This blog is no longer kept.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

The Mafia Project

We have dead bodies all over our lounge room floor. A Mafia hit was ordered and their handiwork is scattered like cushions and rugs on our cold hard white tiles. The red blood of the Sicilian born family has spread like tomato paste on a pizza.

The History of the Mafia project is coming along great guns. I have been amazed at Boy's ability to maintain his concentration. He has looked up sites, printed interesting snippets off, found pictures that fulfilled his need for blood and gore and learnt so much trivia about Mafia bosses that I hope he has a chance to one day correctly answer a quiz question.

Did you know that Al Capone died of syphilis? What's that, enquired Boy. Smiling wickadly, I thanked this teachable moment that had been thrown into our home school day. From Mafia to sexual health without any planning. I love this home school stuff.

Without a vehicle to go and purchase cardboard for Boy's Poster project, we improvised with an empty beer carton. The uncoloured cardboard looks fantastic as it gives a rough, ready, prohibition feel to the project. Rather than glue everything down immediately, we thumb tacked the printed information onto the cardboard while we decided upon best placement. Boy is not stuck on the idea of the thumb tacks but I love it. I think the tacks add another metaphor - a stabbing of criminal activity. Boy thinks I'm weird and has opted to await step father's advise about placement and more pictures or written information. What - he must think his step father is some kind of Don!

Mafia is bad parenting business: While we were tacking information to our poster board, a workman came in to tell me he was finished his task. He asked Boy about his project and commented that it was an interesting choice for a nice little boy. Almost embarrassed at my perceived bad parent status as intonated by Mr Workman's statement, I immediately explained why we home school and how we work through Boy's obsessions.

As I defended our choice of project, I could hear the voice in my head tell me to be quiet: I had no need to defend why we were learning about the Mafia. As it turned out, I had jumped to conclusions about Mr Workman's intonation. He was genuinely interested and he and Boy had a great chat about gambling, prohibition, and family values. More teachable moments thanks to a workman we've never even met before.

Boy and I are now going to watch The Godfather movies, just to make the learning cement in Boy's head and to hopefully rid him of any Robin Hood romantic notions he may have about the original reasons for the birth of the Mafia.

Related article:
Mafia Madness


Elisheva Hannah Levin said...

About the workman: Isn't interesting how we express our insecurity by over-explaining in response to something someone didn't say.

I find myself doing that rather a lot.

Megan Bayliss said...

lol - yes. We project our fears onto others.
What a decent man the workman ended up being. He runs a youth group and said he has several kids on the Autism continuum.
Boy has gone to his Dad's for a long weekend again. It is show holiday day here today.

This blog is no longer kept. I am instead blogging only to Imaginif Child Protection became Serious Business