Category Archives: Logic

Punch Lines “Humerus” Art by George D. Wachob

Standard

IMG_5450Punch Lines “Humerus” Art by George D. Wachob, paperback collection of artworks, 64 pages, published in 2015.

This is a collection of individual drawings. Each piece of art represents a pun, phrase or name. They are fairly simple coloured drawings, one to each page. The actual names of the artworks are located at the back of the book to give the reader a chance to work out the pun for themselves.

I looked at this book with my husband, as he is a big fan of puns. We went from page to page trying to work out what each picture represented. It was obvious what some of the art was, while others had us stumped. Even after reading the name of the artwork, there were a couple that I still didn’t get. I think it’s possible that some of the puns just don’t translate well across the seas. We laughed at some, and groaned at others, but there were only a few that I really really liked, such as brain waves and false teeth. My husband liked the pigeon ‘toad’ and the airplane hanger. I reckon some of these pictures would be awesome as printed t-shirts.

Punch Lines “Humerus” Art is good for some light entertainment with a bit of brain stretching too. Whilst there isn’t anything expressly unsuitable for children in the book, I thought that the artwork would be too complicated for many children, and would be better suited to teenagers and adults.

*I received this book from the author, who asked me for an honest review. I did not receive any other remuneration, and the review is composed entirely of my own opinions and those of my husband.

Advertisements

Optical Illusions by Dr Gareth Moore

Standard

IMG_2514Optical Illusions by Dr Gareth Moore, hardback non-fiction, 96 pages, published by Parragon Books Ltd in 2013.

Optical Illusions presents more than 150 different images with explanations of these truly amazing illusions. The book was broken up into sections containing different types of illusions, such as perspective illusions, movement illusions, and colour illusions.

Both my daughter and myself pored over this book for hours allowing our minds to be tricked by the images. Some of them we had to move closer or further away to experience the illusion, and a few I couldn’t see at all, but most of them were very obvious. Even knowing that it was an illusion, it was incredibly difficult, if not impossible, to ignore the trick and see the image for what it really was. I loved trying though!

There was a handy little visual interpreter card inside the front cover that could be used to remove the illusion. Throughout the book, if an image could be decoded using the visual interpreter, there was a coloured circle besides the illusion indicating which part of the visual interpreter to use. This made checking whether lines were really straight or areas were the same colour much easier. My second grader liked using this visual interpreter to help her to see the reality of the image.

Optical Illusions is a very entertaining book that really has to be seen to be believed!

 

Lego School

Standard

Playing with Lego is a lot of fun. Making up Lego kits is great for L because she has to follow the instructions to get the model right, and sometimes she finds that a little difficult. She loves to display the Lego she has built and play with it. Doing free building with the Lego promotes creativity and logic, as the kids have to design, and then build their creations in a way that works and reflects their ideas.

A has only just started to enjoy Lego, until recently she had been exclusively using Duplo, which she loves. Both kids still love building with Duplo, and because of its size I’m not worried about Baby T swallowing it.

A placing trees and flowers ready for demolition.

A placing trees and flowers ready for demolition.

I put out the tub of Lego, gave them each a green base board and asked them to build their ideal school. Between them they decided that L would build the playground, and A would build the school room. A placed trees and flowers on her board first, and then knocked them all down to make room for the school buildings… L’s first addition to the playground was a swimming pool. I helped A set out the base of her building, then she placed windows, a door, and a doggy door (a small opening window). From there she was able to build the walls up.

 

Making an equipment shed.

Making an equipment shed.

I helped by finding some of the pieces they were looking for, adding some bricks to A’s school room, and putting little flower heads on the flower stalks as requested by A. While we built, we discussed the kind of things their dream schools would have. They both wanted lots of animals at their school. A added a pony and stables to her Lego design, while L added several dogs to the playground. They wanted horses, dogs, bunnies and chickens at their school, as well as lots of trees, flowers and soft grass. A pool was very important to L, and having lots of outdoor equipment like bikes, scooters, hula hoops, climbing frames and a sand pit was desired by them both. They also decided the school should have a nurse with her own little medical area, as well as a swimming instructor by the pool.

Building up the school room.

Building up the school room.

This activity fired up their imaginations as they thought about want they wanted at their ideal schools. They are in a small public school at the moment, so they can’t really have all the elements they mentioned, but one thing they both agreed on was that their ideal school would have awesome teachers, just like the ones at their real school. Hearing that made me happy. While they might like to have some extra things, like a pool, at their perfect school, they are extremely happy with their actual school, and the teaches and staff there. They are also very happy to be back at school this year, and are very eager to learn!

The school and playground.

The school and playground.

Marshmallow Sculptures

Standard
Marshmallow and straw building.

Marshmallow and straw building.

We practiced our architectural skills using marshmallows, plastic straws and toothpicks. It was lots of fun, and the kids loved eating the marshmallows once they were finished 🙂

Marshmallow and toothpick house.

Marshmallow and toothpick house.

L discovered that the toothpicks worked better than the straws, as they were shorter and stronger. She also found that using triangles as her base shape created a stronger structure that could be built up much taller than those made with squares.

After the tower building was complete, both L and A made some original sculptures using the marshmallows.  I particularly liked L’s ‘Cat doing splits’.

Making crazy sculptures.

Making crazy sculptures.

Spiky echidna.

Spiky echidna.

Cat doing splits.

Cat doing splits.

Matching and Memory Maths

Standard
Matching.

Matching.

During a recent trip to Bunnings I picked up some paint sample cards. Once we’d chosen the colours we wanted, it seemed a bit wasteful to toss the cards out, so we made a matching and memory game with them.

Ordering the numbers.

Ordering the numbers.

Each card had three shades of colour on it, so we separated each card into three. I wrote the words zero to ten on these cards, and L wrote the numbers 0 to 10 on more of the cards. We spread all these cards out on the floor, and A matched the numerals to the words. This was a great activity for learning to associate the numeral form with the word form of these numbers.

A placed the numbers in numerical order, and then matched the words to them.

Playing memory with the number cards.

Playing memory with the number cards.

We set the cards out right side down in a grid to play memory. The kids took turns turning over two cards at a time trying to make matches of the numbers to their names. We really enjoy playing memory, and we have several sets of picture memory cards that we often play with. Memory is a simple game for improving concentration, logic and memory and it helps kids learn about taking turns.

Matching 'friends of ten'.

Matching ‘friends of ten’.

L used the cards to match the ‘friends of ten’. These are two numbers that add together to give ten, such as 4 and 6, 3 and 7, 10 and 0, etc. Knowing the ‘friends of ten’ is important for quick calculations and improving maths confidence.

We had enough paint colour cards left over to make a shapes version too, with the shape names on some of the cards, and the matching shapes drawn (imperfectly by me) on others. A named all of the shapes for me, and then I helped her match the words to the shapes. She was less familiar with the shape name words, so this was a harder task than matching the numbers to their names.

Shape matching.

Shape matching.

 

A Puzzling Afternoon

Standard
A proud of her helicopter rescue puzzle.

A proud of her helicopter rescue puzzle.

We love doing puzzles, but we’ve already done all the ones we own multiple times. I had been thinking of getting some new ones, but L’s school has a great range of puzzles that they rotate through the classrooms and the library that we can use, so I’d been putting it off . A and I often spend a couple of mornings each week doing puzzles in the library after we’ve taken L to class. L will sometimes do a puzzle there if we have enough time before class begins, but she isn’t as interested in puzzles as A. We encourage both of them to do puzzles, as they are not only fun, but they are great for hand eye coordination and logic skills.IMG_2137

IMG_2134Last week our neighbour gave us two bags of secondhand puzzles for the kids, so we spent the afternoon sorting through them, and doing them all. There was a mix of wooden board puzzles, large floor puzzles, a counting one, a couple of cube puzzles and some simple jigsaws. I think they enjoyed the floor puzzles best. Most of them were a little easy for L, but she still had fun putting them together with us. It was nice to spend a couple of peaceful hours doing puzzles with the kids and Big L while baby T slept.

IMG_2125 IMG_2118