Trying to shake off the maladies we’ve arrived home from holiday with, taking it in turns to bounce up and down healthwise. Moodwise though can really feel the difference a holiday and the change in weather has brought. Everyone can summon smiles and has stopped moaning about being hot 🙂
We’ve had two days out this week. First one was with my dad to our closest museum. It’s a replica 17th Century village run by volunteers who do it in character. One day when I manage to conjure up more hours in a week I’d love to volunteer there. Sunday was a little different to their usual activities as it was their rural crafts day. Lots of external crafts folk around and far, far busier than normal. The highlight was watching the kiln being opened, my morning FB memories told me it was exactly a year to the day since we went to watch last year’s firing of the kiln.
They had a ‘trickster’ there who we’d not met and who Sam spent most of his time with, while my dad chatted with the potter and I wandered around enjoying the crafts and the setting.
Monday we turned the need to drop off some books into a chance to get out and enjoy a walk I have been meaning to do for 16 years (I get to things in my own time) along the Titchfield Canal. We’ll be back at some point but next time we won’t have errands to run in Fareham after so we can continue all the way down to the beach.
Tues and Weds have been catching up on housework, admin and cracking on with work if you are me. Reading and watching wrestling if you are the boys.
Struggling to write this one as another very successful year so not a huge amount to say.
Did we stick to all I’d planned? No of course not but managed the majority. I think the only thing that changed from the plan was dropping the computer science/programming and the art award for most of the year. Although we did pick both up again towards the end of the year when we finished off other stuff.
One of the big goals for the year was to work on writing. Not so much creatively (although had lots of fun with that) but more working towards being able to answer essay questions. I started off by pushing it as a blogging/typing exercise thinking that would make it easier but it ended up falling by the wayside as felt a bit forced. We talked about answers to questions in books also it became obvious from English writing course that he has got the basic skills there to neatly handwrite and begin to structure answers. We’re not ready for essay level stuff yet but question and answer style paper is not as far off as I thought before this year. Having looked through a couple of GCSE papers this year for minor subjects (General Studies/Classical Civilization) I don’t think either would have been a mammoth ask of him now.
The other big goal was working on control and ‘ownership’. Breaking the work down into jobs he can move about on the planner was definitely a smart move, really helped with him being able to visualise what needed to be done.
We continue to rely heavily on a Charlotte Mason style of education for subjects, lots of reading and documentary watching and discussion. Spent an awful lot of time reading aloud this year which has been nice.
In terms of general knowledge he is thriving, continues to have an insatiable thirst for history of all types. The surprise hit of the year was a visit to a Russian Revolution exhibition at the British Library (we’d actually tried to find a day we could go without kids and failed so he was a tag along really), normally he quietly absorbs things and looks like he’s taken nothing from trips and then out it flows 6 months or so later, this one though has been a big topic of conversation. A year long Victorian project has convinced us both that Prince Albert was amazing in what he achieved for this country. I think the project and particularly our look at the slums and factory working conditions and many conversations about Chartism have fired a political animal in him.
Geography, he has a brilliant knowledge of where places are and flags (I’d love to take credit but suspect his love of military conquest strategy games is real reason). He’s loved looking at Asian culture this year, India and China didn’t excite him too much but Japan and Korea really did.
Science we’ve had fun with a lot of handson learning how much of that translated to in depth understanding I am a little sceptical on but hopefully it will have sunk in a little.
The most positive thing though that comes from the year is that we’re both still really enjoying home ed. At the crossroads where many home ed kids talk about and consider school Sam is sure it isn’t for him. I have noticed him switch in conversation when discussing this from focusing on perceived negatives of school to actively stressing the good points of HE and that is rather gratifying. I am happy to admit I’ve found the juggling it all hard over the last 8 months. Work has been pretty full on and I’ve gone from a small number of hours to work around to being able to work as much as I want. Sounds ideal but comes with a load of guilt. I love my job and am relishing the opportunities to do stuff that time hasn’t allowed but HE is a big commitment and huge drain on time to do well, it is a full time job easily. I know though that I am lucky to love what I do so it’s worth the ridiculously early mornings (5.30am is a lie in!) and late nights and grey hair 🙂
We really are on minimal level workload. I feel like I am scratching round for projects to engage with as we both need things to grab our attention or we can slip into habits which aren’t good for us.
I thought science would today but was thrown by the kits I’d bought (really at lazy level) needed a non standard battery. Amazon Prime to the rescue so that’s tomorrows project.
I was also under prepared when I had no lemon for a lemon clock kit. Fortunately I had a grapefruit so we made a grapefruit clock and I’ll have toast tomorrow 🙂 We got out some other bits to see if we could make a light work – no was the answer.
We spent a lot of time working on comic ideas for our next home ed comic. Excellent plan in place 🙂
Then is was on to a big book clear out. We’ll list some for sale but aim is to get rid of most in a book sale at our ‘home ed fete’ on Weds.
Late afternoon went on a new card game ‘Love Letters’ we’re liking this one.I was going to mention more on the planning front but far too hot downstairs so bed by the fan for me.
Our plans for September seem an awful lot clearer than they did 3 days ago.
A venue has been found for a ‘potential’ activity so looking like that is now a definite on the diary, a pencilled in commitment looks like it can be penned in
Our trip to see the local home ed tutorial centre due an unequivocal no to joining in activities there. Nothing to do with the centre, it’s amazing. More it’s a big commitment in our week and we can do so much more with our time when you consider the travelling. Left decision entirely up to Sam and he was definite that it was a no. I was on the fence so happy to get a decision. A pencilled in activity can be rubbed out, buying us precious time.
Still no idea how to fit in all we want to but at least I know what I’m fitting around. Now comes the fun bit 😀
I really had to buy this diary as so very, very me.
Is how I feel, pretty much.
On the home ed front things are going well. I have planned well and keeping up with what little I’ve allocated us isn’t proving hard.
Yesterday we’d easily finished by 11 so heading in to town, picked up lunch and a friend’s daughter and went over to laser quest. Despite the heat 18 children went in and had the usual fun. My plan on hiding out in the shade didn’t quite work out thanks to a cute 5yo who wanted to play – kickboxing in that heat was a mistake though.
Could have spent day on the top deck of the ferry, was nice and breezy. Sam had sun tan lotion in the eye hence the squint.
Today started early as I went to view a hall with a friend for a group activity. Sam stayed home and got on with work. When I got back all that was needed was grammar, writing, science and some history reading.
Telephones and telegraphs were the focus of science.
Sam made a circuit so we could do morse code with a bulb.
After that Sam experimented with the electical bits for a couple of hours with a quick detour into researching answers to questions I couldn’t answer.
At some point he decided to show me what a peg blutacked on to a motor felt like against your head. Unfortunately I had my back to him when I said yes to ‘can I show you something?’ so couldn’t point out the flaw with that. He quickly realised the problem and there was a lot of apologising as he spent 20 mins helping remove lots of knots, blutack and a motor from my hair. It was scissors job in the end. Had to see funny side.