Saturday, 17 November 2007

The Spider Weaver, Northern Children's Book Festival etc

Round up of the past few days.


Nana and Hermione visited the Laing Art Gallery to view an Exhibition by Romuald Hazoumé. The theme of the exhibition was slavery. There was a workshop which they joined in and made their own personal representation of slavery.


We finished looking at The Spider Weaver by Margaret Musgrove. It isn't a FIAR text, it's just something that appealed in the local library. It is the story of two weavers who observe a spider spinning it's web and as a result go on to weave in a different and more elaborate way.

The story is set in Ghana. We located Ghana on our map and placed a story disc on it.

We watched a clip showing drumming in Ghana

We talked about the uniqueness of a spider's web and reflected on things which are unique and others which are common. We concluded that many natural things are unique and many man made things are common - bit of a generalisation there I know.

Cacao is one of the main exports of Ghana. Not wanting to miss an opportunity to discuss and eat chocolate I thought we would explore this avenue. We looked at this picture of a whole pod, this picture of a split pod and this picture of the beans. Way hey, chocolate does grow on trees!

We looked at different kinds of chocolate - squares of chocolate, nibs, cacao butter and drinking chocolate.

Hermione isn't keen on chocolate. She prefers carob and wondered if it also grows on trees. Yes it does. We looked at pictures of carob pods. I think we should revisit carob some time and look at where it grows, what the tree looks like, how it is processed etc.


Today we went to The Northern Children's Book Festival. We had tickets for a Jan Fearnley workshop which Hermione really enjoyed. She has been a Jan Fearnley fan for a long while now and was really pleased to meet her in person, hear her read some of her books and talk about how she imagines the characters in her book to be really like.

Miles drew a cow. He told me it's a cow. I'm very impressed. Look closely and you can see it has a head, body and legs. Ah, my mini Picasso.

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