Day by Day

29 September 2017

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It’s starting to feel quite autumnal; amidst all the new beginnings in our lives now, the seasonal changes all around us are reassuring. We’ve been on a few sunny (or at least, not wet) walks, and the girls have made a start on their new nature journals. A tree across the road from us was felled, and, in pouring rain, we (well, mainly HWH as boys were camping and my back was bad…poor excuse) were allowed to collect the wood. So, HWH and Rhythm Dude spent an afternoon wielding their axes and chopping it up.

There are lots of bees buzzing round the hive when the sun’s out, and I’ve fed them a dilute sugar solution in the hope of stimulating egg production (idea is that it replicates nectar). Usually at this time of year they are fed a stronger sugar solution as bee keepers have taken the honey off, and this helps to replenish their stores for the winter. However, we’ve had trouble keeping the bees, never mind anything else, so any small amount of honey they’ve been able to make, they certainly deserve to keep!

I planted some borage in the field a while ago, and as well as being a lovely colour (and suppressing the many weeds that keep wanting to take hold), the bees love them. The pigs are in their last week before they make their final trip to the abattoir. We’ve all got quite attached to these two. Not a good idea to name them, but they’ve been given several names by the children in the group. I call them Pinky and Perky, and they have proved good listeners in these last few weeks as I’ve related all that is going on in our family.

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I’m enjoying learning about the Middle Ages with the girls. I was going to skip it, as my memories of doing this time period with the boys mainly included lots of wars and castles. As neither fascinate me, and I didn’t think the girls would be gripped either, I thought we’d move quickly on. However, fortunately a home ed friend of mine was appropriately shocked and reminded me of all the other things that happened in this time. And she’s right! One of the fun things about home ed is that you can very much tailor the teaching to the individual child or children. So, we are approaching this from a slightly different perspective. And we often do history when Dancing Toes’ sweet home school friend comes around, which adds to the fun. I’ve taken pictures of some of our projects.

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We started with the Norman Conquest, and the Bayeux tapestry. Think I may do some tapestry with them, which will help show what an enormous achievement this was. They wrote a page for the Domesday book with paint and feather’s kindly donated by our chickens. Then we learnt about Matilda’s struggles to become queen, and her escape from Oxford in the snow (first picture). And this week about her son, Henry Plantagenet, so named because his father wore broom in his hair…hence they chose flowers to put in their hair, and we had giggle about changing our family surnames to correspond with these flowers!

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