Harry Potter and STEM club

One of the great things about Home Ed is the freedom to sit in your pyjamas, eating your breakfast, as you have your favourite books read to you and on Monday that is just what we did. Moo chose a book about Amelia Earhart written for children and Beanster wanted more of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets read. She is currently loving acting out her favourite bits of the book which usually feature herself as Hermione Granger. We love looking at the pictures in the illustrated hardbacks. Beanster has been particularly excited about getting to the one below and learning all about the diary of Tom Riddle.

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After some more of the novel Beanster did some of her own reading practise using the Teach your Monster to Read app whilst Moo had her Amelia Earhart book. Later there were some mysterious Hogwarts riddles and potion recipes made…

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before we headed out to STEM club (dressed up in witch costume in Beanster’s case!). Today we were learning about acids and alkalis, testing the ph of different types of water and how to record our results.

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After club the girls like to go into the garden with their friends to play and to explore. They let their imaginations go wild as they invent intricate games, learn to share, to take turns and resolve arguments. Moo set up her own little house whilst Beanster played witches and wizards with the boys.

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Before swimming lesson we looked for signs of Spring at Granny and Grandpa’s.

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Afterwards Beanster was very excited to get home and show Mama her latest findings in Minecraft. I am clueless on all things Minecraft so it all goes over my head!

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Our week in summary

We have had a lot of fun over the last week with lots of learning opportunities. Here are the highlights.

Ceramic painting in South Queensferry. The girls painted a plate, coaster, caterpillar and fairy. The plate and coaster were a gift for Mama.

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Chalk and charcoal drawing. We have drawn with chalk before but this was our first time trying charcoal. Think it is fair to say it was not a hit with either girl.

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Some construction activities. Duplo is always a hit and this week the girls made a fairground. We have ordered a STEM playground challenge kit so we are looking forward to that arriving and having fun with it. We played with more Duplo at friend H’s house. Beanster made a bathroom and Moo a train and livingroom with a dungeon!

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Science is always a big hit. At HE club the girls showed their friends how to do paper chromatography and we did experiments to try and float grapes. We discovered we could float grapes if we saturated the water with salt. Of course other things were later added to make a potion!

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We also looked at surface tension this week. We worked out how to float a standing bug made from card then how to make it float for longer. Adding goose fat under the feet made them waterproof so our bug stayed afloat for longer. We also did an experiment using milk, washing up liquid and food colouring. The food colouring made a thin surface covering on top of the water which we then broke the surface tension of by using washing up liquid on a cotton bud.

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Beanster had her latest HE artbook arrive which she needed to put an entry in before sending it off to the next child. This week’s theme was Space so we got busy with paint, glitter, pencils and stickers. We think next week Beanster will get her own artbook back full of pictures made by the other children in her group. Exciting. Moo got involved too and made her own wee space picture. Later we went outside and carried on the fun outdoors.

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Minecraft, minecraft, minecraft. Beanster LOVES minecraft. She now knows more about it than me, but to be fair, that wouldn’t be hard!

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This morning Moo set our calendar. The weather dial seems to be forever set at either cloudy or snow. Oh how we want it to go to sunny…..

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A festive summary

So….we have been absent for a long time. We have been so busy throughout December and the beginning of January that we kind of forgot about our blog. Here is a summary of the last month or so, mainly in photo form. We aim to get back in the swing of things now the festive season is over.

Beanster, Granny and I went to the theatre

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We made a family of snowmen

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We visited the Chinese lanterns at Edinburgh Zoo then made our own silk paintings

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We did some fun Science

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Decorated our house. Beanster designed our window display.

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Played with our small world winter things.

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Had afternoon tea, story and dancing with Santa

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Built and painted…

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…read stories and did puzzles.

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Went on the Big Wheel when we went to the winter wonderland.

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We built and decorated an edible house

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There were parties with friends and fun family gatherings and presents galore to unwrap. December was exciting and busy but so far in January we have …

…played board games

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Observed butterflies and handled snakes and tarantulas

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Been to the museum

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Learned some more about technology playing Animal Crossing and with our new spider (thanks Vic and Jacinta)

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Built a snowman and sledged down a hill (on our one day of snow)

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Made a collage together…

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And started to learn how to sew (Beanster’s top, Moo below)

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We have even eaten space food and declared it to be ‘yum.’

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We have played, written thank you letters, bounced on trampolines, been swimming and fed the ducks (peas and bird food), amongst other things .

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Yeah, I suspect January is going to be just as busy as December. ūüėĀ

A bit of bouncing does you good

Beanster had a rocky morning with her emotions and learning to deal with them is hard. After letting off a bit of steam with her sister on some instruments (she created her own drum kit) 

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we headed over to Fife to the Forth Hedgehog Hospital and handed in some cat food to help feed the hedgehogs in their care.

We then met our HE friends for some trampolining fun. What better way to get rid of the grumps than by bouncing. The girls have not been to a trampoline park before and when they saw it they couldn’t wait to get on.

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Of course before you do you need to try and link feet with all your friends in the special socks.

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Do a conga 

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and listen to the safety briefing.

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After that was done the girls headed onto the trapolines and bounced non stop for an hour. Tired girls tonight.

Enterprise amongst the Romans

This morning started in the usual Thursday morning way. A bit of breakfast, a bit of TV and a lot of chat and play. Today it was playdoh bakeries and hairdressers. 

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After enjoying Sushi for lunch we headed to home ed club where today we were learning about the Romans.

Moo made a Gladiator from paper and card.

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Beanster started to make an oil lamp, but it soon became a pot for Roman ladies to keep their sewing needles in! Like a clay pin cushion perhaps?

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Both girls made mosaic tiles. Beanster’s had a butterfly in the middle and Moo’s was a bit more abstract. 

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The second stage of the tile making process involved grouting. This Moo did very well. In fact she did most of the grouting between the two girls as Beanster had abandoned the Romans in favour of opening a shop with her friends and selling cards, books, gift cards and other lovely things which they had made. She was very pleased that she made some profit as they managed to sell a lot of their wares to us mummies and daddies! Her little bit of money was spent on the way home but it was a fabulous introduction to the business world for her.

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Of course we were then treated to more this evening. Price tickets were created, a float made, pennies counted. Beanster and Moo’s toyshops were open for business for about 2 hours and we were encouraged to spend! Two budding Alan Sugars we have!

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Giving, brains & busy 

Beanster gets ¬£2 pocket money every week which she gets in 20p pieces. She has 3 jars; a give, a spend and a save. The only condition is that she has to put something in each jar but how much is up to her. She’s been good at saving up for things she wants and has managed two ¬£10 saves. She dips into the spend every so often but she’s not been sure what to do with her give money. She’d saved up ¬£10 so we talked about the different things she could do. She decided that she’d like to buy a present for a kid who might not get a Christmas present so i contacted the local Women’s Aid group to see if they had any kids who would like a present. They got back saying that would be lovely so on Tuesday Beanster went to choose the gift based on the info we had about the child and what they liked. We’re going to arrange to deliver it soon. We’re so proud of her saving her money and thinking about who she could help

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Tuesday also involved a trip in to Edinburgh University for Beanster to help out with another Wee Science study at the psychology dept. This one involved getting hooked up to an eeg machine so they could look at her brain patterns whilst she played a game designed to look at decision making. Beanster was a little unsure to begin with largely because the researcher was a man as the previous ones have been women. She sat well to get the wires attached and then concentrated and sat for the longest i think she’s ever managed!

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The instructions for the game were pretty complicated so i wasn’t sure she’d be able to do it but she persevered even when she had to repeat the practice round. She got a pack of Frozen Top Trumps cards as a prize. The whole thing took about an hour and a half and Moo was amazing whilst we waited for Beanster. Both of them got a bar of chocolate for doing so well. 
Wednesday began with lots of playing including pretend swimming for Moo which apparently requires this outfit. Note too small swim nappy over the trousers. She’s totally crazy this one!

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It was also the first week of Beanster’s new knitting class with some other home ed kids. Her friend M was there too so she was happy to stay by herself whilst Moo and I went for cake with M’s mum. Beanster had a great time and made felt balls for the end of her knitting needles. She’s excited to go back next week. Ater that it was ballet for Beanster (in her jammas for fun week), and soft play for Moo. 
Moo has been protesting bed this week so we decided to let her stay up until she asked to go to bed or fell asleep. We said we had things to do though so couldn’t keep playing with her. She was very good and pretty much entertained herself whilst we ate, worked and knitted. 

This was her at 10pm before embarking on a collage 

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She finally sparked out at 23.21 

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It’s been a busy couple of days

Our Weekend 

Moo has been choked with the cold and on her inhalers this weekend so has been rather confined to quarters for the most part.  However, she did make it out for a wee bit today and found lots to occupy her when she was inside. 

Yesterday she played with her Bing toys

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and dressed up to play at doctors and vets.

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She and Beanster decorated some flower tubs and planted Spring bulbs in them.

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Beanster learned a new skill, French knitting

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and she practised counting different animals and objects to 10. She can do this easily now.

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There was also the usual daily drawing.

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Today the girls spent largely separated as Beanster had friends she wanted to see and i also needed some things at the Garden Centre. 

Moo had a lazy start and played with her Superbear and tea set. She then convinced Mama to take her to McDonalds before they did a quick food shop and headed back home to the warmth.

Beanster and I headed to the Garden Centre before meeting her best pal H at the allotment. 

The garden centre we go to is such a wonderful place for a young child and it is one of Beanster’s favourite places to go. It is not a place to buy plants and tools. It is…. 

a place where you may encounter fairies and magical wizards

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There are hidden dangers to deal with

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You can make a wish which may come true

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Where you can interact with the Woodland Muse 

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and make a feast for the fairies. 

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It is a place of wonder, where anything can happen when you enter through the hidden gates and portals. 

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And wildlife is abundant due to all of the surrounding woodland. 

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Today we spotted amongst others some  Grey Squirrels, Robins, Chaffinch, Tree Creepers, Sparrows and Blue Tits.

Up at the allotment we dug the soil

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and watched geese fly overhead.

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Beanster and H played for ages with some canes. They became witches’ broomsticks, a canoeist’s oars, giant spider legs and ski poles.

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Later this evening Mama and Beanster headed to a roller disco with friends M and A. They had a fabulous time and then headed for pizza after. 

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Whilst the other two were away Moo made her own spend, save and give jars.

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We then settled down to watch Frozen and a bath afterwards featured her Frozen themed toys. 

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