Unschooling Today 4/15

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Today was a pretty fun day for the whole family. We wanted to get some last minute family time in before Papa had to go back to work tomorrow. The original plan was hiking, but both kids were kind of tired from a busy week. Instead we took a short walk to see if a nearby nature center was open. It wasn’t unfortunately, but we did get to see a few animals they had outside while they were healing from injuries. We checked out a turkey vulture, a red tail hawk, and a screech owl, read about their characteristics, their diet, and their injuries. Then we looked at the collection of honey bees the center is keeping. I am not sure why we didn’t get any pictures here. I guess I was distracted for some reason!

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We stopped at the store on the way back, and Elijah and I ran inside to get a few things I had forgotten. He asked if we could buy some popsicles, and I say yes of course! I enjoyed the few minutes of time with just him.

We headed home where I made an early dinner. Hailey had been asking for me to make meatloaf for some time, swearing up and down she loved it and would eat it. So we made it together. Hailey, not surprisingly, didn’t eat it. I had a feeling that once it was baked she might feel like it was out of her comfort zone, especially on a day that she was feeling kind of off anyway. But Papa and I enjoyed it and she had peanut butter toast.

We headed out for a program through our local metroparks. It was a nocturnal frog search. We did this last year and it was a lot of fun, so we were all excited to do it again. The guide talked about frogs, and shared some cool facts. The kids were armed with flashlights and headed out. It didn’t take long before Papa spotted a frog and helped the kids catch and take a look.

After a bit of studying, we released them back. Someone else found a sack of salamander eggs. I didn’t get a picture, but it looked like a giant slimy booger. Yuck! Another person found a crawdad, and the kids took a look. Hailey gladly gave it a pet, but Elijah was hesitant. Then there was a small box turtle that was hiding in his shell. That was pretty cool to see in his natural environment.

It was getting pretty dark, so more creatures were coming out. A friend spotted a water snake. Hailey was dying to take a look, so Papa grabbed it up and put it in a container to examine. We showed it around to whoever was left and let it go.

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My friend identified this as a juvenile northern water snake.

 

Thanks to our friend, I have learned round pupils vs slit is the telltale difference between a venomous and non-venomous snake.

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On our way out we found a couple big toads that the kids held. Hailey was really fearless with all the creatures.

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We stopped at the swing and the kids swung a bit with a friend while talking about the stars and planets.

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Everyone is asleep now, and I am just winding down. Please feel free to share about your unschooling day in the comments!

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