Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Just Another Home-Ed Blog....


Our weekly art project ast week was 'Pop-Art' ~ Andy Warhol to be precise.

This was SUPER easy...

Just print out multiple grey-scale copies of the same photo on the same sheet of paper and use whatever paint you choose to paint over.

Some of the children used poster paint

some used gouache

and I think maybe some used watercolours.

They all worked, but gave different effects.

Fun, easy, quick and with interesting results!



Joel had to put some food sources in some jars, block out the light (hence the tin foil) and collect some local pond-water!

Leave for a week and then take a sample of each (hold your nose!!)...

...and study the 'bugs' under a microscope!

We all enjoyed discovering what was under there, but I'd really love to be able to afford a better microscope ~ this one may look good, but it's not as good as it looks. It has a USB (hook it up to the PC) lens, but that was totally hopeless (as it has no means of adjusting focus!), and it simply will not allow you close enough to focus at higher magnifications. Shame. The most we managed to magnify at was 64x, but that was good enough to see a few different kinds of bacteria.

Of course there's all the 'other' stuff happening all the time that I don't take pictures of (because my kids get fed up of the camera in their faces!)...

Stitch has completed the second terms worth of work for his Yr2 maths ~ he just 'gets' it, which is such a blessing. I tell him what is required for the set page and he just does it. I barely have to teach him anything thus far. He has deduced his own strategies and naturally works from what he knows to calculate what he doesn't. He understands the principles of four basic operations and confidently works with money problems. He understands all 'shape and measure' concepts like symmetry, mass and distance, and can even estimate fairly accurately. 

Stitch is also chomping at the bit to get going with some 'real writing', but much as I don't stop him, I still am choosing not to give him much work that requires actually writing. This is because his pencil control is still quite poor and, not only is it difficult to read what he writes, but I believe his hand would tire far quicker than his brain would ~ which might lead to some frustration and or 'abrupt' work! For now he's doing a little handwriting every day to help his graphia skills (which are slowly improving at last), and he writes stories on Reading Eggs (typing not writing). He often listens in on All About Spelling and expresses regret that he stopped doing it, because now he'd like to be! Much as I can see it might be worth it some ways for him, I would struggle to know where to 'place' him now. The beginning would be FAR FAR too easy for him, but he would need some more of the foundational concepts to be able to jump in and work with DD & Lilo. I actually don't think he NEEDS AAS, because he is such a natural learner (for the things he chooses to learn), but I do think I will need to get something to stretch him more - very soon! Education City, Explode the Code and Reading Eggs (the Comprehension Levels) just aren't cutting it for him anymore.

Today was the very first time he has expressed that he would like to go to school ~ because he'd like to have more friends. Funny how my children always see school as a means to 'getting more' friends, and yet, in reality sometimes those friendships that might be formed in school would not always be wanted by us as parents, or helpful to the children themselves ~ and even less seldom do they seem to last beyond 'school' itself. I have a feeling Stitch would be popular enough (he's funny, and naughty!), but would struggle even more than he does at home, to focus on any given tasks. He would struggle with having less of his work available to him in computer format (he really does love to work on screens) and he would struggle to work for a full day! Yesterday, he managed to string his work out well into the afternoon and it was then a futile exercise to get him to into gear. Maths, his usually favourite and best subject, had got pushed to the end of the day by him, and suddenly it was a REAL struggle! He learnt his lesson, got Maths out of the way bright and early today, stuck to his 'schedule' and was finished everything by lunchtime! This really is the way he works best ~ race through and go and play!! I'm not sure a classroom could accommodate his need to do that and he would most certainly be held back in that environment. It's not happening. We chatted. He knows it's not. But we do need to try and find 'something' for him to be involved in - with other little boys especially (he's a real boy's boy iykwim) ~ now that he's dropped out of gym. I'm wondering about Beavers, but I'm just not sure it's his cup-of-tea, or that we have the time... I'll keep thinking...

I've STILL not done anything about calling the college re Taz ~ MUST DO THAT!!! Even managed to miss the last two open evenings due to excessive business on my husbands part! There is one more this month I think ~ must try to get to it!

H'Ed aside now (sort-of)...

Christmas is just around the corner, but not before we celebrate two more birthdays of the year! The minibus just needed an expensive repair, and was due a service, so we've had that done too, as we knew it really needed an oil change and a new tyre (or maybe two). SO, that leaves us PRETTY strapped this year. I think I might just have to get 'making'.... I should follow my oldest daughter's example ~ she has already finished making gifts for ALL her friends (and she's not short of them) and ALL her family - each something personal to them. She is amazing and SOOOO into Christmas :D So much so, that now she is setting about making more things that she can sell at church for our 'Care & Compassion Fund'.  She's considering it a practice run, as we are considering setting her up an Etsy shop as a means of earning herself some extra pocket money. She is my least ambitious child ~ outside of 'have a family and keep house' she has absolutely NO long-term thoughts for the future! With this in mind we figure a little bit of entrepreneurial training now might be a wise investment of time! That way she can maybe be a SAH,WAH Mum someday :D

That'll do ~ signing off now!


Monday, November 04, 2013

Creativity Catch Up Post...

The final couple of Romero Britto pieces from this postt

Click the pig to see the before ~ this is Taz's

 & DD's

And one more Picasso head...

Last week's work was based on Paul Klee's art. 

There's only 4 pieces as DD & Lilo were away staying with cousins for the week

TP & Minnie

Taz & Stitch

The art has been great,
 but there's also been a lot of Knex creativity going on here too, particularly over half term...

DD seems to have really got the hang of it now, 
and made these with very little, or no, help from anyone else.

Stitch made this (and a few other models I failed to photograph), 
so he's getting it too :D

It's funny how Knex has always been very popular here ~ 
perhaps it's the 'real' representation that they can achieve. 

Chip also likes to get involved in creativity, but sometimes I give him his very own 'messy play' ~ this particular day it was blue 'snow' (shaving foam and corn-flour). It was a very interesting substance to mess with ~ one second solid enough to make snowballs with, and seconds later stretching and oozing and liquidy again! Great fun!! :D

Linking in today to