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The Montessori Method and home education

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Home Education Making the decision to home educating your child can be a huge step for parents. The reasons can vary from family to family. with my own family, we got a taste of home education during the covid-19 lockdown and I found it to be fantastic and stressful at varying times. It was fantastic as I could monitor what my son learnt and could fully see the extent of his own knowledge. It was great seeing how he absorbed anything put in front of him, however, it was also stressful when work needed to be completed for the teacher by a certain deadline and Jamie didn't want to do it.  What is great about home education is that there are no deadlines you and your child can learn at your own pace and base your curriculum around their developing interests. This concept of following the child's interests is in line with the Montessori Method. What is the Montessori Method? The aim of the method is to enable you to raise your child as a whole person, not to develop one specific pa

Sleep routines and consistency

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  Over the six years I have been a parent the one thing I have relied on is the bedtime routine. Luckily my kids so far have been the type to still sleep well even if they are out of their usual routine. However, every night I put my kids to bed reminds me how beneficial it is to set up consistency at bedtime from the start. Jamie's Routine When Jamie was a baby all the books I read mentioned some sort of a bedtime routine. There are some parents who would rather not have any routines and allow the family dynamic to be child-led as much as possible and that's ok to, if it works for your family don't change it. At the start the routine was bath time, breast-feed while reading a story and then he would fall asleep on the breast and I would gently place him into the bedside crib until the next feed was due. As he got older and moved into his own room and onto formula the plan was to give him the bottle, read the story and then learn to self settle. This didn't happen. What

Daily routine and lockdown

 In Northern Ireland we are currently at the end of the Christmas break, my son was due to go back to p2 tomorrow (today was a development day). The schools are now closed for at least a week for all pupils except for vulnerable children and the children of key workers. Everyone is having to do online learning.  It's ok for me as I'm on maternity and so I don't need to worry about home educating while trying to get on with my own work. But not all parents have this luxury time to put in to their children's education and I really sympathise. Daily Routine At the moment the daily routine focuses on Rosie but while Jamie was in school it was all about getting him there on time. 6:00am- wake up to Rosie shouting at us from her cot (she is still in our room). We usually bring her into our bad and let her play with some toys between us while we take turns in dozing. 7.00am- Jamie wakes up and comes into our room. Some mornings it is sooner, it just depends on how loud Rosie i

Christmas 2020

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 So I haven't posted in a while what with the Christmas holiday and everything.  Christmas 2020 was quieter than last year thanks to covid-19. We were still up early to see if Santa had been, he had, and Jamie was the best big brother and 'helped' Rosie open her presents.  After presents Scott had a quick nap and we got ready and went to visit family where more presents were opened. I had the meat in the oven on low as it was the first Christmas dinner I've made. I was so nervous that something would go wrong.  Luckily it didn't. By the time we got back from visiting it was dinner rather than lunch. We had our starter, lentil soup made by my mother in law and then Jamie was full and Rosie was tired so we decided to save the rest of dinner until boxing day!  It still worked out ok and to be honest I really enjoyed the quieter Christmas at home. There was no need to try and rush two tired kids home for a late bedtime. We were able to relax afterwards without being to

The Nativity and how it related to me this week

We are due our third child in April. We were now faced with getting a double pram and getting rid of our old silver cross. This was abit emotional for me as we've had it for 6 years. It was Jamie's pram then Rosie used it but now seeing as we'll be having another baby in quick succession we needed a double pram.  After toying with the idea of keeping the silver cross and just using a buggy board for Rosie we chose the babylo duo x2 which is great for our needs as I realised Rosie would only be 13 moths when the new baby arrives and a buggy board was not going to be practical. But I was then torn about what to do with the old silver cross. Most people would give it to charity to sell or just sell it on themselves. However, this didn't feel right to me.  For a week I pondered about what to do and then suddenly I thought of the Nativity story. It sits differently with me now that I'm a parent. When I was taught the story in school the focus was of course on the baby Je

Sleep deprivation- the difference between the first and second child.

 Sleep deprivation is something all soon to be parents are told to expect. I'm now on my third pregnancy and I have noticed a difference in  lack of sleep between both of my children at different stages. With my first it felt awful at the start because I wasn't used to it. I was trying to breast-feed and keep on top of the housework. Everyone kept saying sleep when the baby sleeps, but how could I when there was so much stuff that I had to do? Some chores could only be done when he was sleeping, like taking the finished laundry upstairs and putting it away.  But new-born stage soon turned into baby stage and he began sleeping for longer periods at night and so I wasn't as tired during the day and so I had more energy for other activities. By nine months he was on formula and basically sleeping through the night, though getting him to sleep was still a song and dance but once he was sleeping that was him. My daughter on the other hand is different entirely. The new-born stag

The not so naughty elf on our shelf

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The elves are back! Many people bring elf on the shelf into their homes at the start of December. The elf comes alive at night and ends up getting up to mischief. The child finds out in the morning what the elf has got up to. Elf on the shelf watched the child throughout the day and then reports back to Santa if the child has been naughty or nice. While the idea seems good it is flawed. How can we teach our children to be good by using threats of the elf telling on them when the elf themselves misbehave.   I have found a resource that has a Christmas kindness countdown. The idea is that the child sticks a bauble onto Santa's beard for each day and they carry out the kind thing marked on the beard. The elf hides with the next days bauble, the child has to find the elf and bauble that morning before they can pick the kind act for the day. This helps to reinforce positive behaviour more so than threats of not getting presents.  To find this resource head to www.twinkl.co.uk and let m

Finding out I'm having two children under two

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  So 21 weeks pregnant with baby number three. I love my children and we had always thought about having a third but hadn't planned on it being so soon after Rosie's birth.  I had booked an appointment at the GP to get the contraceptive implant and when there I was asked if I was pregnant. I had thought not as I was exclusively breastfeeding and my periods hadn't returned. I had read that exclusively breastfeeding could be used as a form of contraceptive, it's called  lactational amenorrhea . I thought this was going ok and that I was getting the implant in for when Rosie started solids so I wouldn't get caught out. How wrong I was.  So the GP asks me to take a test and I do. She looks and says well no little brothers or sisters for you Rosie! Thank goodness! She begins to get prepped to put the implant in and so happens to glance at the test again before disposing of it. Oh! she says. What? I said. She then proceeds to tell me that there is a very faint line!  It t