Sunday 28 March 2021

Project 177: Spring

With the start of spring it was a good time to get a bit more in touch with the natural world. 

The children planted some wild flowers, sunflowers, and vegetables:

They went pond-dipping (without Solomon falling in! see Project 51: Pond Life).

They went on a flower and spring hunt using worksheets from Twinkl, and made their own Daffodil spinners:

Next project: Easter IV.

Project 176: Road Safety (again!)

We last had a road safety project back in Solomon's first year of home education (see Project 9: Cycling and Road Safety), so it seemed about time we taught the younger two, and get the stabilizers off their bikes. 

As well as getting them out and about on their bikes, they rewatched many of the old road safety videos. Monica's favourite was the SuperTed one:

They also made use of a Green Cross Code powerpoint and wordsearch on Twinkl, and some games on the government's road safety web site: Think!

They also did a road sign hunt in the local area:

...and had to design their own road safety posters:

Next project: Spring

Sunday 14 March 2021

Project 175: Grammar

Grammar is touched upon regularly as part of home education. Whenever we check the children's writing it inevitably comes up, and every week they do some work out of the Schofield & Sim grammar workbooks. Nevertheless, it seemed like a good idea to have a project that looked at the subject more closely, and we focused specifically on a different word class over four separate days: nouns, adjectives, verbs, and adverbs.

Unlike some of our other projects, this week's project had a more traditional scholarly feel, making use of the whiteboard and lots of worksheets from Twinkl. There was even a timely KS1 Mother's day grammar problem-solving game and some 'colour by word class' sheets.

There was also a set of useful introductory videos and activities to the different word types on the BBC

Next week's project: Road safety (again!)

Sunday 7 March 2021

Project 174: Snails

Our first Lidl-inspired project (see Project 173: The Alps) was quickly followed by a second: Snails. These were available in our new local shop as France was the flavour of the week. The children were all willing to give them a try, and enjoyed them (although Sam was far more hesitant than the other two).

Of course it wouldn't be much of a project to just eat a few snails, and the children also watched a few videos, did some worksheets, and brought in elements of maths, science, and art. 

They created their own snailery, and then went out on a snail hunt to fill it:

The created their own snail art, inspired by The Snail by Henri Matisse, and even attempted to make their own slime. Unfortunately, however, the BBC recipe wasn't very good - their instructions for the necessary chemicals were not precise enough. 
They were also reintroduced to the golden ratio to produce a spiral, using This Is Not A Maths Book (last seen in Project 111: Geometry). 
We finished the week with Turbo, although after learning about snails all week we had a few criticisms (and not just about the superpowers!):

Next week's project: Grammar

Wednesday 3 March 2021

Project 173: The Alps

This project was inspired by Lidl's #Alpenfest, as it provided an opportunity to introduce the children to a few different foods, as well as an opportunity to learn about the alps and some of the associated countries.  As Alpenfest was followed by an Italian food event at Lidl, and the alps stretch down to Italy, we introduced some of those foods too. 

The most popular foods were the breakfast foods: fresh pretzels with cheeses and hams, and, surprisingly, the muesli. So we'll try to introduce those more often. They all enjoyed the schnitzel and fondue, and Solomon was also keen on the currywurst and, strangely, Swabian dumplings. 

Of course the project wasn't just about food. The children learnt about the alps and the countries they run through, and as the alps run through eight countries, there was plenty of additional culture that we could bring in: they explored some music by Mozart (and ate some Mozart pralines), read an abridged version of Heidi (full version on order), and read the story of William Tell. 

We also watched the 2005 film version of Heidi. 

Next project: Snails

Project 172: A Dog So Small

This project was a last minute substitution. We had originally planned to read The Neverending Story by Michael Ende, as the film was available on the iPlayer, but when the book arrived we quickly realised that it was not going to be suitable for us to get through 500 pages in a week if we read it together. So, A Dog So Small was picked instead, as the number of pages was more reasonable and the children had enjoyed Tom's Midnight Garden by the same author previously (see Project 135: Tom's Midnight Garden).

Most of the week was spent with reading and discussing the book, and types of dogs more generally. Although there was time for a dog craft as well.  All the children enjoyed the book, and it's a nice exploration of how getting what you wish for might not turn out as expected. 

There wasn't A Dog So Small film to accompany the book, so instead we watched an alternative film about a chihuahua, albeit one in a very different setting: 

Next Project: The Alps