On Friday I received a text to say that school was closed because of a severe weather warning. I was really quite glad as it's very possible for the children to become cut off in a short space of time at their small secondary school in the centre of the Lake district. Needless to say they were delighted !
As they had already got up and were dressed for school at the unearthly hour of 7.15 I watched to see what they would do. My home educated son being unaccustomed to early rises, was still asleep .Unlike his siblings he isn't bound by time scales and deadlines which would put an overwhelming pressure on him- Children with Aspergers whilst high functioning find every day organisation and pressures can make them extremely anxious! Instead I work with him at the best times to suit his body clock which are generally in the afternoon or late evening.
I found my daughter sitting at the computer together with her ipod talking to her friend face to face. They were discussing a maths assignment and I noticed that although they were helping each other understand how to tackle the questions they weren't helping each other with the answers. It struck me just how much technology has changed the way we learn and that it's perfectly possible to have a virtual classroom rather than school in a school building!
My eldest son on the other hand disappeared upstairs and I discoved that he was preparing a controlled assessment for his GCSE's on A Street car named Desire (which he incidentally finds really boring and irrelevant to him)
When maths was finished my daughter decided to make a Victoria sponge so with minimal help from me she went off to the kitchen to weigh her ingredients!All the while the snow continued to come down and my husband came home early, before the village was cut off!
My daughter was supposedly camping with scouts .It looked unlikely until we were told it had been moved from tents to a village hall and her friend's dad (a former gritter) said he would come and collect her! I realised how old she is becoming as she marched down the path in green wellies, snow jacket, gloves and buff with a rucksack almost the same size as her on her back!
Camp as usual was a .great success.Despite the blizzards and snow drifts in our village there was hardly any snow eight miles up the road and she spent the weekend using a GPS, hiking and camp cooking all the while benefiting from the fresh air and exercise.
For my autistic son it was lovely to have the company of his siblings- he went dog walking with his brother in the snow, played on the X box and computer, combining it with the literary skills needed to type messages he wanted to convey.
Whilst the school building might be closed the School of life certainly wasn't!