Friday, 29 January 2010

Looking forward to spring and a view of Mars!

In the winter our HE activities do seem to take on a more indoors approach.  Pembrokeshire is very much an outdoory kind of place but the wind and the wet do not invite us out as much as when the weather is more clement.  Now as January draws to a close we are looking forward to the promise of spring and the chance to get out and about more.  I have so many plans and ideas in my head of things we can do and enjoy.  The winter wearies me.

A pressing task is the need to design our small garden for maximum productivity.  Fruit, veg and chickens as well as better accomodation for our quails is planned, not forgetting flowering plants to help our honeybees and butterflies.  The children have come up with some lovely suggestions for the design, so now we need to pool ideas and get digging and constructing.  I'll keep you updated of our progress!

One thing that seems to be tying us to the house more than usual is Rhiannon studying for IGCSE's.  She started in October and is taking the exams in May so she has a packed schedule to ensure she is fully prepared when the time comes.  I addition she is completing her art correspondence course and trying to build a portfolio of art work and photography for when she is called to interview at the local college.  She is only taking the exams she needs to get onto the course she wants to do, but it is still time consuming just learning to jump through the right hoops to pass the exams - at least that is what it feels like to us.  I'm not sure much learning happens which is a shame, and another reason why she is not taking more exams than absolutely necessary.

Sam's been doing alot of science lately - yesterday he did experiments on viscosity of liquids.

We're also watching a great series on BBC - "Chemistry: A Volatile History".  It's fascinating stuff and is putting alot of what he is learning into perspective, as well as making me realise what my Chemistry teacher must have been rambling on about all those years ago!  I highly recommend it to anyone like Sam who loves a bit of science - lots of bangs, flashes and pretty colours :-)

Jo is currently quite determined to learn to play his guitar and to learn to sing.  Guitar I can help him with for a time but I'm looking around for resources and ideas to help with the singing.  I can sing to a point but was never taught to sing properly which I regret.

So now it's a wet Friday afternoon and blowing a gale.  Enthusiasm is lacking so we have been trying out some one-point perspective drawing.  Sam decided to have a go at drawing his skateboard!

Jo looked at photographs and tried to identify the vanishing points and horizons.  Rhiannon of course is way ahead of us in that department so she has been experimenting with sketching eyes.

And tonight, at around 9pm, we're hoping to get a view of Mars (cloud dependant).  Apparently it is only about 62 million miles from earth and should be visible slightly above and to the left of the moon.  We'll let you know if we're lucky!


Carolyn said...

I had to laugh when I read this post as it was snowing again outside!!!!

Carol said...

Oh I know :-(
We've had more snow today although nothing like the beginning of the year. I've just had enough of winter!
Need to find some snowdrops :-)