Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Christmas School (4)

We have returned to Christmas School today, after the children's book clubs on Monday and puppy class, history workshop and swimming yesterday. The children are avid followers of Blue Peter and were very excited yesterday about the mince pies they had seen being made. Sorted. No reason for me to search through our Christmas cookbooks finding something suitable and no need for me to buy more than a loaf of white bread and a jar of mincemeat. It is easy to tell when they are keen to do something: my eldest appeared, already wearing his apron, as I was finishing a cup of tea to tell me that he was ready to cook and not a cross word was spoken as they organized themselves into a production line, just like they had seen on the telly. It's a simple recipe using sliced bread rather than pastry. A lot of sliced bread, so we had to pause while middle son was dispatched to the corner shop. We had some trouble remembering which way up to put the lids and a variety of flavours were made as not everyone likes mincemeat, even Waitrose cranberry and port.
Ready to eat:

What fascinates me about the way children learn is how much they do it, or demonstrate it, when I least expect it. My daughter happily fetched a calculator to work out that, if we had three flavours and twenty-four bun tins, we would have eight of each. I asked her how she knew what to do. She told me that she'd divided it, of course! This is the first time I have seen her use this mathematical function with such clear, gut-level understanding of what she's doing. She looked at me as if it was obvious. My son, in the background, is working on some genetic diagrams, the result of a conversation about breeding gerbils, and my explanation of dominant and recessive genes. I'm not in the picture, I'm making a cup of Christmas tea and finding somewhere quiet to eat my, surprisingly tasty, mince pie.


Kate said...

Fantastic - sounds like you all had fun and managed to keep up the Christmas theme without too much hard work.
They're amazing kids - don't know where they get it from!
Missing you all and counting down to Christmas!
Lots of love everyone - inclusing Coco

Jane D. said...

might have to catch up on blue peter to get that recipe Gaynor - they look good!