Saturday, 21 March 2009

Busy getting on with life

School has been humming along. Here's a brief overview of things to date:

Mathematics
  • I still can't afford to buy Beta [yet], so we are doing things in our own way again.
  • We've moved into multiplications. Some days I think, "Yes, they're ready for this," but other days I think, "hmm, maybe not." In particular, I think tamāhine 1 needs to step back for a bit because she's mixing up her numbers when she's adding now, eg if I ask her to multiply 4 x 7, she may say two sevens are 14 and two sevens are 14 but if she tries adding them together she may say 82 instead of 28. It's a hard transition to understand that multiplication is simply fast adding. She can look at the multiplication sign (x) and just go blank. She can easily rattle off 7 plus 7 or 7 minus 7, but when she looks at the multiplication sign she stumbles. When I say "what's two sevens?" then she can rattle the answer off quickly, yet if I say, "what's 2 times 7," she takes a long time to click. So to me, that means we need to take a step back. We'll stick with the skip counting she does know and only try a maximum of two multiplication questions a day mixed in with her addition and subtraction rather than 10 multiplication questions.
  • I always try to encourage the kids by reminding them they know lots of mulitiplication already: they know their 1s, 2s, 3s, 5s, 10s, 11s. They don't realise it, but they also know a chunk of others, eg 1x7=7, 2 x7=14, 3x7=21, 5x7=35, 10x7=70, 11x7=77 ... so really, there's only a few blanks that need to be filled eh?!!! That's a definite positive in my books.
Reading
  • Tamāhine 1 has for some time now, grabbed a book and started to read on her own. I try to be within earshot to listen in ... without making it too obvious so that she's not deterred by mum's eavesdropping, lol. Sometimes I'll let her make the odd fumble and carry on, but other times I will simply make a point of asking what she's reading and depending how the conversation goes, I may get her to re-read a section and that way she will read the word correctly. It feels like only yesterday she used to pick up a book and make up the story by looking at the pictures. Now my little girl isn't so little anymore and is able to read - for the most part - an entire book on her own.
Handwriting
  • Leaps and bounds - the two older kids are making lovely progress with their writing. Glancing at tamāhine 1's exercises each day, I can see her efforts improving which is lovely.
  • Tama 1 has begun to use cursive writing when he writes his little "play" stories which is great. I've altered the way we write a couple of letters to move him from being too flowery which can sometimes make for difficulty reading of a word, such as the letter 'w'. Sometimes it can become muddled with the letter following the 'w' as he tries to 'flow' it across if you catch my drift. But really, in all respects, he does have a lovely style - but then I would say that, because it looks so much like my own, hee hee. "Funny that," you say! He is copying my writing of course!
  • I must mention tama 2 also at this juncture. Isn't it amazing how the children's first letter writing looks so much alike? I do remember noticing the similarities between tama 1 and tamāhine 1, but it seems so much more evident now that tama 2 has joined the writing journey.
Socialisation
  • The children are now attending Lake Rotoma playcentre Tuesday's and Friday's. Whaiāipo and I are desperately trying to find another family vehicle because rather than spending money on dear old Dora the Explorer, we could buy another runabout. So, we're starting to save towards a secondhand people mover. I mention this because I don't want to disappoint the children by saying we can't attend playcentre because the car has gone kaput! BTW, although I shared their first attendance on this blog, I will keep the bulk of all other attendances to the correspondence blog because afterall, they are interconnected. So follow this link if you'd like to view some of our recent days at Lake Rotoma.
Sports/After School Activities
  • I don't think it's anything new when I say the kids are getting into motorcross, so it won't be earth-shattering news when I announce the children attended their first motorcross race on Sunday the 15th of March. In order to be eligible, they required boots, helmet, goggles and sturdy clothing. So, on the weekend of Uncle Craig's birthday we headed over to Te Awamutu to buy two pairs of boots ...

Tamāhine 2 just had to be in the photo

We bought some ice creams and sat at the gardens before heading home
Here's a couple of famous landmarks.
Q: What town are they in? ...
A: Tirau
Very good!
Here's tama 1 practicing on the berm the day before the race.

We stayed the night at Nancy's the night before then met friends and family at 8 o'clock in Waihi. I'll only add one photo of each of tama 1, tamāhine 1 and tama 2 to keep it simple.

You may notice the bigger riders in the background of some of the photos? Well, while the seniors had their lunch break, the minis were allowed to ride on the big track. That was a major buzz for all the kids.

The kids came away from the experience really excited and pleased to have participated. We met a few more people and were invited to more events. The kids got a real kick out of everyone clapping as they walked up to receive their prizes (chocolate bars).

It's the oddest feeling not to be nervous because you're competing, but because your children are competing ... suddenly I felt like a real mum! Excited, nervous, proud and competitive on their behalf. A real buzz.

We're now in training for the next race ...

There's probably a lot more I could discuss, but I will leave the post there at this stage and remind you to catch up with the kids on the correspondence blog as well.

My intentions this week are to attend a portfolio seminar for playcentre, as well as sort through all the school paperwork I have building up around me!!! I need to sort the mountain before it gets too much more out of control, lol.


Thanks for dropping by
ka kite ano

1 comment:

  1. I can not believe I had to read your blog to find out your kids rode in a moto cross event! Have I just not being listening to you or something?

    thanks for a great afternoon

    ReplyDelete