Category Archives: misshapened pancakes

“Blue’s Clues” lesson for the day!

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If you are a parent of a preschooler, a grandparent of one, or are a

teacher of younger children you will recognize the titled female dog

named “Blue.” Which, just to be funny do you remember Johnny Cash’s

silly song, “A Girl Named Sue?” For some reason, that crossed my mind

as I wrote that first sentence!

I love the way the young man who is not animated, Steve, relates

to the dog, “Blue” and all the lessons you can learn from the way

they carry out their conversations with Blue barking and Steve

interpreting his barks. What a lovely way to show communication

between animals and owners.

I enjoy hearing the interactions and seeing the hidden pictures

that the kids react to,  usually including three “clues” of paw prints

given on each show. I like to hear my grandkids getting involved;

sometimes yelling at the screen, “Look over there!” or “It is green!”

in equal parts enthusiasm and confidence in knowing the answer

to the questions given. It is interactive, as many of the younger shows

are created with learning “sound bytes,” inserted in amongst the

fun and animation. There is also “Magenta,” Blue’s best girlfriend

and the boy cat named “Periwinkle.” There are others like the

“Shovel,” “Pail,” “Mailbox,” and clock, known as “Tickety Tock.”

Steve has a younger brother, Joe, and the “cutest family ever,”

as Marley is known to exclaim, is Mr. Salt and Mrs. Pepper with

their baby daughter who still sucks on a bottle or pacifier, her

adorable name is “Paprika.”

Today, before making pancakes, scrambled eggs and hash browns,

my three overnight visitors were disparate in age grandkids. Kyah

(age 2 and 1/2), her older brother, Landen (age 8 since October) and

Micah, their cousin, (age 4 and 1/2). The “rule” is first one up in my

house (apt.) gets to choose the show. Kyah chose, “Blue’s Clues” on

Nickelodeon, Jr. or Nick, Jr., a creation of two women and a man

that are also the producers. Their teamwork makes a very well

rounded show, I think.

Their Lesson for the Day was about art! Right up my “alley!”

I sat drinking some coffee to learn the lesson and listen to the

beginning banter. It had three different styles of artwork, all

different techniques and interestingly enough, educational

at a higher level than preschool.

First picture was a “realistic” one or “natural setting” of a fish

in a seaweed and watercolor painting. The children were told

to, “find the fish!” That one was easy to see and the style was

emphasized as “Realism.”

The second picture was one with crayons and paint which if

you were to implement it, you would call it “crayon resist

painting.” Do you remember how you would make a picture

and the art teacher would emphasize filling the parts with

the crayon using a “heavy hand?” Then, the second part you

would paint over it with your watercolor box. Sometimes,

younger children leave too many ‘holes’ in the drawings,

but this can also make it ethereal and like stained glass, too.

This painting had a hidden fish or two and the style used

was called, “Impressionistic.” (Wow! I thought!) Landen

even was saying he was not sure he had heard of that “big

word before,” when I asked him if he could say the word

back to me.

The third kind of artwork that Steve utilized in the lessons

was gluing squares of tissue paper to produce a seaside

scene of water, seaweed or underwater plant life with

a fish. This one you could see the fish the easiest of the

three. Steve declared this a “Mosaic” and emphasized how

the squares became able to be identified more, the farther

away you moved from the picture. I liked this idea of giving

the children a lesson in perspective, too!

They were allowed to drink chocolate milk and we switched

to one of my favorite cartoons, which is kind of scary for Kyah’s

age but she is the youngest of four children, so she is unfortunately

exposed to much more than the isolated, unitiated “first child.”

It was “Scooby Dooby Doo” and I sang the song from the kitchen

while getting them cups of chocolate milk to keep them satisfied

while I made a pile of silver dollar pancakes. This time my silly

creation was a “ghost pancake.” I am not sure if I have ever shared

this, but usually one misshapened pancake is not only ‘oohed’

and ‘aahhed’ but I purposely label it one thing or another. Just to

keep the fun going, on a simple level.

This was a fun morning and I was glad to have my oldest daughter

appear to have a cup of coffee, (Butter rum from my friend, Jenny)

and take Micah off, he had a Boy Scout Nature Hike to go to with

Skyler, who Carrie had to head to her ex’s house and pick up to

attend.  I sent her home with pretzels and the rest of the gummy

bears.

I got Landen and Makyah ready by enlisting their help to complete

the “clean up” chore, while I sang the “Clean Up” song. They know

I am constantly following behind them, after we played golf, after

we played Dominoes, after the hide and seek, while they slept I

put away the flashlights, etc. No one dares complain or I am hard

to the core, I ask them in a kind of mean way, “Do you want to

come back and spend the night? Then, shape up and clean up!”

I am really a ‘marshmallow’ but the harsh tone does prevent, for

the most part, laziness and sloppy guest etiquette!

Hope this post will make you smile and enjoy your week!