Highlights of April

Some of our activities in April included art group, music class, dance class, nature walks, several parks, Langleybury Farm, planting in our garden, a variety of creative activities and Easter activities (see previous blog post).

(I chose the song Price Tag because this was the one Squiggle learned a routine to in dance class and so we have listened to it ALOT this month! It also led to a nice discussion on materialism/ priorities).

March Round-up

Here are our March highlights. I chose the song ‘Wonderful World’ because we went on several lovely nature walks and this song really echoes our appreciation of the world around us!

As well as the nature walks, a few of our other activities (as seen in the video) include a marine conservation workshop by Whale Fest, a playdate at the park, other parks and playgrounds, growing our own potatoes, reading, Aldenham SEN playground, a trip to Willows farm and a visit to Stockwood Discovery Centre.

Dog Shows, Fetes and Fun Days

We have been to various fetes, fun days and dog shows this year. We really enjoy going to these events, not only as a fun family day out, but because they are educational and excellent social opportunities too.

For example, dog shows might seem like an odd place to hang out if (like us) you are not a dog owner but we find they are a brilliant way for Squiggle to initiate social interactions in a relaxed, spontaneous situation. She loves dogs but she knows not to stroke them without first checking with the owner, so she has been learning to judge the situation to decide if it seems a sensible time, then asks the owner’s permission before petting the dog. She sometimes then chats to the owner further, asking questions such as the name of the dog, breed, age etc… Great for building her confidence!

image
Oaklands Doggy Day
image
Dog event in Hemel Hempstead- June
image
Donkey sanctuary fun day (dogs, horse grooming and inflatables)
image
Dog show at a local school (play area, dog competitions, dog agility, games)
image
Highfield Charity Dog Show- Sept
image
Highfield fete (dog agility, assault course, inflatables)

Oaklands Summer Fete in July had a huge range of activities and events going on. This one was a big hit!

image
Oaklands Summer Fete (morris dancing, funfair, inflatables, coordination/ fine motor skill games, bricklaying demonstration, birds of prey, chainsaw sculpture demonstration and loads more...)
image
At Oaklands Summer Fete we also watched a horseball game, which was very unusual!

St Albans Country Show relocated at the last minute from Aldenham to Highfield Park. This was another lovely event with plenty to do.

image
St Albans Country Show (animals)
image
St Albans County Show (dog competitions)
image
St Albans County Show (circus skills- Squiggle was SO excited!!!)
image
St Albans Country Show (Squiggle LOVED this inflatable slide because there was a choice of which slide to go down!)

These events also inspire her, capture her imagination, bring out her creativeness and motivate her to write. Her are some of the activities she has chosen to do at home after our days out…

Squiggle designed her own dog activity worksheets.

image
The first picture says 'Which dog do you think has the waggiest tail? Colours Dog or Circus Dog.' The second picture is a colouring in that says 'eyes red, nose yellow, ears pink, smile biro.'

She made herself an animal colouring in book.

image
Title page 'Colour in the animals' Page 1 'golden retreiver...Cute' Page 2 'dalmation.... Milu Cute Littlesea' Page 3 'poodle...Oodle the Poodle' Page 4 'harbour seals' Page 5 'cat...Littlesea' Page 6 'tigre tiger...Rory' Page 7 'walrus (on ice)' Page 8 'bunny'

She acted out the dog agility.

image
Dog agility

Squiggle’s book of dog breeds.

image
Dog Breed Book. Page 1 'Dalmations' Page 2 'Poodles' Page 3 'Bull dogs. Playing games- lick bone, chase, fetch' Page 4 'Golden Retrievers' Page 5 'Huskies' Page 6 'Spaniels' (Below most dogs she has written 'with a tickly tummy' plus their name and/ or a description by them too).

Following Interests: Circus

So, as mentioned a while back, Squiggle developed a keen interest in circus skills after attending a workshop. Here are some of the circus themed activities she has done…

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

April 2015

Ok, since I have gotten lazy about blogging lately here is April all rolled into one…

image
Spring walks
image
Highfield Park, including some of the tree trail with friends
image
Growing our own food
image
Science experiment- celery in food colouring
image
Sand and water play
image
Problem solving- how to patch up a leak with resources available
image
Art group- foam marbling
image
General garden fun
image
Squiggle designed a carrier bag kite and parachute
image
Quality time with our cats
image
Observing and discussing the sky above- including clouds, rainbows, sunrise and sunset
image
Playdate at home
image
Writing
image
Princess Diana Playground, Kensington
image
Aldenham SEN playground
image
Designing own games and activities
image
Art and crafts
image
Fun at a park
image
Physical games- cone activities
image
More playground fun- with grandad
image
Butterfly World
image
New 'Music Meadow' at Butterfly World
image
Seaside- yes, she did steal daddys cardigan for a short while!
image
Art group
image
Art group- butterfly symmetry painting
image
Art and Science! Put a few drops of food colouring into milk. Then put some washing liquid on a cotton bud, dip it in and let the colours disperse. Makes an interesting 'painting'
image
Exploring instruments- lots of singing and dancing too!
image
Park with a friend

We also did lots of Easter activities, which I blogged about separately, and have been to music class but haven’t got any photos of that! Last but not least, we did various circus themed activities, but that needs it’s own post!

November: Part One

These are some of the things we have been doing so far this month…

character drawings 01.11.14
Drawing various characters she has created in a variety of outfits 01.11.14
fishing 01-11-14
Fishing for coins in the bath- a game she designed herself 01.11.14
water scales 01-11-14
Squiggle started off using her balance scales to compare volumes of water. This then led to a discussion about measurements of solids and liquids, and the units they are measured in. She then decided to experiment with comparing the ducks and water combined. She observed that when the water was the same volume each side and therefore balanced, that the two ducks did not weigh the same. This was not what she predicted because they look the same and are the same size, but she the concluded one of them must have water inside adding to the weight. She then tried to push the duck down into the water and was amused that it popped back up again so we discussed why this happens. She also noticed the water level rises as she did so, which also led to a discussion on water displacement. 01.11.14
white water rafting 01.11.14
We went to watch white water rafting at Lee Valley. 01.11.14
2014-11-02 13.44.48
Caldecotte lake 02.11.14
2014-11-02 13.47.30
Watching watersports on the lake 02.11.14
2014-11-02 13.52.01
02.11.14
2014-11-02 13.54.16
Photos at the lake 02.11.14
2014-11-02 13.45.40
One of my favourite photographs of Caldecotte lake 02.11.14
cuddly toy cat game 3-11-14
Cuddly toy cat game 03.11.14
paradise park play area 4-11-14
Paradise park 04.11.14 physical exercise and a spot of map reading too
paradise park animals 4-11-14
A few of the animals at Paradise park 04.11.14
paradise park monkey 4-11-14
We were lucky enough to spot a two day old newborn baby gibbon clinging to mum 04.11.14
sylvanian school game 5-11-14
Squiggle used her Sylvanian families to act out a day at school. This led to some very interesting questions, such as why do the children need to wear a school uniform, who decides what it should be etc… We then had a very balanced discussion about the differences between school and home education. She was able to articulate very well why she personally feels home ed is much better suited to her needs. 05.11.14
southend 6-11-14
Southend beach 06.11.14
2014-11-06 13.26.36
We found this great resource at the beach playground, it is simple explanation of the weather cycle. Squiggle enjoyed learning how clouds form and how it rains. This led to further discussion about weather, the sun and also how stars form too 06.11.14
southend boats 6-11-14
Boats at Southend 06.11.14
southend more photography 6-11-14
Some of my favourite photos from our trip to Southend 06.11.14
southend photography 6-11-14
Scenic photos of Southend 06.11.14
fireworks fleetville 7.11.14
Local fireworks display 07.11.14
fireworks crabtree 8.11.14
Watching fireworks with a friend 08.11.14
fashion garden 9.11.14
Playing in the garden 09.11.14
2014-11-09 09.55.11
Picnic in the garden 09.11.14
2014-11-09 16.09.04
Fun at Bopping Babes disco 09.11.14
sylvanian imagination 10.11.14
Small world imaginary play 10.11.14
sylvanian ayletts christmas display 11.11.14
Acting out Ayletts Christmas display from last year 11.11.14
wpid-1415793566765.jpg
We then visited Ayletts garden centre to see this year’s display 11.11.14
wpid-1415792247599.jpg
Notcutts garden centre 11.11.14
wpid-1415806031091.jpg
Squiggle made her own Christmas sticker book 12.11.14
2014-11-12 13.34.30
Sylvanian family decorating for Christmas (wearing clothes she made for them for winter) 12.11.14
duplo treehouse 13.11.14
Duplo construction (tree house playground) 13.11.14
clarence park 13.11.14
Clarence park 13.11.14
2014-11-14 11.43.58
Squiggle designed a multi pack of cat treats 14.11.14
cats 14.11.14
Squiggle then asked the next day to go to the pet shop to buy the cats a treat 15.11.14
2014-11-13 15.47.01
Chilling together
wpid-1416155078382.jpg
Van Hage garden centre 16.11.14
wpid-1416154368864.jpg
We popped to Stanborough lake briefly on the way home 16.11.14

 

In addition to these activities, we also practised estimating (time mainly) and discussed the difference between a guess and an estimate. We have also played a game several times that she invented whereby we try to recall what we were doing x number of days ago. This proved to be a fun memory game and we enjoyed talking about past events, as well as doing the maths to work out how many weeks, months and sometimes years ago the day was. I also discovered she didn’t know what a typewriter was when she found a miniature toy one (then again, why would she know!) So we discussed technology and how it has progressed, which she found very interesting.

 

Our Week in Pictures

sylvanian skiing aug 14
Imaginative play- skiing
2014-08-03 14.55.59
Face painting Fluffy. She sounded out ‘flufe’
garden balancing aug 14
Balancing on the logs with Gingerbread, our cat.
pick your own in garden aug 14
Picking fruit from our garden, lots of blackberries and a few apples too.
person collage aug 14
Collage person.
art group aug 14
Art group, using different tools for painting.
connect four models aug 14
Using connect four counters to make models. She made a 2D dog and a plane, plus a well balanced 3D tower.
designing parachutes and exploring gravity aug 14
Learning about gravity and designing parachutes for her seals. She compared which fell fastest and we talked about why. She then modified her design several times to try to improve it’s effectiveness.
acting out park aug 14
Design and technology, plus imaginative play. She built a park out of duplo for some of her toys. She also designed and made paper clothes for them to wear.
paradise park aug 14
Paradise Wildlife Park
erinne party blog photos aug 14
A friend’s birthday party.

Our Week in Pictures: Water Play

Water play is therapeutic and relaxing for Squiggle but it is so much more fun when it’s outdoors and on a large scale, so there is nothing like sunshine to brighten her mood, just for that reason alone!

 

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Our Week in Pictures

Here are some of our adventures this week….

Greenwood park
Greenwood park
Southend beach
Southend beach
image
Squiggle made our pet cat a ‘pouch’ then set up a treasure hunt around the house so he could follow the picture clues (with her help of course!) to find the prize at the end.
image
Painting in the garden
image
Balancing in the garden
image
Designing her own clothes
image
Playing at Grandad’s house
image
Fun at soft play

Bubble Art

Today for our home ed art group one of the lovely mums brought along bubble art…

20140513-175241.jpg
Learning how to prepare the paint mixture for blowing.

 

20140513-175329.jpg
Blowing bubbles (Squiggle was particularly enthusiastic about this as it reminded her of the glass blowing demonstration last weekend!)

 

20140513-175356.jpg
Her first attempt, she was really pleased 🙂