We began our homeschool last week! It is mostly a way for me to create more routine in our lives and help me to give Briony some structured play experiences. I’m not teaching her to do her multiplication tables or to learn the periodic table, we’ll do that next year 😉
I’ll go into more detail about it in another post, but I wanted to give y’all an idea of what we were doing. Here are some photos and little stories from our first few days at the Hilltop Garden Academy!
Briony really enjoyed the finger painting. It took a minute to warm up, but only a minute. She was really looking forward to doing this at “school.” I love it because it is a great tactile experience. We stuck with one color this time, since it was really the first time. I didn’t want to introduce too many exciting variables at once- this way she could really focus on the feel of the paint and how her hands effected the work. Her final piece that we saved was called “The Moon.” It was an orange blob on the paper with hand prints. Beautiful!
Other fun events in our first week included nature walks, a field trip to the farm to observe plowing and preparation for planting winter wheat, and an introduction to our handwork / sensory fabric basket.
For introducing handwork, I chose fabric since I am working on a few things myself right now. Briony unrolled the different fabrics and explored the textures and colors. She tried tying them around her, covering chairs, making capes and other fun things. It was nice because she could observe how I was using the fabric to make something and still enjoy the freedom of doing what she wanted to with the materials. No instruction = Happy Toddler.
We visit the farm quite regularly, so I wanted to make sure to keep this going. It is such a great learning experience! This visit was special because we went on a wagon tour of the fields they were plowing to plan winter wheat. The field here is about two acres, and with two men, two plows and four horses, it takes one full day to plow it.
Briony loved riding in the wagon. We could see the horses working up-close and watch the plow turn huge amounts of earth.
Here is a shot from one of our nature walks. We went to see the sheep but they weren’t around. After exploring the historic site where George Washington stayed during the Revolutionary War (yeah, ‘cuz she understood all that), we walked down to the canal. This part is “new” (as in, it is concrete) where the Pidcock creek crosses the canal. This works as an over-flow area so it won’t wash the path away. It is nice because we can get up close to the canal and look for little critters.
Briony had a blast tossing rocks into the water and making big splashes. She also enjoyed stirring the water with sticks.
This part of the canal is very close to the wildflower preserve we regularly visit. Due to all the flooding, most of the ground cover plants have been washed away. Even the small bridges that went over streams were misplaced.
Well, that is a little glimpse of what we were up to during our first week. I’ll post some more of the activity-type stuff we are doing.
Thanks for reading!