Friday, November 24, 2017

Term Four: Week Seven ~ Registration and Child Led Learning

I was very light on the photographs this week - but there was a valid reason for that.
Because we live in NSW, we have to register with the Department of Education to inform them of our plan to homeschool.  In our history of homeschooling we have ALWAYS achieved a two-year registration period (the longest you can have) so it is really no drama.
For my readers who may not know the process, every two years, you must send a form to the Department of Education to either initially register, or to renew your registration. This year I sent in an initial registration form for Munchkin (as he turns 6 next year) and renewal forms for both Monkey and Monster. Once you have sent in your form, the Department of Education sends out an "Authorized Person" to do a "home check". This person is generally a retired principal, and their job is simply to make sure that you have a plan that is based on the national curriculum, a suitable place for the child(ren) to study (the dining room table is sufficient) and access to adequate resources (either in the home or through the local library or in our case, both).
Our AP is ABSOLUTELY wonderful. She adores the boys, is extremely understanding or and supportive of homeschooling, and recognizes that learning at home is MUCH different than learning in a school environment.  
Our AP stayed for an HOUR this time, but that was mainly my fault as I had a million questions for her to make sure that I planned adequately for Monster to officially begin high school next year - though in reality he has been doing plenty of high school level work already this year.  She was EXTREMELY pleased to see the improvement in Monkey and Monster's writing over the previous two years and she is already looking forward to the learning they will do in the next two years.
Now, with all that said... on to the few photographs I did manage to take this week.

As I spent the week getting resources ready for our Department of Education home visit (which was Thursday morning) and also continued to push through maths with Monster, the Munchkin found many ways to learn during the week.  First he set up his own water measuring experiment in the kitchen.  He wasn't particularly accurate... real scientists would cringe... but I was thrilled to see his excitement and initiative. 

Then he spent some more time during the week creating his own puppets for a puppet show.  He drew the pictures, cut them out, and glued them to paddle pop sticks. 

Meanwhile Monster and Monkey have found a new obsession... origami! We found some WONDERFUL books at the library that are Star Wars origami books (nothing like combining two passions/obsessions) and the boys have been going crazy.  I am still learning how to manage the paper storm it creates... but I love their creativity and enthusiasm. 

My usual (though not very good) photo of my set up for our registration visit. I basically put all our resources from last year on the left-hand side of the table, this year's work in the middle, and the books I've already prepared for next year on the right.  Our AP spent a bit of time looking through the boys completed work and complimenting them on the wonderful learning they have been doing.  I always get just a little bit nervous about our registration visits, but really I shouldn't, because I KNOW we are doing a good job. Now if I could only convince our AP not to retire until Munchkin finishes school!!!! 

 We didn't get much reading done this week... 
Monster and I did finish another government book though. We both agree that there is so much information in each book that our brains nearly explode, but we ARE learning and it IS interesting.  We hope to finish up our government unit over the summer holidays!!

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