Among many other things, yesterday Max and i talked a bit about how to manage 4 children and educating people in the style that suits us, when there is only one adult to do it. While i often do find it difficult, i think it is easy to forget that with the benefit of gradually upping the numbers and amounts of work required over 7 years of HEing, i’m quite well practised and, because i’m a dragon, the kids don’t play up particularly, or at least not all at once! Max, for all they are his kids, is not quite so practised at it and i think he finds the plate spinning side of it quite hard; the last 6 months of properly sharing the job has given him a very different perspective on it i think.
Personally i find that the trick is not to try and run a classroom, i can’t do it with everyone doing the same thing at once and i suppose this is a mindset i’ve had to achieve, having assumed that classroom and simultaneous subjects would be easiest. In fact, i rely on having someone reading, someone doing a computer activity, and no more than 2 (preferably one of them being a big child) doing something likely to need my input. We do topic type stuff together more, but i’m fairly fortunate that Josie (and often Amelie) will float off quite naturally during that time and play together. No one spends any time in front of the tv particularly, which i am pleased about as they were addicts as smaller children but they seem to have lost interest in it very naturally. We rarely even seem to play on the Wii, it is hardly ever out.
So anyway, having had that conversation, they seem to have had a very good day indeed. Josie apparently requested “education maffs” (she said this to me later too, very cute) and Max sat and did maths rods with her and showed her how to build numbers etc. She liked that a lot. Can’t remember what he said Amelie did, she’s acting up a lot at the moment, mainly because she is really only interested in reading which we fully support as a full time occupation, but it doesn’t quite scratch the whole itch for her, i don’t think. We need to come up with a plan for her somehow 🙄
Fran did reading, music, Meleto and some other things and Max and Maddy had a great time investigating Central America; the looked at an Atlas (one of those annotated ones for KS2-ish level) and Maddy was thrilled to be able to read it, DK Human which i got from the resident The Book People franchise at work and which is a completely FANTASTIC book and used the globe some more. All in all i think they discussed Volcanos, Hurricanes, the Caribbean, the Mayans and national costumes of the area and Maddy was particularly taken with the concept of the dangers of Cape Horn and thrilled by the idea of the Panama Canal; she re planned her paper boat route to suit her new route!
I was at work today; i’ve got a second part timer, which has some potential for interesting dynamics i think, but also allowed MF and i to do some proper “employer to employee” renegotiating of hours and then a genuine “teach you new skills toÂ move you forward to manager” training session. We badly needed this extra pair of hands, despite it being deathly quiet at the moment as we never quite get on top of things and there isn’t enough time for business development. Today felt really good, i felt like i was fully ably to make a plan and move forward with it and it was good to get MF away from some of the packing too. I also left at 3pm, which was great as i got time to come home and commune with family for a while. Annoyingly, new PTer also has a flower as her name, so i have no idea what to call her as a blog name, i might just be reduced to H.
Kids were very excited as Mark had been over and made a start on out new garden additions. We’re having a pagoda-type-thing built over the rabbit corner, partly to shade them and partly to cover us the fact that they are beginning to look a tad on the um…. untidy and sprawling rabbit metropolis side 😆 We’re also having one built across the back door so that the dining room gets a bit shaded from the very hot south facing-ness of the garden. I need to find some pretty things that grow very fast to grow up them.
Max had a work cricket match tonight so i took all the girls with me to cello; Fran had a really good lesson and is coming on so well, i am really proud of her. She practised 30 minutes a day at least and really works at it; it is paying off in the speed she is coming on. She’s using her 4th finger and bowing very competently now and her teacher is pleased with her. Unfortunately she is leaving at the end of term to go private 🙁 However, Wednesday hasn’t been ideal for us, so i think it might be an opportunity to re-jig a bit and see what else we can do.
Home for tea, a film and more karaoke… which fool bought them a HSM karaoke disc? 😆