Friday, May 20, 2011

Math Games Week 4 - Iconic Numbers

I must admit, this has been the hardest Math Games week so far and we didn't get much done. One reason is that I'm not exactly sure how to explain the concept of iconic numbers to M. I tried explaining to Chris, but he didn't understand it which tells me I'm not fully understanding it myself (otherwise I'd find a way to convey the idea).
Another reason is that this week's been crazy busy with projects and also with doing lots of DIY junk toy making. Which is exciting, of course.

The third reason is that we seem to be stuck on the symmetry games, specifically the Mirror Book game. It's really not a bad situation at all and I see that M is developing the game. I simply left the mirror book standing open on a low shelf and noticed that almost every day M brings a small toy and puts it into the book, then adjusts the angle between the mirrors.
Today was different though. He actually created a couple of things just for the mirror book - very exciting! First, he built a simple spaceship shape out of some foam mosaic blocks. I then suggested putting it into a mirror book. It was so awesome to hear him gasp in delight when he saw the result - a beautiful snowflake. We then tried it with a couple more spaceships that Chris built.

I then left the two of them to their own devices and went to finish cooking dinner (chicken braised with artichoke hearts and fennel). When I went back into the room, M proudly showed me a mound of foam shapes in between the "leaves" of the mirror book and explained that it was a volcano.
As for the iconic numbers. I occasionally remembered about them on our many walks this week and asked M to look for them. But he didn't show much interest. Fractals were a notable exception. He actually came up with a silly "living on the roof" game that led us to drawing this fractal roof (the image quality is really poor, sorry about that). And then I showed him a few fractal images online.

I'm not giving up on the iconic numbers just yet. I think I'm just going to continue bring them up as we come across them and hope that at some point things will magically click.

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