It's been quite a week. My eldest son was chosen to take part in The Brathay Trust Apprenticeship challenge and the team are working on a garden for adults with learning difficulties and mental health issues. It has been interesting to watch as they have grappled with concepts of publicity, time management, project management,sponsorship and communication. A huge learning curve for a bunch of youngsters who in addition to working full time are spending their free time voluntarily planning a garden.
They have set up their Facebook page Cumbria's Finest and posted pictures on it of them at work in the garden.
My daughter is helping to raise funds by making cakes. We had Rocky Roads in the Highways department the other day.Today is Flapjack and I've bought us a cup cake book so we can practice our icing skills! All this is practice for her Catering GCSE next year. I reckon that if she can cook she will always have the ability to make a living whether in cake decoration or in a restaurant.At the moment it isn't her intended choice of career but it's a life skill that won't go wasted and she enjoys it so I want to encourage her especially as she is on a high after winning the school Masterchef competition.
Twin brother meanwhile continues to concentrate on his Japanese. He was telling me the other day that the ancient Japanese built their pagodas with a framework of poles which were to guard against earthquakes and that exactly the same technology is used in Japanese buildings today. He also mentioned Kyoto and I mentioned the climate change summit that took place there and said I would try and find out more about it for him. He spent last evening watching a television debate about the benefit changes being imposed by the British government, it is interesting to see the strong political debates he is able to raise because he has been free of the constraints of the mainstream education system for so long and has the confidence to air his opinions and to realise that they are as valid as the other man,even at the age of thirteen. In fact Friday nights at his grandparents house are becoming a bit like a session of Mastermind as he discusses his view on the world and answers some of their crossword clues that we are unable to answer. The second largest country in the world is he said, Canada,not Russia or China as we supposed.
I meanwhile have to finish my book and sharpish. "The Book Thief " comes out at the pictures next week and we are going to see it , so the heat is on. I'm also collecting plants for The Brathay Challenge garden today from a local community garden and the opportunity has arisen for me to do NVQ level 1 in Horticulture. It might just come in useful in our garden. I'm doing a free Future learn online course of the new computer programming curriculum for September 2014. It seems that whilst I have a long way to go,I am not as computer illiterate as I thought I was and am at least on a par with many of the primary school teachers. I suspect from what I'm reading however that my son is well ahead of the game,even without a teacher.Sadly that's the education system for you,it has a lot of catching up to do.