Saturday, March 31, 2007

This month’s daddy daughter dates

I took my daughters out this week for their monthly dates with dad. Like I wrote last month, I take my daughters out for breakfast and we talked about the good things they are doing, and then we talk in general. Here is what we did, and what we talked about:

Wednesday my second daughter and I went to a local restaurant for breakfast. On the way back she asked me about the Germany invasion of France in 1940. Her older sister is taking a history class through the mail via DVDs. They are studying World War II.

In my early teens I had played a game by Avalon Hill called France 1940. It reproduced the exciting three week of the German invasion of France. I explained to my daughter that after WWI the Germans had gone back to the drawing board and completely rethought war. They realized the importance of tanks and their ability to punch a hole through and then circle around in the rear. The Allies, having won WWI, in general didn’t bother to update their approach to war. They were caught flat footed when the Germans blew past antiquated troops and doctrine.

My daughter was fascinated and asked if we could play the game. We spent a couple hours today. The rules are fairly complex. We just played a learning game. She played the Germans, and I played the allies. I helped her run down through the Netherlands and Belgium, and sweep pass much of the French army. She had a much better picture of how the Germans were able to win so decisively.

My third daughter and I went out to Denny’s on Thursday. She overheard some of the waiters talking in Spanish. She guessed correctly that it was Spanish. We talked for a minute or so about the value of knowing another language. She then told me some of the Latin words she had learned while listening to lessons her older sisters had done.

On the way home she heard Karen Carpenter singing a song. I think it was “I’m on the top of the world.” My daughter said she had just heard that song. She had been in a piano recital. My daughter asked if Karen Carpenter was still alive. I told her that Karen had had trouble with an eating disordered and died. She said that was sad.

Yesterday my oldest daughter and I went out for breakfast. She had just gotten season three of the original season of Star Trek. We talked a lot about Star Trek. What it would be like to live in that universe. She’s seen a couple of the other Star Trek series. She has also been reading a ton of the series summaries at Memory Alpha, the Star Trek Wiki. We talked a bit about how Captain Kirk was split into Captain Picard and Lieutenant Riker in terms of the roles they filled.

I value this one-on-one time with my daughters. It is interesting what topics come up, and where the learning goes.

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