Thursday, June 30, 2011

Home Made Face Paint

Last week I discovered the I can teach my child blog. It's a great hub of ideas for fun activities kids enjoy. Knowing our eldest's love of painting herself, I thought she's get a kick out of home made face paint. We invited some friends around to share the fun.


A great time was had; it was a gorgeous afternoon. We found that the actual recipe for making the paint didn't work so well. We ended up with hardened clumps setting in liquid or little dry clumps. Instead we mixed water and corn flour together with a fork until we got a consistency we felt was close enough to paint. Then we poured the white mix into egg carton spaces and the kids added food dye, mixed and started painting. (Harri was big on painting 'dinosuars' on herself and I.

When the kids were finished they had a run around in the long grass, all rainbow and laughing (and some divine singing too). We're looking forward to doing it all again sometime soon.


Unschool Uniform: headware


For a long Winter's day

  • pink baby beanie
  • long sleeved shirt 
  • rainbow fairy dress
  • naked cabbage patch kid baby, wrapped in wet tea towel
  • jeans (not pictured)
  • sneakers (not pictured)
  • no jacket

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Around the world in 80 Plates: Turkey

Our family has been inspired by the girls' interstate Godparents. They've been doing "Worldly Wednesday", each week they pick a different country to learn about and use a recipe from that country to make the family meal. Such a fun idea! It gives us something else to look forward to each week, inspires us to share cooking and shopping for that meal together, and adds to our menu.

We took a look at Harriet's world globe and had a chat about where we live and what "countries" are. She had a close look at one particular region and then pointed her finger to Turkey. I would love to be able to get into her brain and find out why it was Turkey that captured her imagination. Whatever the reason, we had our place to research.


She and Daddy surfed the net for info about Turkey, including a bigger image of the map. Harri was fascinated by the map and felt inspired to draw her own.


We found many Turkish recipes online and settled on Ali Nazik and a tahini spinach salad. We also toasted some Turkish pide. We prepared the meal together, to the sound of Turkish music found through youtube. Our cat sniffed the computer as if to ask "what is making those strange sounds?", Harri appreciated it though. She broke out into some funky (yoga inspired) break-dance moves.


Harri tried a handful of new skills. She grated lemon zest, cut avocados, crushed garlic and juiced a lemon. Using the electric juicer for the first time was definitely the highlight of her night. Once she started using that she stayed there until it was time to eat. She had a ball grabbing anything she could find on the bench and trying to juice it: "Juicing is fun!" she squealed at one point.


With all hands on deck it didn't take long to make dinner. We sat down together and began filling our plates. We had a salad of: spinach, red onion, avocado and sliced almonds, with an option dressing of: tahini, lemon zest, lemon juice, garlic. Our main dish was a mince beef tray with roasted eggplant and green capsicum, yoghurt, paprika and butter, with a side of toasted Turkish pide. Our kitchen smelt fantastic!


Big thanks to The Owlets for great inspiration.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Our Classrooms

As natural learners we understand that the whole world is a classroom ;) Here are some of our daughters' recent learning spaces.

By a fire
Daddy's lap

a trampoline
Lounge room
Friend's backyard
Our backyard
Stove-top
If you share pics of your childrens' classrooms this week, be sure to leave a link in the comments section so we can come check it out and say hi :)



Monday, June 27, 2011

Milestone Monday: Name Recognition

At 10:30 on the dot we race into the library, just in time for the beginning of story time. As we enter the kids section we pause to grab Harri's name tag from the canvas sign where they are pinned.

Me: Hey Harri, would you like to grab your name tag today?
Her: Awight! (glee evident)

She pauses for a moment, taking in all the tags. So many colours and letters and styles of hand writing. She's determined, but struggling. Librarians are ushering us to the allocated floor space for story time and Harri is getting frustrated.

Me: Do you remember which colour you chose for your name tag?
(Something clicks immediately and Harri reaches for her tag).
Me: That's the one.
Someone's Dad: Wow.
Me: Yeah, wow, right!? I wasn't expecting that either *smiles*

Natural learning in action.



I'm joining in Owlet's Unschool Monday

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Unschool Uniform

For Winter afternoon classes
  • long sleeved hoodie shirt, with hood on
  • rainbow tulle fairy crown
  • short sleaved cotton dress (a size too small)
  • jeans
  • 1 men's sport sock in white
  • 1 mutli-colour striped baby sized leg warmer, worn as sock
And that, my friends, is an unschool smile

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Our Classrooms

As natural learners we understand that the whole world is a classroom ;) Here are some of our daughters' recent learning spaces.

Train
TV floor
Ring sling

Quilt
Couch by the side of the road

Friend's backyard
Mumma's fabric

If you share pics of your childrens' classrooms this week, be sure to leave a link in the comments section so we can come check it out and say hi :)



Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Our Classrooms

As natural learners we understand that the whole world is a classroom ;) Here are some of our daughters' recent learning spaces.
Daddy's shoulders
Noodle bar
Steps
a residential street
Train
Aquarium
on a swing

Pop's lap
By the side of the road

Library

Her wrist
In a box
On a sibling's back

If you share pics of your childrens' classrooms this week, be sure to leave a link in the comments section so we can come check it out and say hi :)


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Unschool Uniform


For night classes in Winter
  • Hand made headband by Great Aunt, worn sideways
  • Rainbow fairy dress
  • Leg-warmers as sleeves
  • 2 of Mumma's left shoes: 1 green, 1 pink
  • Bandaid half stuck on lower leg/foot

Monday, June 6, 2011

Unschool Monday : Pen License

I have a shocking confession to make, a secret shame I can no longer keep secret. I am a published writer who....NEVER EARNED HER PEN LICENSE!

Image source
It's true, it's true *hangs head* I've been running around calling myself a writer, sneaking my unlicensed works into respected publications. "How did this happen?" you ask. To make sense of my tale of deceit I must take you back to a time when I looked like this:


1991. I was in grade 3 at school. In the early years of primary school students were permitted to write with greylead pencils. I assume this was so that mistakes could be erased easily, as we learned to write. But come grade 3 it was expected that students progress to ballpoint pens. 

It was not for students to decide when working in pen felt right to them. There was a licensing system imposed by teachers. I watched my peers progress to pen, oh how their pages sparkled with class compared to my juvenile greylead covered papers.

The details I remember about the test include: we had to display hand writing of a standard deemed "good" by our teacher and we had to hold our pencil a particular way. I could do neither. What I found particularly frustrating about this licensing business was that I knew from my writing at home that my handwriting was much more impessive in pen than pencil. But the teacher would not allow me to demonstrate this.A pen license was something you earned in pencil, you see. Much like a car license is something you earn on a bike...huh?

My teacher and my parents worked hard to try to make my hand writing "better" and to get my fingers and hand to contort in the way they told me was "right". But it felt wrong to me, it hurt my hand and it slowed me down. I had many thoughts, so many stories, that I had to get onto the page as fast as they came. I had no interest in being slow. I also had no interest in pain. And frankly, they were being snooty. I could read my writing and they could too, it just wasn't as legible as others. But I have always quite liked that.

I never wanted my unfinished pieces read, I preferred to read them to my audience. "Bad" hand writing is quite good for an artiste with this goal in mind. I never had to worry about being mixed up in one of those cheating fiascos because no one was going to be able to copy my work :D And when it came to my uni days, my handwriting protected my personal impressions of lectures from being read by anyone sitting beside or behind me.

Eventually my parents and teachers gave up trying to tame my wild pencil. I took matters into my own hands and once every other student in grade 3 was working in pen, I managed to slip under the radar.

Something my parents and teachers could not predict was the role computers would play in the future. My hand writing was never going to stand between me and employment or publication. What a lot of time and energy was wasted on this licensing business! 

Who knows how the world might change between now and when my children are grown? There will no doubt be plenty of things I will worry about and want to "correct" for the sake of their future happiness, that will turn out to be completely unnecessary. If I trust in their judgment I'm sure to save us all a lot of stress and I won't waste my time, as my parents and teachers did.



Sazz is a writer who found love with another unlicensed pen user, who found employment as a public servant. Together they are unschooling their two daughters, the eldest (3 years) frequently writes in pen. Sarah no longer wears heart shaped glasses.


I'm joining in Owlet's Unschool Monday

Friday, June 3, 2011

Our Classrooms

As natural learners we understand that the whole world is a classroom ;) Here are some of our daughters' recent learning spaces.

Neighbourhood street
Restaurant
Escalators
Hardware store
Wherever the road takes her
Mirrors
Pile of leaves
Gutter puddle
Kitchen bench
If you share pics of your childrens' classrooms this week, be sure to leave a link in the comments section so we can come check it out and say hi :)