Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Islamic Tile Patterns

Today we have been learning about the beginnings of Islam. The children made these Islamic tile designs using PhotoShop. We first designed  a pattern for one tile on paper. This was scanned into the computer and then coloured, repeated and rotated to make the final design.

By L

By R

By L

Sunday, 26 April 2015

Medieval Life

We have just started a project on Medieval times. Our core resources are Story of the World II and Intellego World History Vol. II. We are also using many books on medieval life from our library.

So far this week we have tried writing with feather quills (Top of page), Weaving woollen mats and cooking a monk's supper.

Monk's supper

Bread, cheese, apple, vegetable soup.

Weaving mats

Wednesday, 22 April 2015


We are just about to start studying the Middle Ages so we travelled up into the Blue Mountains to the Ironfest at Lithgow. The show has a large display area dedicated to Medieval history and many re-enactments. The children tried on armour, had sword fights, watched jousting and R tried archery.

A highlight seemed to be flogging mum in the stocks!

Playing a Medieval board game

There were also displays from other periods of history including a very loud re-enactment of the Battle of Waterloo and a WWII tank fight.

Even the Romans were there.

We visited the blacksmith display and the acrobatics and wrestling. There were lots of displays of crafts and sculptures made from metal but the children liked these robots.

The Rainy Mountains

You may have seen scenes of destruction and flooding in NSW in the media recently. Of course these storms had to coincide with our camping trip to the Blue Mountains.

We stayed at Lake Lyell which is formed by damming the river for the use of the nearby power-stations. When we arrived the lake level was about a foot from the top of the dam wall, when we left it was pouring over it!

On the way up to our camp-site we stopped at Govetts Leap for a short walk near the falls (see top picture).

Whilst in the mountains we visited Mount Piper Power-station for a free guided tour. Of course we couldn't take photographs. It was very interesting although a little depressing seeing the huge pile of coal they would burn up in under a week.

We spent a rainy afternoon at Bathurst Fossil and Mineral Museum.

During a short break in the rain we took the dirt road to Newnes, the historic former site of a shale oil mining complex. We explored the Old Hotel and a few ruins on the camp-site side of the river, the hotel owner asked the children to feed the chickens that seemed to roam freely through the old place. We were unable to go across to the main ruins site as the river was in flood. The camp-site looks lovely so we'll come back on a dry day to explore the rest.

Inside old Newnes Hotel

Newnes campsite, almost empty apart from the kangaroos - I can't imagine why!

Undeterred by the rain and kitted up in full waterproofs we decided to explore the granite tors at Evans Crown Nature Reserve. We trekked right to the top of the towering granite boulders for a view across the countryside.

We'll be back at some point to explore in the sunshine!