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Sunday, September 14, 2008

Phoning It In

Today we entered a new phase of homeschooling. There always seems to be a new one, doesn't there?

Now that Jorge has recovered sufficiently from his flu and both he and Elle finally have their circadian rhythms readjusted, we began phone-schooling. It's not any different from what many of the not-really-homeschooling-distance education-students are doing here in Australia. They used to call it the School of the Air, maybe they still do, but lessons can be done over the phone, two-way radio, and internet. In our case, because Jorge and Elle are so mobile, we're relying on the phone and a very cheap phone card ($.02 per minute!) to get through this next bit.

After a little chit chat, I started in with our Prima Latina routine:

Salve discipulus.


Salve discipulus!


C'mon now, you haven't forgotten all of this already, have you?

No...but Dad's cooking dinner...

So let's get it done quick before he finishes... (Then, realizing she is shy about doing her recitation within earshot of anyone else) Oh! Why don't you go in the bedroom and use the other phone.

Okay. (A pause while she relocates and picks up the other extension.) Okay. (Another pause while she goes back to hang up the first phone.) Okay. (And another while she heads back to the bedroom.) Okay.

Ready? Salve discipulus.

Salve magistra.


(Giggles) I'm lying down.

Well, sorry, I don't know how to say that. Oremus. Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus...

(Together) Dominus Deus Sabbaoth...

Mom. Guess what?

Hang on, let's finish these first...

Guess what, Mom?

(Sigh) What?

(Long story about swimming under the dock at the island and descriptions of various sealife observed while Dad repairs damage to dock from Hurricane Ike. Detailed comparison with sealife observed on Gulf side of island.)

Okay. Let's try this again. Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus...

(We finish the four prayers and first declension and conjugation review.) Finis! Optime! Now let's do your grammar.

My book's in the car.

Well go get it.

It's locked. What's the code for your door again?

[Code number] Got it?

Nope. Hold on, I'm riding my scooter down the driveway to the car.

How about now?

Yep. Hey, Mom!


We got a new doorbell! Listen! (Ding dong, ding dong, ding dong, ding dong...)

Jorge yells in the background: [Elle]!

Cool. Got a pencil?


Sitting down?


Okay. Lesson 44...

Wait! Listen to this Mom... (Elle is apparently sitting at the piano and begins to play me a song. And then four more.)

That's great honey. Lesson 44...

(While diagramming the sentence "May I play?") Oh! Very important! Can you email Skylar's grandma and tell her I'm here and give her Dad's cellphone number so I can play with Skylar?


(While diagramming the sentence "Does ice float?") Guess what we're having for dinner, Mom?

Spaghetti with meat sauce?

Nope. Steak and green beans and mashed potatoes...

Jorge in the background: [Elle]! Dinner's ready!

I gotta go, Mom.

Hang on, let's finish this last diagram... What is the verb?

Does float.

What is the subject?


Great. Did you remember to capitalize the D in "does"?


Okay, I'll talk to you later. Tell Daddy to call me when you're finished. Ego amo te! Vale discipulus!

Vale magistra! Ego amo te etiam!


Total length of call: 64 minutes.
Total length of time necessary to complete both lessons: 15 minutes.

Good thing we have that phone card.

1 comment:

Bayberry Roost said...


Loved it.