Keeping Pets – Aquariums

We keep fish. We’ve had them for a couple of years now.

In terms of keeping pets, fish are probably the easiest, quietest, cheapest (cheap to buy that is, it does cost a bit to set up your tank initially) and least messy. So often I forget we even have “pets”.

It’s great for the kids learning about the fish, watching them eat, how they interact with each other (some fish are territorial and aggressive), behaviours and also learning about life and death (yes fish die and often too). It’s actually been a good lesson when their favourite fish dies and has been opportunity to talk about it openly. In fact we had a beta fish (or Siamese fighting fish) that died last year and I was quite upset about it, he was sick for a day and I kept going in to check on him it really affected me more than I thought it would.

We’ve just added a recent addition to one of our tanks, a blue yabby. We’ve called him “Bluey”.

“Bluey” hiding in his new home about to eat a piece of carrot
Being this is the first time we’ve had a yabby it’s given us the opportunity to read up about them.  We’ve found out a few interesting facts about yabbies like the fact that they like to eat carrots and they’re apparently very good escape artists.

“Bluey” the mountain climber with ‘Neon tetras’! Not sure if hes trying to escape or catch the fish!
The latest amazing thing that has happened is he moulted or shead his outer layer.

Here is his shed outer layer just sitting at the bottom of the tank!
There are so many varieties of fish and we’ve had a lot of the tropical varieties that are available.

‘Rummy nose’, ‘Black widows’, ‘Scissor fish’ and ‘Red eye tetras’ are in this tank
The kids have really enjoyed looking and learning about the fish and so many ‘lessons’ have been learned purely by observation.
What about your family, what pets do you keep?

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Lego Creations

Well it’s finally happened Lego fever has hit our house. This has been a long anticipated event for me. I’ve been waiting and waiting for the boys to want to build with their Lego but it just wasn’t happening. They had a few different sets but they just weren’t playing with them. Then it suddenly dawned on me it was the way it was presented and that’s when I had the brilliant but very simple idea to throw all our bits in one box and let them use their imaginations to build and … It worked!

   
 
By simply throwing them all in this box and letting them use their imaginations all sorts of creations have been made. 

Here is one day’s worth of creations:

   
    
    
    
    
    
    
 
Here is another days worth of creations:

   
    
    
    
    
    
    
 
This has been fantastic for afternoon rest/quiet time as it keeps them occupied and happy. 

So what was it that made the difference? I worked out the boys were looking at the Lego boxes and instructions that came with the pieces and getting overwhelmed by how complicated it looked. We initially made up the trucks and cars as per the instructions for them as the kids wanted them made up but then didn’t play with them after that. So by pulling everything apart and popping them in a box together with no instructions they didn’t get caught up making it try to look like the picture and their imaginations could invent some new creations. 

Admittedly the boys are only 4 and 6 years old but they are still more than capable of creating some awesome vehicles.  

Looking forward to more of their creativity. 

Letter and Number Recognition fun activity

It’s funny how when you’re homeschooling you become more aware of how simple everyday activities can be a teaching opportunity. 

Take for example our latest breakfast time ritual. On the days when we have eggs on toast about twice a week the kids love tomato sauce on toast. 

Somehow it came about that we starting drawing on the toast with the squeeze bottle of sauce. It started off as smiley faces, then the first letter of each person name, then we’ve moved on to numbers. 

  
The younger ones now tell me the letter or number they want written and then we say it together. I’ll usually say the letter sound and we talk about words that start with that sound. 

  
Our oldest writes his own which has been fantastic to practice letter/number formation and also for fine motor skills. It can be quite a challenge to get the letters just right. 

Just recently the kids have been asking for double digit numbers including our 2 year old which is a great learning experience and so much more interesting than just reading it off a sheet of paper. 

What different or weird ideas do you use as “teaching” opportunities?

Update on Veggie Patch

Here’s some photos to show how our herbs and veggies are growing.

Sweet peas just emerging

  
Sweet peas really emerging …

  
Spinach just emerging…

  
Spinach getting bigger …

 
The corn is growing bigger but seems to have slowed done now. Not even sure when it’s supposed to be planted but it’s probably not the right season. Still it’s fun to see it growing.
 
We planted some spring onions too which are doing nicely…

  

The parsley is really thriving. It looks so much healthier than when we bought it.  

 

Can’t say the same for the basil it looks practically the same as when we first bought it. We’ve used a few leaves in our cooking to try encourage more growth but doesn’t seem to have made a difference. 

  
The kids have lost a bit of interest in watching things grow but once we start being able to “harvest” some of our goodies I’m sure their interest will return.   

Veggie and Herb Patch

 
We’re attempting to grow some veggies in a newly cleared part of the garden!

Being our first attempt, not sure how it will go but it’s such a great learning experience for the kids and they are so excited to find out each day what’s happened!

  
This plot is actually some corn we grew from popping corn believe it or not! The kids started this “experiment” in a class they participate in at our Homeschool Co-op! 

We’re just continuing it by planting in the garden to see what happens!
 
This plot has a row of Sweet peas seeds at the back and Spinach in the front! We were going to plant some Broccoli seeds too but after a bit of reading found this needed to be started earlier this year to plant out the seedlings now!

Nothing has sprouted yet but we’re watching!

 
This Sweet Basil was grown from seed a couple of months ago, unfortunately it got devoured by ‘something’ while we were away! It’s making a recovery now so hopefully it will grow back nicely! 

   

These two herbs, Parsley and Basil were bought in very average condition and we’ve managed to bring them back to life! The parsley in particular was very sick so was surprised it made it!

The kids are loving helping to get a bunch of herbs to put in our dinners so we’re hoping they can soon pick some peas or grab some spinach as well!

Will try to take progress photos to show the growth over the next few weeks!

What are you growing in your Veggie patch?

 

Crazy Kitchen Cook Up

So this is not a Homeschool post but wanted to share my adventures in the kitchen this morning…

So I started off making some popcorn for snacks this week:

   

then thought I’d better make a cake too:

 

Which then lead me to think about lunch … So I cooked up 500g of mince (I’d bought 2kg), some carrots and cabbage I had in the fridge to make ‘Beef & Veg Chow Mein’:

 

While that was on the stove I thought about what to do with the other 1.5kg of mince I had left. So while I was on a roll I pulled out my 2 slow cookers and made ‘Porcupines’ in one:

 

And a “Huge” pot of Pasta sauce, adding some more grated carrot and zucchini that needed to be eaten:

  

The kitchen smells amazing and I’m pretty chuffed with myself! 😋 

We’ll be well fed for days! Yay me!

What have you got cooking today? 

What’s your favourite family meal to make?

Hello and Welcome!

 

 

Hello Readers!
This blog is a record of all that we create, experience, feel, see, and do in our Homeschool day!
Being that Homeschooling and Home Life often overlap the occasional post will be about Daily Domestic Life too!

It’s ultimately a place to share photos, hash out ideas, review and recommend curriculum, discuss organisation tips, share storage solutions, dispense handy hints, and discuss important topics related to Domestic Life and Homeschooling!

Come join us as we document our homeschool days and home life!

Enjoy!