Saturday, July 22, 2017

Term Three: Week One ~ Pupil Free Day For Mum and a City Excursion

Term 3 has officially started and per our normal routine we kept week one pretty low key. Monday is actually ALWAYS a "pupil free day" which is the Australian equivalent of a Teacher Inservice Day.  My boys have traditionally attended a Pupil Free Lego Day held at a local church and this year all THREE boys attended, giving me my first (and ONLY) truly pupil free day!!  Next year Monkey and Munchkin will attend, but Monster will get a day at home with me as the event is only for K-6 children.  So I had the day to myself from 8:30am until about 3:30pm.  Over the course of my day I enjoyed TWO cups of tea while they were actually still hot, and I focused on fun activities that I find hard to squeeze in along with the normal activities that make up my day as homemaker and home educator.

I finished off the beanies I started knitting for the boys and left them out as a surprise when they came home.  They love them!! 

I spent a LOT of the day curled up on the bed working my way through this stack of books. YES, I'm reading them all at the same time... and I got at least one chapter of each book read before the boys returned! 

We did no formal written book work this week... instead focusing on hands-on learning and read aloud time.  Monkey did spend a good portion of one afternoon creating this board game. 

 Friday we spent the day in the city.  I had been promising the boys a chance to check out the Kinetic Sand and Lego Exhibit at Museum of Sydney.  The event was ending on the 23rd of July so I knew we had to be quick.  It was AMAZING and I'm glad we didn't miss it.

There were wonderful buildings on display built by Ryan McNaught... the only certified Lego builder in the southern hemisphere. 

 Below the display area of Ryan McNaught's structures was a table and a bucket load of Legos for the boys to build with.  It was heavenly...

This is the crocodile that Munchkin built. 

I was fascinated watching a woman (who looked to be in her mid to late 20s) sit and build her own Lego replica of the Sydney Harbour Bridge... so when she added it to the display table I snapped a photo. 

More of Ryan McNaught's constructions... 

Monkey's fortress that he built... 

At lunchtime we headed outside.  You are not allowed to eat or drink in the museum and they don't have a "lunch room" so they allow you to go in and out of the museum as often as needed through the day. 

I was impressed with my Australian history retention when I remembered correctly (before checking this monument) that Captain Phillip was the first governor of Sydney. 

When we went back into the museum we headed to the craft room to participate in a jellyfish craft.  The boys enjoyed creating samples for the display wall and they made some to bring home as well. 

I learned something new... this was only our 2nd time to this particular museum and only on this visit did I learn that the museum sits partially on top of the remains of the original Government House.  In the area where the craft was set up there were plaques to read about it and a viewing area to see the marked pavers on the ground below. 

On ground level inside the museum there is also this replica structure of Government House. 

In the room next door to the craft area, they had a wonderful exhibit of information about the First Fleet and their relationship with the Aboriginals.  I say wonderful because of the depth of information, but the situation between the British and the Aboriginals was horrible.  But I hope that this is a permanent exhibit in the museum as I will be keen to revisit it when Monkey does his extensive Australian history unit. 

Next we worked through a little scavenger hunt booklet that the ladies at reception gave us.  It familiarizes you with the layout of the museum and you learn some Australian history along the way.  All three boys enjoyed the activity.  This was a two sided structure with heavy drawers to pull out on either side.  I was impressed that even Munchkin could pull them out and have a look inside. 

All three boys spent a bit of time looking closely at all the different goods you could trade in different countries around the world. 

They had to do a bit of a picture study as well... add Creative (Visual) Arts to the list of subjects covered in our excursion!! 

This was a row of miniature replica ships and interactive screens with information about each one.  They had to find out the names of several of the ships and what they transported. 

We headed back outside to investigate the "trees".  We were instructed to lay down and look up and note what we saw, and if you were very quiet and listened (above photo) you could hear fleeting recordings of Aboriginal speaking and singing "inside" the trees. 

Finally it was back to the Sand and Lego exhibit for a couple more hours of fun before the museum closed at 5pm.  It was a LONG day but so worth the effort.  I will look forward to seeing what the next child focused exhibit is which will area in November. 

We enjoyed dinner at Hungry Jacks and then, despite the cold, we walked around to the other side of the Harbour to admire the Opera House lit up. 

While we waited for our train to arrive we checked out the night view of the Harbour Bridge and the lights of Luna Park behind it. 

I even managed a quirky shot at Central station to submit into my weekly challenge.  The theme was street photography and I wanted to do some anonymous. 

 Our selection of books for the week is a bit lacking... but we focused mainly on our read alouds. The top two photos are some of Munchkin's read alouds for bedtime, and the bottom two are independent choices of Monster's.

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