Classroom in a camper

Who knew that spending a day at ‘Grill n Chill’ could be so educational.  Grill n Chill is an annual VW meet; we are now feeling the love of being part of a really cool club…v dub! Stickers for the van bought, interior design inspired and new carpet ordered, Katie is going to have a make over…!

And so it was while treating Katie that we managed to make links with, and reinforce, our evolution learning – through some great window stickers showing evolution of a camper (stays the same, was already quality to start with) a Lego man (starts as a brick) and of ‘man’ who, after evolving to become upright is then sat in a campervan.  C was very pleased to apply his new understanding to a sticker stall of all places!

Lunch on the White Cliffs of Dover - looking fr bluebirds?!
Lunch on the White Cliffs of Dover – looking for bluebirds?!

Having made my first gumtree sale this week, we had to take a drive to make a delivery to Dover.  These two trips have meant that lots of learning this week has taken place in the van- bracelet making, skateboard engineering, further reading of the Darwin books we bought last week, map reading and landscape comparisons, history and lots of mental maths…lots! Poor C, no rest!  Whilst not linked, we are managing a lot of English history learning by home educating.  At Dover, not only were the boys able to sit up on the cliffs and see where we had travelled to go to France, but we also had some really valuable discussions about the significance of the cliffs, the location of the castle.  They had the audio treat of listening to Vera Lynn on the way down!

Friendships with other home educated children have been further cemented this week- I love this picture of a small group of them trying to make fire…

The fire starters...
The fire starters…

They took the precaution of having ‘safety water’ by their side, that’s how confident they were that they could do this!

I was worried initially about the lack of social interaction by home educating.  In fact he has made loads of friends of all ages and we have managed to only have one day where we don’t go along to some club or activity.  Now not worried, just exhausted!

I wanted to finish the Deadly 60 topic this week, but no:  There’s always another deadly animal to research, or another episode to watch.  Not that I mind this particular research… I read somewhere recently of a mum who doesn’t bother to watch the Deadly episodes in Antarctica as Steve Backshall has too many clothes on!   I think I can see where she’s coming from!!  To extend it further and get some more writing into his days we have planned and made an information leaflet.  Given the choice, C also wanted this to be about Mr Backshall (I think he’s in danger of becoming obsessed!) and has asked me how many houses there are in the UK so as to do a leaflet drop.  Now there’s making it purposeful and there’s making it purposeful…  Interesting fact though that there were 26.4 million in October 2013.  I’ve told him we can’t afford the photocopying.

information leaflet writing
information leaflet writing

As well as our regular handwriting, maths and spelling (incase anyone is interested I have found that spelling work is having much more of an impact as I am basing this teaching on his writing assessment- teaching the identified sound or pattern through a game and / or the handwriting so it’s 100% personalised and relevant; research has shown that learning spellings has little or no impact on their writing) we have fitted in quite a lot of art and craft this week.  We have used air dry clay to make a selection of models and tried to recreate a Spencer Finch style painting, inspired by the exhibition at the Turner gallery back in week one. The boys used masking tape to create shapes and patterns and then roller painted over,peeling the tape off when the paint was dry.  Unfortunately our paper was too thin and tore which led to tears from C.  A useful lesson though that trying out new things doesn’t always lead to success and that is what the learning process is all about.  Try again next week.  Hopefully successful photos to follow.

Spencer Finch inspired art
Spencer Finch inspired art

We also made some fairy doors for our fairy friends.  Yes I know I was concerned about how I was going to ever break the news to him about their existence but I saw some cute pictures of fairy doors made from fimo (to make in the very near future) which led me to a tutorial for making them from lolly sticks.  Looks like the fairy imaginings will be ongoing after all.  I’ll break the news another day.  Certainly before Secondary school!

lollystick fairy door
lolly stick fairy door
lollystick fairy door after painting
lolly stick fairy door after painting

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