Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Rhubarb Spoke and the Universe Listened

It is as if Rhubarb stated her intentions for her education and the universe responded with a resounding "Yes!"

Rhubarb declared a few weeks ago that she wanted all of her learning to be accomplished through the arts: painting, weaving, crocheting, knitting, dancing, singing, acting, violin (she has since added sewing, cooking, and working with children -- an art form in and of itself).

She is already involved now or has been involved in several of these pursuits, namely knitting, singing, dancing, acting, violin, sewing, and cooking.  So we started our journey by asking our local homeschool group's art teacher if she would be willing to teach an acrylic painting class that focusses on color.  She was quite enthusiastic about the idea and put together the following syllabus:

  • Week 1: How humans see color. Discuss and make Benham's disc. Make color wheel.
  • Week 2: Discuss primary, secondary and tertiary colors. Mix paints.
  • Week 3: Discuss shades. Mix shades white-gray-black. Discuss history.
  • Week 4: Begin acrylic painting on canvas board.
  • Week 5: Finish paintings on canvas/objects.
The class starts in two weeks. Voila!  Painting: CHECK!

I queried some members of our community and learned of a shop in the city that sells weaving looms.  We bought a small one (6'X12') for $20.00, which she quickly mastered.  We had discussed a larger loom as a birthday present this spring.  Then, on Sunday, a lovely friend from our church  let us know that indeed she has a large lap loom that Rhubarb may use and some connections for lessons.

Weaving: CHECK!

We stopped by our local yarn store sometime last week and discovered that a crochet class was to start tonight.  Though it is for adults, they were happy to welcome Rhubarb, whom they have known through my addiction frequent visits (as a knitter) for about six years.  She started tonight and announced afterwards that the teacher would be searching for a skirt pattern for her to try.  She plans to make it in orange and yellow.

Crocheting: CHECK!

Though our schedule conflicts with our local homeschool group's spring theatre classes, Rhubarb will take a week-long acting class this summer that culminates in a full-length musical.

Acting, dancing, singing: CHECK!

About a month ago, I was talking with my friend who runs the Kids' Club at a local gym.  In passing, I mentioned how strongly time with babies and small children feeds Rhubarb's soul.  She is so invigorated by it, always learns so much, and truly adores the children.  Within a few weeks, "S" had created a pilot mentoring program through the gym, where older kids can essentially become apprentices to the movement therapists there, working with the smaller children.  Rhubarb started today, the first apprentice, by observing the toddler movement class.  She will observe again Friday and then participate as an apprentice every Tuesday and Friday.

Working with children: CHECK!

I plan to write more thoroughly about each of these topics and activities in the coming weeks.

For now, I am filled with gratitude -- for these amazing opportunities, for the incredible community in which we live, and for my daughter's clarity when it comes to her learning path.

Rhubarb's Recent Knitting Adventure

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