A Year in the Life

A Year in the Life of a Home-Schooling Family: Day 88

The younger girls had a friend coming round in the afternoon, so there was a sense of needing to get on today. I had one of my ridiculously outrageous mental lists in my head of things which needed to be done before EM came over. It’s a good job these are mental lists and not actually on paper. I think they would terrify the girls!

The early morning was spent with Charlotte over at Granny’s doing Latin and Classics; Lillie at her computer doing Maths, Psychology and Human Biology; and the littles were completing their final test for the month. Yay, another set of ACE workbooks finished!

Once the tests were out of the way, we went snail hunting among our newly planted lettuce and tomato plants:

Next week I want to get up early each day and spent an hour in the garden before the school day starts. I kill everything I touch, so I am unsure of the wisdom of this plan. Although, let’s be honest, anything which involves me getting up early these days is doomed to failure! I am not the morning person I once was. Maybe the plants will live to see another day after all!

Doesn’t it look so peaceful out here? I love being out in my new vegetable patch! Happy sigh. It’s the small things…

The four girls had their devotions before eating a couple of Easter eggs the older girls had brought back for their little sisters after an egg hunt at youth group the night before:

Then it was time for a marathon read aloud time. I tested the girls on their tables and their Latin vocab. We translated about four pages of simple Latin sentences using the vocab. I read about how the Romans came to Britain. Abs was all excited that we might be relatives of the Romans! I’m thinking that the red hair rather suggests that we are more likely descendants of the Celts 😉

Pythagoras was the next scientist we were studying, so we learnt about how he applied his knowledge of mathematics to the practice of music. We shall be doing Pythagoras all of next week, but this was an interesting introduction. I also read another chapter of The Thieves of Ostia and continued on with the Botany by learning about non-vascular plants.

The girls then wrote some notes in their journals about non-vascular plants:

And we stole some moss (a non-vascular plant) from our roof and settled down to hone our observatory skills:

Have you ever seen it magnified? It is so different from what I thought it looked like. Abigail has a very strong pen scope, which is so strong, you can see the detail of every strand:

The girls then attempted to draw the moss as a whole and as a strand:

Next, we did a demonstration to show how non-vascular plants, such as moss, take in water by absorption. For this we used kitchen paper to represent the moss and blue water to represent, well, the water:

Whilst learning about Pythagoras, we did a demonstration to show that the sound made by the plucking of a rubber band depends on its length and its thickness:

I’ll be writing a post about it soon, but it was interesting to see that when you pinched the band, thereby halving its length, it gives a higher pitched sound when plucked:

They experimented a bit with their fake ‘guitar’:

Before I brought out Gary’s real guitar. Pythagoras realised that if you pluck a string on any given stringed instrument, it produces a given note:

But, if you pinch the string exactly halfway down the frets and pluck again, the note made is exactly the same note but is an octave higher:

The last activity before lunch was a maths revision in bar graphs and sets. I wanted to see if I left them to it, would they understand enough to be able to repeat the activities we’d done last week and earlier this week. I left them with rope, a packet of sweets, some markers and sticky paper and left them to it:

They made a great bar chart, including all they had learnt with regards to labelling:

And did all sorts of sets work, even cutting some sweets for variety:

By this time, the older girls were finished with their morning school and were happily making lunch for us all whilst I finished off with their little sisters:

We had a shorter than normal lunch so we could finish off the work I had planned before their friend arrived. It was fun work so I had no trouble persuading them to do it during what should have been their lunch break 🙂

The first thing was a Georgia O’Keeffe study of her soft pastel drawing of ‘Flowers’. This wasn’t entirely successful because the goal was to fill the whole page with flowers like O’Keeffe did. But it was a great opportunity for the girls to get a bit more practice using chalk pastels before they tackle their own take of a pot of flowers on Monday:

Afterwards, I squeezed in Abigail’s MEL Science which she had missed on Tuesday because of the cheery up party for Lillie. Lillie took EM (who had just arrived) and Becca to the local shops to get some marsh mallows and rice crispies. She had volunteered to make some rice crispy treats with Becs and EM whilst I did science with Abs:

Abs burnt some Magnesium, which to her great delight burnt with an almost blinding flame:

Lillie is making a birthday present for a friend who celebrates her 18th birthday on Sunday, Charlotte is back round at Granny’s working (just four more weeks until her first exam), Abigail and EM are outside playing in the garden and Becca is snuggled up with Daddy not feeling very well. She has a gymnastics display this evening so I’m hoping a rest will make her well enough to take part.

Thomas is doing a worship session at church tonight, Charlotte is working at the Chinese, Lillie and Gary are going to help out at a social group for adults with learning difficulties and I am having a night in school planning!

Have a wonderful evening everyone and a very happy weekend ahead!

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