different positions.
scene from the book you are reading.
next lesson in the Draw Squad book.
the French Impressionists book and find the picture you like best. Write
down the page it is on and why you like it. Use full sentences. 50 words
kangaroo in the encyclopedia. Where do they live, and for how long - 30
the library and check out a book about birds.
your book. The day always started with this for Pete. He could pick what
he wanted to read, but it had to be a chapter book. I would either read
the book, or scan it so that I could quiz him on content at review
Teaches Typing for 20 minutes. Used the first year - he hated this.
Beacon typing for 20 minutes. He hated this too, but man-oh-man can that
kid type today. I think these loathsome drill programs were probably
responsible. By the way, we use to have typing races sometimes, and I
had to practice too to make any kind of a showing. By the second summer
he could beat me hands down, but I the experience, after 40 years of
hunt & peck, taught me how to touch type.
Dacta is a fancy add-on for Legos that includes gears, motors and
pneumatic fittings. It comes with a bunch of project cards, some of
which are quite challenging. Pete loved doing these. I am sorry that
Lego Mindstorm was not available back when we were doing office hours.
Both he and I would have had a lot of fun from that.
tetrahedron model using
outline for your own Star Wars episode. Write the first page of the
instructions for getting up in the morning or some other simple task.
milk and bread at Uni-Mart.
hinges on the bathroom door.
safe small job around the house.
apart a broken computer, clock, turntable to its smallest pieces. (Not a
the Magic Trick book and learn a card trick that you can show me. I have
about 30 books on things like magic, cryptography, toy making, Boy Scout
merit badges, old-time boy’s activities, art, exploration, mysterious
places, how things work, op-art and polyhedra. All of these were
potential sources of tasks, and he often had to root through this home
library in search of the proper book.
hunts. These started simple and became quite complex. The one I remember
best was The Mystery of the Four Fins. Pete did it with his
cousin, JP, who was visiting for the week. It went something like this:
Clue 1: Something
is wrong with this lawnmower.
This took Pete and JP to the lawnmower in the garage. Tied to the blade
Clue 2: Hmm,
pretty dull. Better look at a new one at Shirey's.
This took them to Shirey's Hardware - the folks there were in on the
game. Tied to a new blade was...
Clue 3: A message
written in Klingon.
This took them home to the Internet, where they found the Klingon
alphabet and deciphered the clue to read...
Clue 4: Where the
Hufnagels are buried.
This took them to the cemetery,
where, in a film cannister hidden in the grass at one corner, they
Clue 5: 747.54
P13m4 page 115
This took them to the public
library, where tucked into page 115 of a particular book, they found the
four fins - four $5 dollar bills.
Polaroid camera to take 5 nicely composed pictures in the back yard.
old film camera to take 12 pictures that tell a story. Take the film to
CVS and have it developed.
Gloss Jewelers and talk to Mr. Gloss about his business. I, of course,
made sure that Mr. Gloss was available to give a tour to a lone