Thursday, December 19, 2013

Accidental Bystander of Homeschooling - More Math

Pendulum make out of Knex and party favor disco balls

STEAM subjects  are my son's forte.  He is wild about Science Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math.  I am always looking for more meaningful lessons to engage him and keep him on THE of path of life long learning.  Once of the resources that I found through my homeschooling group SelfDesign Global was a learning network that regularly holds conference on line and has a weekly educator virtual speaker of some kind. This group is called the Learning Revolution.  Here is the link.

Through this portal of educators I have found several groups to connect with.  The 1st organization I wish to talk about here is Moebius Noodle.  This organization is the project of Dr. Maria Droujkova and focuses on children's math.  Here is the link.

I also found the Maker Camp movement.  While we have not officially joined that movement my son makes things all the time and we are part of their Google + community and follow their web sight.
One of the student's projects that we got excited about was this model of a plant cell.  We see wonderful things form that movement on Pinterest too.

I recently took a short course with this group called Open Minds.  We broke into groups and worked on creating a small group of children and teaching some of the projects the moderators recommended.  Since my son has social and language issue, we do not have a pool of children to create a learning group of circle with.  We complete the task in our own family group.  We worked on Tiling and used Pentomino tiles and studied the work of M.C. Escher and his drawings of tessellating images and zero negative space. The class was only two weeks and the moderator and teacher will compile a book of her findings of the group and ideas which will be available soon.  Here is the link to that group and information on how to buy Julia Brodsky's new book.

We worked with the Pentomino tiles and then went out to driveway and drew tessellating geometrical shapes in chalk on the driveway.  Conor started with hexagons and then began finding the triangle shapes within the hexagon.  His drawing here is the end project that got messy but you can see he understood the concept of tessellation and went further with creating patterns with in patterns.


One of Conor's abilities is a amazing visual memory. Artistically he is able to see a shape and recreate it from memory.  I have created some projects to use that gift and also incorporated his artistic skills.  Really all I have to do is give Conor the materials and he does his own projects.  Here is a photo of how he found symmetry, using the reflection of the table, with his attribute tiles.

He also created studies on this concept with Iphoto on our MAC.  Conor enjoys make mandalas as well
and had made some recently with his attribute tiles.  I am always amazed at what he creates if I leave him alone and provide him with materials.


Another project in symmetry we have done is create origami sun catchers and snowflakes.

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