Blowing away the cobwebs and knuckling back down

Took a long time to recover from the coldy bug that was afflicting us.  Definitely was still affecting patience and mood up to the end of last week.

On Thursday, the sun shone.  Things were slow to start and I could feel my patience fraying early on, so as we weren’t expecting Sam’s friend round for usual play and I didn’t really feel up to swimming or gym, I made the snap decision to make some use of our Culture All pass and rang my Dad to suggest a day out at Staunton Country Park.  Sam changed his mind while I was on the phone and we had strop and tears (really was that sort of week).  Glad I pushed on though as once there he absolutely loved being out and the October sunshine really worked it’s magic.  Sometimes Mum really does know best!

Playing in the maze.  He beat me through it nearly every time.  He said every but there was some debate at what constituted the end of the race 😉

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Walled garden and glass house.

20151009_4 20151009_5 20151009_3 Autumn colours and a little bit of the Enchanted Wood.

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Didn’t bother hugely with the animals, but couldn’t avoid the peahens, miss the donkeys or pass up the opportunity to see piglets about 12hrs old.

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Plus just enjoying being outside 🙂

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Cold was finally going on Friday.  A very procrastinating start did unfortunately snap my frayed temper first thing.  To the level I had to send Sam upstairs for 5 mins and ‘start the day again’.  Never pleased with myself when I shout and I don’t often.  We did however manage to put that behind us and have a fantastically productive day.

All core activities managed for the first time that week (Spanish and Latin had got a bit put by the wayside).  English involved writing an application to be a ‘fantasy hero’.


Maths involved looking at ‘split strategy’ for multiplication.  I am still unsure what I think about the teaching of lots of different ways of doing the same thing (this is the first year that we’ve ever really done anything so tied to NC).  I like the idea there is no right way of doing something and as long as you can show how you are getting there great, means that if you don’t get it one way you can try another.  However, think there is a very high risk of muddying the waters and losing some kids completely in a school set up.


In science we looked at the the magnetism of the Earth.  Made a compass.

20151009_22 Demonstrated lines of magnetic field with iron filings and a bar magnet under the paper.20151009_25

Then had fun collecting the iron filings.  Getting them off the magnet was harder.20151009_28

We looked at how the bible in English is a translation and listened to a clip of some of the reading in Hebrew, unfortunately the end of the first sentence sounded very like a swear word and things rather degenerated in to giggling (I have a juvenile sense of humour).  We then looked at different Children’s versions of the story of creation and discussed how they were different.  The Brick Bible was a hit.

We then watched an interesting documentary about William Tyndale.

After lunch we caught up on art.  We did some refreshing of ideas about perspective and vanishing points.  Then we looked at a colour wheel and the idea of complementary colours (colours opposite each other on the colour wheel).

The picture was Van Gogh’s Cafe terrace.  The idea was a collage with pastel highlights but definitely more pastel than collage.

20151009_32 20151009_33We finished off by rounding off Sam’s spy project by designing a spy watch.

20151012_1We looked at Enigma and made a mini enigma machine from a kit we’ve had for years.20151012_2Then completed two more Cryptographer challenges on to earn master level.  He encrypted and sent a message in morse code and with the help of Pete who was home learnt a bit about and decoded a message in Base 64 (please don’t as me).


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