Tuesday, November 30, 2010

First Snow Of The Year

Huhuu... the first snow has fallen yesterday !!! In November !!!

Ilham was very excited, kept looking out the window...

This morning, he wanted to be the first to step on the fresh snow.

But look who has beaten him to it....





Hmmmm some alien creature it seems....

Maybe two alien creatures ???? Of the four legged variaties ???

What do you think???

Definitely not this adorable duckies !!!!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Mix and Match

These are Ilham's gloves

Or rather, what's left of it :)

He keeps losing them...

This one was bought in early October, for the coming winter.

"Don't you ever lose it again dear..." - mama said

But he already lost the half !!! On the very first day !!!

As a penalty, he had to use these.....

But he was embarrassed,

Always kept his gloved hands in the pocket,

In case people noticed it :))


Bought this yesterday

Hope that it will last through the winter,

At least :)))

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Home Learning

Schools in Europe are definitely different from what I was used to. Here they believe that children should not be pushed too hard, that they need to learn at their own pace, that different kids are different, that boys and girls are different etc..etc.. We as parents do not know exactly what the children are learning at school. They do not even have textbooks to give us some guidelines. And they hardly have any homeworks too.

When we were at ISA, Asian parents always complained that their children do not have enough homeworks especially Mathematics. We feel that our children are always "playing" in school. Initially, that's what I felt too. But, as time went on, I could see the benefits in my son. His reading and writings (Language Arts) had improved. Most importantly, he had more exposure of global issues like saving water, saving the planet, recycling, taking care of our health, respect for others, charity etc..etc.. When it comes to homework and Maths, yes I agree that the school needs to improve on that.

Then, we moved to Den Haag and to the British School(BSN). BSN is different from ISA, for one thing they have Home Learning. I will write about Mathematics on another day, insyaAllah :))

Home Learning is homeworks/activities that children have to do at home with the support of parents. This is a sure way to get parents involvement in their childrens' learning!!! Let's see what BSN has come out with on the suggested activities for Year 4 Term 1.

The Home Learning Booklet given to parents

The Do's of the booklet

Do complete a minimum of 6 different activities for Term 1 (ie until Christmas holidays)

Do spend at least one hour each week (it's ok to take 2 hours- ie. 2 weeks)

Do discuss and give a little help and guidance

Do ensure that your child keep notes of what he is doing in the diary

Do sign the diary so that teachers know that children are completing an activity

Hmmm that sounds like a lot of work..... Now let's see the Dont's

The Dont's

Do not do the work for your child.

Do not make sentenses for the child. Children should write in their own words at their own level

Do not copy word to word from the internet

Now that sounds a bit stern right? But it's true, that's what is written in the booklet. Now let's see the suggested activities as laid down by the teacher.

If you look at some of the suggested acivities, I do believe that this is a little bit too much for 8/9 year olds. Bear in mind that they have to do research, write in their own words and then, they have to practice because they are expected to do excellent presentations in class !!! The time allocated is certainly not enough, believe me. Further, not copying from the internet is very difficult to do when you are dealing with facts (which most of the suggested activities are). For some children, to compose a sentence is certainly mind boggling.

Uhhuhhhhh... if I ever complained before, I regret it now :))))

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Ancient Civilisations Day

Unlike the International School of Amsterdam (ISA) where they have "Unit of Inquiry"(UOI) as part of the curriculum, here at the British School, students cover a few "projects"(I'm not sure the term used) a year. Similar to UOI, each project may take up to 8 weeks to conclude. To be honest, until now I still do not know under what subject they learn this.

Ilham and his fellow Year 4 classmates had just finished lesson on Ancient Egypt. Next, according to Ilham, they will learn The Tudors, The Romans, then World War II. So I suppose they learn this under History???? I would prefer the UOIs because they cover a more global issues like health, science, taking care of our planets etc...

They sure spend a lot of time learning about Ancient Egypt, from river Nile to pyramid to flood to pharoahs to mummies and Moses!!! Ilham came back one day telling me that they watched videos of Moses and that they had already watched 6 cds and still have a few more left !!! I wonder, is it really necessary to spend that much of time on Moses(their version of it anyway)???

Anyway, to conclude the end of lesson on Egypt, on November 11th, the students celebrated Ancient Civilisations Day where they dressed up as Egyptians and ate home lunch with an Egyptian twist. The costumes need not be expensive, just something white or T shirts will do, and sandals of course, preferably leather (imagine that!!! not expensive and yet leather!!! )

Since we didn't know where to buy the costumes anyway, we decided to make a simple one. Coincidently, we happened to have a guest staying with us at the time, and she was full of ideas. Let's see what she came up with using double sided tape (we do not have sewing machine!!)

Ancient Egyptian Warrior - that's what Ilham wanted to be...

Eye kohl was a must for men and women then..

Capal served as egyptian sandals :))

And his classmates...

Note that Arek, the middle boy was actually wearing his father's T-shirt :)))

Ahhhh the beautiful Cleopatra...

Lunch with Egyptian twist - pita bread and dried fruits....

They spent the day playing games like translating the secret code of Ancient Egypt letters and wrapping up mummies. As it happened, one of the boys came to school dressed up as a mummy, so he became their victim. They just had to wrap his head !!!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Majlis Raya Korban Di Embassy

Raya kali ni IA tak perlu masak untuk majlis makan yang pihak embassy hidangkan lepas solat sunat Hari Raya. Katanya ada orang-orang Shell yang sponsor, jadi depa upah lah sifu-sifu yang pandai memasak di The Hague ni.... Alhamdulillah.... IA ni bukannya pandai masak, kalau setakat famili dan tetamu sorang dua tu ok le.... Tapi kalau masak untuk 300 orang..... nainya.... periuk dan kuali besaq pun tak dakkkk....

Tetamu yang datang tak seramai macam majlis Hari Raya Puasa dulu. Budak-budak peringkat sekolah pun tak ada. Kawan Ilham, Syafiq pun tak datang, hanya Ilham saja yang ponteng sekolah....

Jom kita tengok apa yang depa hidangkan.

Ada nasi minyak(rasanya), rendang ayam, daging hitam, dalca, lontong, mee goreng dan kuih-muih...

DH antara yang pertama menuju ke tempat hidangan :)) Bukannya DH lapaq, kami dah makan pagi tu... tapi dia nak cepat sebab nak balik pi kerja....

Sedapnya makan, dah tak sedaq dunia la tuuuuu...

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Eid ul Adha 2010

Happy Eid Mubarak to all dear friends, family and bloggers. May we always be blessed, insyaAllah.


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