As featured in Parentdish

Sunday, 7 November 2010

A Grand Day Out

On Saturday I had a day on my own with the children. Alan hadn’t been out with the camera for a bit so I said to him to head off and that we would amuse ourselves. Getting around on public transport with four children is getting easier, probably because the older two are now in school and old enough to help a bit. But I still won’t venture on the tube with them all. I made the mistake of taking the buggie on the tube once before. I won’t repeat that experience.

We even went out for lunch, and amazingly it all went like a dream. Usually Alan and I spend a few minutes retrieving food from underneath the high chair, but we left the café as clean as it was when we entered.

Our destination for the day was Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. My children love art galleries, museums and castles. Take them to any place like that and they’re delighted.

With Alan and I both loving history it is probably no surprise. And I do love that my six year old gets his King James’ mixed up – “Was that James I or James IV Mummy?”

But yesterday was as much about science as it was about history. On our way out, a girl stopped us to tell us about the children’s events downstairs for National Pathology Week.

Hayden donned a lab coat, and did some stuff with a test tube; Avril looked through a microscope and learnt about DNA; and Darrell impressed me with his knowledge of chess, and built a lego castle.

History I love, science I don’t, although even I learnt something new on Saturday – we have 46 chromosomes in our body. But even though I don’t have any interest in science, I encourage my children to have an interest in it. I want their education to be wide and for them to find their own niche in life.

For some, our day at the museum would have been a no-go area. A few weeks ago we bumped into a lady we knew, when we were heading for the train through to the Impressionists Exhibition at the National Gallery in Edinburgh. “Oh my children would have hated that” she said to me.

Mine loved it, and we ended up going into the main exhibition.

By the time my children reach adulthood they will be able to read and write well, whether they can respond to a times table question within five seconds will not matter. But they will have something more important – a love of learning, and a well rounded education which is the parents’ responsibility to give, not the school’s.

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