reflections on our home learning 16

As I write this I can hear Bob reading aloud from our latest collection of books from the library. It is so fun to hear him read and wrestle with new words. His reading is coming on in leaps and bounds through his own motivation and determination. Just as with myself, learning phonetically makes little sense and it is really a case of learning and memorizing each word one at a time. He is also winding down after his first evening at youth group which he loved, but knowing Bob there will need to be a far amount of reading done to relax and switch off. Just not sure Aztec and Maya history would be my choice of bedtime reading but that’s our history boy for you.

It is a week of markers and milestones as Bob has started going to youth group, Kanga and I came to the end of our nursing season and I turn 40 this weekend. Nursing has played a large part of my life over the last 6 years less 2 months and it is a bittersweet point to have reached. Yet with its passing comes a new season and a greater sense of freedom and flexibility. Though we do still need to work on bedtime routine that is not quite so crazy as this week but to be fair Mark has been away and out 4 nights this week over bedtime so working out a new pattern with no nursing to sleep the same week as Mark being gone was never going to be straightforward.

This week also saw us finally get on top of colds and bugs that have plagued us since the end of November and we had a normal full week of lessons which we have all enjoyed getting back into and overall our week has been a happier one for it.That includes the fact that I have doubled up on our maths lessons each day to make up for what we missed before Christmas. Bob is well able though and it takes little extra time once he is paying attention. Zog has wanted to carry on doing lessons using our Christmas themed folder for his numbers and colours and patterns.

We have also moved in science from the animal world to the human body. The boys loved the animal world and we still have to read lots about animals but they are also very excited to learn about the human body so yesterday we worked on our skeleton Ezekiel which Kanga sees as her mission to take apart with great glee and joy. Next week we will start introducing different organs to our studies. It has been a while since I studied biology but the human body is something I feel much more familiar with than the animal world and I don’t feel I have to look up every answer to all the questions that come my way about animals.

We have a great line up of novels for reading over the next few weeks which also provide our basis for writing work; The Trumpet of the Swan, The Railway Children and Winnie the Pooh to mention but a few. French begins next week and hopefully the weather will improve and we will be able to get back out for nature walks again and meet with friends for art and music. All in all with its milestones and markers it has been a great week back in the pattern of home learning and as I reminded myself this evening sorting the boy’s room out, what a great problem to have when all that you are picking up to find a way to their beds and in fact to discover their beds themselves are books, books and more books. And knowing that these are not simply books dumped about the room but books that they have spent time reading in nooks they have made for themselves during their afternoon quiet time and various other points in the day, no doubt when told to be getting dressed, getting ready for bed etc.

All three are growing up in their own ways with their own loves, passions and ways of expression. What is noticeable at the moment is that while Bob and Zog play well together for the most part there is also a stretching as Bob is moving out of those early years and so his play is not always easy for Zog to join in with or there are times he just wants to go and read books and so Zog who finds assurance in contact has increased his need for hugs and contact this week aware that he and his big brother are not the same age and that there are times he feels as though he is being left behind. That said there are also many moments of great interaction and when everyone is in a good place Zog can see the benefit of Bob being older and being more capable as he can help in when Mark or I are not free, or their building projects can be more elaborate. Kanga meanwhile is ensuring her parents continue to suffer heart failure, working out how to get to reach the gas hob, how to open back doors and escape, climbing onto the dining table and discarding all that has been laid out for the meal you have just stepped back into the kitchen to bring out. She hates to miss out on what her brothers are doing and wants to be at the table too during activities and has her own ideas on how she should be participating.

It is good to be back in the way of learning again in this way, and fun to see where this term will take us as we travel through further ancient civilisations, the human body and the wonderful worlds our novels will take us too.

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