Saturday, November 24, 2012

Counting Down

Another busy week has drawn to a close, before our last week of planned school work.  Basketball training finished on Friday, but we've planned an outing for Gabriel and Arden to go and see the Perth Wildcats, so they're quite excited about that.

Some of our homeschool friends from basketball, were in a drama group this year, so we went to see their production tonight.  There were two groups, up to 10 performed in 'Tiddalick the Frog', and over 10s performed a play called 'Backstage'.  Both were well performed, and it was lovely to see a homeschool play so well put together.

Willow has been continuing to work on chemistry, finishing off with combustion last week, and moving onto acids and bases and the limecycle this week.  Acids and bases has involved doing quite a bit of litmus testing and seeing what items are acid or alkali using a cabbage litmus.

This week also saw Willow achieve stilt- walking.  One of her friends was holding her hand and said 'I reckon you can do this' and just let go- and so Willow found herself standing and walking and doing ok!

Gabriel has been progressing nicely through his socks- almost halfway through the first one now- and whilst I would have liked him to be finished by now, I can see an improvement in his focus and dexterity in knitting so we'll just keep plodding along at it.  I've been continuing on making a doll for Arden, and she just needs to have her head sewn on now.

Gabriel has also been keeping some silk worms, thanks to our friends at City Farm.  The moths all made their way out of their cocoons last week.

So looking forward to being done with our organised work next week- there have just been a few too many things happening recently, and it will be nice to spend a quieter week come December.

Thursday, November 15, 2012


There's a few different books being read around here at the moment.

For Gabriel's coming block we've started reading 'Playing Beatie Bow', by Ruth Park.  It's set in Sydney between the 1980s and 1870s, and lines up quite well with our Geography block.

Gabriel has also started a section of a new epic to recite.  He finished Voluspo from the Edda earlier in the year, and we had a bit of a break from reciting, whilst we read the rest of the Poetic Edda.  Now we're onto Arthurian legend, and learning part of the Idylls of the King, by Tennyson.

Willow is reading two books, one is more of history and discussion of chemistry- The Bedside Book of Chemistry.  The other is the story of Oliver Sacks childhood, Uncle Tungsten.  It's quite an entertaining narrative of his life growing up surrounded by science.  We've been really enjoying reading it.

Otherwise, independently Gabriel is reading the Asterix comics and Willow is re-reading Harry Potter again. 

Chemistry and Dolls

Feel like we've been run off our feet recently.  Activities and stuff happening everywhere, particularly as Willow is doing her chemistry practical work over the weekend, so that I can take Arden out whilst it's happening.  We're using 'The Wonders of Waldorf Chemistry' for our experiments, and most of them have worked well.  Highlights of the first week, were watery fire and making charcoal. (Willow is looking at combustion)

Here's the charcoal making underway.

The fresh wood was placed in side the tin, and after being heated and having the gas that was released from the tin set alight, made a beautiful dry charcoal.

Gabriel has just finished a block on human reproduction and will be finishing the year with some Australian geography.

Gabriel is progressing nicely through his socks, and Willow and I making dolls.  Willow is copying an old doll of mine, which is rag doll style and I'm making a waldorf style doll for Arden.  This is her head so far.  Arden wanted her to have green eyes like me, but didn't really like the green thread we had, so we blended some green, white and black for them.

Classes are ending soon (two more weeks of basketball) and there's a few performances coming up, as well as our homeschool review, before we start holidays and celebrate Arden's 5th birthday.  Amazing to realise that we'll be onto class 1 with him before long.