I mentioned a movie with Billy Crystal a few days ago. I’m pretty sure the name of the movie is Forget Paris.

Beyond that bit of miscellany, here we are on a cold February, Saturday morning. Papa Chris is coming home tomorrow!! Much rejoicing!

This morning, as I check my email and drink my coffee, Whingari showed me that she wanted the cuisenaire rods to play with. She’s very good at communicating, this little girl. She grunted and pointed at the rod-bowl on a high shelf. When I asked if she wanted it, she smiled and pointed — with her tiny little index finger — to a spot on the carpet where she wanted it placed. As soon as I put the bowl there, she plopped her little cloth-diaper-clad-tuchas right next to it and started exploring.

Within minutes both of her brothers were sitting with her exploring the rods. These are NOT new to us. We’ve had this bowl of rods for all of Theo’s life. And the only reason they’ve lasted that long is because we clean them up and put them away so that the littlest pieces do not get lost (or swallowed.)

Yet every time the come down off the shelf, everyone wants to handle them.

So, here’s Nic making a stair-step of them, showing the longest rod to the shortest. And, there’s Theo, showing how many smaller rods have to be linked together in order to equal the length of the longest rod. And, finally, there’s Whingari, just trying to use her growing motor skills to link two together successfully.

Now, it doesn’t have to be an ‘official manipulative’ to be good, fun and educational. But I have found these rods to be well worth the $20 I spent for them 5 years ago.

No worksheets for these three children, yet each of them, in their own unique way and with their own unique stage of understanding — ‘did’ math this morning…while I drank my coffee. Awesome!