kate5kiwis: October 2011


“If you were all alone in the universe with no one to talk to, no one with which to share the beauty of the stars, to laugh with, to touch, what would be your purpose in life? It is other life, it is love, which gives your life meaning. This is harmony. We must discover the joy of each other, the joy of challenge, the joy of growth.” — Mitsugi Saotome

Monday, October 31, 2011

birthday boy

he's been counting down the sleeps

for the last three weeks and is oh!

so very excited to be in double digits.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

garage band

we cleaned out the garage again in the skool hols and took 400kg of shizzit to the tip.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

George and the Golden Moment

Today I had one of those once-in-a-blue-moon golden moments.

Last year George (not his real name) was in my Year 8
Science class
but I only saw him for one or two hours a fortnight because he has ‘learning difficulties’ (translation: he doesn’t learn the same way as the rest of the kiddos in the class) so he spends a lot of time with a teacher aide. George, being ‘on the spectrum', always laughs and lowers his eyes whenever I speak to him (even to say "Hi!" which I still do, even though he’s not in any of my classes this year).

Today I found out thirty seconds before the bell rang that a class needed to be babysat. I was given a stack of blank papers and a stack of sheets with map symbols on them. The kids were to ‘make their own map’. Uh, hello? I need a GPS to find my way home from skool.

When I arrived at the classroom (with my lunch in my hand cos I'd been sewing sparkly stuffs with kiddos at lunchtime) George was there with his teacher aide, and she miraculously turned my shoot-from-the-hip lesson into something manageable for him. Towards the end of the hour, I mooched up to George and looked in his eyes (yeah, I’m so intrusive) and told him what a fabulous map he’d drawn. He grinned, repeating my words to himself, and looked down. So I tried again. “George, what did you think of the gymnastics performance at skool assembly the other day? I saw your sister on stage and I thought she was fabulous! You have such a great sister!”

He looked me in the eyes and said,” YES I DO!!!” and I swear I felt some fairy dust sprinkled on my head. Because after school, George’s teacher aide came to find me and said that it was the first time ever that he’d responded like that.

Which goes to prove that silence isn't always golden.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

traffic light curry

i get teased on facebook for all my i'm-making-this-for-dinner status updates. but when you're a mama of hungry teens, food features rather frequently on your horizon. today was back-to-skool, and we all arrived home feeling like we'd been hit by a train.
enter pj's, a kids' movie, and traffic light curry. i named it myself, pfft... perfick rice, and a usual recipe refabriKATEd with additions of red capsicum + pumpkin + coriander (ooh, lookit, a maths equation).
it looks pretty delish, if i say so myself.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

we want cookie!!

there's a whole lotta stuff going down lately about #occupywallstreet (yeah, i'm back on twitter). i don't have any amazing new ideas to contribute to the occupy chat. in fact, not being a political animal, it took me a while to get my head around what it's all about.
yesterday, i came across a ridiculous situation with a journalist in her evening gown and a tumblr page about occupying education - and lookit!! unskoolers and classroomers are both in the same boat for once ;P
so i was thinking about how to make current events understandable to kids - and then i saw these words (but the original image offended my apostrophic sensibilities so my own kiddos collaborated with me and we made zees guy

aha, i get it now. but wait, there's more: a link to woozie's signature cookie-chip-chocolates, cos we're all about sharing the cookies (chef's tip: scr*w what the recipe says, chop up one and a half blocks of dark ghana choc instead). nom nom.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

shopping bag tutorial

hi, i'm katie. i make stuff.
i wrote this tutorial for a class
of 25 eleven year olds
who had met the sewing machine
and could sew a straight seam.
as soon as the more able kiddos
had done each step,
they became the experts for the others -
Kids Teaching Kids is definitely my style,
especially with a 1:25 teacher-student ratio ;)
and the best thing? re/upcycling a throw-out.

click on each pic to open it *large* + zooooom

i am so impressed with the kids' finished bags:

and so are they :)

Thursday, October 06, 2011

hello neglected little heart space

today's post is brought to us by some gifted turkish bread.

cos this morning i arrived at one of the pooter rooms with thirty leetle mathematicians for a play computer maths session, and lo and behold there was a class in there! so i left my leetle peeps outside in the sunshine with a leetle pairs-problem-solving-game and popped inside - at which point i realised it was occupied by a senior english class (is this double english, or double scottish?) and negotiated them half the period - at which stage we'd invade.

it turns out there was an eleventh-hour-assignment going on (which i completely understand, cos there are three teens living at my place) so i took my leetle people back to our pad and gave them all a chocolate fish for being so unnerstanding.

fast forward an hour later to a shower of gifts bestowed by last period's gorgeous english teacher: lollipops, choc fishies, choc bikkies, carrot cake and TURKISH BREAD. i know. there is an abundance of love in the universe, cos yesterday's tinned spaghetti dinner option was overtaken at the last minute by takeaways.

healthy mommy award right there.

so tonight i am cooking with tequila extra virgin olive oil, onions, happy chicken breasts, moroccan seasoning out of a shake-it jar, an artisan pumpkin + parmesan soup sachet that i found in the fridge, a tin of delmaine chick peas that i found in the pantry.. and i shall call it 'moroccan sunshine chicken' (cos all the best recipes have 'sunshine' in their title) and it shall be eaten with turkish bread that is already topped with fetta and rosie-mary and sundried 'marrrtoes (name's mater, like TOHHH-mater) and steamed frozen beans. and there shall be candles, cos there's one more sleep and one more get up and then - there's holidays.