Caterpillar Farm …

I guess that’s what we have now; a caterpillar farm. H and S finished making 2 terrariums for the caterpillar and a few days ago they transferred 3 caterpillars to the terrariums. It’s pretty cool actually. They even ‘decorated’ it with some smooth rocks. I had asked,

“What are those rocks for?”


Hmm. Interesting. They treat it like an aquarium. N’s beta fish had died. H’s too, recently. H’s fish has been with us for almost 2 years now. Now, the only fish that is living is S’.

They even named their caterpillars. Well, N and S did. H didn’t even bother to. He didn’t even transfer his caterpillar to a terrarium yet. He plans to make one more. Right now, it’s still in the jar. I was looking at their caterpillar one night as I was locking the doors up, and one was trying to climb up the wall to try and get out probably. The next morning, N’s caterpillar was missing.

She looked for it and tried to gently dig into the soil and eventually found hers already burrowed, ready to pupate. We were surprised though because the last caterpillar they took, was VERY huge when it was about to pupate and these were not that big. Yesterday, Z and S’ caterpillars also burrowed, ready to pupate. Now, only H’s is still on the soil surface. Probably ready to pupate, but H really needs to transfer it to a terrarium soon.

The girls seem to be really interested in this project and are even googling and reading up on caterpillars. I asked N yesterday,

“How would you know if it’s a girl or a boy?”

“If the cocoon is lumpy it’s a boy, if smooth it’s a girl.”

I then told her to really document all this because I feel it would be a good start towards a Zoology course possibly for her high school. She already keeps kind of a chart. S too, but I’m not sure how dilligent they are at updating it. Yesterday they were playing with the caterpillar (before it burrowed of course). They were all in the sunroom, on the floor, and the caterpillar was out and they were playing with it.

It would be an interesting experience especially for Z to witness this transformation and learn about the life cycle of a moth. I checked out some books on it but haven’t had the time to read them to him yet. My busiest days are Wednesdays and Thursdays and today I have a class too and I have to prepare for my students’  session on Sunday, and catch up on my notes from yesterday. I’m feeling a bit stressed out too. I”m asking for a cancellation of my article but the editor hasn’t replied to me yet. This is the first week of class resuming so I can only imagine how tight things would be after this. Hopefully S gets to go to Canada soon inshaAllah. We are submitting her application today. May Allah make it easy Ameen.

So it seems like I won’t be reading to Z on Wednesdays and Thursdays. At least he’s getting some stuff from his therapy sessions too on Thursdays. The only thing about that is I feel that whenever I leave the older kids for 2 hours like that, they waste their time and it really stresses me out because when I come back, I find things that are supposed to be done, not done etc.

Just now, I had to spend time talking to them, more like lecturing because I’m at the point where I”m ready to burst. We’re resuming Seerah and I was explaining to them how this is the time when they should be using their skills and time to be really productive, and my point is not that they are productive, but productive in Allah’s way, in pleasing Him. I feel like my chest is so tight with yearning for them to really understand this. I am vaguely aware that sometimes you have to show them, model it, and in terms of projects I’m not doing that because I’m doing other things. Subhanallah, the wisdom can’t just be imparted like that. What I know now, I wish for them to know it as well or better than I do, for their own good. When you’re an adult, you have to worry about many other things. At their ages now, they don’t have much to worry about except studying. I’m not trying to undermine that, but I also told them that the reason why I give them work is because I see them wasting their time. I have given them chances before in the past to be productive on their own, and I’ve left them with no structure for months but they didn’t really use it and I can’t bring myself to see my kids wasting their time like this. So we went back to structured schooling.

Sometimes I feel like it’s a vicious cycle and right now I feel bad because I should have read that dua before lecturing them. It might have penetrated their hearts better. Sigh.

I told them that this is the time when they should be really using their skills and talent to be productive in pleasing Allah. We were talking about the Seerah project and my long term vision for it. They’re really good at drawing and I feel like we can really produce something that would benefit others and would be a means of sadaqah jariah and beneficial knowledge for long after we’re gone with this. If they spend their time just like other kids, they will just be average. Why would you want to just be average? Subhanallah….oh Allah, please make them understand and internalize this. I didn’t do a good job of relaying the information because I want it so bad for them that I just tend to get angry at them for wasting their time. It’s hard being a parent when you know things your kids don’t know and you know the mistakes that are made and you try to warn them of it but sometimes they have to experience those mistakes first before understanding what it is you’re trying to tell them. It’s like warning a person to take this route and that route so they won’t fall in a ditch or run into a thorny bush, but they don’t take you seriously, and then they do fall into that ditch and they have to backtrack and detour and you feel,

“If only they’d listen to me!!”

but that they had to fall into that ditch in order for them to understand what you’re telling them. Argh!

And since Z deleted all the files in the camera, I am not able to upload them since they’re not there. Argh!

Categories: Animals, Homeschooling, Productivity, Project, Thoughts | 2 Comments

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2 thoughts on “Caterpillar Farm …

  1. ummrashid

    I empathise with everything you said about urging the kids not to waste time and hating seeing them waste time. I have the same issue with my older ones!

    • nadiaschooldays

      Waalaikumsalam UmmRashid,

      Oh I’m not alone! lol…subhanallah…may ALlah make our children productive in His cause. Ameen!

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