Sunday, 26 January 2014

Aussie, Aussie, Aussie!

This Australia Day was a very special one for us as we became Australian citizens. We attended the awards ceremony at the civic centre where awards were also being presented for local Australians of the year.  We took the pledge and collected our citizenship certificates. Later it was off to the Australia day street parade followed up with a BBQ celebration with lots of friends.

All dressed up ready for the ceremony

Friday, 24 January 2014

Grass Heads Need A Haircut

The kids grass heads have really sprouted as you can see in the picture above!

Thursday, 23 January 2014

Camden Local Study - William Howe Reserve

Using our Camden maps we discovered that there was a large park very close to where we live that we had not been to before. R was keen for some off road biking so we headed for William Howe Regional Park for a walk and cycle. From the top of the hill we could see right across Camden and our local area.

Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Camden Local Study - Visiting New Places

Today we set out to explore places we had never visited in our local area. We also looked for some geocaches along the way.

First up was Macarthur Park and the war memorial. We discussed the world wars and looked for wildlife as we walked around. Some of the trees in the park are thought to be over 600 years old!

Huge tree, kids for scale

Just up the road is St Johns Anglican Church and graveyard. We wandered around the graves reading the dates and discussing why so many people died young in the past and what life and living conditions were like in the past. We read the time on the clock using Roman numerals. It was too cloudy to use the sundial. The oldest grave we found was from 1845. We discovered our first geocache nearby.

We went into Camden town centre to try out a new cafe for lunch before heading along to Camden Town Farm and a second geocache find. The farm is now used by local people as a community garden and is full of scarecrows and vegetable plots. We were perhaps 3 blocks from Camden's main street and we right next to the countryside with views across to Camden Airport (top photo).

Last stop of the day was Camden Airport (and another geocache). It was quite cloudy today so no one was up in the gliders, although we did see a small aircraft take off.

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Camden Local Study - Maps

This week we are starting a unit on local geography and history. Our first stops were Camden council offices and the tourist information centre. At the council we looked at the maps on display in the foyer and discovered that Camden local government authority covers lots more than just Camden the town. We use the maps to find out which places come under the control of our local council. We also looked at and discussed the flood danger map and the land use maps. At the tourist information centre we collected information about Camden's history and local attractions. We also got some free maps of the area.

At home we used out free maps to locate our house and other places that we regularly visit. The children made up symbols for each place; for example a book for the library, a piano for the music school and a pizza for the restaurant. We made tiny flags using cocktail sticks and decorated them with our symbols. We then located the places on the map and stuck them on.

We played a few games involving questions like: "How far is it from our house to the pool?", and "What building is to the south-west of the park?" The children used the key, scale and compass rose.

Later we looked through the brochures, and the council and tourist board websites for new places to visit in the local area. We'll visit some of them and add their flags to the map.

Sunday, 19 January 2014

Cooking - Yuck And Yum!

R has been busy in the kitchen making a yummy tuna bake and some yucky slime!

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Designing With Patterns

Dress design by L

Last week we used lino prints to create a pattern (see previous post). This week we used Photoshop to put our patterns onto different surfaces to get an idea of how they could be used.

Robot army clothing collection by R
  1. Photograph the artwork and upload it to the computer (you could also scan in the artwork).
  2. Open Photoshop. First we are going to make the pattern smaller. Open a new document with dimensions 50 by 70 pixels. Use view/fit on screen to make it easy to see.
  3. File/place and choose your photograph of the art work. Place it on the page and make sure it fills it completely (you may have to extend off the edge a little. It will look really pixelated, don't worry.
  4. Edit/define pattern. Give it a name if you like.
  5. You have just made a very small pattern based on the artwork. Next make a larger version. Run through the steps above again but this time start with a paper 500 by 700 pixels.
  6. Go to Google and download some outline images that you would like to fill with the pattern. We chose clothing and interior designs.
  7. Now open another new file, this time A4 (or whatever your printer paper size is). 
  8. File/place and put in one of the outline drawings. Resize if needed so it fits the page.
  9. Click the paint bucket tool.
  10. In the top tool bar you will see a white box showing foreground. Change this to pattern. You will see a preview of the patterns available appear in the box next to the word pattern. 
  11. Choose either your small or large pattern from the selection (click on the tiny arrow next to the patterns to see what you have). Fill areas of your base picture. 
  12. At any time you can change back to solid colours by changing the word pattern back to foreground.
Cafe carpet by L

Bed covers by R

Bedroom by L

Sofa by R