|The latest pile of books by Charlie's bedside|
I was reading the Wikipedia entry about Eleanor Farjeon yesterday and noted that she was educated at home, 'spending much of her time in the attic, surrounded by books'. Her introduction to her collection of short stories, 'The Little Bookroom', explains that this was the name of one room in her childhood home, which was filled to the ceiling with books: "Seven maids with seven brooms, sweeping for half-a-hundred years, have never managed to clear my mind of its dust of vanished temples and flowers and kings, the curls of ladies, the sighing of poets, the laughter of lads and girls", she says in her author's note.
We don't have a specific book room, but we do have books in every room, and one of the good things about home education is that it gives Charlie more time to read. At the moment, he is re-reading 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory' and one of his favourite 'Harry Potter' books, as well as reading his way through a series of old 'Doctor Who' novelisations. His Dad bought him the latter, remembering how much he loved them at the same age. When I picked one up and started reading it, I found myself plunged into an exciting and well-written story. The books are written by BBC script writers and established children's writers, such as Terrance Dicks, who started out studying English at Cambridge before his career as a copywriter, script editor and children's author. As we are working on story writing at the moment, these provide excellent examples of plot-building and characterisation.
Charlie remains reluctant to write his own stories, which is odd given how much he loves reading. I encouraged him to write a story based on Minecraft, but he wasn't enthused.
Discouraged, I decided to concentrate on other topics and come back to this another time. A few days later, I overheard him telling a long story to the cats. They provided a rapt and non-judgemental audience, perfect for him to hone his story-telling skills.
In our lessons on grammar, we have been revising imperative verbs, which we had covered earlier in the year. As Charlie reads a lot of cookery recipes, he soon got the hang of this and was happy to write out one of his favourite recipes, using lots of imperatives.
Frustratingly, he still regularly forgets to use finger spaces between words, unless I remind him. I found this reminder on Twinkl and am hoping it will jog his memory so I don't need to keep nagging.
Charlie continues to practise his handwriting daily - and to complain about it. The struggle is worth it, however, because I can already see an improvement in some of his letter formations and connections.
In Maths we have been focusing on multiplication, practising the techniques his tutor taught him last week, as well as working through our textbook.
Charlie's new school has given us their password for MyMaths, which means Charlie has been able to practise his maths online and reward himself by playing the games.
Midway through last week, the latest package from Little Passports arrived. I had held the last one back a bit, so Charlie has had the benefit of two in quick succession. This month's package focused on India, a country which we had looked at earlier in the year.
We have also been playing BrainBox's quiz / memory game, 'The World', which is a fun introduction to learning about different countries.
At the weekend, Charlie was invited to a football party in the local park with a bunch of his old school friends. Charlie isn't keen on football, but he enjoyed meeting up with old friends and formed a breakaway gang who played 'war games' in the woods before joining up with the footballers for pizza and cake. Not content with three hours playing outdoors with friends, he then invited one of his best friends home for tea afterwards.
The week ended with a delivery of yet another baking book ('Life is Sweet') for Charlie to add to his growing collection. Charlie is now planning to bake us a 7-Up cake.