My four-year-old is now successfully reading her sister's 500-800-page chapter books and enjoying them very much. Car rides are generally very quiet and [it seems like] they know every children's librarian in a hundred mile radius.
The little one is currently obsessed with the Presidents of the USA and knows their order better than I do. I've got most, but I get mixed up with some of the less significant ones.
The older one loves drawing cartoons and writing stories and still reads a ton.
They are both very active and are enjoying swimming, jumping rope, playing make-believe and prairie days schoolhouse in the woods/grass, climbing trees, dancing, singing, skating and dreaming of traveling.
After the fiasco of violin lessons for my older dd last year, I was stunned to hear her playing songs on the piano (a few weeks ago) for her sister (who was apparently not singing the correct tunes) and she wanted to show her how the tunes should go. I had no idea she could play the piano and she thought I was asleep. I never told her I heard her. I think she''s keeping it a secret from me.
Younger dd fell in love with ballet this spring and loved her teacher and class and did fabulously in her spring performance. Her teacher really got her. She's very driven for her age and is passionate about her gymnastics and ballet. She's pretty amazing.
Oh, I just noticed this was the June thread... but I didn't reply in June and it's up here at the top of the forum again so anyway...
DS (21 months) finally came had a vocabulary explosion and started making phrases... thank goodness! His sister was such a talker that I feel like we've been waiting foreeeever for DS to really talk. He's hard to understand but it seems like half of what he says relates to shapes or letters. He probably knows as much of the alphabet as DD did at this age, which continues to surprise me because he's never seemed as interested in intellectual pursuits as she was--he'd much rather sneak into the bathroom and make a big wet mess on the sink than play with letter magnets. He's an excellent problem solver and can now reach just about anything in the house, turn anything on or off, and has just learned to open the baby gate at the top of the stairs. He may well turn out to be a supergenius but only if he doesn't manage to kill himself first.
DD is hard to define lately. Her reading level is high enough that I'm not really sure how high it is. We recently picked up nearly all of the American Girl books at a book sale and have been reading them together (I stashed them in the top of her closet where she cant' get to them or she'd've read them all to herself by now, but I'm tired of her reading ahead whenever we are reading a book together!!).
I'm working to enroll in a master's in teaching program in the fall and have been studying up for a pre-admissions test by brushing up on things like algebra, biology, physics, etc. DD has been making off with my study materials (YA/J-level books from the local library). She's spent the entire last week talking about molecules, vacuums, and chemical reactions. Like this morning she had a cup with a straw in the car and was making vacuums with her straw and talking about how the walls kept the air molecules from getting in, and stuff of that nature.
I also recently picked up a lovely teaching manual called "Literacy: Helping Children Construct Meaning" and having been working with her on increasing her reading comprehension though intentional literacy activities like story prediction and summarizing what we've read.