Restaurant for Dinner

April 18th, 2014

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Kabir has been saving some money each month when he does $20 grocery dinner for us. This evening, I asked him to take us to a restaurant and use his savings to order food. The idea was for him to figure out how to order food in a restaurant, to calculate the bill, to calculate the tip. It was fun! He did amazing job! Hopefully, he realized that eating out is more expensive than at home.

Here’s Kabir’s report for this little project:

“Today I decided to treat my family to a Thai restaurant using my savings. We forgot the bill, but we know that the food costed $31.55, and I gave $5.45 as tip, and I spent $37.00 ($31.55 + $5.45 = $37.00).

I bought Pad See Ewe, Pad Ki Mao, steamed Thai dumplings, Thai iced tea for my parents, and four waters. I was also going to get Hai Karo soup, but my parents said it was too much, so I canceled the soup.

Now, I have zero savings. Either I had made a mistake in one of my calculations, or I had lost some money. According to my previous calculations, I should have $41.97, but I had only $36.97. I learnt from this that you should make sure everything is correct before you spend the money.

While ordering the food, I felt a mixture of happiness, proudness, and nervousness.”

Easter Egg and Basket – Lego Club April 2014

April 12th, 2014

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The plan was to get kids to make Easter eggs with Lego but the task seemed daunting and so, I tried it myself. It wasn’t easy and I had to get ideas for Lego Easter egg online. When I told the kids, they were unperturbed. They just start building. I asked them if they need help but they refused. It’s amazing how kids can be so confident. Here’s what they created.

Then they made Easter basket in groups to hold our Easter eggs.

Daniel brought his mini cars and parts to customize them. It’s an amazing work that we were honored to look at. He explained everything so patiently and eloquently. Thank you, Daniel!

buoyancy – Lego Club March 2014

March 30th, 2014

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Today, our Lego quest was buoyancy, i.e., we had to create a vessel that will float in the water (even though Arjun insisted on making a submarine that must sink but it didn’t). To make it more challenging, we used marbles to find how many marbles does it take to sink their vessel.

This quest was challenging enough to make a few kids go back and modify their design to make their vessel float. This assignment was fun for all of us. It seems I forgot to take photo of Jackson’s creation. Sorry, Jackson! Here’s what the kids created.

Brazil Party

March 18th, 2014

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Welcome to Brazil!

Welcome to Brazil!

As always, first we studied Brazil on our own and then we met last Saturday with several homeschoolers for the Brazil party. All the kids did great job. I particularly enjoyed kids presenting Brazil in the form of quiz/game. It was very interactive, fun and informative.

Homeschoolers at Brazil Party

Homeschoolers at Brazil Party

For food, we had Brazil nuts, Brigadeiros, Brazilian Wild Rice, Brazilian Cheese Puffs, Brazilian Limeade, pineapples and mangoes. I forgot to take photos.

Brazil party was a success!

At home, we had tried Brazilian chicken with coconut milk sauce, Rabanada (Brazilian-style french toast), and Brazilian hot chocolate. We thoroughly enjoyed Brazilian cuisine.

Brazilian Chicken with Coconut Milk Sauce

Brazilian Chicken with Coconut Milk Sauce

In January, we studied Brazil. As always, we completed our fact sheets. For famous person, we studied Pele. Kids made Lego version of the Brazilian flag. I did not feel the need to either help or correct Arjun’s creation.

Kids made cascarones.

Kabir completed a rainforest puzzle.


For famous landmark, we studied the Amazon Rainforest. Both kids made a model of rainforest. Here’s is the visual tour of Kabir’s model of rainforest. Kabir did 100% of the work. All I did was to tell him what to do. Kabir used glitter glue to make the river. It was entirely his idea to pour the glitter glue to make the river.

Here is Arjun’s model of rainforest. Arjun did almost 90% of the work. He did all the painting and and added plants and animals. I just helped to cut the styrofoam and made the plants and animals more secure. That’s all.

In addition, we made a terrarium to understand the environment of rainforest. His friend, Architesh Prasad not only helped to create the terrarium but also took care of it during February as we were out of the country. He did an excellent job!

Kabir created a powerpoint presentation on the Amazon Rainforest. He did 100% of the work. All I did was to help him when he got stuck with respect to technology and I was his editor. That’s all!

If you wish, you may download his powerpoint slides on Amazon Rainforest.

Here is Kabir’s Amazon Rainforest presentation video. It is 6:48 minutes long.

What Shall We Cook Today – $20 Grocery

March 13th, 2014

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We bought a cook book for Kabir, “What Shall We Cook Today” and our aim is to cook all the recipes from this book at least once. The first recipe we tried was in January, when the three boys (Kabir, Arjun and Amit) made sticky toffee pudding for my birthday. They did such a wonderful job. It was absolutely delicious!!! They made me sit in the couch and read a book. They did everything by themselves. I was so tempted to help but they scolded me each time I tried to enter the kitchen or enquired if they need help. They did such an amazing job that I am so proud of all three of them!

After a long gap of two months, we returned to our $20 grocery project where Kabir has to buy grocery under $20 and make dinner for us. This time, he made dinner for 3 adults and 3 kids. We have a lovely lady with a very cute and adorable baby staying with us for this week. Even the toddler loved Kabir’s cooking! This month we chose two recipes from this book for his $20 project: tomato pesto rolls and creamy pea soup. In addition he served us cucumber and tomato salad. He wanted to buy grapes too but he couldn’t afford it and so we had to put it back. We spent $17.20. He bought all the ingredients except oil, spices, 1 egg and flour. The receipt we received from Kroger had printed only half vertically and so, he couldn’t tell the cost of each item he bought. He was disappointed but that’s all right. Adding his previous savings, he has $41.97. I think I’ll ask him to to take us to a restaurant once in the month of April and he will have to order food and pay tip using his savings $41.97. It will be fun.