Tuesday, 25 November 2014

8 fun Christmas science experiments

Make a crystal snowflake


Another way of making a sparkly snowflake 

How to make a Christmas lantern - no candles!

Fireworks in a glass!   A fun way to celebrate and no loud noises!


 The Flame test - pretty colours, a fun thing to do round Christmas time whilst demonstrating how real fireworks get their colours!

Homemade bath bombs - learn some science while you make some lovely handmade gifts for family and friends!
Lolly pop reaction  Just because it's really fun!

A bit of magic for Christmas: Liquids Changing places

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Never Stop Questioning!

I was talking to my husband the other day about how Honi, my seven year old, has an excessive amount of curiosity.  

We are all born curious.  It is what spurs us on to learn, to develop and grow.  It is normal.  But some people seem to have larger doses than others.   I am one of those people and so is my Honi...

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Table manners...

Today was a lovely day.  Yesterday I had managed to empty out half the boxes and made a good start on the kitchen and conservatory and the girls' bedrooms.  The place is beginning to feel more like home.  There is still a way to go, but I can see that we are getting there and that is a great feeling after the very busy and super tiring week we have had. We only managed one trip to our favourite coffee shop all week...

Today, we had to go into town to sign the last of the forms for the inventory today so I decided to feed the girls in a restaurant.  There's a couple of places where kids can eat cheap in town; today I only paid £1.50 for each of their meals and it was a decent size kids meal too! I grabbed a coffee and got on with some crochet while they ate - I just wasn't too hungry today.  

Saturday, 15 November 2014

The new house!

It's been so long since I blogged.  I have missed it terribly but I have simply been too busy putting my girls first as much as I can whilst moving HOUSE! It's been crazily busy!

I had been rather apprehensive about this move but I think that had a lot to do with the fact that it wasn't by choice that we moved.  We HAD to move. Of course there was the excitement of a new house (once the stress of finding one was out the way) but then there were all our neighbours that we will very much miss.  We received a lovely card from one of our friends and neighbours.  It put a smile on my face.

The first day of moving into the new house Harmonie, my four year old, just wouldn't stir from her sleep - we needed to be at the new house by 10:30am. Forty-five minutes before we had to leave the house and she was still sound asleep.  I wasn't surprised.  With all the excitement of the move the girls hadn't been going to sleep very well. I left her to sleep while I got ready and found some breakfast for her to munch on the way.  It all worked out in the end and I stayed surprisingly CALM! We made it to the new house on time to collect the keys and give them all our money! Moving house is so expensive. 

We are nearly done and I am actually quite impressed with how we've done considering.  There have been a few breakages and, despite all my efforts the littlest one has been quite insecure due to her new surroundings but my older girls are LOVING it.

I am loving that they are getting to sleep hours before midnight.  Always good.  The excitement got so much for them that they were up until midnight nearly every night last week! Along with all the packing and suffering with colds and all the other stresses on top the lack of sleep followed by long days of miserable (but very cute) kids who had, of their own accord, deprived themselves (and their parents) of sleep - I think I have done pretty well.  As a friend today said to me, it was my best so it was acceptable.  I liked that very much.

I do love my new house so much now I am here.  I can't wait to make it our home.  Here's some pics for those of you intrigued...

Friday, 7 November 2014

New adventures...

We have been so busy with all this packing that any learning going on has been completely autonomous and has involved lots of documentaries, films, books and computers mostly.  

On November the 5th, Guy Fawkes night,  I had planned to do lots but with this house move coming up we managed sparklers!  The girls loved it apart from Naomi who hates playing with fire - as her mother I am not going to argue with her.  I am however saving up some sparklers for when we move into the new place; I want them to remember moving as a positive thing in their lives and that change should be seen as something exciting!  An adventure!

I want them to remember moving as a positive thing in their lives and that change should be seen as something exciting!  An adventure!

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

Science: 5 Fireworks experiments

Here are all my science experiments that are great at this time of the year!

Here are five fun fireworks experiments...

This is a fun experiment for any age: Fireworks in a jar - ok it's not really fireworks but it does make for a very pretty and colourful show.

The Flame test - now this is rather spectacular is a great way to teach how all those colours in real fireworks are made!  All you need is plenty of pine cones and a few chemicals!

Fireworks in a microwave! This experiment does require adult supervision but it has a very cool effect!  Here's how to do it...

Freeze the glow! Another fun one for all ages. 

Hot iron - if you want to see the sparkler effect this is the one for you.  But remember to wear safety goggles! 

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Play... The most important thing?

Friday was mostly full of play...

I made some play dough with Harmonie.  I love how children enjoy weighing out all the ingredients and asking what each ingredient is.  To them, everything is play.

The older girls I played maths games with. We played around with estimating and rounding numbers up and down. Not challenging for my eldest but then she went up to do some computer programming on scratch while I made the dinner. She always asks if she can 'play' on scratch.

It did make me think: 
when do we as adults stop calling things 'play'? 

Sunday, 2 November 2014

Playdough faces activity

We've been playing with play dough again!  This time I thought it would be fun to make some faces.  My four year old loved this and it's a great way to talk about emotions and discuss different types of characters.

Friday, 31 October 2014

Pack up and keep going...

That's basically what our life is all about at the moment.  Yes, we are ever so busy recently due to this moving house malarkey but (apart from filling boxes and cleaning) we have managed to squeeze in...

Finishing off that Greek vase...

That was a worthwhile mission!

This weekend I spent most of my time thinking 'what do I pack that I won't miss!'  That's the only thing with moving isn't it:  one is bound to pack something that is going to be really needed and it is bound to be at the bottom of a box which is on the bottom of a stack of boxes!  Gah!  It needs to be done though.  

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Learning to spell through play...

We were looking for a way we could learn to spell a bit better and turn it into a game.  This is what we came up with and it turned out to be a lot of fun.  There are free printables included for this game...  

First you will need to choose which Spelling Bingo boards you want to use, these are all ready to print out and play:

  • Hard level - click here for the printable hard Bingo board
  • Medium level - click here for the printable medium Bingo board
  • Easy level - click here for the printable easy Bingo board

I filled them with some common letter sounds to help with spelling: fl, ou, oi, ph etc. I filled the grid so there was 20 in total.    

Find a box full of buttons, each player will need 16 buttons for this game.

Now click here for my list of words to read out for the Spelling Bingo games.  This list was made to work with the boards I have made into printables. You could either read the words out or, alternatively, cut them out and draw them out of a hat or a bucket if you want to make it more like Bingo.  

How to play the game!

It works out similarly to regular bingo except instead of numbers we are using letters.  You can either play:
  • first one to make a line and shouts BINGO wins 


  • first one to fill up the board and shouts BINGO wins.

For the Easy bingo I made the rule that it was always the beginning letter we look out for. For the Medium and Hard level I said the sound could be from the beginning, front or the end of the word. 

I read each word out and put the word into a sentence so the children could be confident of which spelling due to homophones.  If they had the letter sound they got to cover the square with a button.  If they missed a letter sound on their board I left it for next time and said nothing, if they put a button on the wrong letter sound, I informed them it was incorrect and asked kindly, for them to remove the button.  

I gave them 30 seconds or so to look at the board each time a new word was called out.  With my youngest, aged 4, I helped her a little more by repeating the phonic and, when she got stressed, helped her to find the letter that went with the sound.  Soon she remember which sound went with which letter and needed less and less help.

I hope you have as much fun as we did playing it!

Sunday, 26 October 2014

Science Friction: Get a Grip

This is a simple and inexpensive experiment.  In this experiment we are learning how friction works and how it can be useful to us.

I did this experiment with my seven year old but my four year old was desperate to join in too, so she did a bit too.

All you will need are these three things...

Thursday, 23 October 2014

Aren't you keeping them out of the real world?

Aren't you keeping them out of the real world? 

This is a question I was asked yesterday during a conversation on Home Education started by an acquaintance, my inner thoughts went...

THE REAL WORLD! I cannot believe how many times I have heard it and how many more times I am sure I will hear it. Why do people think that sending their children to school will teach them about the real world, about real life challenges?  


Being in school does not teach a child how to deal with trials in life...

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Headstands, Steamboats and things...

Well, we didn't have the most exciting weekend due to tummy bugs but Sunday evening, when we were feeling a bit brighter we did go for a walk and check out the new area where we will be living.

The sun was so beautiful and bright and I was reminded of all the good things to look forward to with this move, the area has so much to offer really, despite not being quite so close to town.

We've been as busy as ever.  I think I'm trying to squeeze as much fun time with mummy in before the big move.  We only have a few weeks now.

Here's a little peek into what's my girls have been up to...

Sunday, 19 October 2014

Science: How to make a Steamboat

This was a great little science project this week. All my girls asked the right sort of questions so it was easy to fill them in with the scientific facts: the hows and whys.

Another reason I love this project so much is it's another of those MAKE YOUR OWN TOY moments!

What we used for this project:

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

We have a new home!!!!

We have a new home!!!!

I was so worried as we had just over a month left to find somewhere to fit all my four girls but we did it and, although there is plenty more going on in my life at the moment, that is a HUMONGOUS weight off my shoulders! Phew!  Now for the massive packing and cleaning frenzy!

After that stress was out the way we had a lovely family day on Saturday.  Naomi and Honi had gone to their swimming class with their dad before I managed to get out of the house, I promised to go but I was on the drag so followed on a little later as I wanted to see how they were doing.  Honi was thrilled to see me when I turned up - it was quiz day in the pool she told me later.  

I am glad I was running late that day because on my way there I bumped into a man who pointed out that one of the churches in town were having an open day.  They had some lovely miniature church bells on pulleys for the kids to have a go safely and a tour inside the church.  I took the girls later on that afternoon...