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Last few weeks 01/05/2010

Posted by snoozerider in days out, home education, kids craft, lapbook.
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It’s been a while since I posted, mainly because we have recently suffered 11 days without a broadband connection.  Yikes!  It has given us all a bit of a jolt as to how much we rely on the internet for learning, so we have been doing lots of stuff involving information from good old fashioned books.  This has been helped by the discovery of a home educator’s perk (yes, really!) – I can get an extra library card from Norfolk Libraries!  And I can borrow up to 20 books at a time!  And 12 of these are allowed to be junior non fiction (usually limited to four)!!  Woohooo.  Now to get myself a bigger trolley to haul all the books home 😉

So what have the boys been up to?  Readers of my sewing blog will know that I am into quilting and have recently discovered the Liberated Quiltmaking of Gwen Marston in this book.  It has such lovely pictures, that Waif has been inspired to design his own quilt pattern:

Gman’s main thing has been learning about Mexico.  Buoyed by the success of the Impressionist lapbook, he is putting together a Mexico lapbook on the bits and pieces he has learned.  He has done a minibook on food in the shape of a chilli; music in the shape of a sombrero; fiestas in the shape of a papel picado…and so on.

Tied in to this, we have done some Mexican themed crafts:

  • Made an Ojo de Dios – check out Gman’s blog here for pics and info about this
  • Created some yarn paintings
  • Decorated skulls in the style of the Day of the Dead

We are about to move on to the Aztec era and there are sure to be plenty of activities relating to this we can do together 🙂

This week we have also been on an home education field trip to Castle Acre Priory near Swaffham, where we enjoyed storytelling from the marvellous Yarnsmith of Norwich.  As you can see, the children were totally captivated by his storytelling in such a beautiful setting, helped along by a bit of sunshine.  Take a look at the Yarnsmith’s website to see if he is storytelling at an event near you.  He really is wonderful!

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Blast Off! 04/02/2010

Posted by snoozerider in collage, craft.
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Another hit from the marvellous Kids Craft Weekly Newsletter (issue 38, found here)

We didn’t have any curling ribbon for the flames so used red ribbon and yellow rickrack.  Waif was very pleased with the results as you can see!

Ancient Egypt Project 09/12/2009

Posted by snoozerider in home education, kids craft, painting.
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The last month or two, we have been “doing” Ancient Egypt.  We have:

  • made a potato mummy – we cut a vaguely human shape out of a slice of potato, covered it with a mixture of bicarbonate of soda and salt and left for two weeks in a sealed container.  The potato shrinks and blackens and goes a bit yucky.  You can then wrap it in bandages and voila you have your mummy.  If you were really brave you might try this with a chicken :-).  My recommendation would be to use a pretty big potato cos it is surprising how much it shrinks!

    Potato Mummy - Before

    Potato Mummy - After

  • made reed boats from bendy straws

  • made and played a game of Senet, making a board from rigid cardboard and counters out of air drying clay

  • learned how the Egyptians prepared bodies for mummifcation by playing this game on the BBC History site
  • played lots of games of Tutan Loot ‘Em (a fabulous board game made by Orchard Toys)
  • made Pharoah’s crowns

  • coloured in lots of Egyptian pictures
  • painted a life sized (well, Waif sized!) Ancient Egyptian man

Handmade Card Swap 18/11/2009

Posted by snoozerider in Christmas, collage, kids craft.
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This year, we have decided to join in with the Handmade Card Swap over at Kids Craft Weekly.  The idea is that the boys make 10 Christmas cards which we send off to 10 other kids and we should get 10 cards in return.  Today has been windy and wintry, so it seemed as good a time as any to get started.  My fabric scrap bag is overflowing, so donated some to make some collage Christmas trees.  They started out quite tasteful and minimalist… but then out came the glitter 🙂

More Cotton Bud Art 03/11/2009

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Inspired by the cotton bud skeleton we made a week or two ago, we decided to have a go at making a cotton bud firework picture and it came out pretty well.

First of all, we cut the cotton buds into different sizes (they ping everywhere and you will be finding them in strange places for days).  Next we set out three pots of water and added food dye and glitter (we only had yellow, red and green dyes but I think blue would work well) and then dipped the cotton buds into these, setting them out on paper plates to dry overnight.

The next morning we took a large sheet of black contstruction paper and started sticking them into firework shapes.  To help Waif work out the direction, we drew a dot in the middle of each one.  Once they were all stuck, we painted strips of glue around and sprinkled generous amounts of glitter around.  The results are pretty striking!

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