Mama's Musings

Home Grown Kids: Magical Seeds

Apr 24, 2020

Few things in nature hold as much magic as seeds. With a small fistful of seeds, children can observe the full life cycle of plants. They can observe how plants reproduce from watching plants flower, go to seed and germinate.

To save seeds from your garden or wildflowers, collect them at maturity during the late morning on a dry day. Clean them to store in a cool, dark, dry place for re-sowing. If you have enough seeds sprinkle them around the garden to see when they come up again. Collecting your own seeds will save on seed costs, create a connection with nature through the seasons, and improve your gardening success rate as the seeds adapt to your locale. For more detailed instructions on cleaning seeds to store and save, look to resources such as The Seed Savers Handbook.

Various types of plants have different methods for sowing and saving seed:

Annuals usually grow from seed through part of a year, then seeds are saved and stored or lay dormant in the ground until the...

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Friday Freebie! Stepping Stones Magazine

Apr 23, 2020

The HEA are offering the Autumn issue of Stepping Stones for FREE to inspire families during the current situation due to Covid-19.  It's available to read here.

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Resource Review: Twinkl Teaching Resources

Apr 21, 2020

I only recently came across Twinkl.  Someone shared a link to a resource on Facebook, and I went to check it out.  I discovered that Twinkl had heaps of fantastic resources suitable for Zeah (4) which I could print and use straight away to compliment our learning about Australian Animals.  



Twinkl are currently offering everything on their site for FREE because of Covid-19.   There are hundreds of thousands of resources, including a Home Learning Hub for use during school closures for children aged 3 to 16!  They always have a whole section especially for homeschoolers here - it includes not only subject areas, but themed resources (one of my favourite homeschool methods).  Twinkl also offer specifically Australian resources, resources in various languages, a wellbeing section, resources for students with special needs, and a cool Twinkl Create tool for making your own resources specific to your family's...

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Researching Home Education: Grace Llewellyn

Apr 20, 2020

The Philosphy of Education

Learning is Natural.  School is Optional.

Grace Llewellyn is an unschooling advocate, and highly esteemed author. She wrote her book, The Teenage Liberation Handbook, in 1991 at 26 years of age. I first read it before my older children were teenagers.  

Grace Llewellyn taught public school for a year. It was more than long enough to show her that something was wrong with the system. She then took a year off to travel and figure out what it was she wanted to do – since teaching was all she was qualified for. During that year she discovered the work of John Holt. Like so many who read his work, a few pages was all it took to convince her, but she went on to read most of his books.

Refreshed and with hope that she could make a difference Grace spent the next two years teaching at a very small private school, where she had complete control over the curriculum. Of this time she says, “The fact remained: they weren’t that...

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Home Grown Kids: Amazing Plants

Apr 19, 2020

Plants are amazing. They are the foundation for all life on Earth. Within the realm of plants there are some which amaze more than others…

Why grow ordinary varieties? As a gardener, you can choose to grow rare and unusual plants. Amaze your family and yourself with less common vegetables – colours, shapes, and sizes that aren’t often seen or expected. Many ‘green’ vegetables exist as purple cultivars – beans, carrots, capsicum, potatoes, cauliflower and broccoli are readily available from heritage seed sellers.

The tiny and the giant are also incredible – from bite-sized tomatoes to wheelbarrow-worthy squash – it’s a wonder to young and old to grow and eat food not normally seen at the market. Even asparagus, a delicate fern with rapidly shooting spears is delightfully different in the vegetable patch.

Cacti and succulents are fantastic hobby plants. Children are attracted by their diversity and love to collect these potted...

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Friday Freebie! A Simple Planning Worksheet

Apr 17, 2020

Use this Simple Planning Activity worksheet to prompt you to make goals and meet them on your home based learning journey... (click the title or image to preview the download)

This sheet is a sneak peak of the free workbook available with my Homeschool Confidently workshop at the Australian Homeschooling Summit 2020.  This online event includes dozens of free downloadable resources.

 

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Resource Review: Little Lifelong Learners

Apr 15, 2020

I really like how, equipped with a printer and laminator, I can "create" resources to suit our learning needs at home!  Last time I was so focused on early childhood education, the Internet wasn't the treasure trove of free and cheap resources it is today.  Sometimes it's overwhelming how much is available, so today I'm sharing a gem I've used a few times - Little Lifelong Learners.

LOOKING FOR RESOURCES FOR HOME LEARNING?

SAVE 20% WITH COUPON CODE LEARNATHOME

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Researching Home Education: John Taylor Gatto

Apr 14, 2020

The Philosophy of Education

'At the pass we've come to historically, and after 26 years of teaching, I must conclude that one of the only alternatives on the horizon for most  families is to teach their own children at home.' John Taylor Gatto

John Taylor Gatto wrote Dumbing Us Down nearly 30 years ago. It sold over 200,000 copies and subsequent editions have been printed with additions. I first heard about Gatto in discussions on home ed. email lists. I followed a link and read some of his essays and became a fan! I read Dumbing Us Down when John Taylor Gatto was coming to Australia where I was excited to see him as the keynote speaker for the National Home Education Conference in 2007.

Gatto was New York City and State Teacher of the Year at various times in his career. He taught at a school where students everyone else had given up on were sent, and he did a good job with them ­ but in a creative and unorthodox way. He let them out of school,...

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