Our Weekend

Our days are always full of fun and variety and this weekend has been no different. Here is a photographic summary of the highlights.

SATURDAY

Doing knitting with Mama. It required LOTS of concentration. 

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Facepainting (badly by me) and roleplay. 

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Making a jigsaw. 

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Making and eating a Mexican tea with our friends Stacey and Lyall. We are making and trying food from different parts of the world this week and tonight it was Mexico.

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Posing for Lyall’s camera

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SUNDAY

Learning to draw Rangoli patterns for Diwali next week. We will work on understanding the colour symmetry next with Beanster. Moo turned hers into an abstract art piece.

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Moo drew a picture of her family.

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Harvesting, weeding, flying an improvised carrier bag kite and making a bench at the allotment. Beanster was very proud of the seat she made.

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Having rides in the wheelbarrow.

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Observing a mouse which Moo found. 

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Looking at and discussing the results of our bread mould experiment from HE club. In this experiment you had to touch bread slices  with unwashed hands then washed hands and ziplock bag the pieces of bread. After a few days we were to look for mould growth :

Moo’s piece of bread touched AFTER she washed  her hands. 

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Moo’s piece of bread BEFORE she washed her hands.

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Beanster’s piece of bread BEFORE she washed her hands. She forgot to do a clean hand version.  She said, ‘Hmmmm I think my hands are maybe the germiest.’ Yeah I think she could be right.

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Helping prepare the dinner. Tonights food from around the world was an English roast dinner using allotment veg. 

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Doing some of our Okido Arts and Science magazine. 

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Talking about her work with Mama before bed.

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Tonight our bedtime stories were Mr Fussy, Gobbolino and an animal poetry book. Both girls were later spotted reading books in bed with their torches. 

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But do your children learn anything?

As a home educating parent, I am often asked if our girls learn anything. ‘How can they possibly learn if they don’t go to school?’ Well, our girls learn through life. They learn by exploring the world around them, interacting with people in our community and beyond, problem solving when they encounter difficulties and basically have a lot of fun whilst doing so. They have a thirst for knowledge. They are allowed the freedom to follow their interests, which are vast in number and varied and they are on the go from the minute they wake until the moon is high in the sky and smiling down on us. Here is just a taster of the things our girls have been doing  in our ‘school’ week broken down CfE style šŸ˜‰ lol

Mathematics

Counted; looked for and read numbers to 100; addition within 10 on Maths Seeds; compared sizes of objects; made patterns; worked out how different shapes fit together on top of others; used money to buy items for the foodbank; simple measuring in Science experiments

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Languages

Listened to daily stories and discussed some of them; gone to storytime at Far From the Madding Crowd; Reading Eggs work; read simple signs together; read instructions together; listened to and discussed Wow in the World podcasts; written our names; made fuzzy felt and drawn pictures and told stories using them; learned to ask questions using Google assistant; 

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Social Studies

Visited Callander House and learned about the Romans, the Antonine Wall, life in the Central belt at different periods of time; discussed coal mining and the structure of coal at different stages in it’s development; talked about the weather and extreme weather (and made a tornado); talked about volcanoes whilst playing on a model one

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Sciences

These photos summarise some of the fun we have had with Science this week.

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We also have a mould experiment set up in the kitchen and are in the middle of making bouncing eggs. 

Technologies 

Some wee models from this week.

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Health and wellbeing

Danced; climbed; ran; gymnastics; rolled down hills; swung; walked for MILES; thrown frisbees; jumped and tomorrow we are swimming. Oh and we baked and made soup.

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Religious and moral education

Bought food for the food bank; discussed homelessness and started to learn about Diwali. 

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Expressive Arts

We have drawn; painted; listened to different styles of music; listened to music from different eras; played the piano and role played (with each other and with friends).

YEAH i think it is safe to say OUR GIRLS ARE LEARNING.

Birds & vegĀ 

Today we took advantage of a nice day and headed down to the woody park to to up the bird cafĆ© that mummy and the girls set up. Mummy and Beanster had made some new fat cake and mummy rigged up some take away boxes to hang in the trees. 

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There was much climbing and swinging too.

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After the park we headed up to the much neglected allotment. This year has once again confirmed we are good at growing squash and pumpkin. The sweet corn is the biggest we’ve ever managed but an investigation of one corn cob confirmed it’s not ripe yet. 

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We dug up the rest of the potatoes and brought home rhubarb, a spaghetti squash,  a couple of marrows, a wee pumpkin, some beetroot and a few peas and broad beans. 

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There are also a couple of big pumpkins that are starting to ripen so we might have home grown Halloween pumpkins this year. 

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Eid in the woods

Today we headed to Callendar woods to take part in the Eid in the woods event. This event was jointly organised by Al Masaar, a Falkirk based charity, and The Forestry Commission, to celebrate Eid Al-Adah in the great outdoors. This is the second Eid festival of the calendar year. 

Stacey and Lyall came with us but as Moo fell asleep in the car Mama stayed with her and the rest of us headed to start the celebration with a bit of Oak tree planting. Beanster did some obligatory tree climbing first!

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We learned how to work out how old a tree was by wrapping our arms around it. A tree you can hug all the way round with your fingertips touching is about 75 years old. We worked out that the tree below was about 225 years old.

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We collected our saplings and headed to an area with good sunlight to screef (removing vegetation) and then plant.

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We planted 10 oak trees in total. They should grow to about 5 ft after 5 years. We will check on their progress often. 

Next we headed to a stall to build some wood sculptures.
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Moo had woken up so she and Mama joined us by the Ka’aba to watch a fire juggler and eat pakora. We also had some soup made up largely of foraged food which was absolutely delicious. MP Martyn Day appeared to watch the fire juggler too. We also saw some HE friends.

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Beanster went off to climb some trees and gave a group of boys who were damaging one of them a right ticking off before heading off to the Forestry Commission stall to report them. 

We finished by watching the fire juggler again before heading back for an ice cream. We are desperately hanging on to Summer!

Stacey and Lyall kindly donated us Lyall’s marble run from her childhood so when we got home the girls had fun building and playing with it.

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And Moo helped cut the potatoes for tea.

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Trip to Falkland Palace…..twice.

We decided on Wed to take Granny a wee trip to Falkland Palace in Fife. It is such a beautiful palace set in the most wonderful grounds. We spent a happy 4 hours or so there investigating and learning. We didn’t realise at the time we would end up there twice in one week. During our first visit we lost Beanster’s favourite hoodie and despite kindly searching for it the staff couldn’t find it. We headed back the next day to look for it ourselves since we knew roughly the journey we had taken around the grounds and thankfully we found it. Beanster was relieved. Here are some photos of our 2 days. Unfortunately you can’t take photos inside the palace but the grounds are beautiful so there are plenty of outdoor photo opportunities.

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Day 1

Sisterly love. After looking inside the palace and seeing how people used to live when it was once occupied by kings and Queens we ventured out into the grounds to explore. 

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Getting exercise running. Our girls love running and today they did it hand in hand.

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Inside the glasshouse. Granny taught the girls the names of some plants. We also looked at the mechanism for opening the glasshouse roof.

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Watching the waterfall. Moo was fascinated with it.

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We played some games from the past and some newer games in the Orchard. Beanster used her technology skills to build an aeroplane model with the construction bits. We also discovered a small dog graveyard which Beanster and I talked about.

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We read some animal track information signs and then discovered a wasp nest.

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We found a wee bothy (where the hoodie was later recovered from) and the girls made a pretend meal for Granny and I. They included pretend spinach, kale, noodles and  rice in their offerings. We also found evidence that rodents had eaten in the bothy.

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We had a look for animals and plants we could identify in the wee ponds. Moo and I also had a chat about Pondskaters which there were in abundance.

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We had a look at the real tennis court, the only one in use in Scotland….

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…and we watched a mother swallow/swift feed her young. We couldn’t see the tail properly to identify the bird. You need to wait to the end of the video to see the mum come in.

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Day 2

After finding the hoodie and having another quick play with the outdoor toys we found a traditional ice cream cart….

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….and had some ice cream

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I then spoke to the girls about the types of houses found in Falkland, why the doors are smaller than nowadays and why there are letters and numbers over the door.

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We had a quick walk around Falkland before heading home. Granny and Beanster had a look in one of the antique shops.

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It is a lovely wee town and we will definitely be back again. Next time we will explore the town more and look at all the different houses and their features. Watch this space. 

A show, a birthday and some vegetables

This morning we were heading to the Edinburgh Festival with the girls to see one of our favourite singers, Nick Cope. He writes fabulous songs for children and he is funny too. If you have never heard of him you should do a quick google/youtube search. Our ultimate favourite song is ‘The baby’s done a poo’.

Here we are waiting at the front of the queue to get in.

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In our seats right at the front.

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The man himself.

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Beanster was a bit afraid that she was going to have to get up on stage.

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Moo was a bit sleepy.

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Audience participation (Beanster didn’t get up on the stage)

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He was absolutely brilliant and we bought one of his CDs at the end to add to our collection.

We then went and got a bit of lunch and had it sitting on giant pillows in a park.

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Beanster wanted her photo taken on top of a wall.

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And then we had a play before heading back to the car.

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It was granny’s birthday so we headed to her house to give her presents…

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and cake….

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Moo chose the cake and candles and was very happy when she got her slice.

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Later on the girls played in the garden.

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Back at home they opened up their own cafe and ice cream parlour and Beanster wrote the menu.

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Beanster and Mama headed out to the Library after tea to log Beanster’s last book for her Summer Reading Challenge. She will miss the award ceremony as we are away on holiday but when she gets back she has to go to the Library to receive her medal and certificate. Whilst Beanster was away Moo played in our Fairy Garden and made tea for an imaginary Auntie Alice.

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For an hour or so before bed Moo and I headed to the allotment to attend to some of our veg and Beanster and Mama went to check out a possible venue for her birthday party in a few weeks. Moo was very excited to see that we have got some corn cobs growing. This is the furthest we have ever got when growing corn on the cob. Scotland is usually too wet for us to have any success, maybe this is our year to taste one!

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We also have spaghetti squash, pumpkins, butternut squash, courgettes (on the verge of becoming marrows), cabbage, onions, beetroot, cauliflowers, kale and potatoes growing nicely too. There are other things in too but they haven’t come on much yet.

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Oh, Beanster gave the local venue a thumbs up so now party planning begins…….

Day 3 Dundee Science CentreĀ 

A slightly less wet day was predicted but as we were heading to Dundee Science Centre it didn’t really matter what the weather was going to be like. 

First of all though domestic duties needed to be done. Beanster fetched more water so we could have cups of coffee.

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Then she made the lunch.

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At the science centre the main theme was Space. We watched a show about rockets where we learned that rockets are heavier up at the top than the bottom and that this combined with thrust pushing the rocket up and the pulling down of gravity is what helps the rocket get into space. Beanster then recreated this in a little rocket experiment with the help of her glamorous assistants Katherine and Lyall.

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Meanwhile Moo was learning about skeletons, cogs and practising weighing.

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One of Beanster’s favourite things to do is to go along the same journey a bogey takes as it is formed from the back of the mouth, up into the back of the nose and out through the nostrils. There is a large model children can climb into to do this.

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Soon both girls headed to the recreated moon landscape and did some investigating.

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I got into role of the chief astronaut on our mission. I was reluctant to give up my uniform.

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Moo really enjoyed constructing pulleys.

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One of the best interactive exhibits was the sandbox which you could construct different landscapes on. We spent a long time at this making contoured landscapes, volcanic landscapes and seabeds. Apologies if some videos are the wrong way round.

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Moo said, ‘ I have made a volcano with an ice cream’ 

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Back at camp we ate our last supper as we are heading back home tomorrow.

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After tea Beanster headed out to the woods with Katherine and Lyall and got up to nonsense.

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Moo and I played games, had a ride in our wagon, went to look for fallen apples and grasshoppers whilst Mama made a fire.

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When we got back the fire was looking grand.

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Beanster helped to keep the fire going when she returned from her walk.

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Moo and I headed for bed and left the others chatting by the fire.

Tomorrow we head home via cousin H’s birthday party. I guess we had better have a shower before we leave eh! šŸ˜‰