Wednesday, 23 January 2013

Under the Sea...

My brain is still whirring on how to home educate three different boys with different skills, passions and styles of learning - so hopefully there will be more on that when I've found something approaching a solution! Meanwhile, knowing how much it helps me to write down what we have done in a day, here goes today's 'doings'...

First of all we watched Curious Cat on how electricity gets to our homes, and how sewage is treated.  Then Eldest got his brothers to sit down & watch a documentary on the Barrier Reef - going into more detail than CBBC's 'Barney's Barrier Reef' (which we also watched later). I loved ths way he asked them questions to get them involved... if he's learned that from copying my example, I 'll be happy.  At one point the boys argued about who got which blanket to snuggle under, and we talked about them finding peaceful solutions (not expecting me to intervene all the time)...  this is becoming a theme at the moment!

Following the programme, Eldest and Middle decided to do some Barrier Reef art of their own making.  Free reign of the craft box was permitted, with the usual rule that they tidy up after themselves!  Youngest was enthused by the craft box contents, and had a merry old time exploring and creating.  No set plan - he was just enjoying himself.

Eldest's "Manta Ray from Above"
(he put a lot of thought into how to get the right effect of the waves over the  top of the ray).

Eldest's "Black-tipped Reef Shark"

Middle's "Undersea World" 
(using sellotape and glitter to get his under-water effect)

... and another little pictoral note for Mummy from Middle, showing both of us and a love heart

Youngest's arty creation
Then they all wrote some sea-themed poems (Youngest dictated - as did Middle, who wasn't in the mood for writing today - he still shies away from written 'work', although he loves leaving me little "I love you" messages).  Poems included at the end...

Middle found some leftover party balloons and played with static electricity making his hair stick up, sticking it to the wall, and then using it to move water like this...  it was quite tricky getting the right strength flow of water, but we did see it work in the end...

We've also been watching birds in our garden & hoping they all come back on Saturday morning when we do the RSPB's Big Garden Birdwatch.  This morning we had ten long-tailed tits and a female greater spotted woodpecker, among many others.  I also took some photos of the prints in the snow to see if we could work out what they belonged to... it's not as easy as you'd think!  We did see some nice wing prints though...

 mystery prints (the big trainer prints are mine, for scale - I'm guessing the first ones may be squirrels...)

 we think these are blackbird footprints...

 can you see the wing prints on the right?

Oh, and I've discovered Pinterest.  I joined a few weeks ago, and am really getting the hang of it now.  I love having a one-stop place I can go to to stash all the ideas I find online, neatly grouped, and easy to find again... perfect for Home Ed!  My back hasn't been feeling good this week (especially today), so I've been spending a lot of time sitting still - and Pinterest is making me feel better about not being so active as usual, as I can track down ideas for future HE projects and store them somewhere where I know I can find them all again - it's great :)  In fact, the static electricity/ water experiment above was one that I had pinned earlier this week, so it's working already - hooray!

That's it for now - I'll leave you with the boys' poems while I go & top up the hot water bottle for my back ;)

Sharks - by Eldest
The goblin shark
lives in the dark
The mako shark is fast,
It moves with a blast
The great white
Likes a big fight
The whale shark
is bigger than a park
The sleeping shark is blind
Like most sharks it has a tail on its behind

Sea Poem - by Middle
I like it underwater because there's not any thunder.
It is pretty and peaceful.
There are beautiful fish all different colours and shapes, like the silvery sunfish and the spotty clown triggerfish
The jellyfish come in all sizes, some small and some big.
They are see-through and pinkish.
I like the beautiful coral that makes lots of beautiful fish come towards it. 
It makes me feel calm and joyful

Under The Sea - by Youngest
I would love to be under the sea
but not the sea with sharks in it.
I want to go in the sea
but not with piranhas in it
I want to be underwater in the sea
Just with lovely fish that don't eat us - that's all.


  1. Ah yes, Pinterest is brilliant, I've found loads of useful home-ed stuff there! Love all the wildlife footprints, we're hoping to do the big bird watch this weekend too but, despite living on the very edge of the countryside, we seem to get very few birds actually visiting the garden! R x

    1. hope the birdwatch goes well for you :) we have had to be very perisitent at times leaving food out for months before any came along ;) And then whe they didnt turn up on the day - so frustrating!