Monday, 29 November 2010

Taekwon- Do - Yellow Tag



Owen and Anya have been attending Virtue Taekwon-Do since September. Anya has really picked up the moves. Owen initially found the classes too noisy but each week he has been able to stay in the class for longer and longer. The teacher and assistant coaches have been very flexible with Owen which has meant he has maintained an interest. I was worried that they would insist on him remaining in the class for the full duration which would inevitably result in him it quiting.

Over the past few weeks that have been learning the 10th Kup which are the moves and theory for their Yellow Tag. Last week they were both assessed and both passed!

Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Home School Resources

A fabulous list of resources that have been put together by the South London Home Educators.

Free Home Education Links

Sunday, 14 November 2010

Brain Pop Jnr - Educational Videos



Brain Pop Jnr was recommended to me by another home educator. It is my favourite educational site. Owen and Anya love the site and spend hours watching the videos. There are free videos but it is worth paying $85 for a years membership.

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Blackboard Handwriting Excercises

Finding Something to Inspire Reading

My kids hate reading.  They have never liked looking at books even before they were subjected to the torture of the schools reading books.  They enjoy being read to at bedtime and love books that are quirky and alternative.  But. they rarely want to look in a book on their own.  They will occasionally flick through the pages of a super hero comic or natural world book with striking illustrations but that's about it.

One of my friends (also a home educator) who has a mildly autistic child suggested that I just try and read the words that surround us in everyday life eg road signs, packaging, adverts etc.  I am sure that generally this is a good idea and would be an organic and natural part of a child reading development.  However, my kids simply refuse to read anything.  No matter how clever I try to be to 'trick' them to read something they always see through it!  However, they do take an interest of anything or of place or different to the norm so I took them to the South Bank to see if there were any words they could read in the graffiti.  They took great pleasure from reading the inappropriate words!  It’s a start...

Monday, 8 November 2010

Salt Battery

How To Make a Salt Battery



1Clean each coin with a solution of water with a drop or two of dishwashing detergent. The coins don't have to be shiny and new looking, just make sure to remove any debris and dirt from the coins and dry them with a towel.

2Cut the paper towels into small squares, small enough to fit under the smallest coin.

3Create a solution of saltwater by mixing about t2 tablespoons of salt into a glass or bowl of water. Use a spoon to thoroughly mix in the salt and continue to stir when the salt begins to settle to the bottom of the glass.

4Place the paper towel pieces in the saltwater solution, allowing them to soak fully.

5Layer the coins and squares of paper towels. Start with a 1p, then place a piece of paper towel on top of it, followed foil, then another square of paper towel. Repeat the pattern until you use all coins, foil and paper towels. Make sure the top coin is a penny and the bottom coin is a nickel.

6Touch the exposed wire ends of either a voltmeter or a LED light, which is similar to the indicator light in many electrical items showing that the item is on and receiving power. The coin battery should get a reading of at least 1 volt on the voltmeter or make the LED light turn on to show that the coin battery is generating power.

Saturday, 6 November 2010

Agression, Swearing & Self Esteem

During Owen's school years our biggest concerns relating to his emotional welfare were:

  1. Low Self Esteem

  2. Aggression

  3. Swearing
The school said he did not demonstrate ANY of these symptoms at school. It was very frustrating as I felt they were implying, that as this behaviour was not at school, it must be associated with his home life. I have always felt confident that his emotional difficulties were a mix of his autism and the way the school was educating him. And NOT as a result of my parenting. Somehow, he managed to control his aggression at school. I think this was mainly because he was so petrified of the head teacher. However, when we picked him up from school he was often aggressive or he resorted to excessive swearing. Have we seen any improvements since he left school? YES! His self esteem has dramatically improved. His swearing has subsided specially in public situations. However, he is often aggressive. His aggression to wards other kids is at its worst during chaotic groups.

Monday, 1 November 2010