Thursday, 21 July 2011

Science on the Beach

We had a super awesome homeschool group this week! We met down at our usual beach; it was a gorgeous sunny day with clear, blue skies. It was actually warm enough to take off all the layers and bask in the sun.

And there were dolphins swimming in the water, just a few metres from us!

53 dolphin

There was a much bigger turnout than we’ve been having lately; lots of old faces came along as well as some recently-joined members, so we had eight families.

Bella organised a bunch of science experiments for the kids to do, which was great. Science is, of course, hilarious fun!

32 HS science on the beach

The kids learned about air pressure

34 HS science on the beach

And surface tension and heat. You can’t pop a filled water balloon with a lit match

36 HS science on the beach

Chemical reactions – so much fun that can be had with bicarb soda and vinegar!

37 HS science on the beach

How oils and detergents react

42 HS science on the beach

And made awesome swirly patterns in milk

40 HS science on the beach

Once all the organised experiments had been demonstrated and tried out, the kids went crazy having a great time trying out random ideas, messing with the leftover bicarb, vinegar, food colouring, milk and balloons.

44 HS science on the beach

The best part was seeing how a group of about 18 kids ranging in ages from 3 – 12 were all collaborating together. There was no need to remind anyone to share, no squabbles to sort out. The bigger kids helped the little kids, the little kids learned from the older ones. None of them felt they couldn’t or shouldn’t interact with anyone else simply because they were different ages or genders or levels of learning and understanding. It was just a group of kids having fun, and learning was purely incidental.

45 HS science on the beach

51 HS science on the beach

Eventually, they all ran off to build cubbies in the bushes, and whittle sticks, and build sandcastles, and fill balloons with sand to make “eggs” to put in “nests”, and splash in the water, and watch the dolphins, and run around enjoying the sun…

52 HS science on the beach

Hooray for unschooling!


  1. It was an awesome day :)
    I love how all the kids relate so easily. And what a beautiful winters day at the beach!

  2. Your homeschooling group always sounds so wonderful.

  3. Yes, HOORAY, Majikfaerie—to the discoveries and the being together and the kindness and the rambling lovely trails the kids went on, from the 'speriments to the stick whittling! Makes me so happy to be on this journey too, with my kids. I so love what happens when we intentionally explore ideas, but keep our hearts completely open to where those ideas might take us. It could be somewhere very different from where we expected, or imagined, or planned, but that's the sweet magic of it, isn't it?

    Lovely day. Thank you so much for sharing it! I love seeing every new post—what adventures you're up to, and how you all are :)

  4. thanks all! and yes; it is an awesome adventure to be on, and inspiring to see children unhindered. :)

  5. I am jealous of your wonderful weather....and are you all unschoolers? or are there some homeschoolers too? either way, I am jealous and envious and all the other green eyed things

  6. Most of our group are somewhere on the natural learning spectrum, though not all "radical unschoolers" like us.

  7. I love reading about your homeschooling adventures. My kiddo is still too young but we are planning to homeschool and I am so excited to start... eventually. :)


Thanks for your lovely words, witty banter and entertaining discussion :)