Wednesday, 6 April 2016

STEM Challenges and Other Fun

We managed to lower our stress again today and have fun too - back to our usual MO, thankfully!  Admittdly we started with MathsWhizz which didn't go so well on Monday, but was much better today.  I did still have to ask Youngest and Middle to sit with me in turn and do it on my laptop as Youngest went into 'fear-of-maths' mode and needed some hand-holding despite the exercise being well within his ability.  Middle also needed my supervision as he had found the calculator mode on his computer in the den (out of my sight) and couldn't resist using it to make the sums even easier.  As I told him, that's not exactly wrong - we all use calculators - but it does mean that he would get to harder levels of exercises without necessarily learning how to work out the steps needed to do the harder sums - so we sat and he did his exercises with me, and he had no problems at all.

While Youngest was doing his Maths, Middle read a book on "Disgusting Digestion", and then while Middle was doing his Maths, Youngest went to get a book but came back with a jigsaw map of Europe and proceeded to do most of it by himself, with Middle helping just at the end.

By this point Eldest had come downstairs from doing his Maths, so we went into the kitchen and had fun doing some STEM challanges that the boys had chosen from our Dyson Challenge cards.

Youngest did an experiment on inertia which involved boiling an egg and seeing how easy it was to stop it spinning compared to a fresh egg which continued spinning after he spun it and then stopped it briefly....

Middle was inspired by the card detailing how to make invisible ink, so got some lemon juice and wrote a secret (gorgeous) message for Daddy and me to discover when heated...

Eldest's experiment was acknowledged by all to be 'AWESOME!' as he made a lava lamp using oil, water, food colouring and an alka-seltzer...

Afterwards we listened to the 'Arrival of the Queen of Sheba' by Handel, and the boys drew pictures inspired by the music.  Eldest said that his was too detailed to be coloured in - plus it was in the 'olden days' when photos were black and white anyway!  He certanly worked hard on it - and even wrote a list of random things on the back for us to look for in his picture...




And finally we found a couple of episodes of "Your Paintings" (BBC2) on Youtube, on Henri Rousseau and Paula Rego to watch before an episode of the boys' much-loved Mythbusters while we had lunch.

So generally that was a busy but fun morning - just the way we like it!  We're back to fully enjoying our holiday from autonomy.

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