Tuesday, 4 August 2009

The Iceberg adventure... In pictures

Hettie using the telephone from the 'Wendy House' to try to pick up the 'iceberg' which was rapidly melting. She learnt how very cold the ice made the water hence the reluctance to use her hands!

Milly getting hands on with the 'iceberg' and is quite amazed how quickly the ice melts. Another lesson for another day... Global Warming!

Blood from a stone!

I find, pleasingly, that most days are peppered with many, many random questions and even more pleasingly I am finding that I don't know the answers to many of them.

So here starts the opportunities to aid/assist/guide or whatever but also to just allow Milly the opportunity to explore the different ways she can find out!

Oddly, most questions are fired at me usually during the times when we can't access the Internet or even the bookshelf (which is ever increasing and creaking with the weight of reference books)... And some at times when I am in the middle of making the tea, and yes there is more than half of me that just wants to drop tools and go and find out and the rest wants to get tea on the table before we all start getting ratty from low blood-sugar levels! So at those times I do my best to answer the question and fully engage with her too whilst preventing a curdling nightmare (multi-tasking-domestic-goddess that I am). It's just nicely getting to the point now that Milly helps out with the tea and we can chat about other things while we are chopping or mixing rather than reminding her that eggshell and onion skins aren't really very nice to eat!

So just the other day Milly asked "Why did the Ice Age melt?" (it's all linked with the Movie and not, alas, with any reference to David Hempleman-Adams or Sir Ranulph Fiennes and their incredible feats of endurance across the ice)! There was very little precise information about this when I Googled it so her question is one of those 'open' ones we have where she refers back to it quite often and we discuss possible answers to it. With interesting outcomes and possibilities.

It lead on to a discussion on Icebergs of which we found loads about on You Tube. As we looked at the incredible images of collapsing icebergs the size of sky-scrapers and effervescing seas, I found that Milly was not glued to the screen at all... in fact I found myself encouraging her back to the screen with exaggerated "Ooooh... Wow look at THIS... it's Amazing!" And "I've NEVER seen anything like this... Look at this with me?" I did this about five times and really felt like I was trying to get blood from a stone to try to get her to engage with it... with me... with it... Oh it's all so interesting and very confusing at times. Hettie was enthralled by it and whilst Milly came back to the PC to look she just acknowledged with an "Hmmm" and "Uh huh".

I felt a little dis-heartened but felt that she must have just gleaned from the images what she wanted and that that was enough for her... So I suggested that we make our own iceberg... she was delighted with this. So into the freezer went the lunch box full of water and the following day we 'launched' it into the baby bath full of blue water (food colouring, to make it look a bit like the sea). First we chatted about whether it may float or sink, they both felt how heavy it was and this was getting quite exciting. They agreed with each other that it would float. It went in and with delight the the 'iceberg' floated but only just.

Most of the ice was under the water and a small fraction of it was showing (just the uneven part on the top - It was quite realistic actually). An excited discussion ensued about how and why only the little bit at the top was showing... I said that some icebergs were bigger than our neighbours house (that we can see from the garden). We looked at the house and I asked Milly if that house was an iceberg how much of it would be showing and how much would be under the water? She said that only a bit of the roof would be showing.. and you know that within scale I reckon she was pretty much spot on and that is another lesson for another day... FRACTIONS! I love this constant edge-on learning! It feels raw and totally organic! About the only organic thing we can afford these days! Hee hee!

Another lesson for all of us: 'Show me and I will always remember'.