Multiplication, Division AND Economics!

Following on from what I was saying about how important talking is in HE: out of the blue last night M said she wanted to go looking for gold when she was a grown-up.  Intrigued, I asked her what she would do when she had gold and she said she would sell it and be rich.  Then I asked her what she would do when she was rich (hoping for some charitable reply like ‘help the needy’) but no, she said she would ‘just be rich’.  Anyway, this led on to an indepth conversation about how much money she could get for her gold (you could almost hear the cash-register ker-ching! and see the dollar signs in her eyes); what ‘value’ means; what ‘rare’ means; and I slipped in a bit of supply and demand economics too, just for good measure.

On to today.  I wanted to take the girls swimming and get some jobs done in Wimbledon but we only managed Wimbledon.  It was a big shopping trip though and the girls did really well, there were no flops at all!  I had written out a shopping list which M enjoyed taking charge of and I also let her lead the way around the centre.  She has appalling bearings/direction like me and I want her to get a sense of her surroundings a bit more rather than being led around in a daze.  She did really well looking out for shop signs and seeking out the things we needed in the shops.  It also stopped her from slipping into the strange dreamy state she can get into at the shops.


After we’d done most of our jobs we popped into the coffee shop for a treat and to do a bit in the girls’ workbooks.  This was a special request from D – she really wanted to bring them along so I wasn’t going to argue!

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D did a bit more alphabetising of words and M worked on her times-tables sticker book.  She made a few mistakes on the sums where part of the question was missing so I decided to go through it in more depth when we got home.

Somehow, we ended up being out for hours so when we got back there wasn’t time to go swimming as I had to make dinner.  The girls had some lunch and rested in front of the telly while I cooked a curry.

Once that was done I sat D down with her Arithmasticks to do some multiplication.  She has been desperate to learn her times-tables and this morning was reading the times-tables poster on our bedroom wall and delightedly telling me she had learnt them.  I’m not sure if she has fully grasped the concept yet but we went through lots of different sums and I helped her to work them out on her Arithmasticks.  She was fully engaged and enjoying it which was a pleasure to see.

Then I spent 10 minutes with M going through division with her.  I am sure she did this at school but she claimed no knowledge!  I got some pretty beads out which immediately delighted her and we went through a few sums.  I showed her how division is the opposite of multiplication and how to switch the numbers around to work out an answer if the sum is missing part of the question.  She didn’t really enjoy it.  But at least she understood it.


J came home early but was very stressed from work.  He still managed to fit in a quick game of chess though… and was beaten by M!


Little things:

On the way downstairs this morning, M and D were saying they were going to be nice to each other all day.  I said, yeah right, how about just trying to be nice to each other until lunch time?  Or just for 1 hour?  But they were sure they could do it… and they did!  There was a slight blip around 2pm but it was over in seconds so I’m not counting it.

J & I forgot our anniversary!!  I only remembered at 2pm when I was writing the date down 😦  Any tips on home educating plus stressful job and maintaining a good relationship would be most welcome 🙂


3 thoughts on “Multiplication, Division AND Economics!

  1. You are SO right – talking is the most educative tool kids could use! It cements understanding, irons our misunderstanding when the child has a chance to ask and discuss without threat of being made to look silly, it promotes language and vocabulary and develops thinking skills! And children learn far more through a discussion than through a lecture!
    Thanks for visiting my blog Lucy – I’ve added yours to my list, hope that’s okay. And all the best with your home educating days – hope you enjoy them as much as we did!


  2. Thanks for this great post Lucy. I agree completely – talking is such a powerful learning tool. Not only does it help consolidate understanding and develop language skills but it gives children the security that their opinions are both important and valued. I really liked what you said about the children wanting to take their workbooks out with them – it’s lovely to read about children being so motivated to learn. My Jasper is so engaged with everything around him and is desperate to learn more all the time; he can see his own progress and he loves it! I have noticed though that sometimes if I suggest we “learn” something formally, he often doesn’t want to, but he will always decide by himself he wants to do something and gets so much more out of it. I must remember this as sometimes I worry I may be a little pushy. I’ve followed your blog and am looking forward to reading more about your journey!


    1. Thanks for your lovely comments! D sounds very similar to Jasper: she isn’t open to being ‘told’ anything! However if I casually get something new out and start looking at it then her curiosity is immediately peaked and she wants to know all about it, haha. Thanks for following me. L x


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