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Jun
29
2014

History overload, and vague career plans

We binged out on history recently.  I can't remember if I mentioned instating a docos-only-before-bookwork rule to stop the kids from gluing themselves to screens and routinely refusing to come do the bookwork, but it's been working reasonably well.  Horrible Histories was the recent favourite, I think they've watched every dvd we have now as well as anything on iView at the time, and favourite dvds have been repeated with them singing along.  As well as watching Horrible Histories, 9yo has also decided to have me read him the books for bedtime story.  We're also still very slowly working our way through the very thick Ned Kelly book.

Jun
06
2014

Semi-rural days

We've had a couple of days going semi-rural this week.  The first was a picnic at a friend's 12 acre block in Bullsbrook where a great time was had by all children and I caught an awesome photo of my friends' kids and pretended to be closer to a master of iPhone camera composition.

Pretended to be closer to a master as it was a very, very quick "whip phone out of pocket aim try to get horizon lines and vague rule of thirds thing happening press button before kids move" kinda photo.

May
31
2014

Writing and thoughts on school

From writing and art not really being his "thing", 9yo recently had a sudden explosion of doing a bit of it without me yelling out that it was bookwork o'clock and him coming and doing some or not as he felt like.

He made a new character which is supposed to be a roleplaying character (though I have already told him I'm not sure how well it would fit into the WoD Changeling system we have but I can usually make things work and if there is a next time maybe it can be after Winter if I ever get my paws on and head around the new version) and spent a couple of days writing notes and a backstory:

9yo writing character notes

May
08
2014

Is this real?

9yo hopped into my bed in the early hours after The Linux Geek left for work.  After chilling for a bit he asked me: "Is this real or is this a dream?"

"I think so," I replied after a moment's hesitation.  "There's a creation myth, can't remember whose, maybe one of the Native American tribes, about how the entire universe is the dream of some god and when that god wakes up we'll all stop existing."

Then he asked, "What if every atom was a universe, and all the atoms in that were universes as well?"

I answered that I had had similar thoughts previously and there had once a theory involving fractals and everything being repeated at different scales...or something to that effect.  We then imagined containing bazillions of tiny little universes and our entire universe being an atom inside something phenomenally huge to us which might be an ant in that outer universe.

May
05
2014

Mundaring Sculpture Park and Weir

Last time we were out this way was a few years ago for a Truffle Festival.  This time round we came out this way on the weekly excursion (which he hadn't done for a couple of weekends due to some major works including replacing the fence out the front and helping friends lay some cable to a shed) and because 7yo heard there was an art gallery.

We stopped by the "village" to pick up maps and things for 7yo's collection and she also bought a butterfly spotter's book and to hit up the bakery for lunch.  We took the food to the Sculpture Park and the kids had a play at the playground before we checked out the sculptures, read  and followed the track up to where there were some rail switching levers and an amphitheatre.  Ru put a performance on the old platform (now a stage).

Apr
25
2014

Not schooly stuff

i love you in Duplo

Duplo "i LOVE U" by 9yo with a little blue heart in the O

Picture of Hootabella the puppet owl

7yo's pic of Hootabella, one of the owls from the Giggle and Hoot show on ABC4Kids.  She has since added in a magic wand and we will be sending it in to the Giggle Gallery along with one she helped 5yo with


Plaster of Paris "fossils"

Apr
23
2014

1900s

me: We're going to find out how people lived in the 1900s!
7yo: how long ago was that?
me: so long ago not even Great Nanny was born then.
7yo: the Stone Age?
me: ...[trying not to laugh]...not that long ago.
7yo: Romans?
me: not that long ago either.
7yo: [thinking]...Tudors?
me: that's probably closer.

Apr
15
2014

Duplo tablet stand

5yo likes to watch mocies on his tablets when he's eating alone, but sometimes struggles to hold the tablet up with one hand, and often gets told off for gooping up the tablet if he uses both hands to eat for whatever reason (I've also tried not allowing him to have the tablet while eating but that doesn't always work).  Yesterday after watching 5yo struggling to eat a bowl of pasta while watching a movie, 9yo built him a tablet stand out of Duplo:

Think if being a pro gamer or footy player doesn't work out for 9yo, he could be some kind of engineer.

Mar
24
2014

Aviation Heritage Museum of WA and Army Museum of WA photo post

On two different weekends, we hit up the Aviation Heritage Museum of WA in Bull Creek and the Army Museum of WA in Fremantle.  I think the boys got more out of those trips than the girl did so next stop might have to be the Perth Museum (she has a special liking for the butterfly corridor) or Art Gallery and I suppose SciTech or the Zoo can also be considerations, somewhere she enjoys at any rate.  Both these places are great, the guides are extremely helpful and are often floating not far away and are happy to answer everything about everything.

Aviation Heritage Museum of WA - Mar 03

Feb
27
2014

Unschooly things

Yeh I'm not doing the week by week anymore.

In addition to pocket money, daily bookwork is really good for basics when I'm sick or otherwise blargh from staying up too many late nights in a row and the kids are not (if they are sick they get to veg out and I try to get them to watch docos, we have recently discovered the TED Education Youtube channel and the kids have been consuming the snippets rabidly.  There are full lessons on the TED-Ed website but we haven't really explored there yet.  The animations are short (usually under 15mins) which is perfect for 5yo's attention span, and could potentially skim a huge variety of topics in 2 hours.  Just off the top of my head from passing they've watched clips on the Higgs-Boson field, icebergs, eel migration, vampire mythology, why glass is transparent and the Fosbury Flop.