Not Back to School

It is the start of September and the nip of Autumn is in the air. For many it is the time of new starts as they begin a new school term, possibly in a new class or even a new school. New timetables, new teachers, new uniforms. But for us it is very much business as usual.

I have to admit to the odd pang when I see photos of beautiful, beaming, shiny children in their new uniforms popping up on my Facebook newsfeed. I am not anti-school, after all I have spent more years of my life in them than out, and there are some excellent schools where children are allowed to learn and thrive despite the limits being put upon the teachers. I do however disagree with the excessive testing; the rigidity of curriculum; the pressure to conform; the over-crowded classes, and quite a few other negative aspects of the English schooling system. So why the pangs? Read more

Lego love

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This weekend has had a bit of a theme… LEGO. Martin and the girls spent most of yesterday creating. Well, Martin did lots of creating of intricate lunar buggies and fabulous flying machines which the girls then played with, much to their father’s disgust (apparently LEGO creations are for looking at on a shelf!) However, it must have inspired them because they were both in full creative mode this morning, with all sorts of models being built before they had even had breakfast. Read more

Photo quotes

I nearly didn’t post today, it’s been a long one and I’m tired. But I’ve been playing around with photo quotes to add to my Facebook page so thought I’d just share that. I used a combination of Tadaa and Typorama, both photo editing apps on iPhone. Not everyone enjoys a quote, but I like to read them on Facebook. I think they give a little insight into people’s life philosophies, what their priorities are or how they are feeling at any given moment in time. I also just like playing around with photos! Here’s the one I have been playing with tonight:

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It doesn’t come out so crisply in the blog as the image is optimised for Facebook so I hope you can still read it. The quote sums up perfectly what I hope my girls will get out of a home education.

“Whatever an education is, it should make you a unique individual, not a conformist; it should furnish you with an original spirit with which to tackle the big challenges”

John Taylor Gatto

Potions and Princesses

imageThe girls and I have had a few disagreements lately about paint use. I tend to have craft materials all with free access so that they can get creative as and when the mood strikes. However the last few times they have got the poster paint out there has been an awful lot of squeezing out of paint and mixing them, and very little actual painting. I don’t like to see waste so I was finding it really hard to step back and let them loose, despite knowing that it is just another way of using the materials rather than the wrong way. I did eventually put the brakes on a bit, temporarily removing the paint, but I decided that if squeezing and mixing was what they were into just now we’d do just that. Read more

Challenges always result in learning

1440447781788I’m still here blogging, this is the 6th consecutive day of my blogging challenge… woo hoo! It has certainly been a challenge so far but after yesterday’s wobble I’m going to stop over-thinking things and just write what’s on my mind or what we’ve been up to.

I’ve been thinking a lot about what a challenge actually is. There are many things in life that can change you as a person. Some things, such as bereavement or traumas can completely de-rail us, and often we are very different people after. But such life altering events, for me, are not challenges. We have no control over them and are swept along on a tide of emotion. We are not making choices. There are no end results we are trying to achieve other than to stay afloat. Read more