Friday, 19 September 2014

Marbling with crayons!

This is a really fun craft project to try with children.  We marbled eggs and paper but you could marble many things using this technique.

It doesn't involve chemicals with toxic fumes, but it does involve boiling water so care needs to be taken but I love the effect that it achieves. 

For this project, you will need...

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Time to move on...

Monday was lovely.  We had a surprise email in the morning, it was friends who fancied meeting up.  The girls have never finished their history and maths so quickly.  Ever. 
My friend has five children, I have four - we had a house FULL of very happy playful children.  It was lovely!
We went out shopping, walked about the town enjoying the sunshine.
In the evening, I got to do a bit of yoga with my 9 year old too. She loves learning new sports and had the frog pose conquered very quickly indeed!
Then, it was bedtime. The youngest two were asleep when we had some bad news... 

Monday, 15 September 2014

And how the years fly!

My beautiful little Honi turned 7 this year!  Where does the time go.  I remember it so well, born at 5:30pm in hospital with one of the loveliest midwives in the world.  I will never forget that special moment.   I only wish I could remember her name.  I even got to cut the cord myself, something I only managed to get to do with Honi.  Special memories...

Friday, 12 September 2014

SCIENCE: Step by step experiment - how wind is made!

For a while now I have been wanting to do a few science experiments to show my girls how weather works in a practical hands on way.  Finally I am getting round to it...
Last week we looked at different climates and their affect on the world.  This of course lead to how wind is created.  So, I have been pondering on ways of creating this effect at home, a way that makes it fun and keeps all my children.  This is what I came up with; in this experiment we did today we learnt how earth's winds are created with a simple experiment - no blowing required! 

Monday, 8 September 2014

When do you get your 6 weeks?

Since Friday I have been suffering with the most horrendous face ache.  I can not work out whether it is my jaw, ear ache or toothache but what I do know is I hate going to the doctors and I hate going to the dentist so I bought myself some co-codomols and got on with it.  I am hoping it will go away, I am sure it will.
Friday, just before the jaw was hurting too badly, we were out shopping when I got into a conversation with the lady serving us in BHS.  When do they start again?  She began indicating to the girls.  I wasn't really up for conversation but me being me felt I should answer her questions. 
This is a snapshot from today where Honi refused to do her history until she finished reading Hamlet - what can I say! Ha!
I am sure most people might have felt a little grated when she asked the children how old they were, but she was just a little old lady trying to be nice - you can tell the difference can't you.  Anyway, when I told her we home educate her eyes lit up and then she asked that question: What about exams? 
I forced a smile as at first I thought she meant GCSEs but no...

Saturday, 6 September 2014

Hands on Geography Activities

Here I am compiling all my Geography activity ideas I think of as I teach my four girls about the world they live in - I will be adding more as I go along.  We have enjoyed these projects so I thought I would share them here and will share any successful projects I discover or make up on the way, will also feature here in the future...
Play dough maps - My four year old hated the idea of drawing out a map, but when I go the play dough out things changed.

Tectonic Plates - This activity idea came up when I was doing a project about volcanoes for my under 12's science group.  It is simple and imperfect in ways but it gives children a visual idea of we mean when we talk about tectonic plates and how they move.


Salt Dough Fossils - this is a simple activity which can bring up a lot of conversation as to how fossils are formed.

How do clouds form? - this is a simple and cheap experiment that teaches children how clouds work.

Here are 11 science experiments all about volcanoes; 11 ways of learning about geography through science in a hands on way.  Most of these are simple and easy projects that can be done with children of any age, but there are a few that are more challenging.
Geotechnical Engineering project - I thought about how I could do this one for a while before I came up with this.  There is quite a bit of maths hence it being in the NOT SO EASY section.

Photo: My 1st time making homemade fudge worked out really well!

Volcanic rocks - making and eating sweets to learn about rock formation

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Fun, Friends and finding our groove again...

I wanted to write a blog post Tuesday but I was just too tired.  We  had a lovely day though.  It was busy but in a good way.  

First thing Chiara was on the computer playing on Mathletics while the other three were downstairs playing with play dough so I snuck in a bath before starting with any structured education. Then...

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Lucky Pants!

This morning I lay in bed, as I seem to most mornings these days as there's not much point until the girls are finished in the bathroom - it's safer under the covers, trust me. 

As I lay there, in my lovely cosy bed, I heard Kev leave the house. What got my attention about this very ordinary event, was the fact he was fighting off little people's cuddles as he desperately tried to leave the house without being late for work - normally they opt for the television or playing in their room at that time of the morning, but kids do random things so nothing to worry about, RIGHT?  Well... the front door shut followed by a lot of giggling; there were two very cheeky people full of very cheeky giggles. 
Not long after all the giggling, I heard a gentle knock at my bedroom door.  It was my Honi who very proudly announced her most recent successful prank.  There was no guilt on her face just sheer CHEEK!  I had to laugh when she told me what she had done though...

Saturday, 30 August 2014

Back to school!

Not quite school, but you will see what I mean as you read on...

We went on a walk Thursday; we went for a walk we had promised our older two girls we would do for a long time.  To be honest, due to two little people who didn't appreciate what we were doing so much, we only did half the walk but it was a sunny day and they did enjoy trying to read the map until it just got too late and we were all getting too hungry.  We will most certainly be doing the walk again another day and hopefully, next time, we will finish it.

Monday, 25 August 2014

Science: STEP by STEP Paint splatter experiment!

We did a new experiment this week.  One I had thought up a while back but finally we had a moment in time where we had enough empty eggs shells enough paint!

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Fun at FolkEast Festival!

I have to say it: I have some pretty exceptionally AMAZINGLY loving friends.  Friends who are so very special that I can truly say I am blessed. They are family to me.  Why am I saying this? Well things haven't really been too rosy recently and the girls and I really needed to get away (even though I hadn't realised how much). My friends had realised this and, generously, offered to treat us to camping at the FolkEast Festival.  It was amazing.

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

An Unexpected Visit...

Today I had a lovely visit from a good old friend!  It was unexpected and most welcome. It was so nice to have a good old chin wag.

Sunday, 10 August 2014

A lot of fun and games...

This week we have all been under the weather.  It's not been pretty so I won't go into detail but it has meant that we have had a house full of whiney, irritable children mostly.  We have also had accidents resulting in cuts and bruises and computers playing up.  But apart from all that this week hasn't been so bad. We...

Went to the park with friends on Monday and found some fascinating and rare wasps called Beewolves!

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Toilet roll craft: How to make Olaf from Frozen

I was inspired to make this Olaf craft when I saw this post here: Cardboard tube Olaf craft.  To be honest I didn't read how it was made but was inspired by the photo I saw on Facebook linked to this post. So you can click on the link or read on to see how we made ours.
For this Frozen craft you will need: 

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

No More Toys!

Well not quite all the toys but we have certainly made a start on our serious mission this month to de-clutter and reorganise ourselves ready for a new year.

Not only do we have four girls and all their play stuff, but we have all the educational resources that we need for our home education.  Every year we have to clear so much stuff out but this year I thought it was time to sort out their bedroom too!

It was this weekend I finally had had enough of all the toys.  The girls over the last few months have kept begging me to keep so many toys yet, over the year, they haven't seemed to be interested in them enough to play with them and (what is worse) the toys end up all over the floor as there is hardly enough room in their bedroom to store them: 
  • Under the bed is packed full of mostly important things: clothes for the next season, boxes of memories and boxes of things they do actually use.
  • They have so many drawers to put their things in but on top of the drawers are piled high with more things that they never seem to use.
  • On their beds there is hardly room to sleep for all the extra toys that they just LOVE so much but still they lay dormant, waiting to play but rarely being used.  These are mostly found laying on the floor or down the sides of the bed collecting dust.
I had had enough.  The room was so untidy that it was becoming difficult to get rid of all the dust and the complaints I was getting from the girls - nearly every day - that they had gone and lost something else.  Everyday was beginning to feel like a spring clean.  To top it the girls moaned every time I asked them to pick up the toys from their floor.  Then I read this post: Why I took my kids toys away and why they won't be getting them back. 
At first when I read it I thought how cruel but then, as I got to the end of the post, it made more sense and reminded me of how when, just over two years ago, we moved and got rid of LOADS of the kids stuff.  I mean WHERE DOES IT ALL COME FROM?