Sunday, 29 January 2017

Real life learning

We had to go to the big city this week, for many reasons. We had made felt veggies for a swap, wanted to catch up with a friend at the sanctuary, midsumma pride and a protest against new regulations for homeschooling.

We camped at a nearby campground, which happened to be in the rainforest (cool temperate).

Amongst many things we visited the Ada tree, the biggest tree on the mainland. 75m high and 15m girth at breast height. It was fascinating learning about rainforest ecosystems, light that falls to the ground, species of plants, fire history, indigenous history. We found a species of rhinoceros beetle and discussed its body parts. We have a book on this beetle.

Hella was fascinated by the native animals in the zoo and learned the word koala. She did lots of walking and observing. She likes to stick her nose into plants and smell them. She's very independent. The photo of her on the bridge was taken at a park where we stopped for lunch. There's a playground on the other side. I told her to come back, but she turned around and waved bye bye. Cheeky girl!

Sarah developed a fever on Saturday, so we went home instead of the marches. I was keen to check on our chickens and plants anyway.

Today is our first day of the school year!

Sunday, 15 January 2017

Continent work

First an apology for zero formatting. I haven't worked it out yet, but thought its more important to start writing again so that I get this blog going.

Continent work is by far Sarah's absolute favorite work. It features daily.

I remember last year, I traced a map onto coloured paper, following the Montessori colours and got Sarah to match them with the map. I had also painted the sandpaper globe into those colours.
There was extensive talk about which animals lived where and we started our animal collection (which by now is embarrassingly large, I'm quite addicted myself).

We added the oceans and seas over time. And then creation of lands and features (geology).

Most of our work concerns the physical and animal world but recently, she's five now, we added our first culture. I made three part cards of national dress, around five cards per continent. She's starting to understand the concept of countries

I'm also working on proper continent boxes. These contain maps (physical and political), bag of animals, flags, three part cards, objects, books and music. I just bought the cardboard continent puzzled too. I've only just started and got a long way to go, but it will be so nice to have it all in one spot.
I'll also have a box for oceans, dinosaurs and the universe. All favourite topics.

I got three part cards on the following: States of Australia, continents, traditional dress, universe. I'd love to add oceans and famous buildings and features (like grand canyons and fjords and natural things like that).

I try to keep the box as concrete as I can still. Traditions, culture and politics are quite abstract and shes simply not ready yet.


This is of course another major work on the continent works. We did some last month, using play dough. It was quite simple, just play dough and a plate. I didn't do water pouring as it made the play dough yuk.
I did as many landforms as I could remember and gave examples of ones we've seen where possible. We've seen all but archipelago!
Following this I showed her about continental drift. I showed Pangaea, Gondwanaland and laurasia and how it went on from there on. This is also a hot topic! I tried, but failed, to remember time frames and relate it to her extensive knowledge of dinosaurs. It will happen. I did make three part cards on this too! It will all come together soon enough.
Today she took the play dough out and reenacted continental drift. It was lovely to observe and it clearly showed the next step: adding a timeline.
Not sure why she thinks there were two meteorites.

And this is why I looooove the Montessori way. It's offering information in a complete and logical way. Most of what we do relates to the great stories that are meant to come next year. I follow the child, though and while her interest borders on obsessive, I'm going for it. She's obviously in a sensitive period for it, and absorbs the information like a sponge.

I really enjoy seeing the information as a whole and am growing my own knowledge and understanding as well.

Photo of Sarah working on the clay continental drift

Tuesday, 10 January 2017


There's an app for this too. Now to figure out how it works.

We stopped travel and Sebastian, Now Sarah, went to a real Montessori school. It was great. It was expensive. We just started homeschooling again and I am soooo keen to get this blog going.

Got to figure out how to add photos. Otherwise I'll have to find out a better way.

Sarah's been amazing in her learning. She writes, reads, adds up, counts, knows more dinosaurs than I do. I'm most proud of the last one. There's lots to share about it all.

Hella. She's 1.5 now. She's gold. Her fave game is chores. Loves her cars, stacking, puzzles and all the other toddler stuff. Its great.

I'm feeling excited. School has been worth it, but homeshool is way more fun.