I’ve taken a break from blogging lately but I’m hoping to get back to it! We went to Canada for a visit and had a great winter holiday. The kids enjoyed their first proper snow experience! Although Cheeky Girl did not enjoy the -28 temperatures!
We went on our first home ed camping trip recently! It was amazing! We only went for 3 nights because our youngest is only 16 months and we weren’t sure how he would do camping; however, it was a great success!
We will definitely go next year for the entire week! We met some amazing home ed families from around the country. We barely saw the girls as they were playing constantly! They spent time swimming whenever it wasn’t raining. It was a good time!
My closest friend of 31 years recommended a book by Ann Pelo called The Goodness of Rain. I’m really enjoying it and it’s really pushing me to rethink my home education philosophy.
I feel pressured (by my own mind and teaching background) to push my children to know how to read and do maths and sit there and be good students. But the more I push, the more they hate learning. So I’ve tried to back off a lot and focus on their happiness, on play, on relationships, on art and other interests and enjoying the environment. I want them to enjoy nature, see creation and appreciate it. I enjoy my children the most when they are outside and getting dirty! Why did I not realise this before?
My eldest child hates going in the garden. She is terrified of bugs and creepy crawlies and being dirty. After reading a few pages of this new book, I realised, she needs to be outside as much as possible to get over these fears…and she needs me to help her. So we went outside; she cried and complained while my other little girl dug up worms, but I explained that she would have a good time if she gave it a chance. So I cleaned the spider webs and flies out of her Wendy house, brushed off her slide and let her go.
I began to mow our jungle lawn and soon, I could feel her little eyes on me. She wanted to help me rake up the grass. I handed her a rake and she started. Soon after, I asked if she could pick up the grass and put it in the bag. She looked at me and said,’but won’t my hands get dirty?’ I suddenly realised she wanted to know it was ok to get dirty. I really hope I’ve not made her this way but I reassured her that it was fine and we’d wash her hands later. So she got stuck in.
As I continued mowing, 3 frogs jumped out of the grass so I stopped the mower and picked them up. Lady P actually asked to hold one. I could not believe it! Later on we found worms and she picked one up (with a fork; she’s not completely nature girl yet) and she helped me mow the grass. We stayed outside from 10 am to 3:30 pm. Not one complaint!
They were filthy! And sun kissed, and happy!
Cheeky girl is already nature girl! She even goes to a forest school two mornings a week for nursery. She loves being outside! So I’m pleased that Lady P is starting to come around. Today she even said, ‘mummy, I’m not afraid of flies anymore..’ She had a very pleased expression on her face! She makes me laugh! So I encourage anyone to get outside and enjoy whatever outdoor environment you have access to! I’ll continue to write about Lady P’s journey.
We are continuing with our Autumn unit as the weather holds up. We headed to the woods near our house to collect leaves and take pictures. The girls love walking during autumn (particularly Lady P who hates bugs). We had a great conversation about plants and how they make oxygen (air) from the carbon dioxide (bad air) we breathe out. Lady P thought it was great learning big words. Next, we found a little clearing and I sat down and began to make a little house for critters. Lady P took interest in this only after I said the spiders needed a warm house for the winter. Considering she’s petrified of insects, she didn’t like the idea of them freezing to death so she helped me build. Cheeky Girl made trees. This lasted a good 15 minutes. Then they ran around at Mach 5. Lady P did a ‘show’ on a stump and then they jumped off stumps while I filmed them in slow motion. They thought it was hilarious and kept wanting me to do it again.
It was such a wonderful morning. No pressure or reason to tell my kids off. We definitely needed to unwind and spend quality time together! Afterwards, we headed home. We shall make some Autumn crafts tomorrow.
Last week, I went to homeschooling group and there was a fellow homeschooler with 3 little boys who were lovely. They sat there and played quietly and nicely, then went and ran around at the play place for a while, then came back and played nicely. They were really lovely kids! Lady P is wonderful and happy and full of life and energy! I can’t keep up! But she cannot keep still! She is fidgety all the time and hates to sit! All of my homeschooling activities MUST HAVE kinaesthetic activities involved or else she gets bored and says she doesn’t want ‘to do school anymore’. I have heard from many people who have sons that boys usually can’t keep still and are high energy. Girls are good at playing quietly…HA
So we finally had a nice day here in sunny Blackpool! I try to take advantage of every possible smidgen of sun particles as I never know when I will see it again! I took my little girl outside and decided not to get rid of that old baby bath I had collecting dust! I filled it with water and voila! A free water table!
I gave my little one a cleaning sponge, some cups and an empty bottle I cut in half (the end with the cap on it makes a great funnel). She also decided to use a paint brush that was lying around to draw on the pavement with water! I also showed her how to squeeze out the sponge into a container which is a good way for her to build strength in her hand! Overall, a successful morning activity!
Note: don’t put soap in the water as I did. Toddlers love drinking bath water! Why I’ve not figured this out by now, I don’t know!