Sunday, 4 March 2012

Paper Making

This week, we made paper - an activity which came up in our ongoing Marco Polo project workbook. Fortunately, my Mum had done this before and had an old kit she had found in a charity shop tucked away, with a plastic frame which we used to lift the mulch from the water to form the paper. It was a fun, hands-on activity and one I am sure the boys will remember.

Pushing oneself ...

This week, our youngest son (6) obviously decided his KUMON maths sheet was too easy, and decided to make it harder for himself by writing his answers in Chinese! I was intrigued at this novel & innovative way he devised to push himself. The only problem was that I had no idea whether the answers were correct! Fortunately, his eldest brother, as amused as I (and perhaps recognising some of his own traits in his younger brother) came to the rescue, and checked them for me, declaring them all right. A great example of a child bringing his knowledge together and applying it to challenge himself - all of his own initiative!

I have also observed our youngest son using computer learning programmes of his own initiative to challenge himself. I confess this has been rather an easy option for me with our baby due any day now, and there have been times when I have thought, "Too much screen time, he needs to come off" ... but he is certainly learning and will sometimes spend a considerable length of time absorbed in the challenges presented by Reading Eggs and BBC Bitesize particularly, declaring his intention to finish a particular level or map, and gaining obvious satisfaction at his accomplishment. Whereas people often ask me how I get the boys to 'do their work', this is undoubtedly learning on a par with his KUMON, and done completely willingly and with enjoyment - again of his own initiative.