Co-op, Speed Stacking, and the Clay Class Formerly Known as Effing

Today was the first day of homeschool co-op. Riley and Seth are taking a play writing class in the first block. In the second, Riley is taking puzzles and games, which is a lot of charades type games, mind teasers, thinking on her feet. Does she need her mom in that class? No she doesn’t.

Seth is jazzed about cup stacking for his second block:


You want to see kids thoroughly engaged? Get them cup stacking. And, it’s good for you!

…stacking improves hand-eye coordination and reaction time by up to 30 percent.
Sport stacking helps students develop bilateral proficiency equal performance on both sides of the body. By increasing bilateral proficiency, a student develops a greater percentage of the right side of the brain, which houses awareness, focus, creativity and rhythm. Stacking helps train the brain for sports and other activities where the use of both hands is important, such as playing a musical instrument or using the computer. Sequencing and patterning are also elements of sport stacking, which can help with reading and math skills.  
– From the website

The kids are also taking another session of clay class, (formerly known unaffectionately as effing clay class) and Riley has requested her mother NOT be there. So I am down the hall, for two blessed hours, (within earshot of screaming but not small blips, and in the path of the door should she bolt). Let me repeat. I am down a long hall, hands off, for clay class this year. Yesterday I was able to write for the full two hours. She had a couple of very small moments, but none that required my intervention.

Tutors come three days a week for a total of seven hours, (math, science, Spanish) thanks to the Ohio Autism Scholarship. We’re doing a ton of reading. Our schedule is very loose, but we have a lot going on. Last week was a field trip to the Art Museum.

It’s Friday afternoon and they are presently plunked in front of the TV, vegging with some popcorn. Soon they’ll be outside riding their scooters on this unseasonably warm and gorgeous day.

Riley thinks she wants to return to school for high school. Her motivation? She wants a boyfriend. This, she confided to her tutor. Did you hear the thud of Todd fainting over that one? Seth would like to be home forever, despite the fact there is a charter school here that uses Lego as part of their curriculum. He’s still intermittently wracked with lots of neurological tics and some other issues associated with PANDAS so I am glad for him to be home at this point in his life. I’ve learned not to look too far ahead.

For now, we are in a good place. Lots of freedom. Lots of activity. Lots of learning going on for all of us.

Have a great weekend!

Lovingly yours,


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7 Responses to Co-op, Speed Stacking, and the Clay Class Formerly Known as Effing

  1. Liz says:

    So happy for you.

  2. amber says:

    Oh, I’m sorry. You will have to inform Riley that I am not ready for her to be thinking about boyfriends. I’m sure she will understand, and comply like a good girl. Thanks.


  3. Amanda says:

    Ummm… how come she can’t find a boyfriend at home school co-op? Do they only move in school circles? and what Amber said…. but then again… she’s thinking about forming close relationships! *YAY!* and there is a while to go before High school, right?

  4. Dee Ready says:

    Dear Michelle, thank you for introducing me to cup stacking. I’d never heard of it before nor seen how quickly it can be done. I can readily see how doing that exercise would develop dexterity and stimulate the brain.

    Two full hours to write. You must have felt as if nirvana had enveloped you. I’m wondering what you are writing now, after publishing your memoir a few weeks ago.


  5. I was working on a forthcoming blog post about the memoir and the decision to publish it independently. I am also working on a second memoir which picks up where the first left off. It is much more light hearted than Daughter of the Drunk at the Bar. Kind of a Bridget Jones goes to DC and finds herself with a White House press pass and hasn’t a clue what she’s doing but somehow fumbles through.

    We’ll see where it goes.

  6. kario says:

    Love this! Love the co-op and the classes they offer. Love that you’re so hands off this year. Love the Ohio tutoring scholarships. Love that you’re writing. Love that Riley is thinking ahead and that there is a school that uses Lego even if Seth doesn’t want to go. Eve’s sixth grade science class is using Lego to build simple machines right now and she comes home every day feeling like she’s gotten away with something.

    Ahhh, life is good!

  7. Carrie Link says:

    Teach me how not to look too far ahead. And hurry.

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