The first thing to hit me is there is so much out there I want the children to see and experience. How am I going to achieve all this, but also know that if they want to head back into mainstream schooling, they won’t find integration too difficult. I’m like an over active puppy with the excitement of the adventure that is home education. First of all I need to decide on a bit of a strategy, and this involves research….I want to try and stay away from conventional methods as much as possible to make the most of the opportunity, but I need reassuring that this is an acceptable method on some sort of level. My initial intuition about children learning is backed up by the reading I do on the subject, but I realise I also need to remain flexible and very open minded.
The main activity I wanted our daughter to be able to participate in during our home education adventure, was Forest School. The twins have already been attending a pre school aged session (Twiglets)since January and have had a blast hammering, sawing, discovering, making crafts, and toasting marshmallows and eating pancakes, all made in the great outdoors.
I also needed to follow a more conventional method of learning for maths and english, just to keep them up to scratch, should the need arise for them to return to school. So with those two main ideas in place, a rough method started appearing. I shall use a conventional approach to start the day the day with maths and english (heavily curriculum based), and then a more unconventional approach to the rest of the learning. I wanted to incorporate arts and crafts, french, geography, science, and history. I decided the best way to help me guide them to learn, was to invest in the curriculum guides for me, and workbooks for them in maths and english (plus a whole heap of phonics aids for the twins). The remainder of the subjects I’d use the curriculum guides to give me some direction, and think up methods that involved learning through different means. Whether being in nature and the outdoors, visiting museums, and making things. Around all of this would be any home education group activities we had linked up to, and networking with other home educating families.
The supplies were ordered. I had found a fantastic supplier that kept everything simple (what I needed) and best of all they were easy to understand. The pictures below make it look like a daunting task, but that’s a years worth of curriculum for all three, and delving deeper I saw we could have a lot of fun here. For instance, for science I have ordered a monthly publication called Whizz Pop Whizz Bang (for children) giving inspiration and ideas for experiments that can be done. The world is indeed our oyster. With all these discussions about Forest School, science magazines, and only spending half an hour on english (that day she’d nearly keeled over with a two hour classroom session of literacy) and maths, the excitement was already growing in our little girl and the motivation returning as well as learning being viewed as something fun.