Friday, 19 September 2008

Treasure maps, ds2 knits, and 'when is a school not a school?'

Well we seem to be regulars down at the sailing club. Each week I've been taking along an activity for the kids (and anyone else who turns up). It's usually just something I leave on the table, a little temptation for them to dip into if they wish. This week I took some old paper, all yellow-brown with age, and pens and paints, along with an atlas and a few books on pirates and explorers. It didn't take long for the kids to be painting treasure maps, rolling them up and setting off to the West Indes with their fellow pirates. Hmm..did I spot a bit of geography there...And no adult intervention at all...

It looks like there will be a regular nature group of some sorts at the sailing club: a monthly Saturday one for all children, and a weekly one for home ed kids to join in. There is so much conservation work to be done around the site - plenty of bramble clearance and apparently lots of plans for the woodland area - so we'll not be short of things to do. I think the only difficult thing will be trying to curb all that adult enthusiasm: we don't want to scare the kids away! Among the plans is a session to make some lanterns and have a torchlit procession around the lake for Halloween/Bonfire night. It sounds wonderful! A big project will be mapping the other, smaller, lake: the kids will have to go out on boards/boats to explore the unknown territory. I think they'll like that idea {g}.

Ds2 caught me knitting at the sailing club and wanted to have a go. He was making quite a good job of it, but got a bit bored after a few rows. Maybe I should teach him how to crochet? It grows much faster and it's not so easy to drop all your stitches!

Today the kids tried out an afternoon session at a local Montessori school which is opening up some of it's primary lessons to home educating families. Ds2 had a great time, primarily because he got to use some technology in the music session (always a bonus for techno-head like him). Ds1 wasn't quite so enthusiastic, but then even the shrug and a grunt in response to my questions was more than I was expecting. Thankfully they are in different groups for music, so they got a chance to do something independently. I guess this is one of the main problems with home educating kids that are close in age: they get to do pretty much everything together, whether they want to or not, and tend to get pretty sick of each other's company.

I think we'll be signing them up for this session for a term. I'd happily sign them up for a few sessions, but finances just don't make it feasible (I haven't yet worked out how I'm going to afford to send them for this one weekly session yet!). It's a bummer when such good opportunities arise and there just isn't the money around to make the most of them. I need to find a good money-making scheme.

Ds1 was funny as we were leaving the Montessori school.

Ds1:'Is this place a school?'
Me: 'Well kind of, but it's very different to a normal school'
Ds1:'Oh. So if I went here would that mean that I'm going to school?'
Me:'No, it's just like when you were going to piano lessons. You're just coming here for a few hours and you'll still be home educated'.
Ds1:'Oh that's alright then. I don't want to be a child that goes to school'.

Ds1 has decided he wants to buy a nintendo ds lite. I'm surprised cos he doesn't normally fall for peer pressure stuff, but this is definitely motivated more by his mates and fashion than his desire for technology. Now if it was ds2 hankering after a nintendo I could well understand it:given the choice he would be permanently plugged into his gameboy advance or the computer lol! So, ds1 has decided he is going to sell his ELC wooden castle and knights to make some money towards it. It'll be wonderful if he does sell it - not only will he make some money, but there'll be alot more space in their bedroom! Don't suppose anyone out there wants to buy a castle do they?


Jules said...

Hmm, I need a good money-making scheme too for the same reasons - so many wonderful opportunities, so little money to finance them.


Big mamma frog said...

Well my kids love selling stuff, so that's an advantage. However, I'm sure the neighbours think my kids are in slave labour when they're out the front of our house flogging things! At the moment I have a table with home made jam and some of the kids old toys sat on the pavement outside our house with a 'for sale' sign. I have no shame!

Shirl said...

The sailing club sounds fun: lantern making and a torchlit procession for Halloween sounds great!