I am amazed at how many issues you can bring out of such a short and on face value simple story. I read the story and it went down well - the first thing Hermione said when I finished was, 'I'm having that one again at bedtime'. We then discussed discernment, how all is not always as it seems. There was talk of why we shouldn't jump into a river even if it looks inviting, shouldn't step on frozen ponds, shouldn't smoke, take gifts from strangers and so on. We also talked about taking responsibility for what we do and the consequences of our actions.
We then went on to talk about the Yangtze River upon which the story is based. We talked about where it is, how it is over 4,000 miles long, how in places you cannot see the other side it is so wide and how it flows past all kinds of things on it's way out to the East China Sea. We talked about the problems that exist with flooding along the banks of the Yangtze, how the people of China built dams to try to stop flooding and considered how it may feel to live there.
After chatting we looked at some pictures of the Yangtze at different stages and stuck them up on a large sheet of paper which I had stuck up in the playroom earlier. This is to be the gallery for our works on Ping. We looked at locks lifting boats and dams.
I had traced a map last night showing China, the Yangtze and the East China Sea. Both Lily and Hermione were keen to make one of there own so they did.
After this they painted a huge picture of the river and we looked on the Internet and printed off pictures of Chinese boats and buildings to stick on it.
All in all I am really pleased with how today went. The downside, if I can call it that, is that it does require a lot of preparation. One of the main reason I was drawn to some sort of curriculum is because I was struggling to sort everything out the night before. I don't know that this curriculum is going to help me in this respect but I am very impressed so far. It may just be that I have to get quicker at preparing :-) I am at least aiming to prepare the 'normals' a week in advance and just once a week in future. That should help.