Our Unschooled Week #57

Having taken rather a while to wend our way home from holiday last weekend, we had a quiet day on Sunday then headed over to Arlington in East Sussex to the glorious bluebell walk on Monday.

The bluebells were absolutely gorgeous and smelled amazing.  The girls wanted to cover all of the trails so we walked a good 6 or 7 miles hither and thither.  We walked through a couple of farms where we saw horses and cows, and went into a milking shed.

Catboy came too and had lots of adventures in the grass and up and down hills.

Compass and map reading skills came to the fore as we wandered the paths.  (I didn't mention seeing the same parts twice.)  And who needs PE lessons when you've got all this walking, balancing and climbing to do?

There was time to make some new friends in the barn, and lots of posing amongst bluebells.

Lots of wild flowers and plants to identify, including the heavy scent of hawthorn in bloom and wild garlic.

And then time for a cream tea to recover from all that walking!

Afterwards we headed down to Wilmington to walk up to the Long Man.  We read up about the history of this hill carving and spent a lot of time exploring and looking at the earth and countryside around.

There were masses of cowslips growing wild in the dry chalky flint soil.  I've never seen so many!

Legs definitely ached the next day.  I think with the bluebells trails and the Long Man walk we did about 10 miles in all that day!

Poor Steve was ill all week with full-blown flu, so laid up in bed most of the time.  The rest of us stayed at home with him on Tuesday and fiddled about doing bits and bobs, playing with the cats and watching some documentaries.  Stonehenge and the Tudors are still the main interests, but we managed some nature and animal study, including habitats and food chains ahead of zoo visit on Friday.

On Wednesday there were all sorts of errands to run, amongst rain showers.  Not the most interesting thing to do but the girls helped with weighing, measuring and some maths.  Sophia spent some more of her saved up pocket money on a science kit which she is delighted with.

Thursday was a bit more exciting with the girls playing outside with the neighbour's kids for much of the day.  As Steve was feeling a bit better, I managed to go out to work at a cafe for a few hours.

On Friday, we visited Marwell Zoo to promote their new LEGO dinosaurs exhibition.  The girls loved seeing all the different animals close up, especially the rhinos, giraffe and zebras.

Of course an LOL had to come with us too!

There was much to see and do, including five playgrounds and a fun safari jeep to play in.

I loved the gorgeous wisteria festooned across Marwell Hall and the girls were delighted to find a herb garden behind to investigate and identify.

There was some dinosaur learning to be done, but perhaps not as much as they had hoped for.  But plenty of other learning to do around the zoo, from watching an ostrich have a dust bath to identifying what makes a mammal a mammal and a reptile a reptile.

The learning stations inside the Tropical House were of particular interest, with everything from planets to food chains.

We even managed to find the zoo's smallest resident, who stayed still in the sun long enough for a thorough examination.

The highlight for Lara was seeing the otters.  They were busy playing and would then gether together chirping every time the train went past, obviously a highlight of their day!  Just gorgeous.

Our intrepid scientist led the way back to the entrance via some of her favourite animals: giraffes, lemurs, flamingos and penguins.

Today has been a down day, watching TV, playing and a walk to the beach and playground.  Hope you've had a good week x

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