Category Archives: pre reading

Scrunching the leaves

my sister loved this time of year, and the falling leaves are just so very symbolic of loss. Been a bit of a struggly weekend, tho doing my best :) .

Today, orig, i had thought we might go out somewhere, but have instead stayed in, as SB wanted to ‘just spend time with me’ awwwww. SO that is what we did. She has spent a fair bit of time playing with paper dolls. But we also did a long time of recorder duets together – half the book! we would have done viola, but have mislaid the book [again!!] was trying to find a nice starter violin/viola duet book, but can’t. So instead we did clarinet, and yes, it does need a service :) and the piano. Following that significant amount of music, BB wanted to play bohnanza again with me, having done enough ‘penning‘ [another sign] so we did that and SB started a window mosaic. BB and I then read some of A City Through Time which seems to be currently on amazon at a phenomenal price… and BB very successfully read to me another 1b book :) [it didn't have 'the' in it! ] before we went out to play in the garden, scrunch leaves and adore baby bunnies! It did start raining even though all else sunny – very weird!

Back indoors we ate ponigramits [bb's] in the conservatory whilst SB did the primary maths challenge. i am quite proud of her. She sat happily and did it for the allotted time, wasn’t stressed or worried and just carried on with it. A bit more stress and she might have concentrated slightly more, as she got 4 questions wrong she could do upside down waving her feet about – and even went doh when i went through them doing a quick check when she got a different [right] answer!! lol! I think she has got 15 tho even with the doh moments, and perhaps we should have done a few practices to get her head into gear, but I am proud of her relaxed and happy approach to it, and the fact that if she had engaged brain [on some of the easiest questions!!] she might have done :roll: and giggle ]

SB ate her pomegranate, and BB and I played settlers of catan, which she did quite well at, tho couldn’t see the point :) so we went back to bohnanza, sb went to playing with paper dolls and then we watched merlin. A very relaxed day indeed. I start my phased return tomorrow, tho actual work on tues. It is right that i get back into it, but very hard.

I just loved this pic of SB. I *love* that girl!


A (very) late start!

I was up late, but it took a serious amount of encouragement to get SB up and out of bed and stop reading :), and was nearly midday. [i did get a lovely snuggle tho whilst persuading her :) ] It did me that we didn’t get to the cheap cinema tho :( . BB had managed to get up tho, as a little lark. BB and I had commenced calligraphy [or penning as BB calls it] when SB staggered down. She looked tired and wan, so I made her a cooked brekkie of sautes [from a left over jacket pot] and fried left over sausage with a fried egg. That seemed to go down well :) and she needed something hearty to be a combined brekkie/lunch. [seems somewhat early in a blog to say, and then we had lunch - giggle!].

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SB joined in the calligraphy, doing a pen drawing and sort of poem first, and then deciding to do a big capital letter on nice writing paper. She didn’t finish tho. BB did lots of writing, then a capital letter and then used the nice writing paper to make a sign. All very happy and chatty. SB and I snuggled and did SoTW 3 with various fightings in america and canada, and the founding of pennsylvania, I found out the origins of the name Philadelphia. SB then did some of her DK project book – she is in the middle section now, on Earth and we had a bit of discussion about the different layers always shown, and how they might come to be there. [I winged it a bit]. Then we all did SoTW 1 about ancient China and had a thought about the realities of rice farming in freezing cold water :) .

We then did a bit of bunny adoration, and took a couple of pics. We have a definite home for one of the girls – now named Olive, but homes for the other girl and the 2 boys required. Am hoping to have a home for boy + girl, and then rehome boy on own if can. They are all v gorgeous :)


SB did some piano prac [trudging grad getting there, and thanks G for loan of sightreading book] and then galore park english, and BB did music theory and then explode the code. We felt like we had had a lovely snuggly day alltogether and recharged batteries :) BB and I then watched the david attenborough first life as recommended by Kirsty, and we enjoyed that. SB had been playing with paper dress dolls, but grad watched more of the DVD. BB did then fall asleep on me – awwwww. Woke up to have her bath tho as totally mucky from the ink! After that BB and i played some Bohnanza before bedtime, and SB carried on her doll game. A really lovely day :) . Oh, and I love the conservatory!! not sure I will move back into playroom when painted…

remember remember!

Though I had better start with Thursday first! we managed to get up really early to be off and out to T and N’s as G had offered to listen to SB’s exam pieces before it got going. Unfortunately there was a huge hold up on our way in due to roadworks so we were late. Luckilly we did get a bit of piano in, and with a bit more work should be ok for grade 1 – phew! Which also meant that i went to the group for the first time in ages. i hadn’t gone whilst off as have found new places stressful, and meeting ppl difficult, especially as haven’t really broadcast that I have been off work and why… [and now slightly stressed that due to the post a couple down, lots of people will be reading my blog that don't normally - eek and embarrased wave!] Anyway, chatted to lovely people, reminded me how much i would like to be the home educator! but back to work next week. SB did some french, suprised me by not doing the bookclub, but we are all in a bit of a funny mood i think at the moment, and BB went shopping with chris and returned with new boots and a fab dinosaur top – prompting the post below!

Home and SB did some more home ed – maths and galore park history, and then we gave the rabbits a good clean out. BB went off to gym, and SB wrapped her pressies for BB and then made a lovely hamabead card. We then went to gym. Finished the day watching the new BBC shopkeepers in shepton mallet prog. perhaps not good for veggies watching the pig being butchered!!

This morning was completely and utterly devoted to bedroom tidying! It was painful, it was shrieky, it was done!!! phew! After that SB and i did piano prac and then went out to play with rabbits and then find some pretty leaves for our autumn craft. We stuck leaves on into a pleasing pic [BB cat, SB random, me spiral] and then read Keats’ Ode to Autumn, had a bit of a chat about the poem, and then SB and I chose our fav lines and added them to our pictures. Looks good i think! Let me chill after some stressy interweb moments! I love occupational therapy through crafts

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Friends arrived for the bonfire and fireworks at our house tonight, and we had a lovely time. The kids had fun playing together, that adults chatted, giggled and chilled. After dinner it was still raining, so we shrugged our shoulders and got on with it! enjoyed the fireworks in the rain, and then raced inside to do birthday cakes, more playing and then a tearful goodbye. we should prob have arranged a sleepover! A very pleasant way to spend an evening :)


its raining

actually it is the second time i have wrtten this blog, as i got to the end, and the blasted wordpress said i didn’t have permission to save and booted me to log in!!! it is going to be shorter this time :) [grrrrrr]

Anyway, as i said before :roll: today was another split child job, as it was bikeability for SB, in the rain – poor love! she didn’t find today as interesting, as she said it was ‘just yesterday’s stuff, but on roads’ I did say that that was the point… she does enjoy riding the bike tho, and chris and i thought it would be good to do some of the basics. Bikeability wasn’t the only thing today, she did some home ed stuff – maths - multiplying fractions, a bit of a surpise things come out smaller , grin, and some head maths on multiplying bigger numbers, which she gets to check afterwards with a calculator galore park history and a really good piano prac with me. so although the exam could be any time soon [eek] we have nailed 2 pieces completely, so only scales and the 3rd piece to go -eek! why does grade 1 recorder only have majors, when piano has majors and minors! In reading all the narnia books, she is now nearly through the horse and his boy :)

BB and i played together. we did a lot of home ed, but bb is autonomous really, and i can’t take any credit. i just get to watch, fetch and tidy up!! she had realised yesterday she had forgotten the colours in french, so today we learnt some of the again. [ah yes, i neeed to think of bike grease - with picture thoughts like that she could work for Collins :lol: ] we did some reading prac [without the dreaded 'the' word] and then when i was looking for chemicals for latinetc tomorrow, she ‘remembered’ the science kit cupboard, and had a load of fun making circuits with the primary electronics kit. as always, the flying saucer one a fav :) Finally she played with magnets for a bit, before declaring it rabbit-o-clock!! it absolutely pouring it down, we did a more cursory rabbit check and care rather than a long lovefest.


I took BB to her new swimming class. it is the same time as SB’s, so that ought to make life easier. It didn’t today, as bikeability finished too late and she missed it :( . BB and i listened to classicfm on the way in and she nattered about the music being a tom and jerry music – she was right, the presenter then said so. SHe fell asleep just as we got into the carpark – awww. I enjoyed watching her swim. only 4 of them in that group today, but the most common name was ‘BB’ to be shouted. mostly, i think, cos she must be at least 2 years younger than the other 3! they did backstroke, and her little arms went like the clappers. awww again :smile: i enjoyed watching every second.

We weren’t home long before chris and SB joined us. so me and SB snuggled on sofa, as she was feeling in need of a snuggle, and i agreed the SoTW request and we read about the Indus Valley. I do really like SoTW. we watched sinbad and then bedtime for the girls, a bit of wailing from SB – too tired i think, so a long cuddle and soothe, and extreme mania from BB – same root cause, so a bit of firmness, oh, ok, i did shout *in the end* and a dictat that no reading or dsing, and no noise! they fell asleep pretty quickly…

Still worried about Uncle D’s health, and just other blah things, but enjoyed watching QI with chris.

oh, and the first person to pick up Vivien Visits TB has added both a bead and a small donation :) feeling happy.

a setback

TBH, although i had nightmares about it for the last few nights, i had hoped to be back at work and getting going again, however difficult. i had an occ health appointment, and i did a few of the objective tests, and she recommended not. slightly too anxious to be reliable on good decisions, and as she said, as soon as i start, the job takes no prisoners. :( i imagine the managers are going to be ecstatic :( so have 2 more weeks then a short phased return. hmmm. so, with that, and then the visit to gp for sicknote and then the emailing and phoning ppl that i had said last week i would be returning… we were nearly at lunchtime

SB, bless her, spent the morning in bed with a hurty head and tummy [reading avidly, so head can't be THAT hurty!] . she is so imprecise that it is difficult to work out why things hurt, but they seemed to get better when i got home… SHe finished reading the magicians nephew and is most of the way thro the lion, the witch and the wardrobe anyway. She snuggled up to me and did grammar before going to her bikeability session with chris. She really enjoyed this, and told me all the accidents other people had had, what they did, in that breathless it was great fun speech, and she has new boots :)
I love having snuggles anyway :) After her bikeability, she snuggled up with her galore park science too :)

Whilst SB off for her bikeability in the afternoon, BB and i did some bunny care – the little bunnies do look all cute and little :) and it is amazing how much less food is eaten, and correspondingly how much less poop there is :) . BB is such a cutie pie, and so adoring of the rabbits. We then did piano practice. BB has a current like of getting the metronome going and then making a funky rhythm with her 3 note repertoire. i love it :) must surreptitiously iphone vid it sometime [she usually stops!] and then she will sometimes do a bit of jibbedy f, but its up to her. She has a fairly natural musician flow, so i am working on just encouraging her to play, whatever, with the option of looking at new notes etc if she wants. it is really lovely to do together :) we then snuggled in the conservatory :) to read a fact book - i wonder why the sea is salty – together, and then we did some fimo. BB was making a fimo rabbit for her secret santa, but liked it so much, she is keeping it… this is not a surprise, she has kept the last 2 birthday presents she has made too :)


SB coming back and snuggling with me persuaded BB to do something on her own, and so she played falconer to her peregrin falcon cuddly, and that was v cute to watch. i do love watching the imaginative games :) . we finished the day with tea in front of horrible histories, each girl choosing a box book for getting the required number of ticks – bb v happy with a dinosaur maze book, and SB with the georgian horrible histories – the box set seems partic cheap currently :)

And i have watched a grand designs in falmouth – fab house! and then looked at videos of sis. But it was also a day of all those weird home ed conversations where lots of things flow on, and yet when you come to blog, you just can’t remember any of them!

tuesday is my hump day!

well, we got up earlier today, after an exceptionally late night. SB just didn’t settle at all, and so was a very tired bean when she got up. awww . anyway, bit more of a discussion on 5 a days and what counted, how big etc over brekkie, then a look at part of the first chapter of real science for kids level 2. SHe did understand it, and we talked around it, but then got a bit worried that if she didn’t she would have to change science group, as she loves her science group. ((SB)) so i reassured her that currently the groups weren’t changing, but that if she found the level 2 difficult, then we would read the level 1 version. And i think though the group BB is in will be doing the level 1 version for labwork, that i will be reading the pre-k explanation to her beforehand, and think the various families may want to bob between the different levels, as more important to get understanding than be pushed ahead. [such an advantage to have a flip book!]

We then got down to a sturdy morning of home ed in my lovely conservatory. Hmm, i think i have forgotten to mention how much i love my conservatory :) .

SB did some galore park science, history and english, and then some clarinet prac. BB did some maths – with some serious argument over whether nothing/zero existed, whether you were allowed to put it in sums etc, and she remains unconvinced over its validity. giggle! She read a 1a magic key story – again with a grumble over the word the [obv that shouldn't exist either!] and i read to her the next story in the chaucers canterbury tales, the one with the bottoms, so she particularly loved that ;) we also finished painting her spider puppet, and later strung it together, tho as we had lost instructions, don’t know that it is quite right… Both did a bit of colouring as well.

we played with rabbits again – making sure we get enough rabbit love in before the bigger babies leave for their new homes. :)

after a nice lunch in our LOVELY conservatory we did some baking. SB wanted to use up left over rice crispies and marshmallows, so we went to do that, but we didn’t have enough marshmallows… and BB then wanted to make choc rice crispie cakes, but we didn’t have enough rice crispies or any choc… so we went to the shops and then made the cakes, and now have more marshmallows and rice crispies than wen we started 1 :roll: we also made some fruity snow from the galore park science book. SB really is quite an accomplished baker and cook, really good at following instructions and tweaking things so they work. it was a fun bake :)

SB and i also got in a piano prac before she went out for swimming. trudging is getting sort of a glimmer of hope about it, and the other 2 pieces are ok and should pass already, but time will make them better. so we started with arpeggios. she isn’t certain she will ever play them :( but we will see. we all did some ds-ing together with animal crossing and also mario bros games. we ate a chippery tea [totally ruining the 5 a day thing!] watching the primates episode of life.

now i must try and get things a bit organised for historyetc tomorrow.

gotta get movin’ !

hmm, the plan had been to do 3 bits of HE in the morning and then fun craft this aft as my last week off work. however, due to feeling somewhat fragile from the w/e i had a sleep in, so BB watched dvds and SB stayed in bed reading famous 5 till rousted at 11! some riot act read, and actually the home ed she then did was v good, but v long, and she had golf in the aft, which i hadn’t remembered, so no crafting :( . we plan to do better tomorrow as baking in the afternoon, but she and daddy have been reminded! laying in bed reading books all v well, but…

so, she did some more of the galore park geography, and was working out distances and place references all v happily, after a bit of extra encouragement and help. but must have taken an hour. maths took way over an hour, due to distractability etc! but was done really thoroughly. golf lesson was doing a half swing to develop her swing – which she needs to practice. SHe had snack and then ballet lesson. After that we did a piano prac together. pretty much nailed song of erin, gavotte getting there, and stomping needs a fair bit more work. scales, well the majors ok, so now going to do arpeggios and chromatic and then minors last.

BB and I did some music theory [little children book 2] and explode the code. she just can’t get her head round ‘the’ and has a hissy fit each time the word comes up! we painted some more of her kit spider, played with the bunnies and she played with various reptiles :) we also did a v short piano. She then had a VERY long bath! i read her some of the comic canterbury tales, which she v much enjoyed.

the bunnies themselves are all adorable. the big ones are so cuddly, will be sad to see them go :( and the littlies are old enough now for a tiny bit of a pet :) gerda is so much bigger, and hamster def the smallest :) BB loved picking them up. the big buns all love dandelions, and also eat the burgess rabbit food [for those picking up rabs this week] and have been acclimatised to all sorts of veg.

Anyway, lovely eve, nice dinner – which chris emphasised was at table rather than dvd, so we had a discussion about Newton, man and measurement and oranges and apples. Sb is now recording our 5 a day. we all did rather well today, lets see if we carry on :) . we did watch part of a DVD about fish before bedtime, and SB decided to read a fact book or 2 in bed – she took up a rubbish one and a horrible egyptian one anyway, as that will take her to 6 :) . we are back to another roman mystery now at bed time – sirens of surrentum, and it opened with a kiss, to SB’s disgust!

duvet day!

predominantly for my big girl, who finally managed to completely get up at lunch time, having been happily wrapped in her duvet reading a book since 10am, when i had woken her up – giggle, i can’t imagine who she takes after! :lol: It was supposed to be a mega catch up home ed day for all our lazy days this week! ah well, we have enjoyed each others company a lot this week, even if we have neither been ‘productive’ or gone out much! i am going to declare it a companionship week :)

BB, obviously, had been up, and was watching dvd’s on lizards and amphibians. she really loves them, and has asked for a bracelet like mine, but with lizard and frog charms for xmas [they are having something small from us, as getting 1/4 each of trampoline for birthday and xmas]. I don’t know of many small children who have remained as determinedly fixated on lizards/dinosaurs/amphibians for so long. pretty much since she could speak. she then went off to play a complicated game with her lizards and frogs. SB also fancies a charms bracelet, but wants quite an individualised one, so have handed over some likes from other bracelets, and we will see what happens [fingers crossed!]

We did do some home ed today – since this is a home ed blog, this is something of a relief. SB did some maths, science workbook, galore park english and non verbal reasoning – ooh that sounds like quite a lot! SHe still didn’t write the english in sentences tho, will have to remind her again next time! BB and i did some reading practice together, and a tinsy bit of maths. we all did story of the world 1 chapter 6, just need to do chapter 7 before wed :) . no piano got done, as we had made the mistake of lighting the fire in the front room, and that was sooooo nice and warm…

I spent a while on the phone today as uncle D has got a v bad knee infection where he had a knee replacement, so had a surgical debridement today, and has 2 weeks in hospital wth iv ants before they decide, presumably, whether to take out his replacement :( he is feeling rottenly unwell with it. I have got a pavlovian response to the phone ringing of my heart dropping to my feet, and it just isn’t pleasant.

i also painted a tiny square of glass to more or less match with the others to go in our window. very proud of it, as tho not identical, pretty much fits, and if i am lucky, will stay in the house even if we end up moving on. :) I played stork’s nest with BB and SB [i lost!] and a complicated game of blokus crossed with ludo frogs with BB [i lost!]. :lol:

chris bodged a temporary extension onto the rabbit hutch, as the 4 big babies quite big and need a teenager pad :) he has also put all the panes of glass back into window, so i guess paintng next :) .

the rabbits are adorable, and it is hard to part with the older babies, but glad to know what good homes they are going to. flopsy is def most the amenable rabs of them all. will be perfect for aprillia to cuddle :) . fudge just soooo fluffy, so t-bird can have a good cuddle too ;) . lupin has a bit of character, and is happy to be cuddled and also happy to pootle about doing her own thing. Biscuit is a bit shyer than the others, but does sit beautifully for a cuddle once persuaded to not hide. they all v much adore dandelion leaves, and have been handled and loved on a more than once daily basis, and have no bad habits! even more or less litter trained… awww. the baby rabs are quite a mixed bunch. they are now findng their way around the hutch, tho i have made it so they can’t get into the run yet. the white stripe baby [currently called Gerd due to her statuesque build] is 2ce as big as the other babies, and the fawn one is quite a bit smaller [attracting some of my worry, tho she seems quite healthy]

we finished the day with a snuggle watching jem do some explosions, and searched on ebay, and found all the ingredients required to do at home – hmmm!!! well, only the earlier explosives. it was quite clear watching the prog that the later explosives not such a good idea…

an excursion to london

on friday, i had booked the day off work thinking that we would be doing a ww2 evacuation day, but it was cancelled. we decided to make the most of it though, and do an overnighter to london! we had a number of possibilities and a definite. the definite was tower of london, as we have a palaces pass currently, and possibles thrown open included the globe theatre, tate modern, museum of london, imperial war museum, something found on a leaflet… and bookshops! bookshops were picked out as the girls each have a lot of book tokens to spend!

so we started at the tower, we were a bit worried, as the day started off v bleakly rainy at our end, but london just dismal rather than overtly wet – so v happy!! SB picked up a ‘thing to do’ so off to the treasury [has it always been called the jewel house?] to do the sheet. SB loves doing sheets, and this one has a sense of humour. we looked for the frog for ages before sb read on and said it was a joke :roll: !! BB lost patience before SB had finished, so some dividing and conquering, but think the sheets are good, mostly info and v little writing! SOme serious lagging later and we went to the restaurant for lunch – that set us back a bob or 2! the weather was too cold and wet to picnic out in any kind of fashion unless truly masochistic – and although chris and i alone may have been, the addition of BB warrants gentler treatment! [SB is pretty much game!] After that we went into the Henry VIII armour exhibition and hands on area – which was really good and SB spent a long time looking, and even BB made a fairly impressive coverage. The annoyance for me was the no photography rule. grr! finally, we went for a walk along the ramparts, and really liked all the info and background noises placed along them. i did wonder if there was a leaflet for that actually. We were chased out by warders for it being closing time. so we did only do that one thing!!

mooched back to the travelodge, with BB falling asleep on the tube, a rest, re-invigoration and out for a meal at a nearbye italian where they made a fuss over the girls being lovely – and they were. the travelodge is directly over the circle line, and initially BB insisted on looking out of the window at every rumble, but the game eventually palled…

next day up and to brekkie, when surprised by BB shouting there is k-! and there she was!! on breakfast TV, so we cheered her on defending her educational choices. SB had chosen the globe theatre, and by a slightly devious route we got there. loads of the tube was closed, either whole lines or stations, so we had to do some extra thinking! we decided to get to st pauls and then walk across the millenium bridge. we checked on a map our bearings, and BB made other tourists laugh by saying she now knew where the toilets were – she knows the important signs! [aside - though not the letter p however hard we try, she insists it is an r or a t - although she can recognise those]. we meandered around st pauls garden, had a look at the fireman memorial and ambled our way to the globe, just in time, as it started absolutely chucking it down.

we loved the globe! we started with a look around the top information exhibition. thought it was nicely done, could be read at a number of levels – pics for bb, skim read for sb, bit more for chris and i had we had the chance! then a break in the middle of more display items and then on how built. we then had a 40 min guided tour of the globe, and although abslutely teeming it with rain, the guide was excellent, and so were our children. so much so, that i bought them home ed books in shop at end [well, they are still on a no museum money as spent 4 museums as one at hampton court - currently £1 a museum, but with poss of slight extra if needed, so usually better saved up!] I chose 2, and agreed to SB’s choice off 2 as well. [what a moment of weakness!]
SB’s choices:

my choices [a bb and an sb book]:

[I will not look at cheaper-by-far prices on amazon!!]

and we read them whilst having lunch there, which was good, as SB’s had a printing error, and it was easy enough to exchange! we went back and did the musical uppersection and then the ground floor of the exhibition, discussing printing presses with a demonstrator – SB is fairly happy with discussing printing presses, she has seen quite a few in action as well as having it on the inventors story cd! then we popped next door to the tate modern – the printer recommending the black box, so we went in it. not quite dark enough as lots of ppl held their mobiles out to see [headdesk!!] and then we peaked at a couple of the galleries SB and i had a chat about what she could see, what she liked, if she thought there was an emotion there, and how might the art have been created, but BB becoming tired, so we had a restorative cake before moving to a bookshop.

i am going to gloss over finding the bookshop, suffice it to say that chris and i had different ideas of where to go, i agreed to choose chris’s idea, and we both regretted it, and the girls did a fair bit of extra walking before we ended up at the known fabulous waterstones by picadilly… SB chose nearly all famous 5 books [£40 worth!] and BB was dissuaded from buying all dr who story books – mainly because she can’t read, they have no pics and she doesn’t want them read to her, just turns pages, so we found a variety of doctor who alternatives, and she then picked 2 fairy based books she was also happy with. we had passed a buffet chinese on shaftesbury avenue earlier, so made steps back there, stuffed our faces, staggered back – well, we were going to get a bus at girls request, but by the time had walked to leicester square, decided to tube it! BB sang a v cute and jolly looking for a bus song, complete with looking actions. just made the train, easy journey home and there you go, a lovely 2 days in london!

will he wont he? [and a confession]

I think he will! blog, that is, as there was another fab trip out this week to a waterworks, and also various other bits and pieces.

me, i have been migrainous and grumpy. really not sleeping properly! AMongst all the exciting trips HE goes on, lots of maths, fair bit of science, music, reading etc etc. actually, i am going to digress. i think i read somewhere that penny whatsit of dcsf independent schools said one of the advantages of us being forcibly registered was that we may avail ourselves of school trips.

1. what, with schools?? no thankyou
2. we already do ‘school trips’, but without schools, without crocodiles, in small groups with plenty of adults getting loads more value.
3. does anyone at the dcsf actually have any idea about home education ‘for real’?

back again from minor rantlet!

anyway, back from work earlier today, and caught SB doing her galore park science, which was fun. we got out various rocks – prev birthday presents, picked up etc and did the compare and contrast thing, which was kinda similar to our identify the chemical previously. she got really into it! maths, clarinet, english also happily done.

As blog readers will know, in the summer SB chose to revisit the idea of timetables so she knew what there was, we minimised and ameliorated the unmanageable, and had a list of about 50 things for her to choose 20 from a week – most of the 15-20 mins, or as long as she fancied. [this includes all her favourite things such as reading books, watching fact dvd, art, craft, baking, yoga , maths, english, science, music practice and french, plus whatever! ]this has been going really well. so well, that she wanted some rewards thrown on top! my nephew gets a mars bar for doing something well at school in the week. we hummed and ha-ed, and decided doing 30 things was our mars bar equivalent. she has done this every week for the last month. [why do i feel slightly soiled by this bribery? it was def not initiated by us - effectively it is 'normals' rather than school at home?]

today, bb finally cottoned on to the fact that she was being done out of a sweet!! massively massive tantrum, and with calming her down, but not making light of the work sb has put in to ‘achieve’ hers. so i thought 5 ‘things’ for a chupa chup, and 10 for an equivalent sweet [50p] to sb. cue massive more wials that she couldn’t do 10 and she needed a big sweet. [cue parent v tightly holding onto temper, as feeling cornered in the wrong place on the wrong foot]. Anyway, she now has a list too, where 5 is almost guarenteed, and 10 with the minimum of effort. so both got a sweet.

now, this is working really well for sb, in the way she can see a spread of what there is, chooses what she fancies, according to mood, time avail etc, and actually although i have asked for 3 music practices and maths a week is otherwise entirely hers to sort out and organise, and there are no ‘penalties’ for not doing the 3 i suggested – i only pointed out it lets her move forward, and she has noticed that if she does or more, she gets on more easily. no box other than above is stipulated as more valuable for her learning, and that above is only done so in a rational way. so her gluing window is equally valued to french for example. And I am really proud of the way SB looks, chooses, gets on with things and enjoys her home ed. But i guess today, with bb’s outburst, i wondered what juggernaut was on the loose! going to make sure sb is the only foot on the accelerator, and that i make sure occasionally that a brake is suggested! I really don’t want her to be confined by lists and expectation! but i guess, it is things she loves, we have always done them. hmmm.

BB had such a major strop, actually, that she didn’t go to football, too busy drumming on the floor with hands and feet. this too will pass, i am sure. But she did do some piano, read a few words and did some before the code with me, determined to get her 50p of sweets.

SB and I played games, hugged and then she finished her mecchano radio controlled car, which she is v v proud of. [thats on the list as 'making things']