The Railway Children


Alhamdulillah, another productive weekend has come and gone. Time is flying past, subhanAllah. This is the summary of what we did this weekend.


We started with circle time activity: Skip counting in 2s, 3s, 5s and 10s. Recognizing the numbers up to 100 and 1000. Identifying place value in numbers up to 100 and 1000. I write a number on board “245, 58, 79”, then ask them to read the number and answer “How many hundreds in 245?” or “How many tens in 58?” etc. Also reinforce some basic concepts like when we add the number should increase; subtracting is the same as countdown so the number should decrease- and we need these skills in our everyday life (When following a recipe for something we want to bake or cook, when shopping to check if we are given the correct amount of change)

And some problem solving activities where they had to work out the answer by themselves. And they continue with MEPs pages at home.


  • Motivation- some girls are naturally sharp and clever in Maths. They understand all the concepts and are quick to work out the answers. Some are so demotivated, not necessarily because they don’t know the answers, but simply because of the lack of interest. They can do but they take ages to complete the activities and need a lot of push and reminders.
  • Mental maths- overall they all need more practice with calculations “in their head”. Some can’t do anything unless they put the pen to paper and do all the sums on paper.
  • Problem solving- again, we have to work on understanding certain formulas such as a+b=c, so a=c-b and b=c-a

InshaAllah, we will start with Maths next week as we have been leaving it to the end (as many prefer to start with Science and English) and we don’t seem to have enough time to complete everything planned. So, we will swap the order or lessons each week to add a bit of variety inshaAllah.


The Railway Children (book).jpgWe read a passage from The Railway Children by Edith Nesbit. I did guided reading with the younger group. The story was written over a hundred years ago, hence some vocabulary are hard to understand. So we read it together and had a group discussion. One of the girls brought the abridged version of the story so we had extended discussion and children really liked the story. I always encourage them to answer the questions orally before moving on to writing. It is always easier to write once they have the ideas ready in their minds.

After the group discussion, they have to read the text independently and write their answers. Younger group can write short answers whilst older group have to write full sentences (elaborate their answers).

We also did some copywork from the book for handwriting, spelling and punctuation. When they write, I ask them to point out the capital letters, commas and full stops in a sentence and emphasize:

  • Capitals are used at the beginning of each sentence and for proper nouns.
  • Full stop is used at the end of a sentence.
  • Comma is used when two sentences are joined together or when many similar items are listed in a sentence.

Some examples of English work


We covered two topics in Science. On Friday we learnt about Animals.

  • Animal features (land animals may have claws, fur and tail. water animals may have fins, gills and scales)
  • Their food habits (Plant eating animals are herbivores, meat eating animals are carnivores, both plant and meat eating animals are omnivores)
  • Animal habitat (domestic or wild; animal homes: dens, burrows, kennel, trees etc)

On Saturday we learnt about Human Body in detail. They learnt some terminology (including myself). Some basic concepts covered in class:

  • Skeleton gives structure to our body and consists of bones. Adults have 206 bones, babies have around 300. We have different bones including vertebrates, tibia and flat bones in our skull
  • Internal organs are protected by our bones and each have an important function
  • Muscles cover the bones and help us to move. Bones are hard and rigid whereas muscles are soft and elastic.
  • Joint is a place where two bones connect. Some of our joints are elbow, wrist, knee, hips, shoulder and neck.

I deliver the topics with Question and Answer, pair-work and group discussion. Then they have to complete some tasks individually to check if they understand what we just learnt in class. So, they completed the following worksheets

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Fun Friday activity

We had fun at the park on Friday, Alhamdulillah. Younger girls were shy to talk about their favourite books to the whole group. But they read their books to each other and we had picnic and race. Alhamdulillah


2 thoughts on “The Railway Children

  1. Sana says:

    Asalamoalikum Sister.
    Everytime I read your blog post,I wanted to leave a comment to appreciate your efforts but always kept silent.I guess I started reading your blog in 2012.After I read Quran,it opened my eyes.I used to think where are we heading towards as an Ummah.Since then I thought to homeschool my children (I wasn’t married back then).Now I have a daughter of 6months old.I pray to Allah that he give me strenght,courage,patience, resources and knowledge to homeschool her.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s