Top Ten Posts of 2013

As everyone seems to be writing about their top ten posts, I thought I would get on the bandwagon!

  • Remaining the most popular of all time is my post on Viking Runes.  This was where we made our own Viking runes; made a hip bag to carry them in, from a shammy leather; did a Viking rune treasure hunt; designed our own initial monogram and initialed our own wooden spoon with the monogram, as they did in the Viking time:

  • A favourite of mine and yours was the page containing all my Little House on the Prairie posts.  I don’t think we will ever beat the fun we had last summer recreating the Little House on the Prairie:


  • Feudalism in the middle ages has been popular and was probably one of our favourite studies.  For this study we did a great mathematical demonstration of how feudalism worked and also made a lovely diorama to express all we had learnt:


  • My post on our study of bones also seemed to be a hit in 2013.  We watched dvds; learnt all our bones off by heart; played ‘Simon says’ to check; built a skeleton from cardboard, from xrays and finally from a large plastic model; learnt and acted out first aid linked to the bones and made a model of the bone:

We mixed a yellow and red paint with glue and gave the bone a coat to represent the living covering over the bone which we wouldn't see on a dead bone (periosteum). We then trailed red and blue threads over and stuck them down with another coat of the glue/paint. These were the oxygenated and deoxygenated vessels. I completed the cross-section with some spongy bone under the thick cartilage at the end of the bone.

  • Picture Study of Botticelli’s Map of Hell.  This has been a huge surprise to me because it certainly wasn’t one of my favourite studies, and yet has had almost 3000 hits on it since I wrote it in October.  We studied this in the midst of our literature studies of Dante’s Inferno.  I thought it would help the children to be able to visualise the inferno.  And I was right!  We looked at Botticelli’s original preliminary drawings and tried to replicate them using a homemade stucco on parchment as well as attempting to replicate his final Circle of Hell using, as he had, colouring pencils:


  • I also had a lot of hits on my ‘Going on a Bear hunt’ post.  This has proven popular since I wrote it.  The little ones learnt about bears; dressed up as bears; played play dough; made Bear Hunt puppets; had a teddy bears picnic; did a huge re-enactment of the story using sensory boxes and shaving foam; made lots of teddy bear snacks; made and painted some bear plaster casts; and after going on a real bear hunt with Daddy in our back garden had our very own Bear Hunt themed tea party.  Oh and I also gave the littles a Bear Hunt themed muffin tin to top it off.
  • Another favourite was Helping Children to Edit their own Writing when I demonstrated how I made the children their ‘informationaries’ ensuring they had all the information they needed at hand, enabling them to edit their own work and thus moving evermore nearer to independent study:



  • Most of my Ancient China posts seemed to be fairly well received and nearing the top of the list but the one about the Shang Dynasty and writing systems inched its way into the top ten.  Here, we made some oracle bones with clay; did some ancient Chinese calligraphy using reed pens and ink as well as with Chinese brushes and ink; we made our very own form of one of the first ever ancient Chinese envelopes and made a Chinese chop for seal stamping:


We then covered it in rope

The final mummified chicken in it's coffin.  Note the canopic jar next to it

There you have it.  Ten most popular posts of 2013.  Here’s to more blogging fun in 2014!

 Homegrown Learners


  1. Those are all such good posts, and my favorite one on this list was the Feudalism in the Middle Ages one 🙂

  2. Your top 10 looks like more than I do in ten years! My absolute favorite – Little House. Little House is dear to my heart AND that is how I discovered your blog. I am looking forward to seeing what is ahead this year.
    Hope you have a super day, a most wonderful weekend, and lots of fun with your family:)

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