Letter of the week- We made it!

 

After 26 llllooonnngggg weeks, we finally made it through all 26 letters of the alphabet! We’ve been faithfully sticking them up on our cupboard and here you see it- all 26 letters, upper and lower case alphabets!

Its our first education milestone since we started the Growing Tree Project. And while Q’s been able to sing his ABCs for a while already, I think this take-your-time method has really helped us enjoy learning, learning the alphabets and its place in our lives more. Sometimes when I feel like maybe he’s not “quite getting it”, he’d surprise me by correctly identifying the alphabet in random words we come across: street signs, words in books, names of his friends… Interestingly enough, he seem to like some letters more than others!

We’ve been working on writing some of the alphabets and we started with the letters of his name. We’ve gotten through all the different letters of Q-U-E-N-T-I-N (not so steady on the E and N just yet) but we’ll get there soon enough I think. He writes the letter Q very well ( a circle and a line) and I look forward to hitting this new learning milestone!

Letter of the week- Z

We finally made it to the Letter Z! I had great plans for the letter Z since Q’s favorite place in the world began with the letter Z: The Zoo! Unfortunately, between my crazy schedule (its peak work season) and the terrible weather (too hot, too cold, too wet), we did not manage to go to the Zoo to see the Zebras.

So, to make up for it, we pretended to build our own zoo! We pretty much have all the animals in our animal menagerie and our lego set has “gates” so we spent a happy afternoon building ourselves a zoo. In our zoo, of course, the crocodiles would live harmoniously with the Pandas and the goldfish next to the lions. Its a very peaceful, friendly zoo.

Methinks a trip to the zoo might still be in order next week.

Letter of the week- X

I’d be honest and say that the letter X doesn’t quite rank as high for me in importance when I rank all 26 letters of the alphabets. But the “lets be fair” part of my says, that I gotta give good ole letter X his equal emphasis; after all, what would Fox, box and X-ray be without the letter X.

So I did a little digging.

X, as most of us already know is the 24th letter of the alphabet. Aside from its (meta)linguistic importance (ahem!), X also has mathematical importance as it is often used to symbolize an unknown variable and has been thereafter co-opted within linguistics to denote a similar unknown: person X, for example.

Traditionally, X was also used in lieu of a person’s signature back in the day since many people could hardly read or write. Though, I never quite get that since they could always use thumbprint. Maybe they did both. I’m sure there were and are huge legal issues to title deeds or will signed simply with an X. Clearly who ever came up with that was either lazy or clever or both.

Then there’s X in lieu of a kiss: this dates back to early Christian times when people would place a kiss on a cross as a mark of a promise. X was a symbol of the cross of calvary as understood by the Greek word for Christ: Xristos. I’m thinking maybe this is why some people aren’t fussed to use X’mas. I personally like spelling the word CHRIST in whole. But back to my point- this was why people would write X at the bottom of letters: to suggest earnestness. Though why hugs are fat Os is beyond me. I like to think someone thought the contrast between both letters looked nice. Or maybe Hallmark came up with it.

Anyway… then there is the all famous X chromosome. The all important X chromosome is one of two sex determining chromosomes. Females have two X chromosomes and males have XY. I think this is why women are considered mysterious and all- evidently the mathematicians got that observation right seeing as they like to use X to denote the unknown variable.

And most importantly, to me anyway, X just kinda looks cool. Don’t you think?

Joining the dots

Q hit a stage about two weeks ago where all he would want to draw are shapes: circles, squares, triangles and rectangles.

All fine, well and good and we started introducing the idea of complete the picture to him: I’d show him a sample picture made of shapes and draw another one half completed and he would finish it up. Usually it’d be something simple like missing wheels on a car (circles) or ears on a cat (triangles).

Then he went on to wanting to draglines. Many many lines, so I begun using his fat do-a-dot markers to draw thick luminescent lines (like highlighters) and he would either draw on them or between them “like a maze” he says.

I got kinda bored with doing that so early in the week instead of starting our letter of the week, I introduced him to connect-the-dots since he knew his number sequences quite well and simple line matching (where you join an item from the left column to a corresponding item on the right column).

I left him with very sparse instructions and was pleasantly surprised he managed the tasks well enough. He tore through the stack of self generated worksheets fast enough, mainly, I think, driven by the fact I’d give him two M&Ms for each correct task and soon started requesting for specific picture I had to craft the connect-the-dots around: like Nemo.

His requests have gotten more complex (turtle, rhino, dinosaur…) so maybe I think I will go find ready made ones.