INDEPENDENT LEARNERS

'O Allah increase me in knowledge,
amin.'


Friday, 29 May 2009

The 'half term'!

Assalamu alaykum,

the half term is almost over and to be honest for the first time I was happy to be out and about with my boys.

We had a surprise visit from my sister and the kids were so happy to spend some time with her. With my great pleasure, the kids have improved their italian and now can understand much more and reply little in italian.

The past week has been a busy one but very, very pleasant!!

So here it goes the non-so-usual 'unusual list' :) :

-Monday to Friday: A. has been at one of the many free courses organized by my borough. This half term he chose 'African Art'. A great way to learn about Africa!

-Tuesday: Kids attended a workshop at the Chadwell Heath Police Station. They learnt about the work of the police, safety and much more. They even got to hold real handcuffs and sat on a police car!

-Friday: we visited the local farm and mash'Allah the sun was out and all the farm animals were about. S. really like the farm. We bought some fresh eggs and honey freshly produced. My sister decided to make some tiramisu'! I am so looking forward to eat it after years!!

Qur'an and Arabic has been on as usual. Kids are still revising the Juzz 'Amma. The tutor was surpised to see my little 5 years old reading all the 30th part of the Qur'an. Mash'Allah. They are now working through more tajweed rules. Hamdulillah.

I started a small tafsir class with my boys. Every evening we read one small surah and then read the tafsir together. We are using a small collection of booklets from Ad-Duha institute .

I need to keep my post short and sweet as I am busy with studying...I can only pause a bit for some tiramisu' and a freshly made cup of cappuccino! :P

Happy home education to all!!

wa alaykum assalam

Tiramisu'!!

A. and S. afternoon in colourland

African mask and Certificate of Achievement

Painting in canvas made by A.

It means 'Be Happy and feel important'

At the farm



Baby S. loves reading


Thursday, 21 May 2009

...And now for the movie, excuse me, movies you have been waiting for!!

Assalamu alaykum all,
finally the movies the kids have been working on, are ready!! Since time is a big constrain for me at present, my exams for my final year in Health and Social Care are around the corner, I won't be having time to update this blog as usually.
But here it is a list of what we have been up to in the last 5 days:
-Calvert for A. In English he is learning about homophone, alliteration and contractions. In Maths, he is learning about hundreds, thousands etc and <,>,= and lots of problems solving.
In Science he has really enjoyed the magnets and finished that Unit in great style recording all his experiments in his science journal.He is currently learning about animals living in the great canyon. Very interesting, especially as he loves wild animals.
In History he is now doing the American Presidents and what it means to be a good citizen.He started off with President Kennedy.
In Islamic Studies he is studying about Prophet Muhammad (sallahu alayhe wa sallam) again but concentrating more on the history side including the battles, hijra and the companions.
-With S. we have been carrying on with mindsprinting.com. He is now doing additions and subtraction. He can read books on his own geared for his age. Completed lots of worksheets with long sound vowels and short ones. Also consonant clusters e.g. fr, dr, cr, tr, cl, fl, pl etc. S. has enjoyed a full week of art&crafts not just at the weekly club but also at home. He produced some nice butterflies, dragonflies, airplanes and lots more.
He also completed two mini books. One about butterflies and one about summer. Mash'Allah. -Arabic and Qur'an as usual, hamdulillah.
-Thursday meet ups with other homeschoolers happened this week. Hamdulillah missed all the sisters a lot!! Happy to be back!
-And finally we worked on our new passion: movies!!! And here they are!

Enjoy the weather and happy home edu to all!
wa alaykum assalam Ayesha

PS: tried to upload S. video but i couldn't. And the PC freeze. Will try again tomorrow insh'Allah.
video

A. tried out some Greek ionic columns with LEGO, of course! ;)

A. said this is the Roman Emperor Villa. Looks a bit too busy and

the walls are not exactly what you would expect to find

in a Roman villa :/

Ancient Greece lapbook cover

Lapbook inside

Timeline

Wooden horse and a Greek vase with a scene of fighting.

If only you could read what A. wrote next to it.

S. little lapbook about butterflies

The life cycle of a butterfly and

The very Hungry Caterpillar story

Saturday, 16 May 2009

It's all about lepidopterans!

Assalamu alaykum,
I am a bit earlier than usual updating the blog. It's just I have a bit of 'spare time'...oops I shouldn't say so! If my tutor reads this...

Back to us. What have we been learning these past few days?
Monday and Wednesday we have been learning with Calvert and midsprinting as usual. Mash'Allah S. surprises me every time he opens a book. He is really reading properly now. And his writing is getting better and better. I can dictate words to him and he writes them nicely and I must say his calligraphy is really neat. Mash'Allah tabark'Allah.
A. was less 'productive' this week and fell behind. In fact he has been thinking about the cartoon movie since we went to the Museum for the Wallace and Gromit exhibition. Unfortunately we were so busy with other things that we couldn't start on the movie project yet. Insh'Allah soon. In the meantime A. has finished the little figures (no eyes!) and their living room and bedroom. Really cute! Mash'Allah. He even added some homely touches such as a plant, a rug, a cup of tea and a cake for one of the figure sitting on a sofa. And also a bowl of fruits, a closed book on a small table and a throw and some cushions for the bed!


Talking of inventions, A. finished his 'Inventions and Inventors' lapbook and enter a competition on the Wallace and Gromit website . I cannot say what he invented just yet as there is a copyright and hopefully a patent pending on the drawing and we are just waiting to hear in October (long way ahead!) to see if his inventions could enter the winners list. I can only say that it is a very useful item we all would love to have, specially those busy homeschoolers out there!


On Tuesday I was at the doctor yet again. My little toe is not back as normal and the bone still out of place. Such a little thing but so painful! I will have to go to hospital yet again for further investigation and most probably an operation. Ya Allah! Make duas for me please.

Tuesday afternoon we were at the Art and Craft Club and S. learnt how to draw butterflies. He made one really colourful and very big. I believe they used oil crayon. Maybe sister U. could confirm this to me.

On Thursday morning was busy and left the kids entertained themselves with the Quraish game (pc cd-rom). They were so quite, witnesses can confirm this. ;)

On Friday we were, yet again, at the Natural Museum. We went to see the butterfly exhibition and one more visit to the Dinos as the sister who was with us never visited the Museum. The butterfly exhibition was really nice. This is the second year we attended and mash'Allah every year we learn something new. We made a search engine to find more info about some butterflies namely brimstone, swallowtail and peacock and also visited the nature detective website to enter the competition. The boys chose the swallotail and the brimstone butterflies.


Saturday (today) A. was at his supplementary school and enjoyed hockey, tennis, French, art, and literacy! Mash'Allah!! In the last few months he performs so many different sports e.g. tennis, tennis table, badminton, rock climbing, hockey, gymnastics and football. He could also benefit fully from the school resources such as ICT , French and the science lab.


Qur'an and Arabic was on as usual. The kids can now read nicely and knows most of the tajweed rules. They are still reading slowly and most of the time need to read with spelling but the tutor is confident. I feel helpless and I wish I could do more. Ya Allah increase me in knowledge. Amin.


Last but not least:


-The Greeks are leaving us and it was about time!! :) ;

-One more lapbook is on the way, soon to be revealed the theme.

Have a nice weekend and an happy beginning of the week to all!

wa alaykum assalam

x


S. butterfly. He used glitter for the butterfly's eyes (circle shapes)

and for the body. The rest is foam mosaic and crayons.

A. butterfly. He used foam mosaic, glitter and crayons.
S. butterfly from the art and craft club. I believe he used
oil crayons.
Cracking ideas free resource pack
At the exhibition, free playground for my mini beasts.

S. is holding a butterfly
Blue butterfly

Bird of paradise flower
Painted lady Butterfly
Buckeye butterfly
Red Hibiscus
No butterflies! Just some little, cute and I bet delicious cakes in a very
posh shop!
Finished S. lapbook about Safety Tips.
Greek Mask used in a Theatre (tragedy)
The plasticine house, rug, table with fruit bowl and a closed book.
On the back a lamp, a man sitting with a newspaper.
The complete house with living room and bedroom.


Monday, 11 May 2009

Inventions and Inventors!

Assalamu alaykum and hello to all my readers,
one more week of busy 'schooling' has passed.


Last time I wrote it was on Sunday 3 May. Time's flying and soon summer will be upon us. Time to rest but also for my exams which I am already dreading. I need all your duas, please.

So what have we been learning?


Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday I schooled the boys as usual using Calvert and mindsprinting. But also enchantedlearning.com and homeschoolshare.com


A. is reaching lesson 120 now and soon we will be saying goodbye to Calvert :( He has also been busy with his new lapbook 'Ancient Greek'. This time we are taking more time to complete the booklet as we have many resources to go through. I bought some great booklets at the British Museum full of activities and resources, mash'Allah. Also time has been an issue, as always and we have not worked on the booklet everyday as planned. Hamdulillah.



To top it all up A. switched his attention to yet one more project: 'Inventions and Inventors'. triggered by a visit to the Science Museum, Wallace and Gromit, a world of cracking ideas!



So one more lapbook is on its way, a very short booklet this time but full of fun things to make and do and lots to search and learn on the net about inventors and inventions. Did you know who invented the post-it note? And the Velcro? Really interesting!



Further to our visit, A. decided to learn how cartoon animations such as Wallace and Gromit have been created. So he got busy making his own 'cartoons' with plasticine and he took pics and now he wants put it all into a movie. A long process and to be honest I don't know where to start so if any homeschoolers and non, out there has any ideas please do share. Jazakallahu.

We also paid one more visit to the British Museum to enjoy the exhibition about Ancient Greece. This time around we have not enjoyed it as previously for so many reasons. Hamdulilah. When we arrived at the Museum, we found a picture of Shah 'Abbas on the floor. Some local artists painted many A4 papers and added them together like a mosaic to construct the face and body of Shah 'Abbas. Now all was fine until we got closer and found that one picture had the name of Allah on it. The picture was laid on the bare floor. Now, why on earth would you put the name of God/Allah on the floor????



I was really upset and made a complain. They quickly removed the paper. Still I am out of words since everybody by now should know how much importance we give to our deen.


The exhibition in itself was not as good as we expected and we couldn't access some of the rooms because there was not a lift available! I felt so discriminated against just because I was with the pushchair.


And then? S. got lost and I had the worse 30 minutes of my entire life. Hamdulillah a security guard found him and we were re-united.


We left the Museum annoyed, tired and upset!! Not a nice start of the day. I thought to make it better and head towards Covent Garden, one of my favourite place in central London.
Hamdulillah the day was warm and we enjoyed the long walk down to Covent Garden market.
The bad experience at the Museum gave me an opportunity to talk to S. about safety and we started a lapbook about safety based on the book 'Gloria and Officer Buckle'. This story is included in one of the reading book from Calvert. We used this website to help us with the lapbook. I need to say jazakillah to sister Umm R. for suggesting this over to IHSAN forum.


What's more? Felting! Lots of felting. This time we tried to make a mat. We started with a very long rectangular shape and very tick consistency. We started at around 5pm, one afternoon. At 7.30pm when hubby was at home we were still rolling the mat!!



The result was a very soft but tick mat which my son is using it for his Lego city. Mash'Allah. Next time I know I will need more wool if I want to make a longer mat. Insh'Allah. You wouldn't believe how much the wool can shrink!?



Sports and other activities were on as usual but once more we missed the Thursday meet ups at the park with the other homeschoolers. This time we didn't have the car :( Kids really missing their friends there and I miss the sisters too. I know sisters have been asking about us, jazakallahu kheiran. Insh'Allah we will be attending again soon.


Qur'an and Arabic is now on 3 times a week and kids have carried on reading the Juzz 'Amma, just revising really and reinforcing their Arabic reading skills. Mash'Allah. The tutor asked them to revise often at home. I am finding hard to follow their progress as my reading skills are now rusty and I need to exercise first.



I am looking for a valid Arabic course for them but I don't want to spend a fortune and then find myself that I cannot help them because of my lack of knowledge in Arabic. What would you suggest? I may even consider leaving UK for a while to be within Arabs speakers, but where to? What would you suggest?
Lots to ponder and think over before taking any rushy decision.

Love and duas to all.
wa alaykum assalam



working with plasticine


Mum safety tip #10
Officer Buckle and Gloria book
S.lapbook about safety tips based on
Officer Buckle and Gloria book
Some more safety tips
Day out at the lake

Walking through the woods
At the exhibition
Making it work!
A giant bath tub complete with bubbles
and colourful ducks
Water energy
A scene from the latest cartoon of Wallace and Gromit
The soft play area
How the hoover have changed over the years.
My mum had the one standing, very heavy and not so practical.
Old TV!
Old style fun!
One more scene of the cartoon
Weather-hats machine... funky invention
Wellies anyone? From dark age to a more familiar pair
The entrance to the exhibition

Love it!
in Covent Garden we found some having a pj's. party.
Jumping on a massive bed!
It says it all!
Cool.
The mosaic about Shah 'Abbas
Ancient Greek's vases
The acropolis, a small temple

Earlier version of the vases


One side of the soft merino wool mat we made
And the other side.
Rolling the mat, hard work. My arms are more tonic now...strange :)
Just starting off with the design, dry wool.
Below:the actual size of the mat before shrinkage