Friday, 18 November 2016

Autumn Term Update!

This term we have been quite busy. We have two monthly clubs that we go to.  One is a Science Club and the other is a Project Club.

We also go to some monthly meetups for people in the area.  At the September session, we had a Science Fair.  For our topic, we did a short presentation on clouds and the water cycle.  We didn't go to the October session because we had family visiting from abroad.

We went to visit a local Tudor home called Ordsall Hall.  It was a really good day.  We got to learn about a day in the life of a rich Tudor and a poor one.  We even got to dress up in period costumes :-) 

In October, we went to a pizza place and had a pizza making workshop: 

We carved a pumpkin which we put on display outside of our home.  This let people know that they could stop at our place for treats on Halloween.

We went to the Hat Museum in November: 

And a certain small cheeky person likes to play practical jokes on me: 

We worked on a small project for Citizenship.  We made and laminated march cards for a brass band: 

We had sparklers in the back garden on Bonfire Night!

We got to go see some films as part of the Into Film Festival that runs from 9th November to 25th November.    We went to four films as part of the festival.  It was fun. 

We met a lovely polar bear named Paula and here is a photo of her with her tree:


We saw our first nativity scene of the season too: 

I hope that you have enjoyed seeing what we have been up to!

Thursday, 8 September 2016

Not Back to School Week

This week all over England and Wales schools and colleges have gone back into session.  This means that we have our playgrounds and parks back to ourselves again.  No waiting in queues when we go to the museums and art galleries, no waiting in queues for a turn on the zip line or other playground equipment.

Everyone thinks that home educated children are not seeing anyone.  Well, over the summer holidays we go into hibernation and take a real break from things.  In looking over our diary, we have something every day.  This means seven days a week we have somewhere to go, someone to see and something to do!  How is that being isolated?

This was our sight yesterday - our wonderful playground:

It is not the best place to go when schools are out of session because the children who go there are not kindhearted, to say the least.

We enjoy ourselves immensely.  It is a nice wide open space and we play there whenever we can, during term time AND before 3 pm on school days. 

Here is my view because I climbed up in the climbing frame and sat in one of the baskets:

We also went on the swings and the zip line (can't see it in this photo, sorry!) and had unlimited turns without worry of being hassled. :-)  

Friday, 12 August 2016

Today We...

For the past few weeks we have been going to an Art Group in a centre that isn't too far away from us.  The group is for home educated children and is run by a centre for art and well being.

Here is a photo of how messy my hands got!

Today's session was about painting on paper without using a paintbrush. I used tissue, cardboard, and leaves.  Little Miss used pieces of wood and a sponge dabber.

Last week she painted these paintings:

Next week we will be doing some multimedia work involving everyone working together to make a collage.  The painting we will be collectively reproducing is Tiger in a Tropical Storm (also called Surprise) by Henri Rousseau.  Here is a link to the Wikipedia page:

We are going to study this painting before the next session and learn about Henri Rousseau.

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

Caught on Camera - Home Educated NOT Invisible

We were involved in a film shoot last week.  M played a school child being picked up from school at the end of the day and I played her mom.  She had to come to me and give me a slip of paper (a little note from the school) and then we were interacting with each other on camera.

I asked her how her day was and she told me it was 'Awesome' and then we had to slowly walk out of the playground.  We had to do the same thing over and over again.  We also needed to do it the same way each and every time.

We were filmed doing this scene 18 times.  14 of those times the camera was in the playground and the other four times the camera was outside of the schoolyard gate.

14 times we had to do the scene without making noise.  We had to mouth our lines to each other.  This was to make sure that the main characters could be heard as they walked through the school playground.  On the takes that we were allowed to speak (when the camera was outside of the gate), we had a hard time actually speaking because we were so trained NOT to speak.  It was a fun time.

The film is called Harry and Grace and is a modern day take on Hansel and Gretel.  It explores the father's culpability in what happens to the children. The director of this film is a 13 year old girl who is also home educated.   Here is a 30 second preview of the film - it is the opening scene:

Harry & Grace - opening shot from Holly Jacobson on Vimeo.

Saturday, 2 July 2016

End of Term Concert

Today marks the end of the school year for recorder lessons.  My daughter will be playing with her small group of children and they are also home educated.

They will play tonight as a small group and then as part of the entire college.  She will play her recorder and then for the full college item on the programme, she will be playing the bongos.

Friday, 1 July 2016

The Big Home Education Picnic - a National Celebration of Learning

From 20th of June to 4th of July there are picnics all over the UK which are for celebrating home education and learning.

I personally organised two picnics in the Greater Manchester Area - one in Stretford at Longford Park and one in Stockport at Alexandra Park.

The weather cooperated for us, mostly, and it didn't rain (too much!).

I forgot to take photos of the picnics because we were chatting and the children were climbing trees and other things.  They also got to feed the geese.

My next task is to organise a coffee morning/FAQ morning.  I have potentially found a free venue with indoor and outdoor facilities.  Watch this space!

This was the photo that I used for the Facebook event.  It is a really nice and serene park.

Saturday, 11 June 2016

Half Term Break

We have been enjoying two weeks off from our weekly activities.  We have relaxed and also met up with school friends because they were off from school.  In the area where we live, the primary schools have two weeks off in May/June for Whit Half Term.

We had play dates both at our home and their homes and we went to local parks.  One of the parks was really busy but the children still had fun.  I realise just how spoiled we are when the schools are in.

Our Saturday activities were only off for one week because most of the children who attend them go to secondary school.  Secondary schools are only off for one week at this time of the year but then they break up for summer holidays a week earlier than the primary schools do.

We are looking forward to getting our parks and playgrounds back.  Museum trips are also nicer during term time.

Here are some photos of what we have been up to for the past two weeks:

We have been enjoying our own back garden :-) 

We went to a local monastery and spent the day there.  M got to enjoy a workshop with a cartoonist. 

L finished her second year of college (a year early) and these are her 'Well done!' flowers :-) 

We visited "our" horses.  OK, they aren't really *our* horses but you understand my meaning!

Learning can take place at any time and we did a Science experiment and read some living books.

Friday, 27 May 2016

Activity Roundup Time!

We have been quite busy. We went bowling (a group of 30 people), we have had Music Group, Science Clubs, and History/Geography Clubs, attended a National Brass Band Competition, went to visit an historic property, and our most recent trip was to the art gallery. We went to to see an exhibit called The Imitation Game. Here are some photos of our days out.

Only two people were allowed in the room at any time for this exhibit.  The wheelchairs interacted with the people in the room and communicated by printing off messages.  They also chased them around the room.

We had playdates in the park!  This is my favourite park to go to - look at that amazing cherry tree!

A nice visit to an historic property.  We took a break from the game we were playing to play in the natural playground:

Medical treatments used at the time this mill was operational.  There are leeches on that table!

A Science experiment showing light reflecting and refracting.  The test tube disappeared.  We also watched a coin disappear:


History and Geography group - this is a project on Egypt:

This is a national brass band contest.  Some of the children on the stage are or were home educated.  They are in a packed room performing a programme that they have been rehearsing.  Nothing to see here, just some invisible children making noise.  

Friday, 15 April 2016

Socialise! Socialise! Socialise!

This week we have done nothing but socialise! We went to the theatre to see The Cat in The Hat. It was so funny and another home educator had organised a group booking. We were in the second row! We had a wonderful time and then went for lunch after the show at the shopping outlet across the way.

Here is what we saw when we walked into the theatre:

Thursday, 7 April 2016

Animal Friends We Have Made

One of the nice things about home educating is that we can go out when the sun shines and make four legged friends. We can go for nice nature walks along the river and on our route, there is a horse pasture. We stop and fuss over the horses and they love the attention.

We also get to enjoy the playgrounds when the children are in school. One day when we were out in the sunshine, we met a lovely dog. I've been told she is a Staffy (Staffordshire Terrier). She was very friendly and I did think she was going to follow us home!

Here are some of our animal friends:

We also made friends with a snake at a vivarium:

School Holidays

This week the local schools are off because of the end of term or Easter Holidays. We have been getting together with some of Little Miss' school educated friends. We've gone to some local parks, met some geese and ducks and we've had a film club.

Little Miss' big sister went on a very exciting journey and was part of a fashion show. Big Sis used to be home educated and did her GCSE exams early. School pupils have to wait until they are 15/16 to do these exams.

Big Sis did her exams at 14/15 and she passed all of them. She's now in her second year of college (a place for 16 - 19 year olds) and is obviously the youngest in her year. She has quite a fascinating career ahead of her.

Friday, 1 April 2016

New Social Group For Home Educated Children

This week, we went to a new social group for children. Today we are going to a comedy workshop and craft session. What have other home educators or homeschoolers been doing this week? I'm pretty sure your children haven't been isolated or invisible!

Thursday, 24 March 2016

Museum Trip

Yesterday six families met and wandered around a local museum. Lots of people saw us and some museum staff invited us to come for workshops. I assume that the staff members are professionals and they clearly were able to see the children. ‪#‎homeeducatednotinvisible‬ ‪#‎educationinthecommunity‬ Here are a few of the items from various exhibits that we saw: