Thursday, March 29, 2012

If its not your sibling it's your pet

Ds spent ages this morning trying to make a little box house...all the boxes are gone now.
He did really well.
And now the cat has gone and squashed it all
He also made a pink cat this morning it's the first time he's really concentrated for ages. I helped him cut but he colored and chose the color.

What a day

My cold is terrible...but on we go.

We read some story's and dd wrote a story about her in the garden with her chickens.

The Far away tree it still going strong.

Talking about plus minus times and divide.... Which connects with the current activity of water balloons and making sure they have an qual amount.

We made it to the library which was much better than last weeks story reading of Angelina ballerina. We didn't get many story's This week as we have brought a lot lately as well as dds cousins giving some of their books too.

We went to the warehouse to choose some Easter eggs for dds birthday party.

Then onto the pools which was mad with all the school kids there. Ours still had heaps of fun even though we could only stay in a little while due to our colds.
Dds last lesson for the term and she has moved up yet another level again. Shes amazing how fast she's picked it up... Dds A bit worried as she will have a new teacher next term and she's attached to her current one.

Now we are home so I can collapse in the chair and watch the kids watch little Einstein. Trying to pat their hands and legs in time to the music. Lol.

Dinner...might be boil in the bag curry as I'm totaled. Though ds said "only for you and dad as I don't like curry"

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Educational stuff

This is just one catalog that I've been looking through
Wow there is so much stuff
Do we really need it?
I'm sure many of unschoolers will say no. Good for ideas though.
Lot of money
I suppose after a few years at it things get easier and the confidence grows.
And all this jus becomes another money making idea

Oak meadow when I cant be super mummy

About a month ago we decided to order the first grade of the Oak Meadow curriculum. It seems to work in well with our lives and a lot of it is things we have done or would consider doing.
I wanted to have something for my days when I was not well and couldn't use my brain well.
The rest of the time I'm unschooling and this curriculum seems to be absorbed as just a follow on to our day I'm not forcing it into our day but rather reading the story's and the rest seems to follow.

I didn't think I would be referring to it so soon.
I've got their cold today.

I've read "the bears child"...twice this morning. Dd loves it.

I drew the bears for the B and b and we wrote the letters...not sure if she'd want to do any other letters in this way.

A while ago I showed dd the rat, sat, mat, hat, etc set of words. She loved it.
So today I showed her the words, bay, hay, lay, say, pay etc. this again was exciting.

Dd wanted to make a calendar...make me's the activity for the day in the oak meadow.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

What a morning... DAY

We've got some great highs to off set both kids who are not well with a cold.

I had a call from the ministry of education.
I've been like a cat on a hot tin roof for months wondering if I've done well enough in our certificate of exemption.

Well to celebrate!

I'm planning dd's birthday oh goodness it's right in the middle of Easter holidays.

We are taking Dave's sister and her children on a homeschool visit to the ambulance and helicopter.
Ds has his toy ambulance and helmet on.

After that I'm taking dd to the ballet.
The Royal New Zealand

Wow I'm still on a high. Told dad about the cert. yahoo! Dad came with me to the talk put on by the ministry of education - recommend it!

The homeschool visit was great! Tones of people. Great talk and hands on for the kids even ds asked a question...
"do they have to wear seat belts" Lol.
I think he thinks they are super human people...and they are;-)

We then went to the quarry gardens. Kids had a great time. This aloud time for my nephews to interact with the kids and relax a bit.
Wonderful time

Then my parents turned up and took ds so I could take dd to the ballet.
So cute. Mice dancing. It's still soaking into dd's mind.
Her eyes were just about popping out.

Now we're home after a very long day. Nana is here for the evening.

Goodness I can't wait till Dave is home.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

An interesting talk as all Ted talks are
Shame is thick through out or culture and is often seen as a part of everyday learning.
I am trying to become more aware of it

For sale

Dd just loves the markets. She's had a few stalls her self to make enough money to buy her chickens... And now saving to buy an iPad.
It's not the best time of yet for the markets so I'm just trying to get the focus on what is she going to sell next.
Mean while they itch to play shop is the point she was playing with her real money.
So to prevent loss I brought some play money.
Oh what a hit.
Everything is for sale.
At the moment dd does not get the idea that each note and coin has a value she only knows 1 and 2$ coins as that is what she got at the markets.
So the lovely purple ones and green ones tend to have the same value as the coins;-)
She'll get there.
Ds has no idea what is going on and just hands over anything

New look play room

The play room used to make me almost cry at the end of everyday. Mess!
So I pulled it all apart and have completely devoted it to learning and play...not much of Dave's or mine is in there ...maybe a few books.
I love it.
The kids love it.
The big open space in the middle gets used for the play of the day....marbles, is a bit hit at the moment.

I've still got more to do yet.
We need a science area to keep bugs, and growing things.
We need a season table to display our collections.
I need to get a few collection bags to keep with us so they can pick things up.
I need a craft shelf instead of boxes under the kitchen bench.
The basket in the corner is full of wool and knitting, crochet mum just brought a French knitting thing which dd is loving she is carting every where.
Even mr griff loves this new space.
My nana wants me to get rid of the climbing frame as she freaks out every time ds climbs up on it.

Saturday, March 24, 2012


I did have an ice cream container full of marbles. But with two children. They are all on the floor.
They have been rolled...put in cups...put in bags...stacked in a tube...sorted by colour size and material (all the ball bearings given to Dave)
They have been clinked together and later some were bounced at granny's on the tiles and ......broken.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Dr Raymond Moore Sandra Dodd John Holt

I like to read. I like to read different books....what makes me laugh and many would not agree but the similaritys of the home educators are funny. Some are religious and may tend to lead a little into the stricked side of things Some are what you would consider new age and lacks. But when you cut it all down they are pretty much saying the same thing. Don't rush it Love your kids Get outside Live life's experiences as your education. I'm sure there is more which matches up but I'm just feeling great after reading lots of books.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Far away tree

Dd loves the magic far away tree.
So I started reading it again last night.
I hardly got more than one line this morning when dd came up with the idea of going to the forest...I asked where would she like to's tipping down with rain.
I suggested that we scatter the leaves she wanted to scatter outside in the courtyard inside...this then developed to drawing drawing making a small model of the tree.
This kept dd absorbed for a while. I built a house box for ds.
I helped cut out the tree while dd stuck on more leaves.

This kept us going right up till 10:00 and dd declared she was hungry and went to look at the clock..."mum you've missed morning tea the big hand is on the 1 now your late".
Oh dear.
I started a loaf of gluten free bread...which they didn't like in the end but I'll eat it.

After Morning tea we moved onto Lego the new set we've got...a car which uses a rubber band to move.
Dd is very excited.
Ds is stuck on the idea of making a plane but at 2.5 yrs he's not quite able to work it out.

We came back to making our trees. Dd having finished hers started looking at the human body book then the abc blocks working out the whole alphabet. Just as well dad made enough to do that.

Now hush hour.
I'm really trying to work on my listening to the kids and understanding what they want to do. Also understanding at what level of readiness they are for learning.

Dd was burning with the idea to maker a munching machine this morning. I was really sad I couldn't even get us to see one. But I have lined it up.

We hope to explore outside this afternoon if the weather lets us...all feeling a bit pend in.

Yup got outside with raincoats on and walked through the long grass down to the pond... We played in the overflow for a little then back up the drive pulling out the pine needles as we went. Dd asked how could so many needles be on the ground but they still have so many on their branches.

More far away tree.
Then dd cooked fried rice poor ds kept saying no peas but he got them anyway.
I don't get it he'll eat them frozen but not cooked. Ds will only eat them in fried rice

Monday, March 19, 2012

20th march

Started off with dd finding..."an odd looking moth".
We looked it up in Andrew crow s book and discovered it was a magpie moth and it's caterpillar stage is was called a wooly bear.
She do not want to make a display of it...I might have to make a science corner in the play room.

Dd picked up yesterday's project drawing water things...the sea, clouds, river, snow flake...she took over the roll of mum and was explaining to ds what to do.
This became extended into drawing pictures of rainbows and pet elephants and her chickens....

Then for some reason we had a picture of "Donald where is your trousers". ???
I googled the song and played it for dd. (iPads are great).
I'd only ever sung it to her so the Irish rovers were an experience.

"where is Scotland?"
We talked about her cousins living in London and how Scotland was not far.
We talked to ds about how the cousins would be going to he said.
I brought up the "solar walk" app to show them how the earth was spinning round and how the sun is on one side but not the other.
They both played a while with the solar system dd working out the names of the planets by look and guess.

I then swapped to google earth.
Then we zoomed in to find Scotland.
Dd was fascinated by the farm house we managed to zoom in on.
She then wanted to see our house... She found nz zoomed in to almost our town but was a little confused to start as she thinks our town is much further north.
She found our place.
Then she "drove" along the road to get to Nana's then along the main high way to her friends house.

Messy paint day!!!!
Then dd pulled out all the family play crockery and cleaned it all up.
Then moved to the music and Jammed for a while.
Then to craft work with glue.

Home after lunch with Nana.

Dd found a snail in the garage..."do they like water?"
We now have a lunch box with a caterpillar and snail in.
Dd observing them both.

Now it's hush hour
Then with hope on to an experiment with dissolving sugar in water to make crystals.

More help understanding unschooling


All life is a chance. So take it! The person who goes furthest is the one who is willing to do and dare

What do you do all day
This is what I was looking for

Finding help with unschooling

Unless your talking face to face its hard going trying to work things out. I've often looked to John holt or Sandra Dodd Some times I do get frustrated as we do live in a completely different country and ideas are different But hey I'm used to being different and working thing out on my own.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

So much to read so little time to do it

We have a few book cases. I want more and I have another two large ones out in the batch which I'll not photo because it's raining a storm out there.

I've read John jolts instead of education...but now two years on I want to read it again because I've learnt so much more i am sure I'll get more out of it.
Same goes for Pam Leo book connection parenting
And so many more.
A hs friend reads like I do and I'm borrowing books off of her too.
And I'm addicted to the library.... Which is probably weird for some who knew me back in my school days... Cause I couldn't read well till I was 13.

Lunch time for me is reading time.


I plan some times for things and wait for a lead in.

19th march this week

Wind in the willows
Captain small pig

All water poems
It's raining it's pouring
Rain rain go away

Make a rain maker shaker
Painting of the different clouds and name them
Make a water poster where is water found (print out different drawings)

Dissolve sugar in hot water and make crystals
Pond life study...go and look. Make a pond life, draw and make cover page
Grow alfalfa sprouts
Try the flower with food colouring again
Wizards potion. Flour, salt, sugar, cornstarch, baking soda, food colouring,gelatin, soap flattens, liquid detergent, Tom sauce, vinegar ... See if we can chart them...combination
Keep a rain gage
Gravity Free Water
What you'll need:
A glass filled right to the top with water
A piece of cardboard
Put the cardboard over the mouth of the glass, making sure that no air bubbles enter the glass as you hold onto the cardboard.
Turn the glass upside down (over a sink or outside until you get good).
Take away your hand holding the cardboard.
What's happening?
If all goes to plan then the cardboard and water should stay put. Even though the cup of water is upside down the water stays in place, defying gravity! So why is this happening? With no air inside the glass, the air pressure from outside the glass is greater than the pressure of the water inside the glass. The extra air pressure manages to hold the cardboard in place, keeping you dry and your water where it should be, inside the glass.


Wash the windows/cars
Bubble mix up with egg beater

Writing is getting there slowly

We were reading an early reader and looked at "long" and "longer"
We then had questions about other words and how they change.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Straight leap

This has been an issue for dd in her ballet. I've looked on YouTube for some pro's. So this evening has been full of run run leaps.

Even though dd's best friend is no longer doing ballet dd still seems keen to keep going.

The teacher asked what dd's favorite colour was and was surprised when dd said "yellow".

Birds with David Attenborough

I know it's Sunday but learning is an everyday thing.
We had david attenboroughs fabulous bird documentary on this morning.
Dd asked how come she's never seen these birds around.
We explained they come from another country...showed her PNG on the map talked about how my cousins live there and maybe we could ask if they had sen one?
As we have a super LARGE screen connected to our Xbox which looks a little like a window when it has bush on the program our kids felt they could copy the "nest houses" and maybe some birds might come and live in them.

The question at the moment is how come some of the houses have stayed up while others have been blown down...this might be an on going project until something has been discovered. I'll just have to get over the mess at my front door for a while.

Mummy into 1st aid training

Before being a mum I used to volunteer for civil defense. So every weekend was consumed by rescue work, knots, bush skills and first aid skills.

It's been a long time.
As we live rurally and we are often on our own I felt it was very important to re train again...10 years very rusty.

So yesterday I left for the first time the whole day the kids with Dave.
This course was a hard out normally two days squished into one.
By 11:00 I was really starting to feel the brain imploding. But I made it and feel really good to of done that.
The hardest thing was CPR on the child was dressed in little overalls just like was the same size and oh dear the horror story's.

I feel good to know that at least I can do something and at home education gatherings I can step up if need be. With hope never.

Hickory dickory

My mum loves to skip and hope... ;-)
We are working hard on doing some writing.
The inspiration came from the singing phonics song.
We read the poem
We wrote out some of it but putting in our own names and what we like to do.
We then made paper mice.
Dd made a mouse hole to go in her room...she took over ds's mouse as her own which he said that was ok.

Dd has some home educated friends who she is smitten with...they have pet mice and budges. Dave and I have had to say a firm no... We have a cat and 10 chickens as well as a goat.
That's enough for now.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Making a tree

Dd got out the DVD "curious George" and in the program was the idea that George could make a tree to encourage a local homing pidgin to stay.
This has been on dd's mind a lot. She has been saving the old rolls a while which has been hard since ds loves to play too.
So this morning at the crack of dawn.. She used half a roll of Sellotape and her project from yesterday - leaf rubbing. To make a tree.
Now awaiting on out outdoor table for the birds to use.

Bird in the homemade tree

Dd was not happy with not having to wait for a bird so she made a bird

Tuesday, March 13, 2012


Some days seen to go well...and some less so.
With a rocky start and lots of grumbling on all sides we finally relaxed into butterfly's a lead from enchanted learning web site.

We read the hungry caterpillar last night...and I said the dd could read it to me this morning.
She did really well to remember almost all the words. She's not reading the story but re telling it back using the pictures as clues.
Though now as her understanding of letters and sounds grows she is often looking at the first letter to help remember the page of story.

We colored in masks and cut them out.
They wanted to wear them down the park.

Dd has spent a while in the garden looking at leaves with little dots on them wondering if they are butterfly eggs... We've looked them up but can't find any matches so we are just going to watch and wait and see what comes out.

Monday, March 12, 2012

What is the same game

Dd had an empty flower pot full of things. After reading Charlie and Lola. She lay them all out on the kitchen floor as I was cooking dinner. I started a game. I put all the pink things together, then all the natural things and so on. Dd guessed it straight away. So I played again in a different order...all the drawing things round things etc Then dd played We had a few more goes

The old socialization thing

Despite what a lot of homeschoolers is hard to provide the out lets for your children. I've been reading Help 4 your homeschool We live in a small country town...and it's probably my mind set I have to change and relax. I'm going to start looking for more things around town that the kids can get into as well as try to sort out an all weather catch up point for our homeschool group the park will not work all year round.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Pictures and writing for the morning

We had a fan tail in the house this that's the red drawing...dd was worried that she couldn't draw the wings. But she's got the beak and the tail.

Then we have an elephant...I've learnt from past experience that when dd writes something to make sure you congratulate but also correct as a friend read dd's word spelt wrongly but you could still tell what it said...but then dd wrote it every where thinking it was right....and got very upset to learn it was not.
But this elephant has a trunk with nostrils.

Next was a chicken. Dd really wants her chickens to have the eggs are her chicken sitting on them.

Mr Griffin is in favor at the moment climbing into their game of knot tying and pulley systems. Now sleeping in the trolley.

White tail spider

The first sign I taught the kids was the sign for spider.
My mother in law was bitten (they suspect) by a white tail and it took a long time for it to get better.

Dd has a little homeschool friend who is currently in hospital for the last 5 days with a spider bite.
She is worried in her own child like way.

Just makes me think

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Our field trip bag

I'm trying to get a bag together so I can just walk out the door knowing I've got something.
It works some of the time
The kids also need a bag to carry their stuff in.

A great owl art work

Singing again...

Dave and I have been working out our music collection.....its VERY large!!!!
I am putting a few things on the iPod Touch just our every day stuff that we can take in the truck too.

I've just brought the Multiplication Country

The kids seem to love the science songs I found on the a while ago and there are heaps of questions springing from listening to this so I think I'll keep going till they say
Oh Mum...not again ;-)

I like these ones they sound nice from Songs for Teaching

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Solar system still

This is an on going interest which has been flicking in and out of the seasons as well

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Sea week

Goodness we've had a morning documentary which is so planet.
We are working on lots of things about the sea this week and hope to spend the morning at Langs. hope that the weather is going to help. Would like to look at some rocks pools.

Today though we have a normal morning then a homeschool catch up... But weather does not look good.

Monday, March 5, 2012

5th march

Sea week
We started off with an eyewitness about the poles.
Breakfast dd cooked me fried rice

Reading dd attempted two early readers. We moved onto Lion in the library - both kids loved that one. I started an early reader about mice going to school but dd said it was not interesting.
Finished the magic tree house about dinosaurs.

Dd worked on some jolly phonics work book.

Moved on to yartzi
Then snakes and ladders
Then back to jolly phonics because dd discovered a biscuit recipe for letter biscuits.
So we made them...hard work keeping two bowls on the bench with all the right things in it and the fingers out of it
Ds did soooo well with his cutting.
Dd wanted to make her name and rusty and cat.

Now it's hush hour and waiting for my cousin and her husband to arrive. Dd is hoping to say some Spanish words.. But she might chicken out on that ;-)

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Xbox ... And mummy learns

We do not have many games for the Xbox which the kids can play... But dd chose cars2 as her movie choice for this week...not having a tv means we get to keep an eye on what they are watching... And limit.
So after watching the movie dd wanted to play Dave's car racing game.
Now we've been here before and it ended in tears. Dd wanted us to fix it, us to do it and also we had to be there for her to vent at when it didn't work out for her.
So no!
No fun and lots of tears!
Dave did not want to do that again.
I also did not want to do it again... But thought I would try once more.
I laid down the rules.
No help from me unless it was a computer error.
I was not there to do it for her
I was not there to be vented at.
I would throw the game away of any of the above happened.
Sounds horrible? Well I didn't want to sit again and get so wound up.

I've worked out over the last few years dd is a private learner...the term I found from John Holt. She goes away and works things out on her own.
But sometimes she wants company...not to do it or teach her just to be there.

So I just sat there as she worked out this game on her own.

I think this is part of my problem at the moment a lot of what we do is lead by me (which is a bit of a spin off from playcentre...we come up with ideas the kids can do that they like but its not really from them)or we look at how others have done it.... We need more creative time.
It's hard when I've been schooled not to do the same things.
I think that's why Lego is going so well at the moment and also craft time...which often happens on an afternoon or Sunday morning.

As dd learns on her own there is more satisfaction and we seem to extend the learning a lot also goes in.