Budding Graphic Designer!

I’m so proud of Buzz today. I’ve been teaching myself to use Inkscape, a free opensource design programme. I decided it would be really useful for Buzz to learn to use it too, it could potentially open many doors in the future. As well as this, he is very creative but in a mathmatical way. He’s never been into colouring or drawing, but he loves drawing diagrams, and if he does draw a picture it has to be very precise and scientific. For example, the other day I drew a sun, you know, that typical way most people draw a sun – a round ball with lines coming out all around. He said “that’s not what a sun looks like” and proceeded to correct my drawing with a non-spiked sun with red heat spots and solar flares!

So I felt that working with vector images on a design programme might be just his cup of tea when it comes to creativity. And it turns out I was right! I spent a few minutes showing him some of the basics, then left him to have a play. Half an hour later I encouraged him to choose a youtube tutorial to work on. I’ve been using Nick Saporito‘s channel, his tutorials are excellent. Buzz chose to create this Heartbeat Design Vector. It may not look like much at first glance, but if you start watching the video you’ll realise there’s so much more to it than first meets the eye! I really didn’t believe he’d cope with it, in terms of the focus and time needed to see it through – it’s a 13 minute video (which we have to pause and rewind a lot to follow the instructions) and is created for adults or older kids, not young children. However, I was completely wrong.


Buzz grasped the concept and the language so quickly, quicker than I had! He’d hear something once and then remember it. Or Nick would say something that wouldn’t have made sense to me if I hadn’t worked through some basic tutorials, but Buzz seemed to understand it, as if it was a language he has always known. It took about 2 hours, a he loved doing it too. He was so proud of himself, and this is really important. He struggles a huge amount in some areas, and can get very upset and cross at himself (and us!) if he can’t get something right. The world is black and white to him, and if it’s not right then it’s wrong and bad, there’s very little room for middle ground. It’s exhausting for him and for us (as it was for school) to work in the areas that don’t come naturally to him, so I’m super excited to have found another area of strength and enjoyment!



Tongue Twisters

I suggested we write a poem as Buzz always comes out with very poetic sounding phrases, but he suggested we write tongue twisters instead. Homeschooling is mostly Buzz-led so that’s what we did. Here they are. Some written by Buzz, some by me. Let us know which was the hardest to repeat over and over as we’re having a competition between us!

Ali asks Alan about antelopes and anteaters.

Busy buzzy Barnabas bakes bread beautifully.

Can cows count cantankerous crickets?

Does Darren dance delightfully?

Elephants eat elderberries early in England.

Gorgeous guineas graze on grass gratefully.

Lily lies laughing like Little Lola.

Silly Sam sings silly songs on sunny Saturdays.

Timmy titters to tiny turtles.


“My brain might be different from yours, but it’s still amazing!”

I want to share this video here because it hits the nail on the head; these kids say it better than I ever could. This is Buzz through and through and is one of the main reasons I took him out of school, although since homeschooling I see it for myself so much more clearly. It is truly amazing to see his brain working so effectively and quickly and enthusiastically when he is allowed to move and fidget and stim as much as he likes. It fascinates me because it is not what I’m like at all. I can fully understand why all that movement and noise can be mistaken as him not focussing and not concentrating on what he’s doing, and I can understand why it would distract other children in a classroom setting.

The more I homeschool, the more I realise that this is exactly what Buzz needs, and that makes me so excited and relieved and certain of our decision. When we made the decision we were far from certain that it was the right one, but Buzz was struggling more and more with school so we had to give it a shot. Now that we’re doing it I see that homeschooling is the only way Buzz will be able to reach his potential, enjoy learning to the full (which he really does), and keep his stress levels to a minimum. I am beginning to understand why he came home from school and completely broke down, because he had been trying too hard all day long just to be the person school needed him to be, and that was before even trying to do any work. Just as the girl in this video said:

“It makes me feel sad when you tell me to try harder even though I’ve already tried as hard as I can.”

Quotes taken from the http://www.facebook.com/Upworthy/videos/1125589414148582

Where Does Our Recycling Go?

The first day of school after we’d taken Buzz out of school we wanted to do something really fun, so that he didn’t feel that he was missing out by not being at school. It just so happened that some other local homeschoolers were going to visit the recycling facility for our area, with a guided tour by the manager. It was fantastic, and I was so proud of Buzz for asking the manager some really good questions. We intend to visit the incinerator and the composting site as well in due course.

-150413 Recycling Centre Collage