Not ‘Back To School’

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I love this time of year so dearly..cool, misty mornings,  warm, sunshiny days, our apple tree & blackberry bushes overloaded with ripe fruit…bountiful blessings.

I also love our ‘not back to school’ day.

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I am so very grateful to have had this wonderful life with my children. To be there with them day in, day out. To see them learning & growing.

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I usually time our ‘not back to school day’ to fall on a Wednesday or Thursday & we ease ourselves back in with familiar activities to reacquaint ourselves with the rhythms & routines of our learning at home.

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This morning we discussed our new books & resources, then chatted about the children’s goals for term 1.  For us, this runs from September to the end of November. 6

After an impromptu trip to the supermarket to pick up toilet paper & to spend birthday money (really! who runs out of toilet paper on the first day of lessons?!?) We came home to enjoy our traditional ‘first day’ lunch of alphabet spaghetti. After lunch the girls & I began work on our new journals. These journals are going to be dedicated to a year long pond study that will we be carrying out of our local pond. I think this may just be my favourite part of our studies this year! I intend us to study not just the pond itself, but also the creatures, plants & trees that surround it. We each stuck one of these handy-dandy ‘observation tools’ print outs into the back of our journals & covered them with sticky back plastic to protect them while we are outdoors for good measure. I would highly recommend you take some time to watch this video by John Muir Laws if you have an interest in nature journaling. It is not only inspiring, but wonderfully practical too. And so on the button. Deep Observation & Nature Journaling is the title. Deep. This video is not about skimming the surface, superficial learning, or any any old ‘box ticking’ activity, but wonderful, deep learning about the world around us. 11 The girls baked & iced gingerbread which we had with apple juice for ‘afternoon tea’ in the garden. We each choose a poem & read them out loud. I read Jaques speech from ‘As You Like It’ by Shakespeare, which we had memorised last year. Elianna read ‘Night’ by William Blake & Rose read ‘The Birthday Child’ by Rose Fyleman, on account of it being her birthday earlier in the week.

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Honestly, I have no idea why the child is now in her dressing gown!

After dinner I took Rose to our local canoeing club & Elianna stayed at home to read ‘D’Aulaires Norse Myths. It was a perfect day. A beautiful, autumnal, perfect day.

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