Tuesday, 8 May 2007

Weather forecasts

Well, we started the day with 'normals' as per the norm. More of the word board, placing numbers in order of size and looking at the sound 'oa.' We went on to play a maths game which we had made from an idea in this book -

I bought the book second hand from a home ed email list a couple of years ago but it has been packed away in storage and forgotten about up until now. I like it. It is basic but it has some good ideas for simple games to make and play. Today's game consisted of rocket shape boards with numbered squares on plus lots of additions cards. The idea is that someone calls out the additions sum and players work out what the total is and if they have the total on their board they claim the card. First to complete their rocket is the winner.

We read Red Clogs again. Once again Hermione sat wide eyed and slightly open mouthed. She likes this one!

We located Japan on the map and placed our story disc on. I need to have a think an a bit of a re jig with the story discs. They are of a size which obscures small countries and the map is becoming crowded and confusing. Perhaps I should arrange them around the edges with arrow points to the country??

After reading the story we talked about predicting the weather. We wondered why people are fascinated with predicting the weather. We talked about how farmers are interested in the weather so as to know what best to do with their livestock and crops. We talked about why fishermen and airline pilots would be interested in the weather. We talked about how desirable it is to be able to predict potentially dangerous weather conditions such as floods, hurricanes, tornadoes etc. Thankfully the girls have never witnessed truly treacherous weather conditions so we watched a clip from National Geographics video clips about hurricane Katrina http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2005/09/0919_050919_katrina_video3.html They were sufficiently interested to watch it three times, (it's just a short clip).

We discussed how people predict the weather. The girl in the story throws her clog into the air and believes the position in which it lands is indicative of how the weather is going to be. We chatted about other weather predicting folklore such as, 'red sky at night shepherds delight...'. I went on to explain a little about what meteorologists do and how hey use lots of special equipment and scientific instruments.

We have set up our own weather station in the garden. We have set up a rain gauge and a thermometer. We also have a home made wind measuring device. It has a name but it escapes me right now. There is a picture of it below. We count how many times the cups rotate full circle in a minute. We hope to record the weather conditions over the next couple of weeks so watch this space!

As I went to switch off the computer Hermione noticed a video clip about trees and decided to watch it. It was about the discovery of a tree in Australia which was thought to be extinct. It dates back to the days of the dinosaurs. There is now a big conservation effort under way to try to protect the future of the species. Hermione explained that she had heard about things like this in the Judy Moody story. http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2007/04/070427-wollemi-video.html

This afternoon we went to visit a friend who is just starting her home ed journey. We had a pleasant time although Miles was a bit cranky towards the end of the afternoon. Hopefully this won't have spoiled it for anyone and we will spend more time together in the future.

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