We spent the last week away from home, performing as a family in a show about the historical background of our church in the UK. It was set about 180 years ago, so not only was our week filled with singing, dancing and a little bit of acting, there was also a whole load of history attached to it…
Outside of rehsarsals and performances we were fairly tired but that didn’t stop us from learning some other things. You see, we don’t follow school term times, mainly because we don’t have to, but also because learning happens all around us at all times, so we do formal learning throughout the year, but also take days off when we want to too! We love the flexibility.
So what did we take with us so we could still learn on the go? Here is the breakdown of all we brought…
We don’t use workbooks much. But we do use them when we are more out and about, because they are easy to just pick up and go. Addie has a Maths book, and Bear has a book on initial sounds which is our next focus with his language learning.
Addie and Bear were asked which books they wanted to take for the trip, and they chose these fun My Animal Kingdom books from DeAgostini about elephants, spiders (Bear’s choice) and chimpanzees. We don’t specifically read these, but they look through them and we discuss the content from time to time.
We have been having some late nights, and to tie in with it, our Exploring Nature with Children topic of the week was the Night-time Sky, gave us an opportunity to do a late night nature walk to try to look at the stars. We were able to bring along with us our Usborne spotter guide The Night Sky book and 100 Things to Spot in the Night Sky cards, along with some Montessori classified cards to help with language learning (I am trying to find the source for these, I have had them for a while).
I love these books, and Addie is coming along really nicely with her reading, even if she is fairly resistant to sitting down and completing a book with me. However, while we have been away, she picked up one of the books herself and started reading it because she wanted to know what it was about, which was a wonderful breakthrough. She loves the characters that carry through the different series of the Dandelion Readers, which are from Phonic Books. I love them because they work really well along with the Montessori approach to reading but would also fit in nicely with any phonics approach.
We love using this, and it is a really easy one to take away easily. Not all Montessori maths materials are so easy to transport, but with these few tiles, we can do addition, subtraction, multiplication and division sums with ease, and we write the problems out as we go.
Usborne have some great books, don’t they? And Puzzle Island is a book that entertains children while developing their maths and observations skills.
Biological Classification Cards
We are introducing these to Bear and revisiting them with Addie. These sorting cards are ideal for Addie to teach Bear and take up next to no room in our learning box. We have living and non-living cards, and classifying animal and plant cards.
We love going through these books which tell us what is happening in nature on each continent in August. We have all the months, and we just read them at the moment but they will become triggers for further project work from next year onwards. We got these from the Book People.
We put all our week’s learning materials into our August box, and we were good to go, and along with a tablet and the other activities we did, we were able to enjoy our time away and still take a relaxed approach to our learning.