Science, Maths and a bit of Privacy

Our summer holiday is upon us (although I have to say our lives are pretty much one long summer holiday :D) and we won’t have any classes or meet-ups to punctuate the week for the next month!  I can feel change is in the air and I wonder where we’ll be (in terms of head-space) by the end of summer.

M is almost 8.5 years old and she is beginning to show signs of growing up.  Although we are still co-sleeping, over the last few weeks she has been spending evenings in her own room.  All of a sudden I feel like I should knock before entering (I’m trying to remember) and when I do I find her at her little desk, reading a rabbit book or drawing a picture or organising her Sylvanian Families display.  She hasn’t needed privacy before and this development feels really new and strange to me!  It also means that our bedtime routine has changed slightly: instead of staying in our room to read to both girls, I now read to M in her own room and D is finding it difficult to occupy herself or settle down to sleep without us.  M clearly doesn’t want D in her room either which makes the whole situation quite difficult to manage!  As we’re leaving for Nottingham in a week I am going to delay dealing with it for now and see how things are on our return.

D is still up for doing formal maths.  We have tried a few apps that have been recommended to us but none have compared to the onebillion app.  I was resisting purchasing any levels, partly because of the price and partly because I thought D might find it too easy and whiz through the questions in minutes.  However, I relented and it is absolutely PERFECT for her!  It is easy enough that she doesn’t get upset and it’s challenging enough to mean she has to listen to the questions carefully and has learnt a couple of new concepts (e.g. division and fractions) that she struggled with before.  Although we are rather strapped for cash at the moment, I believe this was absolutely money well spent!

We’ve been rather science-led over the last few days.  I was inspired by another HEer’s bubble experiment on Facebook and quickly showed M the video which explained how to do it.  It’s a great video and I can’t believe I haven’t known it was possible to do this with bubbles until now!  M persevered and persevered to get as many bubbles as possible, and this is how she did:

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She got as far as 3 bubbles!  And both sausages had a go at holding a bubble – just wet your hands (who knew?!).

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M has been thinking in quite a sciencey-way lately (although to her it isn’t categorised into an academic subject, it’s just life of course).  She’s never been much of an experimenter – she has never really done open-ended exploration – but lately she’s been doing little things that tell me she’s really thinking about seemingly simple things: “look Mum, when I put my hand into the water it rises” and “look Mum, when I put water on the table it disappears!” and “look, when I flap my hand the paper moves”.  If I question her about her discoveries she comes out with some amazingly detailed (and accurate) explanation of why it’s happening.  It’s such a pleasure and a privilege to be a part of her learning and to see her blossoming!

D has also been experimenting and wanted to make her favourite density tower again.  This time we did it really properly and carefully dropped the water and washing up liquid in with a pipette so we made an absolutely perfect tower.  She loves the bit at the end and runs around looking for little objects to throw in to see where they land.

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M also rediscovered her Insta-Snow and had a play with it.  Funnily enough, that same day one of my favourite bloggers posted about fake snow so we had a go at freezing it overnight as her post suggested.  M was delighted to find that it crunched like real snow and got a little Lego figure to play in it.  Next we’re going to try rainbow snow!

M has bought herself a Harry Potter game to play on her Nintendo DS2, which she’s happily played with for hours today.  I’ve also been reading Tom’s Midnight Garden to the girls during the day, usually while they’re playing on the computers.  It’s a story I adored as a child, though I think I might have been slightly older than M when I read it.  M is really enjoying it, although I am having to describe some of the slightly old fashioned dialogue to her.

D is desperate to sew (I must get my old sewing machine out!) and helped me to make her My Little Pony some shoes…

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Today has been spent at the park with J and their Nanny…

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And no week would be complete without a visit to Curious Minds – we love our group!

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