I’m Back & Just in Time for Christmas!

In Competitions, Days Out, English, Field Trips, Gallery Visits, History, Maths, Museum Visits, Outdoor Learning, Science, Subjects by Prudence9 Comments

I am finally starting to feel like my old self again after my recent ordeal (regular readers will know all about it or you can follow the link below to read my post). I say starting because it has been difficult. Some days I have been filled with regret, anger and apathy which are complicated emotions to clamber away from. I’m doing it though, coming up for air and it feels okay, I feel more at ease. I must thank everyone who got in touch with me after my miscarriage post – it was and still is a little overwhelming. The kindness I have been shown is lovely and it has made getting back from the depths much easier so thank you all. Thank you also to all those people who shared their own sad stories in an attempt to break the taboo.

Waiting for Miscarriage – Unexpected Sadness

The journey leading up to my miscarriage wasn’t a smooth one which is why the blog posts and link-up’s were few and far between. Looking back I knew that there was something wrong and spent my evenings asleep on the sofa rather than writing. I’m feeling less lethargic with every passing day and as my tiredness fades my mind is clearing – hooray!

Putting aside all melancholic thoughts for a moment, let me fill you in on our recent home educating activities which have carried on regardless throughout it all.

As always there were lots of outdoor activities even on damp and rainy days. In October we thought about the changing seasons with Tristan making a model of an autumn tree. We splashed through streams, played in dens and enjoyed the fresh air. This week we have really enjoyed getting back outside and they have enjoyed the cold air and lovely long winter shadows.

PLaying in a Den

PLaying in a Den


Late October adventures.

Late October adventures.

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December in the low lit cold.

The boys are learning about  space and healthy eating. Theo has found out about the solar system, moon cycles, gravity and the speed of light. There is so much to learn and he is so interested that I foresee him continuing to learn about this independently for many years to come. I have an old GCSE science book which we will use as he as covered the KS2 syllabus.  There are a few more activities planned within this area for both children over the next couple of weeks.

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Theo made and orrery.

Healthy eating and keeping our bodies healthy has been a fun topic. There have been food sampling activities which have been great and hands on activities using our human body model.  This week we will be concentrating on the heart and how it works.

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Organs and what they do.

For Halloween the boys went trick-or-treating for the first time. There were lots of their local friends doing the same and the whole evening had a wonderful sense of community. They came home with a huge quantity of sweets.

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A vampire and a zombie prowl the night.

We had a break a Center Parcs to celebrate Bonfire Night. I have fond memories of this particular holiday because I was happily pregnant – it was fun. The fireworks were amazing, Tristan was rendered speechless which is rare. They had toffee apples as they watched the well put together display and danced a little to the loud funky music.

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Fireworks and music.

Tristan went roller skating for the first time and was so sure on his feet that the instructor put him in grown up skates and he zoomed about. He got a badge to reward his efforts. I was so proud of him especially as I can’t skate at all!

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Nailed it.

Theo went lazer questing with his dad. They totally owned the day and made me incredibly proud of them both. My husband ended up as the general and during the final game Theo was the last man standing beating 20 adults and winning himself the champions badge. He is desperate to go paint balling but at 10 he is still a bit too young. After seeing his Alex Rider style tactics I am very aware of the fact that he is certainly no longer a little boy!

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I have never seen him so happy – I can’t blame him as he was awesome!

The weather was perfect and on some days it was even quite warm. We saw reindeer and experienced a little of Christmas before we had to return home. I hope that we can return again soon.

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Work continued on our return. Theo has been blazing through his maths workbooks. I will write a post soon about how we are getting on with this years Schofield and Sims resources. Tristan can count beyond 100 and complete simple addition and subtraction sums.He enjoys reeling off his number bonds and I am hoping we can tackle some times tables soon. He loves counting and asking his brother if he knows the answer to various sums.

The boys stayed with Grandparents for a couple of days when I was in hospital. They had a day trip where they spent most of the day in an adventure playground and eating ice cream – just what they needed at the time. Theo is a very empathetic boy and was fully aware of what was happening to me both physically and emotionally. He looked after me so tenderly in the days after my last hospital visit giving me hugs and bringing me cups and cups of tea. They both did their school work on my bed for a few days as I recovered.

We watched the Royal Shakespeare Company’s live education broadcast of ‘The Two Gentlemen of Verona’ from my bed. It started at 9.15am so we settled in with tea and toast and spent the morning watching the live play. The boys giggled at the antics of Launce and Crab and were both captivated by the play. It was fabulous and I recommend signing up to their next free live broadcast in March. The link below will take you directly to the RSC Education website where you can sign up for the next live broadcast and there are also some fabulous educational resources to access.  Theo was able to understand the whole plot which amazed me. We have spent much of the last two weeks learning about the language of Shakespeare and they have made a new display for the wall. They are both becoming masters of puns which is wonderful. Tristan has taken to prostrating himself on the floor and announcing ‘I’m a rotten liar’ – I love it!

RSC Education Live Broadcasts

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Watching The Two Gentlemen of Verona

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The Shakespeare themed notice board.

Much of Theo’s English work has been centered around various literary devices such as prose and verse. He has written his own examples of iambic pentameter and is learning about assonance and antithesis as he looks at prose. He seems to have a natural bent for language and literature. Tristan is now able to read pretty much most things and rather annoyingly likes to pause the television so that he can read what ever he has stopped it for. He has a cute love of all things Peppa Pig at the moment and really enjoys reading Peppa books.

We have also been listening to the BBC Schools radio version of ‘A Christmas Carol‘ by Charles Dickens. We listen to a chapter every morning at breakfast time. I have read this book many times so it is nice to let someone else do the reading this year so I can sit back and enjoy my muesli. Tristan is spellbound by all the ghosts and made a spooky version of Marley complete with tinfoil chains. Theo has answered questions based on the text and drawn various scenes which helps me assess his comprehension. Click the link below to visit the school radio page. There are lots of other good radio shows for children on there – we like the mental maths and number time.

BBC School Radio – A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

Theo went to London with his dad in November where he visited the National Art Gallery and the British Museum as well as practically every famous landmark you might care to mention.

In the National Art Gallery he made notes about the pieces which interested him. We will be studying all of the artists he liked including Seurat and Monet. The British Museum amazed him. Apparently the Egyptian and Greek displays made his jaw drop and I am not surprised. Our plan is to visit again early next year as a family and spend much more time in the museum to help with our history studies.


Guess the landmark.


There is more than one here.

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She was in.

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The British Museum.

We celebrated our little darlings birthday. It is hard to believe that he is five years old already. He had a lovely day with his family and enjoyed his explosive cake this year. He received presents galore and was thoroughly spoiled for the day. I love him to the moon and back and quite a bit more besides.

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He is 5!

Now we are in the run up to Christmas and our work is beginning to take a festive turn. I have plenty of Tudor Christmas activities lined up to support our work on Shakespeare plus some glittery,gluey fun as well. The boys will begin decorating the house this week and their friend is coming around after school tomorrow to lend a hand. I imagine that it will be like a grotto by Saturday!

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A bit of Christmas themed maths.

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‘Will ours be bigger than this one mum?’ he asked. Not this year!

I plan on getting back to daily posting this week and I hope to have the link up live next week again.

Don’t forget that I have a beautiful book to giveaway this week so if you haven’t entered already hit the link below and have a go. I will also have few more great books to giveaway next week – well it is nearly Christmas!

The QED Children’s Dinosaur and Prehistoric Animal Encyclopedia giveaway


  1. Lucinda

    I’m surprised we haven’t run into eachother recently, we’ve been to so many of the same places! We also had a great time at CenterParcs, and at the National Gallery. And we’re listening to A Christmas Carol, too. My son is so funny, he keeps referencing all the stories and films he’s realising are inspired by A Christmas Carol. I’m pleased he’s now aware of the original!
    I’m glad you’re starting to feel a little better. I’m sure it will be a long healing process but it sounds like your loving family will be with you every step of the journey.

  2. Louise Frith

    Good to see a new blog post from you, Pru. I have missed reading them. It’s really interesting to know what you and your family have been learning and I appreciate the links (have just signed up for the live Shakespeare – thanks for that!).

    I’m very touched by how understanding and kind Theo has been. And I love the image of your boys doing their schoolwork on your bed whilst you recovered. They must be a great comfort to you.

    1. Author

      Thanks so much Louise. I am getting there although playing catch up a bit! I am delighted that you have signed up – it really is fab and we can compare experiences afterwards.
      The boys are amazing, I don’t know what I would do without their support:)

  3. Lucy Green

    How wonderful that you’re back! You’ve been through such a time of it and there’s nothing like kids to keep you in the ‘here and now’ – it sounds like they’ve been keeping you busy 🙂
    Thank you so much for the links – I have now signed up for the next RSC broadcast and will be playing A Christmas Carol to the sausages soon: we’ve just read an Usborne’s early reader version and they were fascinated by it.
    Good to have you back x

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