A Year in the Life of a Home-Schooling Family: Day 50

Back to school as normal this week. Well, normalish. We are all very happy because Grandad and Granny are coming over from Northern Ireland on Thursday and staying for a week! We can’t wait! Gary has the whole week they are here off, which is so incredible…can you tell how excited I am?!

Anyway, I got up at six this morning. No, honestly, no need to congratulate me. I went to the loo and headed straight back to bed! However, on my journey to and from said loo I did manage to clock that Thomas was in the bath, Lillie was sat at her computer and the little ones were playing quietly in their room. What is wrong with everybody?!! It’s still night-time for goodness sake! I grunted my normal unintelligible grunts, attempting to get across my astonishment without actually uttering any, y’know, actual words.

Two hours later and Lillie brought me a freshly ground, freshly made cup of coffee. Becca came in for a snuggle. Charlotte came in to chat about the day before, and Lillie bounded about with far too much energy given the sun had only just come up. Abigail was sweeping the floor, just outside my room.

I began wondering if one could order in coffee by the drip. I could set it up to go into my veins at six and by five past six I might be conscious enough to make sense of the world around me.

Thank God for coffee. That’s all I’ll say.

By nine I was bouncing about like some over excited lunatic. Coffee had done it’s job, and I was ready to face the day. Not just face it, but conquer it. We started with maths.

I have an interesting observation to make about maths. All the maths I did with the Life of Fred books, and all the hands-on fun maths, the girls have retained perfectly. Doubles, geometry, graphs, area and circumference, cardinal and ordinal numbers…the girls remember it all. So, whilst I shall continue using the maths workbooks (they make me feel like I am covering all they need), I am not going to forgo using Life of Fred. For whatever reason, Life of Fred maths sticks!

Soooo, after completing their work books:

Ab and Becs did some maths the Freddy way. I read a few chapters out and then had the girls make up as many quadrilaterals as they could remember and label them:

Afterwards, Abigail read out Mummy Maths: A Geometry Adventure:

Meanwhile, Lillie was creating some publisher documents for her A Level Photography at my desk:

and Charlotte was cramming in her Latin:

Becca is struggling to push herself with her reading. She is capable but looking at lots and lots of words on the page kind of scares her into thinking she can’t read it. So Super Granny to the rescue! Becca is now going over to Granny’s for twenty minutes a day to read out loud to her. I am choosing books I know she would struggle with if she was reading alone:

We also covered some science today, learning about Saturn. I read aloud from the chapter:

and then the girls wrote some notes down in their journals:

We then made a model of Saturn using an old CD and a tennis ball from our garden that Gary generously sawed in half for us at the weekend:

We attempted to make a balloon rocket, which was easier said than done, and took a few attempts before we were able to just blow up a long balloon to use as the rocket:

There it was, gone!

I did manage to get some black and white photos of it actually in mid-flight, which I will showcase in my Saturn post at the weekend.

Lillie has slowly been making the office area in the porchway hers by painting inspiring quotes all over the walls:

After lunch, they played outside for a while, napping, gymnastic-ing and spraying water everywhere whilst twirling around. Don’t ask.

I read some more Life of Fred maths and the girls used a map and marked out any quadrilaterals they could find and any concurrent lines:

They finished off their astronomy for the day by colouring in a through section of Saturn:

and we prepared for tomorrows activities by reading through the Mystery of History lesson on Hammurabi.

Our penultimate activity was mathematical, and one the girls had been anticipating all afternoon. M ‘n’ M maths! I taught them how to figure out the median average:

and had them build and label all the quadrilaterals they could remember (all the ones they had learnt – yay Life of Fred!):

Our last activity for the day was to (at last) start our art curriculum for this year. I taught the girls to really look at the shape, the ellipses and the lights and darks they could see in a simple flower pot:

The little ones are playing outside, Thomas and Gary have just returned from work, the twins have gone for a walk and I am finishing off some blogging before making a start on dinner. A great day today, and we’re not even out of February yet 🙂

I have rocked this February!


  1. Oh wow ,by the time you get to lunch I think you must be at 3pm but clearly not , you certainly fit a lot in! I struggle to do such amazing things with our clan; our 3 year old (nearly 4) loves to learn too ,but I’ve not mastered the art of spinning between the clan as well yet….they are meant to be self-directed …..hmmm….but not so with distracted boys ….

    Now Art sounds fab! I’ve been wanting to start this myself with all ours too….all in ages from 3 and up to 11….5 of them ,so first I need to conquer the apparent lack of interest….I need to make it appealing and as you’re all very artistic that’s not an issue for you I’m guessing, but how does one indeed make it interesting…… please share about that !:-)

    What Art curriculum do you use please ? How does it outline things and is this the age you start ,or have you done much other basic things with the students before this ? I know you’re making things ,and they are making things a lot already ,so I’m just trying to get started ….where to start , because our children have had enough of colcolour in and such like ,and they are not motivated to start drawing free hand either ….

    Really love reading what you do and we need to relax a bit in our schedule because it’s otherwise head in books all. The. Time. Need other learning too…
    Thank you !

  2. We were just looking at a Life of Fred Algebra book on bookshelf, and discussing whether to try it with the younger girls next. We haven’t had any luck with the series – but I have it so I hate not to use it if I can. I love your days, they are so inspiring.

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