One of the reasons I like writing this blog is that it really helps me to reflect on all the wonderful learning going on without me planning for it. Some weeks (and this has been one of them) I think this is an incredibly important part of the Home Ed experience. We beat ourselves up about what we have or haven’t achieved from day to day and so to sit down and write about it can be very rewarding, giving me the opportunity to evaluate our learning.
The last week has been very relaxed and unstructured. Probably because we celebrated my birthday in the middle of it and had the little one home for a few days. Little L, who thoroughly enjoyed our Victorian day out and now readily talks about Charles (Chiles) Dickens and the Torians! He is fitting in well into the HE picture.
We began the week by continuing with the Victorians power point – learning how to find images online and insert these into the slide show. Again C has spent several hours on this, exploring the features and tools available.
We have continued with fractions so as to consolidate last weeks learning and this led into measuring. Having read about stained glass windows being fashionable in Victorian times he decided to have a go at making his own with tissue paper and so had to measure all his pieces as accurately as possible to fit the frame he had made. To make the frame he had to find half and then quarters of his shape. We then went onto measure ribbons for (imaginary) presents and various shapes for decorations.
Football was cancelled this week so we had an unexpected morning at home which happened to be my birthday and so the boys made cookies with minimal help from me as they were for me, sort of! I think the Peppa Pig cookie mix chosen by L may have had something to do with his taste more than mine! With the independent cookie making came a perfect reinforcement of the previous measuring as C (who was also reading the instructions) had to read the scales and the measuring jug divisions.
Cookies and cakes packed, we headed off to an indoor skatepark for the afternoon where the boys had 2 hours of scooting and socialising. The HE friendships are becoming genuinely cemented.
The skate park trip provided a real opportunity for writing (got to grab them!) as C drafted a thank you letter to the lovely organiser; just about meeting the challenge of using apostrophes for omission and ‘stretching’ the sentences to be as long as possible. Two areas we had worked on last week.
The Victorian Christmas day out at Kent Life was as good as we had hoped it would be. The children were of course dressed up and fully immersed themselves into the day. We do need to write to Kent Life to thank them too; fabulous staff in role who kept the attention of children of all ages throughout the day. They were fantastic! We started out by meeting a housemaid, who talked to us about various christmas traditions, followed by a visit to the wonderful toymaker where the children were able to play with a selection of Victorian toys. We went on to visit the workhouse (our favourite) where Molly entertained us with her stories and recounts of workhouse life and made very good use of her audience! The children also explored a Victorian house, learnt how to make lace effect cards, played parlour games with a parlourmaid and met Charles Dickens himself who gave an animated retelling of ‘A Christmas Carol’.
The visit, along with the Dickens Festival, has brought this learning to life and given C more information to add to his powerpoint (his request) and so the non fiction writing will continue for another week, after which I think I shall sow the seed of writing our own version of Oliver Twist perhaps with a Victorian christmas setting.
The christmas crafts have of course begun – there were the stained glass windows, we have started making pom poms and christmas cards and have bought the resources we need to print wrapping paper. In fact, I now realise that if I can squeeze a story into the week as well I will be impressed!