World Poetry Day

In celebration of World Poetry Day today, Viking Direct kindly sent us a box of goodies to help inspire us to write some beautiful poems. 

World Poetry Day, poems, activities at home, events, Home Education, poetry, writing

Squiggle has previously written several poems and we have discussed different types of poetry before too. For example, we talked about what a cinquain poem is and wrote one together. We have also made a shape poem, and Squiggle once wrote a descriptive rainbow colours poem using a poetry template from Twinkl to help her. But Squiggle’s personal favourite type are acrostic poems; she wrote one about nature as part of our 30 Days Wild challenge last June, and has written plenty more since!

World Poetry Day, Acrostic poem, nature poem, activities at home, events, Home Education, poetry, writing

To celebrate World Poetry Day this year, firstly we revisited different types of poems that we had already learnt about previously. Then we moved our discussion onto poetry form and structure, so focused on rhyming couplets in particular. We picked a favourite topic to write about (Squiggle chose Sylvanian Families!) then started jotting down ideas and rhyming words that fitted the subject, before turning them into simple rhyming couplets. 

World Poetry Day, poems, activities at home, events, Home Education, poetry, writing

Here is one of her rhyming couplets:

Sylvanians are such fun,

I love to play with them out in the sun!

Next she made up an acrostic poem about seals, which are one of her very favourite animals, to celebrate both World Poetry Day today and International Day of the Seal tomorrow.

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It says:

S ea and sand

E (a) ny seal is my favourite, I don’t have a favourite out of my cuddly toy seals but if I had to pick; Pierre, Seal Seal and Dots

A seal of mine jumps for cuddles

Love them

S ays uf, also mum! 

(I didn’t think it was the time to remind her that any starts with a, bless her!) 

Squiggle is very creative and comes up with wonderful ideas. Once she has inspiration, she tends to write fast in order to get her ideas down quickly before she forgets them! As Viking Direct explain in their article about The Importance of Writing, writing is an art form, and it helps us to make connections and process our ideas. I feel it is far more important to allow Squiggle the freedom to let her creative ideas flow, rather than interrupt her thoughts to remind her about presentation, or correct mistakes. So her writing tends to be huge and messy but it’s the content that matters!

However, once she had finished writing the poems, we got out the calligraphy set we were sent to have a try at some fancy writing!

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She found it quite a challenge to use the calligraphy pen but she had fun having a go at writing with it and enjoyed decorating it too!

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Happy World Poetry Day everyone!

Do you have a favourite poem or your own poetry to share? Leave them in comments. 

World Poetry Day, poems, activities at home, events, Home Education, poetry, writing

Join in with the poetry celebrations on social media using the hashtag #VikingWorldPoetryDay

Sylvanian Families Photo Captions

Squiggle has been taking it easy today because her energy levels are very low at the moment. But that didn’t stop her from getting the inspiration to create some simple Sylvanian Families scenes, then take photos of them and write captions. I love how Sylvanian Families continue to inspire her in such a variety of ways! Oh and she has just discovered emojis and hashtags, as you can see from the captions lol… 😬;)😂💗

Sylvanian Families, photo caption, sports, rounders

Sylvanians love playing rounders with chacklat labrordoors #sylvaniansport #rounders!.🐶

Sylvanian Families, photo captions, Christmas

Snowy day 
In sylvania i can see santa in his slay ! #christmas eve! #sylvanians 🎅😻💟🐰🍭⛄❄🎄

Sylvanian Families, photo captions, Christmas

Christmas eve night in sylvania #santashere #christmas night #sylvanians. 🎅🎄🎁🎅🐰💗💚💟💘💟⛄❄👍💗⛄❄👍🍪👍💗💗💗💗💗💗💗💗💗💗💟💟💚💚💚💗💗👍👍🎅👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍👍

Sylvanian Families, photo captions, Christmas, home education

Christmas day in sylvania hire is one of meney of my presents #ChristmasDay #merrychristmas #sylvanianfamiles .         🌹🎁🎄🐰🐱🍭💟🎅🎄🎁❄⛄💟💟💘💗💚💚👍

Sylvanian Families, photo caption, Christmas, winter, snow

Look at the snow bunny i made, ive put my hat on it #sylvanians #snow.🐰🐇⛄❄💗💚👍🎅👍

Isn’t she just adorable?! I wonder what she will come up with next! 

June Round-Up

Aside from our 30 Days Wild adventures, here are some of the other things we got up to in June…

Played games, indoors and outside…

We had lots of other garden fun too, such as painting with water…

Put on shows with her toys…

Blowing bubbles, and quality time with our pets…

Squiggle also enjoyed celebrating a friend’s birthday…

These are pictures of them celebrating together that she drew for her as a present…

She also wrote a poem about cats…

We had a lovely time at Oaklands College fun day…

She then acted it out the next day at home…

Squiggle’s love of Sylvanian families is well known! She spends alot of time using them for imaginative play; such as pretending they are on holiday at Haven, going to buy ice creams, visiting Peter Rabbit’s adventure playground and at the sylvanian families Whitchurch event meeting sylvanian characters and wearing sylvanian hats like the ones she got! Cute…

She also built them an excellent tree house independently…

Other creative activities included scratch art…

And bubble art…

She did some fun science experiments (details to follow on a separate post!)…

And we also got some cool new hexbug stuff to explore…

Lastly, she had some sensory (and therapeutic!) fun splashing around in water…

30 Days Wild- Day 13: Nature Alphabet Hunt

Can you find something beginning with every letter in 5 minutes? We found half the alphabet, can you beat us?!

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Also, remember #WorldMeatFreeDay is today! What are you having for dinner?

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30 Days Wild- Day 8: World Oceans Day

As it is World Oceans Day, Squiggle’s challenge for today was to write down her 4 favourite things about the ocean. This is her message…

my four favourite fings arr boats seals paddling/ dippin my towws wayales (whales)

My challenge for today is to take action to protect the ocean, by sharing information with my online community about microbeads.

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Today, Greenpeace took a petition signed by 312,239 people to No10 asking our government to ban microbeads here in the UK. To date, US is the only country to have banned microbeads, and that doesn’t come into full effect until July 2018.

However, we have also taken our own action by pledging to be #beadfree to help protect oceans from plastic pollution. Go to www.5gyres.org to add your name to the pledge too!

Check out www.beatthemicrobead.org for more information on microbeads, and other microplastics.

30 Days Wild – Day 2: Nature Walk

For day two of our #30DaysWild challenge, Squiggle and I went on a nature walk. We spent lots of time studying things and taking photos. In fact, Squiggle took so many lovely pictures that we decided sorting through them and sharing them could be one of her future challenges for another day! We were also intrigued to find out more information about some of the more unusual things we spotted, so an indentification and research challenge is also on the cards for another day too!

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Squiggle collected some natural items she found on the ground during our nature walk.

When we got back home, Squiggle drew a nature walk picture and wrote a poem.

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A drawing of wild flowers in very tall grass.

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‘Nature’ ~ A poem inspired by our nature walk.

Then she typed a quick message to The Wildlife Trusts to let them know what we did today.

“To day we went on a nature woork  tok lots of photos wen we got back we did a nature powim and drorin xxx”

As for me, we saw lots of beautiful and interesting things, and I took plenty of photos too, but this captured my attention the most! So fascinating, and incredibly vibrant colours- the photo does not really do it justice.

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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!

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

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Oaklands Summer Fete (morris dancing, funfair, inflatables, coordination/ fine motor skill games, bricklaying demonstration, birds of prey, chainsaw sculpture demonstration and loads more...)
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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.

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St Albans Country Show (animals)
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St Albans County Show (dog competitions)
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St Albans County Show (circus skills- Squiggle was SO excited!!!)
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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.

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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.

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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.

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Dog agility

Squiggle’s book of dog breeds.

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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).

August Highlights

We have spent time at home doing a variety of different activities. Squiggle has been particularly keen to do writing and has been very interested in shapes this month.

Writing letters to penpals…

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Thank you letters to friends for her birthday presents…

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Feeding the ducks at Verulamium…

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Properties of 3D shapes…

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Making 3D shapes…

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Making a chart of how many shapes she finds…

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Making a model of the solar system…

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Caterpillars in our garden…

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Going for a walk to post letters…

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Making a 3D puzzle of tower bridge…

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Beyond the ‘Mess’- A Day of Creativity and Imagination

Today Squiggle decided to turn our upstairs into a Haven site. I love her imagination!

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This is the main part of her Haven site.

Ok, so on first glance it looks like a ‘mess’. But let’s take a closer look…

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This is the stage in the live lounge/ show bar.
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Rory the tiger puts on a show.

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This is the souvenir shop.

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She bought a haven notebook from the souvenir shop then wrote a lovely message to me.

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Rory the tiger 'cuddly toy' she made for the souvenir shop.

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This is the Haven arcade (slot machines and sweet grabber).
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This is the what the actual arcade looks like.
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Playing the sweet grabber machine.
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This is the beach (sat eating sweets from the arcade machine).
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This is the onsite Spar shop.
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This is the soft play.

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This is the swinming pool. The duplo bricks represent the water features.

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'Squiggle' takes a swim.

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'Squiggle' chilling in the caravan.

Squiggle spent all day (about 8 hours in total) setting up her game and acting out being on holiday at Haven, it became an elaborate and indepth re-enactment of our previous real-life adventures. Lovely day!

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…

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