Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Term 1 Highlights

This year so far, has been very full, and thus I have managed to neglect this page rather badly!  We tend to start the year a bit more slowly and relaxedly, spending a lot of time outdoors and doing activities, and whilst we did this, we didn't spend quite as much time as other years.

Arden flying his balsa wood plane.

Wandering around the Perth Hills.

Foraged some pears!  :)

We started this year with some colour painting, and focusing on what the colour expressed/felt to us.  Everyone came out with different ideas

Yellow finished.




Then we progressed onto modelling and drawing shapes.


We've been reading Uncle Tungesten, by Oliver Sacks, as a family this year, and it has led to some interesting spontaneous science.

A well-loved copy of the book!

Experimenting with burning string, to see how the idea of the first filament came about.

There was an attempt to dissolve chalk in vinegar, but during this process (the chalk *didn't* dissolve) we did more research and discovered modern day chalk, is actually gypsum.  Thus the lack of dissolving was explained!

Building out of blocks is always popular here!

Working on prisms.

Trying out a flight simulator.

Irving spotted this mysterious door way at the Perth mint- hard to see in this pic, but there are stairs and no door.  So we wandered in, and had an impromptu history lesson.  Apparently the door used to be the way they brought gold into the building, but eventually they stopped delivering it that way, and they bricked in the door.  Best bit, is that there is still a padlock on the gate!

Moving onto some Chinese calligraphy painting.

A beautiful sunset on a train ride home from the beach.

And some craft- Arden and I have been doing a little crocheting again this term, working on dishcloths.

Plus I finished a quilted skirt for the winter.  I'm looking forward to being toasty warm.

Otherwise Arden and  I have continued to work through our JUMP maths program.  He has taken up journalling in the mornings. Plus our final new section of work for the term was starting on Gilgamesh and learning about Mesopotamia.  We still have a little more to do on that theme.

Gabriel has been doing latin this term, WWI and WWII history studies, English-so far with a focus on grammar, Maths, and Art- currently he is working on 3D modelling using blendr.

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

Summer Holidays- finally here

In my preferred Summer routine- we take December off, starting just before Arden's birthday, January off and all of February.  Starting back into some routine with paid classes in Feb, but waiting til March, when usually the worst of the hot weather is over, to do some planned learning at home.  This year continued in the same manner, however my one free day to sit and do some at home jobs, and keep up with my hobbies, was filled up visiting a friend in hospital, and thus this blog has been neglected for the beginning of this year.

Finally life is settling back into our usual routine, and I have found some time to update some of our learning this past year.

This year there was an around the City exhibition of decorated dolphins (to raise money for the Children's hospital I believe), so Arden, Irving and I went out to try and see them all.  In the end, we just missed one.

We managed to get out and about to quite a few Fringe and Festival shows this year.  Some of our highlights- we seeing Movin Melvin Brown, and trying tapdancing in his tap class. (I'm planning to get his DVD so we can continue, as it was a lot of fun.  )

Arden and Irving did a pirate adventure in Applecross at the pirate playground, and also in the Perth Cultural centre.  The story telling and role play was a lot of fun for all the kids.

Stopping off at South Perth on the way home.

Arden and I dancing some rockabilly.

Having a bit of fun at the Courtyard Sessions, after dancing.

Walking home after an education session with Noel Nannup, on the story of the land, at Lake Monger. (This was one of my favourite outings at the Festival this year- the whirling dervish performance, White Spirit, was the other).

Hanging out with Willow and Gabriel in Northbridge Piazza with a very fuzzy Totoro, waiting for Princess Mononoke to start, in the Studio Ghibli Festival.

Willow spent quite a bit of time at Fringe this year, doing flyering, and helping to promote shows this year.  She also went to see Club Swizzle with Damien which apparently was very entertaining.  We all loved the Showman's fair area of the Fringe this year, and we spent just a bit too much of our time there eating stroopwaffles.  In the end we loved them so much, that they gave us the recipe and the machine!

Our regular Burn's night event (since living in Scotland) involves whisky for the adults and poetry reading.

A quiet coffee moment with the little people.

Arden and Irving's beading.

Irving and I did some wandering around Daglish, after visiting a shop there, and we found these cute crossing signs.


A rainy afternoon

So time for a teddy bears' picnic.

Library stop
Visiting Pompeii at Fremantle.  This was the second time that I have seen this exhibition, and the one thing that I missed this time, was the crystals.  Last time I didn't have a proper chance to look through the crystals (and I was hoping to do that this time) but there was very few, except in the dress-ups at the end.

 Some of the sewing projects that I've been working on.

A quilted skirt

Pillowcase for Damien

Transforming my old jeans, into a skirts

Red velvet skirt for Willow's Christmas present this year.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Gradually Planning 2018

Our jar of happy notes from 2016, being read on Christmas Day.  Happy Memories...  :)

Somehow first term of the year always creeps up too quickly for my liking.  We never start any formal home learning til March (most of the heat has gone by then) but classes always start in Feb, and I'm always left feeling like they should also wait another month.  But not so.  This year I have three registered again- Gabriel for yr 11, Arden for yr 5 and Irving for pre-primary (which for us will mostly involve whatever everyone else is doing!)

Gabriel is in theory planning his year 11 largely himself...but at this instant I'm starting to feel like I might have to lock him to the computer to do his planning....there's lots of ideas about his areas of interest, but nothing put into even a vague structure as of yet.  Mostly he has spent the Summer reading.  Currently he is reading "Bulldog Drummond", since we have been watching a few film noirs this Summer also.  (Recently we have been watching the Bacall and Bogart set).

I made a plan for Arden at the end of the year, so I will review that in the week before we start our planned work at home.  I like the yr 5 Steiner themes, covering all the ancient world, and the stories that go with them.  We are hoping to head to the Maritime museum to see the Pompeii exhibit next week.  Gabriel and I have both seen it before, on a visit to Melbourne in 2009,  Willow found it creepy and doesn't want to come this time, but the rest of us are looking forward to it.

Musicianship classes will be back on in a week, and Willow and Gabriel are taking swing dancing classes (there's an excellent swing dancing scene here filled with young people from 20s through to 40ish).  Basketball will fortunately be starting when it cools down (Arden isn't keen to continue, but Gabriel loves it) but both of them are interested in doing some parkour classes, so we might try that this term.  We have been discussing tap dancing off and on over the years, as both Gabriel and Arden would like to learn broadway tap, but I haven't found anyone that offers quite what they would like.  Gabriel has decided to leave jujitsu this year, as he doesn't really love it, and for now he feels he's learnt as much self-defence as he would like.  Probably we'll be encouraging Arden to learn in a year or two.....seems pretty amazing that he's already heading towards high school years.

On that theme Willow recently turned 18, and is heading off to visit family in Adelaide for a couple of weeks.  Plus she is off to Womadelaide whilst there.  She is working on a mixture of projects this year, as she missed out on a place at WAAPA (she came home from her audition fairly certain that she would miss out).  She was a bit disappointed, but she was  pleased to get her Diploma in Classical Voice, and to have generally done well in that, and in some ways she is glad to be able to take the year out.

Fringe is upon us next week, as is the Perth Festival (which I have already purchased tickets to some shows.  We've made a list for the Fringe but have not yet sat down and discussed who will go to which shows and with whom.  Over the Summer so far, Irving, Arden and I have spent quite a bit of the Summer out and about, or hanging out at home with me doing some craft and them playing.

Playing at Fremantle

Flowers growning on a Moretan Bay Fig.  Photography by Arden.