Today was a bit different as Paul was off work and Tristan was in nursery despite it being a Friday. Paul drove the little one to nursery and then Theo, Paul and I went to a local supermarket to stock up on some groceries. It is very liberating to not be constricted by school times and be able to adapt schooling to fit in with family life.
Paul was able to rest and relax after a very stressful couple of weeks at work whilst Theo and I spent the day engaged in learning.
He completed the end of chapter activity in his Galore Park Maths book which was about binary numbers. He had not come across this topic at school and was very excited by the prospect of learning something completely new to him. Once he had finished the written work I introduced a fun practical maths activity to reinforce the idea. I wrote the numbers 1,2,4,8 & 16 on the ends of the fingers of his left hand. I then asked him to hold up the correct fingers to express a given decimal and then tell me how this would be written in binary. For example to express the decimal number 16 he held up his thumb and told me it would be 10000 in the binary system. He did lots of these and found it fun.
It has been a busy week and I could tell that he was more tired than usual. Also he had spent an hour reading in bed before getting up this morning so I decided to select only one question for him to work on from the next exercise in the Galore Park English book. He wrote an acrostic poem using a winter themed word.
We had a lovely lunch break chatting before moving onto our next subject.
Theo really enjoyed finding out about The Four Noble Truths of Buddhism. He found the concept of following the ‘middle’ path very interesting and commented that ‘the road to the left would be bad because you would not have a house or food and that would be sad and the road to the right would mean you were greedy and selfish and that would also make you sad’. It was good to listen to him talking about how other belief systems operate. He also coloured a picture of Buddha in gold.
I conducted a quick spelling test next. It is important to continue this with him as he really thrives on being tested.
Paul went to pick Tristan up from nursery which gave Theo and I chance to read a chapter of the Usbourne Art Book and discuss how to look at paintings. Tristan was beaming with joy when he arrived back home clutching a big tub of ‘prickly sticks’ (Stickle Bricks). They had taken a detour to the shop on the way back and daddy had treated him. Tristan was thrilled to see his brother and they both bounded upstairs to try out the bricks.
I prepared dinner whilst they played and had a coffee with Paul who was spending his relaxation day building a new guitar.
After they had eaten I asked Theo to answer a few questions about what we had learnt for the art book such as; What are the main genres of painting? What is composition? Give some examples of symbols used in paintings. Why do you like the painting?
He used the postcard of the painting ‘The Fall of Clarendon by Edward Matthew Ward’ which he bought at Bury Art Gallery to help him answer the questions. He was intrigued by the symbolism used in paintings and I am looking forward to exploring this with him more. It will be fantastic to take him to some galleries again soon armed with a greater knowledge of how to appreciate art.
Not long after this Theo and I got ready and went out to his athletics club. The weather was pretty horrid and consequently there was a small turnout. It did not stop those few children who attended having lots of fun and certainly did not put me off standing wearing my waterproofs watching them all running. He had a good time and I think he enjoyed it even more than usual because it was so muddy!
After a shower, a glass of milk and a chapter of his book he fell asleep.
Theo has coped very well with the challenges he has faced this week and we are very proud of him. He has a busy morning rehearsing with his strings group tomorrow and he will be spending the afternoon relaxing in whatever way he chooses. I have a sneaking suspicion that he wants to make a computer from a cardboard box and finish the castle with his brother. We shall see what the day brings.
Prudence Clarke 28.06.2013