So… here’s what life learning in Cape Town looked like for our family (lots of photos in this post!)…

Nature Studies & Wildlife

Cape Town is so ridiculously beautiful, that the opportunities to do nature walks abound.  We visited Kirstenbosch Gardens (a number of times)… fed the fish at Silvermine… marvelled at the Kirstenbosch bonsai trees… explored all the different types of fynbos on the Cape peninsula… and fell in love with the gorgeous 300 year old camphor trees and the ancient oaks at Vergelegen Wine Estate.

Inside Africa's oldest oak tree at Vergelegen Wine Estate.

Inside Africa’s oldest oak tree at Vergelegen Wine Estate.

Joah and the hungry guinea fowl at Kirstenbosch Gardens...

Joah and the hungry guinea fowl at Kirstenbosch Gardens…

kirstenbosch stream

We’ve watched the seals at Kalk Bay harbour and Hout Bay harbour.  We’ve visited the Simon’s Town penguins.  We’ve taken the cousins to the Cape Town Aquarium.  We’ve visited the snake park at Imhoff Farm (and petted a very large corn snake).  We’ve explored the natural history museum (at Cape Town’s Company Gardens).  We’ve petted farm animals at Imhoff.  We’ve lived in a baboon-friendly neighbourhood.  We’ve caught tadpoles.  We’ve watched Southern Right whales from our veranda at Misty Cliffs.  And we’ve gone on many rock-trotting expeditions… searching in rock pools for starfish, sea urchins and anemones  (which the kids call “squooshees”)…

Cousins and clown fish at the aquarium...

Cousins and clown fish at the aquarium…

The penguins at Simon's Town...

The penguins at Simon’s Town…

Bunny cuddles at Imhoff Farm...

Bunny cuddles at Imhoff Farm…

Joah loved this little goat...

Joah loved this little goat…

Needless to say – Cape Town has endless opportunities to learn about (and surround oneself with) nature.

Reading & Writing

We found a wonderful online programme called Reading Eggs… which both kids have really taken to.  Reading also happens naturally and organically (we read bedtime stories – mostly Roald Dahl stuff – my favourite children’s author)… and Morgan loves to scrapbook and write little notes to herself.  The kids are learning at their own pace – and we’re happy with their progress.

Morgan busy with Reading Eggs online...

Morgan busy with Reading Eggs online…

Some of our many books...

Some of our many books…

Art

Well… obviously… there’s lots of art.  We draw, paint and create on a regular basis.  That’s just a given in our family.

They collected sea shells… then painted them and glued them together to make interesting shell-art...

They collected sea shells… then painted them and glued them together to make interesting shell-art…

One of Morgan's illustrations...

One of Morgan’s illustrations…

Drawings… lego… and pizza dough! :-)

Drawings… lego… and pizza dough! 🙂

Crafts

Morgan loves to craft.  She seems to have taken after both of her grandmothers (who are both very gifted in making things with their hands).  She has been sewing, beading, weaving… and is also busy with cross-stitch and the creation of felt fashion accessories for herself.  This is something she enjoys naturally… and she has done everything on her own (I can’t sew at all!).

Morgan with the felt accessory she made for her hair… and a necklace she knitted.

Morgan with the felt accessory she made for her hair… and a necklace she knitted.

Experimenting with a big-bum pant-suit… :-)

Experimenting with a big-bum pant-suit… 🙂

The happy little crafter...

The happy little crafter…

She loved her knitting so much, that she'd take her knitting with her to Kirstenbosch Gardens...

She loved her knitting so much, that she’d take her knitting with her to Kirstenbosch Gardens…

Baking & Cooking

Both of our kids are interested in what happens in the kitchen.  Morgan, especially, loves to bake.  I’m going to enrol her in a cooking class soon.  🙂

Baking bran muffins

Baking bran muffins

Joah - cooking his own breakfast...

Joah – cooking his own breakfast…

Baking choc chip cookies...

Baking choc chip cookies…

Physical Exercise

Our kids love to run, climb and explore.  They’ve been hiking,  swimming, rock trotting, beach walking, bike riding, ice skating, tree climbing and so much more…

The climbing course at Acrobranch in Hout Bay...

The climbing course at Acrobranch in Hout Bay…

Clearly, my kids don't have an issue with heights...

Clearly, my kids don’t have an issue with heights…

Bike riding in Noordhoek...

Bike riding in Noordhoek…

beach

Friends

We’ve met a number of people during our 7 months in Cape Town… and all of us have made some new friends.  Morgan and Joah’s new friends are Jonty, Tyler and Anna… (not to mention all the other kids they met at our favourite hang-out’s like Imhoff Farm and Noordhoek Village).  They also loved the visit from their cousins (a very special treat!).

Cousins and ice-cream!

Cousins and ice-cream!

Joah, Morgan, Anna & Jonty… and all the Easter crafts, bags & hats they decided to make...

Joah, Morgan, Anna & Jonty… and all the Easter crafts, bags & hats they decided to make…

Joah, Jonty & Tyler… with lots of lego! :-)

Joah, Jonty & Tyler… with lots of lego! 🙂

Playing "shop-shop" (like true mini Greeks) with acorns and little playground friends...

Playing “shop-shop” (like true mini Greeks) with acorns and little playground friends…

Music

Joah has been showing a keen interest in music… so we bought him his first guitar.  Warms my heart to see him play it.  🙂

Nick and I are both musicians… maybe Joah is following in our footsteps?

Nick and I are both musicians… maybe Joah is following in our footsteps?

History

Cape Town has a number of interesting historical sites… and we’ve visited many of them (including many museums).  We’ve been to the Rhodes Memorial, the Simon’s Town museum, the South African Naval Museum, the Toy Museum, the South African Natural History Museum, the District Six Museum… and we’ve done a boat tour of the V & A Harbour (which also explained some fascinating history of the area).

History used to be one of my most loathed subjects at school… but these days, it fascinates me.  All of us enjoy the history & museum expeditions… so many stories to be told.

The Rhodes Memorial

The Rhodes Memorial

Dino dioramas at the South African Museum...

Dino dioramas at the South African Museum…

Sad stories at the District Six museum. Morgan (especially) gets very serious in places like this. She's very disturbed by the idea of apartheid. She finds it hard to believe that this country used to be so segregated.

Sad stories at the District Six museum. Morgan (especially) gets very serious in places like this. She’s very disturbed by the idea of apartheid. She finds it hard to believe that this country used to be so segregated.

The Toy Museum (in Simon's Town)...

The Toy Museum (in Simon’s Town)…

Simon's Town Naval Museum

Science

We’ve visited the science museum (lots of experiments to try).  We also have various concoctions and science experiments at home.  Just 4 days ago, Morgan built a basic water purifier after hearing our stories about water pollution (the planet and the environment are topics that we regularly discuss in our home).  They also built a big (working) windmill out of fiddlestix – which (again) raised the topic of clean energy and how we can use less dirty resources in our homes and lives.

Joah building at the Cape Town Science Museum...

Joah building at the Cape Town Science Museum…

Building with fiddlestix...

Building with fiddlestix…

Experiments at the Science Museum...

Experiments at the Science Museum…

Nick giving Morgan some chess lessons at the Science Museum...

Nick giving Morgan some chess lessons at the Science Museum…

Fun…

And – of course – there has been loads and loads of fun and games and free-play.  We are BIG believers in free-play and time for kids to just be kids… to invent their own games… do their own thing… and entertain themselves.

Tweedle-Dum & Tweedle-Dee...

Tweedle-Dum & Tweedle-Dee…

Games with old boxes...

Games with old boxes…

Joah and the fluffies...

Joah and the fluffies…

… and last – but certainly not least…. LEGO!

The Lego Movie Set (see videos below)...

The Lego Movie Set (see videos below)…

lego2

We are a Lego family.  We all love lego.  One of our favourite family treats is buying a big box of Lego… and then building it together.  And – because we have now amassed a significant amount of Lego – the kids and Nick decided to make a few Lego Movies.  Here they are: