As the 2011/2012 school year came to a close, the number of invitations for Malachi to perform increased. We agreed the only things we would say yes to were the things that would benefit children the most, and make time for summer. Along with bicycle riding, swimming, twilight runs to catch fireflies, and all the joys of summer. Malachi was growing, learning, and had questions for every observation. For a while it felt like the theme to this summer was "Daddy why is it..?" As a parent I wanted to help guide him through his findings, but I didn't want to give him the answers; answers are oftentimes self evident, and come in time, and some should not be forced.
We decided to have him raise and release praying mantis. Malachi cared for the egg for six weeks, supplying shelter and maintaining a suitable climate. A napkin filled paper bag served as a nest, and a low hanging leafed branch help with the elements. This stimulated weeks of conversations as we checked on the welfare of the egg, and finally, one morning.... Happy Birthday!
The Mantis help control the pest population in our yard and gave Malachi a clearer understanding of the balance of nature and our place in it. Right when we thought we had it all figured out; it was September! The first day of school,.. 3rd Grade, new horizons, new adventures, new questions.