This Week In Our Homeschool

paper aeroplanes - navigating by joy homeschool blog

In our homeschool/”unschool” this week…

J(8) made paper aeroplanes from his Klutz Paper Aeroplanes book. Then C(9) taught him how to make an aeroplane she told him she invented when she was eight.

My children are both quite intense and although they have great fun playing together, things don’t always go smoothly, so my heart sings when I see them working together like this.

Paper aeroplanes on the trampoline
They had great fun flying their aeroplanes on the trampoline.

A helpful homeschooling resource to share…

I’ve been collecting Brave Writer’s free Daily Writing Tips for writing inspiration. This week we wrote riddles to read to each other. Even reluctant writer J(8) joined in with enthusiasm!

Brave Writer riddles - navigating by joy homeschooling blog
J(8)’ s riddle: “Toppings go on me, warm, good-smelling” (pizza)

Places we’re going and bugs we’re seeing…

We made it to our nature-study pond for the first time since we returned from Norway. On our last visit we were surprised to find our swan still nesting, but this time we knew from the “Happy Birthday” bunting someone had put up that something had happened!

Happy birthday cygnets

There was just one cygnet left, but he (or she) was worth the wait. The children have named it “Shadow”.

cygnet - homeschool pond study

We noticed how the cygnet held its leg in the same way we had seen one of its parents do.

Cygnet and swan leg comparison

Cygnet feeding
Feeding with mummy swan

J(8) commented on how much his willow tree has changed since March.

Willow tree nature study

Continuing the nature study theme, I was sceptical when J(8) ran in to tell me there was a bug “as big as my hand!” on the trampoline. We just don’t get bugs that big in England. He wasn’t far off, though – this little lady measured an impressive 6 centimetres!

Female stag beetle  homeschool nature study

I know you folks in more exotic climes are shouting ‘Call that a bug?’ but believe me, it was exciting for us! And by “exciting” I mean, of course, an opportunity to take a deep breath or two and show my squeamish-as-me son how “interesting” bugs can be. 😉

We think we identified it as a (dying) female stag beetle, which we were both pleased to see described as “rare”. Apparently they die shortly after laying eggs in or near rotting wood, which J(8) decided must be our old shed (we could probably do our nature study there next year).

As soon as C(9) walked through the door, hours later, J(8) whispered to her “We found a massive stag beetle next to your den, but don’t worry, the babies won’t come our and NIP YOUR ANKLES til next year”. (Gotta love little brothers.)

My favourite thing this week was…

Playing Consequences. My kids can’t get enough of this game.

Here they are literally rolling on the floor laughing at the idea of Ghengis Khan asking Princess Peach, “Have you got any string? My pants are falling down.”

rolling on the floor laughing while playing Consequences

Consequences as writing practice
More effortless writing practice 🙂

I’m cooking…

mackerel stir fry
Mackerel stir fry – loads of veggies, mackerel and a couple of eggs stirred in. We eat it with rice.

I’m grateful that…

Byline, the blog reading app I’ve used for over two years, has updated to Feedly. I’m so happy that my transition from Google Reader on 1 July will be completely seamless! I love Byline’s unfussy interface and the fact that it caches content for offline reading.

A photo to share…

our 1 year old cavachon
Our dog Harvey celebrated his first birthday this week
birthday card writing practice - navigating by joy homeschool blog
J(8) decided to make him a card. (More spontaneous writing, yay!)

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Collage Friday

Hobbies  Handicrafts

Hip Homeschool Hop

Weekly Wrap Up at Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers

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26 thoughts on “This Week In Our Homeschool

  1. What a fantastic week you’ve had! I love the photos of the children on the trampoline. Trampolining is such a fun way to release excess energy. I’m a new fan of Brave Writer, and have been inspired by how you’ve been able to incorporate writing using her tools. We are not writing so much yet but I am inspired by your examples to make writing a more regular affair in our home.

    I’ve never seen buntings like the ones by your pond. What a wonderful thing to do for the local wildlife! The female stag beetle is also a great find. I don’t think I’ve seen a live one before. What a cute dog you have too!

    1. Thank you, Hwee. You write such sweet comments 🙂 The bunting was fab, wasn’t it? It was nice to think of other people being as excited by the swans as we have been. I love Brave Writer – both Julie Bogart’s practical tips and her whole homeschooling ethos. I think J(8) would write even less than he does if it weren’t for him wanting to join in with what he sees his sister doing – that definitely helps! As you can see, we have a way to go with spelling, but – one step at a time!

  2. I’m loving the subtle turn towards unschooling that is apparent in all your posts. It’s always fascinated me and I think you do it so well!
    Can I just say how utterly jealous I am of your baby swans. They are soooo cute!
    Thanks so much for your support of my children, they really appreciated your comment (as did I)

    1. Thank you 🙂 It’s funny, the thought of unschooling makes me slightly anxious! But I think you’re right, we probably are gradually moving more that way. In some ways my children don’t give me much choice!
      I chuckled about your children’s reactions to real people reading their blog. It’s such a fantastic idea and so good for children to have a real reason to write.

  3. I loved the stag beetle pictures! We watched some videos of them when my 6 year old was bug crazy this spring (well, she actually still is, but she’s focused on fireflies). Brothers are so awful to their sisters 😀

    1. Thank you, Rebecca! I half-hoped one of my children would get interested in bugs so that I could learn more about them alongside, but they’re both as squeamish as ever! Fireflies sound like a great interest!

  4. 2 things: we’re all about paper airplanes here and love the KLUTZ paper airplanes book!

    I’m also going to play Consequences with my kids now. Thanks for the tip!

    Thanks for linking with Collage Friday!

    1. Klutz books are fab, aren’t they? The aeroplane book was a great gift from J(8)’s Godfather.
      Thanks for hosting the fab link-up!

  5. What great pictures of the stag beetle and cygnet! My boys have been wanting to see a cygnet since we read The Trumpet of the Swan.

  6. I love the pictures of the kids and the airplanes and the trampoline! How fun! Keilee would still love doing something like that. “Your” cygnet is gorgeous. I always love your ‘nature’ photos. Great pic of the stag beetle also. We have a free insect museum that I wish I could ‘whisk’ you and the kids here for the day. VERY cool insects. Happy weekend!

    1. Thank you, Karen 🙂

      Now that would be a great way to get my kids into insects – what fun! Happy weekend to you and Keilee, too!

  7. That cygnet is adorable! Makes me think of E.B.White’s The Trumpet of the Swan, one of our favorite read-alouds. So neat to “meet” you from across the pond!

    1. Thank you, Meghan – it is neat to meet from so far, isn’t it? 🙂

      I’m so glad you and Carol mentioned The Trumpet of the Swan, we haven’t read it but we loved Charlotte’s Web (and we love cygnets!) – it’s now on my read-aloud wishlist.

  8. That is one disturbing bug. I have never though of putting fish in a stir fry but most of the fish I buy would flake away to nothingness. I guess Mackerel holds together better.

    1. It sounds like an odd combination, doesn’t it? I saw it in Easy Cook magazine a long time ago and to my great surprise it turned out to be one of my children’s favourite meals, so it makes a regular appearance round here. Freezes well, too.

  9. Harvey is adorable!

    I am going to have to look for Consequences! We are really into games right now.

    That mackerel stir fry looks yummy!!

    My girls usually get along, but sometimes they don’t and it’s so difficult to know what to do…they both want me to take their side. I feel so much more at peace when they get along.

    1. Thanks Theresa, we’re all so pleased we got Harvey 🙂 I think I’m noticing nature so much more this spring and summer thanks to how often we’re outside with him.

      I highly recommend Consequences – and best of all, it’s free!

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