It feels like absolutely ages since it’s been anything resembling normal here, and for once that’s not just a feeling. We went to Christmas camp in the second week of December, and since then, there hasn’t been a day when the whole family has been well. Honestly, it’s been weeks of misery and illness, and it means there is no pattern to the days. As the younger members of the family are the healthiest, this has started to let boredom set in, along with mischief, so this week, despite feeling like really I’d still like to be spending all day in bed, I’ve pushed for what used to be called normals around the blogring.
Normals, for us, are a bit of maths, bit of reading/ English, maybe some history or science or coding. For the younger children, some art, drawing, sticking, whatever, and educational apps, along with read alouds.
Picture books obviously get plenty of attention 😉 Today during the day we read My Big Shouting Day (which I’m hoping is mentioned in that post, or that’s just a miscellaneous link 😉 ) and then at bedtime there was the Gruffalo’s Child. (I do love that book.) Smallest did some drawing – mainly of birds, and lots of playing on minecraft. She’s made a developmental leap there, and suddenly instead of sitting with Small giving him direction, she’s able to build and do things for herself. She caught? found? a dog, but made it grow too big and it died. And instead of sitting and crying, she went out and found another. Then she wanted to name it, but sadly technical support had gone out to the library with Big, so she was left with me.
And I know next to nothing about playing minecraft. I know a bit about installing it and modding it, because we’ve done that before, but I’ve never played it. So we struggled with it for a while, and I even put out a desperate plea for help on twitter, but failed to sort it out.
We were picking the nametag up from the wrong place. Obviously.
I suspect that Smallest is going to learn to read and plan and type now, because she’s motivated to continue to do more and more on minecraft. I’m going to have to buy her her own very soon – they spent tonight building her a skin? (No, still no idea.)
In and around this, she also did some reading and maths (Reading Eggs and mathseeds) and fought with Tigerboy over his new Glockenspiel. Which was nice.
Small has restarted maths after a bit of a break. He’d reached the end of the year 9 work, and I took a look the other day to see what if anything, mathletics offered next. There’s an IGCSE course, but there’s also year 9 extension work, so he got going on that. Surds. Indirect variance. All sorts of things that were hurting to my head, but we got there, and he’s powering his way through again. I think it might make my life easier in some ways (though harder in others) if he and Big sat maths together next summer, so we’ll gradually work towards that.
Big picked up her maths book again, and we’re working towards GCSE. Or IGCSE, whichever we find a centre for. And tomorrow she’s picking up the other text books too. This is absolutely her choice, and I will do whatever I can to facilitate it.
I need to look into slightly more formal art – I’m looking forward to seeing the Toucan Box art awards stuff at some point, which I think will be ideal for Smallest and Small. It would be nice to get Big maybe an art club or art lessons, need to explore opportunities there. And Tigerboy is frighteningly capable at almost reading – he was doing the Bob books app on the iPad mini yesterday and when you suggest what sound he should be looking for, he can find it, although he just stabs madly otherwise.
He’s a little learning machine basically, this morning he was experimenting with truth and falsehood. He was trying to persuade me he needed milk, and I said that we usually do that for going to sleep, or if he hurts himself. OK, he said, and trotted off. Then came back, moments later, claiming he’d bumped his head on the kitchen floor and needed milk desperately.
Yes, well. He hadn’t, and readily admitted that he hadn’t when I asked him. Funny little boy.
And that’s been the last couple of days. Plenty of learning facilitated all over the place, plenty of playing and family too.