“When little people are overwhelmed by big emotions, it’s our job to share our calm, not join their chaos” – L.R Knost.
We have come to the end of another Montessori school year, another group of kids and parents have passed through my room, all I can think this evening after our graduation is where did the year go. We started the year together full of tears and fun and we ended our year after learning so much from each other. There is never a class that I don’t learn something from and this year was no different. I have over the years been very, very lucky with both the kids and parents I have had the pleasure to come through my class and it is as hard to say goodbye to my parents as it is to the kids on their last day ( which is Tuesday for me) . There will be some very lucky primary teachers getting my little people in September, while I will be getting the next little bundles to spend the year with again learning loads together and having lots of fun.
I can say that I truly love being a Montessori teacher, I love seeing the kids bloom and grow into independent, interested and caring people with a love of learning in all its forms. So for our last few days we will have lots of fun, sweets and look forward to the next kids and parents I will welcome into my class in September.
“ The best thing about being a Teacher is that it matters. The hardest thing about being a teacher is it matters everyday” – Todd Whitaker.
During the Easter holidays I received an email from Tesco Ireland inviting myself and Sid to a family fun day they were holding on the last Friday of the Easter break. The fun day was held at Rathbeggan Lakes in Co Meath. When we arrived we were met by Tesco staff and each given a bag with some lunch in it of crisps, water, an apple, a sandwich and a bar of chocolate. We were then given our tokens for the different activities, a map of the lakes and off we headed to explore. We had only walked in the gate when Sid spotted two sheep and over we had to go to see them, next we had to go see the hens and ducks and the geese. You would think living on a farm the animals would be the last thing he would want to see !.
After we had seen all the animals we went to look around the lakes, there is lots to do here from abseiling and a zip line, water rollerz , peddle boats , a fairy garden walk, train rides, pony rides, cute landrovers to drive on a track, fishing and a BBQ area,bouncy castles and lots more.
While there is lots to do Sid was ready to leave after two hours and it could have been that he was cold. If a group of kids went there is lots for them to do together but you would need to win the lotto. While it has lots it is also really expensive !. Now I know a day out with the family is not cheap by any means but if I was to compare it to places closer to home its wicked expensive. Admission to the park is 3.00 euro per person under 2yrs go free and the tokens you need for the activities are 1.00 euro each and activities range from 4.00 euro to 8.00 euro which if you had one than more child and they wanted to do three or four activities it would start to get expensive. To have a BBQ there it was 6.00 euro and fishing was from 20.00 euro.
The price would put me off going again because we have a great park beside us that’s just 8.00 euro a car and there is lots to do and see and nearly all of it is for free including using their BBQ area. Other than the price and Sid getting slightly fed up there is lots to do and thanks to Tesco for inviting us.
Five days out of seven, thirty odd weeks of the year this is my view every afternoon when I sit in my car waiting for Sid to come out of school. School takes up so much time in your year, the routine of the house revolves around the school time table. Drop off and collection times laying the foundation for the rest of the day. The weekly food shop dictated by what’s needed for school lunches, so it comes as a very welcome break to be on our Easter holidays for two weeks.
The chance to get an extra hour in bed each morning, no rushing home from work to be on time to collect Sid from school and no school lunch to be made. While I do like the routine that school brings I equally like the break the holidays bring. We are still busy at home so a relaxing two weeks off won’t be on the cards because we still have sheep to lamb, calves to feed, pony camp and lessons but myself and Sid did have time today to get a Starbucks today, we have planned to go to the cinema, Sid is getting a new bed and I have made an appointment to get my hair done at last.
We have nine weeks when we go back till our summer break and I am sure we will be planning lots of fun things to break out of our routine.
Myself and this little man headed to Dublin today for a little adventure now that we are both on mid term. We are a week away from lambing (or so we thought) and today was our last chance to leave the yard other than for work for the next two months.
So this morning we got up earlyish and headed for Dundrum, coming from where we live I find this the best place to park, parking here from 10am to 3pm was €9. We then walked to the Luas stop just over from the shopping centre, for myself and Sid a return ticket to St Stephens green was €7. The first stop on our adventure was The Natural History Museum , it’s only a short walk from St Stephens green to the museum and entry is free.
Sid was amazed in here, all downstairs is Irish wildlife some of which is now extinct and upstairs is animals and birds from around the world. There is a great worksheet available for kids as well to bring with them as they go around so they can pick their favourite animal, draw it and write what they like about it.
Sid picked this guys as his favourite animal. We had great fun here and it took us an hour to see everything.
Next we headed for The National Gallery , I love art galleries but hate the fact you can’t take any photos. There is a family pack you can pick up at the information desk as you enter the gallery which has lots for kids to do in it, from finding certain paintings, putting their own ideas into famous paintings and their is also a kids audio guide as well. It’s also free into this which is great because where else would you get to see beautiful Monet and Van Gogh paintings along with two Picasso’s. Sid was amazed at some of the paintings and loved being able to sit and draw and find the paintings in the work sheets.
There is also a really nice cafe in the gallery and a shop as well which for a change isn’t overly expensive. I couldn’t recommend a visit to these two more if you are in Dublin.
When we were all done with animals and paintings we headed back to Dundrum for our lunch and then headed home.
While we were away I got a photo from the farmer to show me two very cute lambs that decided to arrive a week early so that’s the end to the trips but today was a great day. Sid didn’t get bored once, it happens a lot when you reach the age of 7yrs and has gone to bed tonight worn out.
So roll on two months of baby lambs and never leaving the yard.
I hated it when I had to do it , I hated when the other two farmers were at the age of homework and I still hate doing it now with Sid. I totally understand the need for homework but it doesn’t make it any easier to do.
If you ask a parent what is one of the stressful times of the day ? I can bet you some will say homework time. It must come close to bedtime and getting ready for school time and for some meal times in the stress stakes.
It’s not even the work level , although it has really taken a huge jump over the years , first class have really hard spellings to learn and words to put into sentences that are hard to explain to a 6/ 7 yrs old like skew ! . It’s the trying to get them to settle when they get home.
I find with Sid that if he looks at TV , has the ipad or anything else while he eats his lunch he just can’t switch back into school work mode and the whole homework time turns into a battle of wills.
So over the last few months of homework I am slowly finding a routine that suits Sid and makes homework time easier on him. We get home from school and while I make him a little lunch he normally changes out of his uniform, then he eats his lunch and it’s straight into the homework so it’s still fresh in his mind and it seems to be the best way for him.
Now don’t get me wrong we still have fairly crap homework days and we have had two this week but 90% of the time this routine works for him.
Do I like homework anymore when it goes smoothly ? no its still a horrible thing to have to do but I won’t be telling Sid that till he is much older. How do you tackle homework time let me know in a comment below.