Our second week of full-time schooling (as opposed to unschooling) and we have fitted a lot in.
There seems to have been much cuddling this week, the reason for which is unclear:
B2 hasn’t been in great form, with teeth coming through but she need not fear because she has her big sister A6 to look after her every whim. I received an unprecedented amount of hugs on Wednesday as I was due a visit to the hospital. I would be hearing about some histology results which, once you have had cancer before, are always cause for concern. I had thought I was handling the stress really well except everyone kept hugging me! I mean we hug a lot in our house, but really I couldn’t go to the loo without receiving at least three hugs on the way in and the same on the way out. By the time the appointment arrived I couldn’t wait to get there, if only to have a bit of space from my six well-meaning huggers. Once I had the results back and found they were clear, I was ready to be hugged for Great Britain……only they were all too absorbed with Poirot to even notice me arrive home! It didn’t matter though. I was cancer free and a very happy little bunny.
There is nothing lovelier than siblings who love each other. It warms the cockles of my heart!
Back to business. This week was a schooling week, and I had planned lots of work to do. And to be honest the children did really well. They completed an hour of maths every day with both T and L earning certificates left, right and center. C was struggling with a concept but by the end of the week she had it sorted. For the last six months we have been using a computer based maths curriculum which is working out very, very well for all three older children. I intend to write a post on it, but suffice it to say it has worked wonders with my girls, who are very close to catching up with their peers. In fact I think I might be in danger of raising a couple of boffs what with T taking up our entire collection of National Geographic to read during his quiet time and L begging (as in really pleading) to allow her to do more maths in her quiet time. I mean, really?
In our morning meetings we have been reading about the explorers who tackled Antarctica in addition to working our way through chapter two of Who is God? Apologia curriculum. The older ones completed three more lessons of Cover Story, their writing curriculum, and during their one hour quiet time they have read through over 9 books between them, writing book reports for each one as well as various copies of the National Geographic.
Afternoons have been filled with history, geography, science and exploration. One of the areas I really wanted to focus on during our schooling weeks was writing. To this end, I have put aside one hour to be devoted to writing something. Monday we answered some GCSE-like questions on the Tudors and I was able to teach them a bit about exam technique; Tuesday they wrote a report about protists, which I then went through with a tooth comb highlighting areas they needed to improve on; Wednesday they wrote another report, using what they had learnt about report writing from the day before, this time about Scuvy (which the explorers during Tudor times suffered from) and the improvement was incredible; Thursday they needed to choose one of the microbes we had studied and write a persuasive 5 paragraph letter to the reigning microbe monarch saying why their chosen microbe should be succeed him to be king over all the microbes. They were given 30 minutes of timed, quiet time to write the essay (basically under exam conditions) and handled it fairly well. Finally this Friday we will have worked our way through (together) an English GCSE paper about Antarctica, which rather handily dove-tailed with are Antarctica unit study we are currently doing.
In addition to all this we have been doing stacks of hands on activities to do with the explorers and Antarctica.
Speaking of which, it snowed Tuesday, so we declared an Antarctic school day and did a bazillion experiments with snow and of course built the obligatory snow man:
Later on that day we watched Happy Feet, which tied in nicely (if a little loosely) with Antactica. Speaking of videos the older ones have been slowly working their way through the Pirates of the Caribbean, which tie in even more loosely with our explorers unit. Tenuous, I know, but the children surely were very excited!
In the very small amounts of free time available to them, they were busy with pleasurable activities and hobbies. Much singing was done with their choir and whilst washing up. I think I know the words of all the songs for their next concert! L received her level six badge in trampolining and was so proud of herself! She has also at last got her hands on my old sewing machine and is currently sewing the hems together on all B3’s old skirts and turning them into handbags:
And T has been having his twice weekly physics lessons with his friend S:
Speaking of physics, I just wonder how many other mums out there get bombarded with physics talks (accompanied by diagrams) at 7am in the morning. BC. That would be before coffee. Seriously, how am I meant to know whether a pendulum could be used to produce enough energy to light up our house (turns out it can’t) but faced with this conundrum in the early hours of Monday morning I simply grunted and told T to come back on Wednesday. Later. Much later. AC. That would be after coffee not alternating currents, although with T in the house it could have been either. Or both. Any way I digress. Back to this week. And science. We have been finishing up our microbe study by looking at the junk yard category of Protists. We wrote about them, made Protist pancakes and collected some pond water to see if we could see any:
The little girls are continuing to have lots of fun together, dancing like no-one is watching:
….dressing up with their older siblings:
and drawing lots:
The girls and I spent another lovely evening art journalling our way through the bible. The girls made the comment that it was just like spending the evening with their best friend rather than their mum. Happy sigh. I’m so blessed I can be both:
The boys had a particularly hilarious play fight over a cream egg which I managed to snap. We were all rolling about on the floor. They are both so competitive and T was almost desperate to get his hands on the egg. That is until I let slip that there were more in the kitchen, at which point he gave up, preferring to take his chances in the kitchen:
All in all a full and fun week, although I’m thinking the children will be glad to have a week off writing next week, during our unschool week.
I hope you all have a wonderful weekend full with friends, family and lots of love.