April 6, 2019

Home Education Timetable | March 2019

The last couple of months have been a bit ad hoc because we are finding it quite difficult to get back into our groove and have just been picking up on things here and there. We had been concentrating on fitting in random core subject activities into every day and going on spur of the moment trips our whilst we got back into the swing of things after the Christmas and New Year slog. I feel like we have got out groove back a little bit this month and stuck to a proper plan of it all, with bits added in of course! It wouldn’t be home ed without the randomness, haha.

This month we have been on quite a few home ed trips to various places so learning has been very “in the moment” a lot with a lot of concentration on the core subjects at home to check we are ticking off everything before the acedemic year ends which may seem a way off now but it will come by so fast, just you watch! I think next month we are going to be focusing a lot more on math as this month was a very “English” month!

English

Read Harry Potter and the Philosiphers Stone: At the start of the month Eloise had about 1/4 of this left so we had to change this to the second book because she reads so quickly!

Read Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets: In true El fashion, she flew through this one too! We also look up any words she’s not sure about in the dictionary and there have been a couple of interesting ones in Harry Potter so far!

Read Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban: She finished this one too in less than 10 days, haha!

English Workbook: We have a little collection of workbooks on the go at all times, mainly to keep track of what topics we have covered and to highlight any areas where we need to work on or areas we need to amp up. Sometimes we go through the questions together sometimes she does it independently, whatever the day brings.

KS2 English SATS Practice Test: Every now and then we do a test of some description, whether that be ticking off exception words (which El is currently smashing year 7 ones…proud) or doing these practice tests just to figure out where we are up to and to provide a more obvious evidence of her progress. This month she completed the 2019 year 6 SATS reading test and smashed it with 42/50 putting her at “working above expected standard” for a year 6 child (age 10-11) and she’s 8 so I’m feeling pretty great with how much she has improved in not only in confidence but she’s completely smashing everything acedemically.

Write a short story: Eloise has well and truly fallen down the Harry Potter hole and I don’t think I ever see her without her nose stuck in the books at the moment. She took the Pottermore test online and was sorted into Ravenclaw and now has the Ravenclaw flag proudly hung on her wall. I thought this would be a great opportunity to get her creative writing mojo going and I asked her to write a short story as if she really were at Hogwarts being sorted into Ravenclaw.

Handwriting workbook: I try and keep a handwriting workbook going at all times because this is one area where Eloise struggles a bit because of how bendy her joints are. Her handwriting has improved so much since doing at least one page of this a day so we are keeping this one up!

Maths

Doodle Maths: We have been trying out a new app this month called Doodle Maths which also tracks your child’s progress and gives you an estimated age at which your child is working at which will be super helpful when I figure out how to find that bit out, haha. Eloise has been really enjoying doing her “6 a day” and I find it really helps keep her brushed up on her maths skills. We have actually started paying for the premium subscription which is £5.99 a month because she’s enjoying it so much! Lily’s started using it too and although she can’t read the questions she can count and recognise numbers to the point the app as predicted her age as 4.5 which I think is pretty cool.

Doodle Maths Tables: Another Doodle Maths app, we haven’t really used this one much as I only downloaded it at the end of the month but it goes hand in hand with the original app and is designed to help kids brush up on their times tables which is Els least favourite thing so having it in game form really helps get her more excited to do it!

Maths workbook: Pretty self explanatory but I find workbooks are a great way to make sure you’re covering everything! Obviously if you’re not interested in following the curriculum (we follow it loosly) then maybe they won’t interest you and thats totally fine! But we find them really useful to keep everything in one place and track progress or highlight any areas that need going over!

Geography

Locate Britain on a map – I’ve probably mentioned this before but Eloise has a huge world map poster right in front of her desk and one of the first things I get her to do when we are researching a country is to locate it on her map.

Research and draw the flag of the UK – Eloise already knew this but it doesn’t hurt to go over things!

Food Tech

Cake making: We have done quite a bit of baking this month actually! We have made brownies, a lemon and raspberry drizzle cake, a custard cake and probably other things I’ve totally forgotten. Els getting good at cracking eggs and can follow a recipe really well.

Art & Design

Create a piece of artwork based on Harry Potter: Seeing as Els not long finished The Prisoner of Azkaban she drew Buckbeak in her sketchbook.

Repair crafting: Eloise loves watching a YouTuber who fixes and transformes broken “Squishies” which are basically foamy toys, a bit like stress ball material but they’re super cute little characters. Eloise had a little bear that Lily had pulled the arms off so she has started transforming it herself. She researched and found out all the materials she needed and designed how she wanted the bear to look, etc.

A Trip to All Things Wild

I know, I know, we go here a lot! They hold home ed days every month so we always try and tag along because both the girls love it and there are always activities going on throughout the day from crafts, train rides, meerkat encounters, lemur walkthroughs, outback trail and loads of other things. This month we played on the go-karts which Eloise loves, went on the dino train because we couldn’t get away with not going on that with someone as dinosaur mad as Lily is as well as played a bit of football and let them both go wild in the indoor sand pit which they had to themselves.

Trip to Hidcote Manor Gardens

Since the sun decided to show its face this month we thoguht we ought to crack out the old National Trust membership cards and spend some time int he sun looking at all the wonderful flowers and pointing out all the newts in the little pond. We went for a lovely walk around Hidcote Manor Gardens and named a bunch of the flowers and trees and it was just an all round lovely time. Eloise is really interesed in flowers at the moment so it’s been lovely having someone else to make my plant obsession look slightly less of a problem, haha.

A Trip To The Alcester Roman Museum

Eloise was in her element here, she absolutely loved looking at the ancient coins, pottery and even a statue! All found within Alcester which is where me and Ben grew up so it’s just so lovely to spend some time there! This little museum is attached to the library with tonnes of things to see, facts to discover and activities to take part in. Eloise absolutely loved it here and we will defintely be returning, maybe a Roman project is in order? One for next month maybe!

Dance

Eloise is still absolutely loving her dance class, she looks forward to it every week and practices her little heart out every day. She has improved so much over the past 6 months or so and she works so hard every single week. I am beyond proud of her for how driven she is to achieve her goals with her dancing and her confidence is blossoming.

Wellbeing

One of the new platforms we have been testing out this month is Kapow Primary, it’s essentially an online resource for schools and teachers with pre-planned lesson plans, worksheets, downloads etc based around specialist subjects including languages, art & design, music, DT, computing, and wellbeing. These subjects are quite often the ones you struggle the most to find resources for online so this website is great if you’re lacking a bit of inspiration or just want to make lesson planning a bit easier for yourself.

I feel like these sorts of websites really help with that initial transition inot home eductaiton, especially during the “wtf have I just done” period of terror at the thought of being respnsoble for your child education that a lot fo people seem to feel when first taking the plunge. Everything is sectioned into age/level so it’s easy to navigate and figure out what’s what within your childs level.

We are currently working on their year 4 Wellbeing: My Place in the World topic which is spread out over 6 lessons, all pre planned with any videos, resources and print outs at your fingertips. I am loving how detailed all their lesson plans are! Definitely going to be exploring more of their topics!

Library Visits

We have been making a significant effort to get to the library a lot more this month because both kids love spending time looking at all the books and picking ones out to take home. Eloise always tends to go for history books, she really loves Horrible Histories! I think she knows pretty much every fact in those books, haha.

Gardening

Choose a houseplant to buy: Since I have been going a bit OTT with my plant buying lately I thought why not add one more and blame it on education, ha! We went to our local garden centre and let Eloise choose her own plant and pot.

Research how to care for the plant: As soon as we got home Eloise was straight on Google researching all about her plant and drew up a little info sheet all about it. She took great care in finding out if it was ok for cats too because Effie is a plant biter.

Keep it alive!: So far so good. This one is going to be ongoing! We will re-pot it eventually as well as learn about how to look after it during the different seasons.

So there you have it, a little insight into some of the things we have got up to this month!

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