Learning to Play

January 13, 2011

Having a super creative child, I am very conscious of the many arty and crafty opportunities The Artist will want to explore…and on occasion (when I am feeling less precious about my beloved camera) I let her have a turn.  Like me The Artist loves taking photographs and quite often the results make me smile…

{actually this photo is very appropriate, check out the real thing}

Have a look at these great learning tools, they all have one brilliant thing in common; linking learning with fun…

Mr Thorne is making a name for himself within the Early Years phonics world and children get a kick out of his quirkiness too.

Bloxorz is a huge hit at the Headmaster’s House…find loads more cool maths games for all ages here.

I discovered Mathletics on a recent visit to Edge Grove School…encourage your school to join Mathletics now!

The Pattern Pod

January 9, 2011

On a recent visit to London’s Science Museum, The Artist and The Composer both really enjoyed the hands on exhibits…especially the Pattern Pod and the Launch Pad.

We probably only discovered a tiny percentage of what’s on offer at the museum, but what we did see really captured the children’s attention.  Many of the exhibits were rather sophisticated for my two youngsters (and myself if I am being totally honest…it’s really rather embarrassing not being able to explain some of the children’s rather more searching science questions, especially within earshot of other parents!).

Christmas Past

January 4, 2011

I boxed up the last of our decorations this morning.   We have all thoroughly enjoyed the excitement of Christmas at the Headmaster’s House but we are definitely ready for all things new that 2011 may bring…including the all important school holidays!  The ferry tickets are booked and we will head over to France in some months time, having something exciting to look forward to will help keep those January blues at bay.

Whilst packing away the decorations, I was reminded of a Christmas we spent in Brittany with dear friends a few years ago…I had packed a few bits and bobs to make the house feel festive even taking my twinkly star lights along too.  It was a glorious time, beautifully mild weather, good company and all the delightful cuisine France has to offer.  The bay will be filled busy with boats, kayaks and bathers by the time we see it next.

Here are a few things I plan to do for next Christmas!

Happy New Year!

January 1, 2011

Are you ready for 2011?  After all the celebrations and festivities of the past couple weeks now is the time to make plans. A favourite activity of mine is making up a new diary…filling in birthdays, anniversaries, holidays, school term dates, to do lists, and dare I say New Year’s resolutions. I plan to hit the sales this week to find a lovely new diary, then I shall spend a very happy evening filling it with plenty of important dates and tasks for 2011.

As always we intend to begin the year being frugal at the Headmaster’s House…and so I shall attempt to create a homemade year planner to help me through 2011.  Wish me luck fitting 12 months and more than 30 birthdays on to an A3 sheet of paper! {more details to come once I have a finished design}

A few simple designs for 2011…

This one by Crispin Finn (design duo who produce everything in red, white and blue) is super stylish and so well designed…my choice for our 2010 planner.  It hung on the study wall and was a delight to look at, so much more attractive than your typical office planner.

A good spot for freebie printables including calendars, Sheepdog Design offer this simple design for 2011.

A smart and functional design for 2011…$25 at this Etsy shop.

Big Book Club News!

December 7, 2010

Rosamund Lupton, author of the bestselling novel Sister, has very kindly accepted an invitation to join our January Book Club meeting!  Sister has spent weeks in the Top Ten of the Sunday Times bestsellers list and is currently in the Number One spot on Amazon.  I am more than half way through the book and it’s keeping me up way past my bedtime because it is such a good read.  If you haven’t picked up a copy, I encourage you to do so!

{Rumour has it the author declined an invitation to the Cheltenham Literature Festival but was delighted to be asked to our humble book group!  Gosh, I’m really very excited and so looking foward to welcoming a very special guest to our next book club get together.}

Winter Wonderland

December 3, 2010

School closed Thursday and Friday this week and the children made the most of the snowfall…it was a tough decision for the Headmaster to close school, but hopefully all families will have had the opportunity to savour special moments while all around is covered in glistening snow.

Close by is the perfect sledging hill in the most idyllic setting (reminds me of these cards)…a closely guarded secret that someone dared to share with us last year!

{That pre-season sledge purchase paid off and so did the snow shovel…I’ve never seen the Headmaster so pleased with my shopping before!} xx

 

 

 

 

November Book Club

November 30, 2010

We enjoyed another lovely get together in November when we reviewed two books at our Book Club meeting; both received very positive comments and were enjoyed by most…

First on the list was Through the Narrow Gate by Kate Armstrong.  Book Club score 8.5/10

Through the Narrow Gate is Karen Armstrong’s intimate memoir of life inside a Catholic convent. With refreshing honesty and clarity, the book takes readers on a revelatory adventure that begins with Armstrong’s decision, at age seventeen, to devote herself to God. What she discovers in the course of her spiritual training offers a fascinating view into a shrouded religious life, and a vivid, moving account of the spiritual coming of age of one of our most loved and respected interpreters of religious faith.

And the second book was Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert.  Book Club score 8/10

A celebrated writer’s irresistible, candid, and eloquent account of her pursuit of worldly pleasure, spiritual devotion, and what she really wanted out of life.

Here are the books on our reading list for the January Book Club meeting;

For more book club news and reviews have a look here.

Gold Stars

November 29, 2010

The seasonal festivities began at school this weekend with the annual Christmas Fair.  It was an early start on Saturday morning to get things ready including baking for the cake stall…earlier in the week I picked up these fabulous gold stars from Squires. Sprinkled on top of delicious (but gooey and a bit too runny) cream cheese icing, the stars add a little sparkle to these festive cakes.

Winter time and washing up…

November 24, 2010

News of snowfall over the country has folks buzzing about the weather…is it really the last few days of gorgeous Autumn colour?

Do we all need to rush out and buy one of these?

Meanwhile, back at the Headmaster’s house there is a disaster…the dishwasher has broken and washing up is my least favourite household chore.  I’m hoping it’s a case of me pressing the wrong button or too many buttons, and when HM gets back this evening all will be fixed or perhaps he can start on the washing up!

(ok, it’s not a real disaster by any means…i promise more meaningful posts are on the way)

Shoebox Appeal

November 22, 2010

We have been supporting Samaritans Purse and the Operation Christmas Child Shoebox Appeal for some years now. It is a brilliantly organised and inspiring charity.

All the children at school are encouraged to take part in this very worthwhile campaign.  Shoeboxes were collected from school this morning by friendly OCC volunteers and loaded up into the van with the help of Year One and Two children.

What I really like about this appeal is that the school children physically take part, firstly at home by putting together a box filled with goodies and then, this morning the children had a chance to meet the volunteers and load up the van. So good for the children to know their efforts are appreciated, and especially good for them to play a practical and key role in getting shoeboxes to children in the Ukraine (that’s where shoeboxes in our district are heading this year).

You can learn more at Operation Christmas Child…a brilliant resource for school groups and clubs.  I can’t fault this initiative and I encourage you to spread the word!

One last thing…

Shoebox World has arrived! It’s the new Operation Christmas Child website, where you create your own gift-filled shoebox online and they then send it out to a child in need.

No shopping trips, wrapping paper or hours of time required – just a personalised gift sent by you to a child at Christmas. Check it out for yourself…Shoebox World