Sunday, 14 September 2014

Our Learning This Week #2

No photos this week because we've managed to break the camera - oops!  It seems slightly odd noting what the girls are learning week by week, as we are really just getting on with business as usual.  They've been learning every week from birth, of course, but when you actually stop day by day to think about what has been covered in the 14 or so hours they were up, it's pretty amazing.

On Monday morning the girls went to the beach with Steve, talked about different cloud formations and found lots of exciting treasure on the shore, such as shells, egg cases, tiny fossils, driftwood, and more.  Then they went to the pier and spent a few of their pennies in the amusements, which involved identifying different coins and making choices about where to use them.  In the afternoon, they went to a new group at church, where they experimented with building on sand and mud, adding water in varying amounts.  They also looked at different types of homes, before reading the Parable of the Wise and Foolish Builders.  At home we looked at houses around the world and through time, and talked about how to build with different materials.

Tuesday was a bit of a sociable day, meeting friends at the park in the morning and having a picnic, then off to soft play in the afternoon.  It's so lovely to have all this space now the older children are back at school.  It makes life much easier for us!  On Wednesday morning the girls did some more socialising at toddler group, where they caught up with their friends George and Lexi, and had a whale of a time.  In the afternoon we did lots of crafts at home, making all sorts of weird and wonderful things; some painting; and model-making.  Great fun!  After that there was some baking in honour of The Great British Bake-Off that evening.  Lara is fascinated with how things are made this morning, so we try to do as much as we can.  I believe that if they know where food comes from they will be more inclined to eat it, and to make good food choices.

The rest of the week had no particular events other than a trip to the garden centre, which the girls always love.  We then re-potted some plants, cleared others, pulled the last of the carrots, planted some winter vegetables, and planted up some autumnal pots.  Sophia swept the balcony for me, whilst Lara helped with planting, and Tatia kept up her soil diet :-/  We also did some sorting of objects by type, by colour, and whatever other criteria the girls could think of.  Always an interesting exercise.  We also did some simple addition and subtraction, focussing on number bonds to 5.  Lara loves 'playing with numbers' as she calls it.

It was the annual Heritage Open Weekend on Saturday, so we visited Priory Park in Chichester where what is now called the Guildhall was open.  It is actually the last standing building of a Franciscan Friary built in the 13th Century, and has a fascinating history.  Lara loved looking at the sketches of how it would have been, and talking about how the people lived there.  In the park itself is the remains of a mound, the last evidence  of a motte and bailey castle from Norman times.  There was some fascinating artwork and excavation evidence of this too, so we had fun trying to relate that to how it looks today.  I am so appreciative of Lara's fascination for history, right up my street!

Afterwards we found some old apple and pear trees in another part of the park, and gathered a few windfalls to cook with.  The fruit of the horse chestnut tree, with its spiky cases and shiny mahogany conkers also proved particularly fascinating.  Then we found and studied some ladybird larvae, happily munching on aphids.  Most exciting of all, Tatiana found her feet in the little garden and took a few steps holding our hands.  That's proper big learning!

See you next week, Lx


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