Monday, August 22, 2011

So...More about Weapons

We've been very quiet lately, the morning sickness means I've been having to take it easy and have even been almost bed ridden some days :(
There is an end in sight though, I'm headed into my second trimester and hopefully it will start to lift from now on forwards!

In the meantime we've been doing quieter activities like reading, puzzles, brainy blocks and other similar things.
I did have a good week last week so we saw some friends and I even managed to get around to the library again let the kids chose some new books.

Bear of course managed to find a book full of robbers & guns, but as it was from the children's section and I've already decided that they are allowed to choose their own reading material he was allowed to bring it home.

As it happens it turned out to be the most wonderful book and we've read it countless times since. Because of my earlier post asking about children playing with guns/weapons I decided to share in case anyone else would like to read this to their kids.

Beaten by a Balloon by Jonathan Allen

Sam Appleby would like a sword, or a water gun like his friend Hacky Mackie, but his father and mother like peaceful things like sunflowers and ballooning and roses.
When a thief happens to comes to town though,Sam and his father outwit him with the help of a variety of items including a sunflower to a chocolate cake.
It's an amusing story that will be enjoyed by every child that ever waved a stick as a weapon, and by every parent that tried to explain why this isn't always the best of ideas.

If your library doesn't have it you can buy it here

Talking about reading a friend mentioned BOB books to me and showed me one her son is reading.
I've had a look and am considering some for us and seeing how it goes with Bear, because I'm not so sure on Teach Your Child too Read in 100 Easy Lessons anymore.

Tell me what you used to help teach your children to read, and at what age you started?

Friday, August 5, 2011

So...A Very Merry Unbirthday to Us!

So...with some superbly unplanned conception timetables our entire family has ended up celebrating their birthday in the 6 weeks or so following Christmas.

Yes...that would be all of us and several extended family members too!

Saying it's a busy time of year for us would be an understatement but for the kids it is also a little hard, they are inundated with presents, celebrations, parties, cakes, excitement...and then nothing...for next 10-11 months.
And when they are so little they change SO much over the course of the year, half the toys they received at the beginning of it are far outgrown by the end of it.

But all is not lost, enter the ever fun UNbirthday party and you have an answer to all our problems, and a fun way to spend a day!

So yes, you guessed it, we had our own little impromptu unbirthday party the other day.

While The Dad distracted the troops I quickly wrapped presents, blew up balloons and improvised birthday cakes with some chocolate mousse, 100s & 1000s, chuckles and some candles, and set up the table ready for our party!

Then it was time to call in everyone from the games they were playing outside!

Candles were blown out!

And some were simply stared down!

Paper was ripped off presents!

Some of us were more interested in eating than in unwrapping...I think we have a little chocoholic in the making in our midst!

And then it was time to check out the stash!

And of course the inevitable sugar crash that accompanies any party completed the day...but luckily you're spared pictures of that ;)

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

So...Khan Acadamy & Advanced Students

So...I've been scarce in the blogging scene lately and have to apologise. It's a combination of terrible morning sickness AKA 24hr sickness in my case, and just not having any energy at all at the moment.So please bear with me over the next few weeks...hopefully it will pass soon and I'll be back into the swing of things shortly.

I was sent something that jerked me out of my pity party long enought to type this post though, it was little excerpt from a looooooong article on Khan Academy
Hopefully you already know about Khan Academy but if you don't you should definitely click on the link and find out more about it. It's a resource where you can learn almost anything for free.

Wired magazine recently ran an article on them which was quite interesting (and word of warning...very long!), you can read here
In the article though there was a small quote which is mind blowing...have a read for yourself and see what you think!

Even if Khan is truly liberating students to advance at their own pace, it’s not clear that the schools will be able to cope. The very concept of grade levels implies groups of students moving along together at an even pace. So what happens when, using Khan Academy, you wind up with a kid in fifth grade who has mastered high school trigonometry and physics—but is still functioning like a regular 10-year-old when it comes to writing, history, and social studies? Khan’s programmer, Ben Kamens, has heard from teachers who’ve seen Khan Academy presentations and loved the idea but wondered whether they could modify it “to stop students from becoming this advanced.”

So...still convinced the schools are really interested in educating your children?