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We started today

C and I started our Abacus study this morning, when we went through the first few pages of the Math Mojo site:


We didn’t actually start learning the Abacus, but we did learn how to count with an Abex (an earlier type of counting board used by the Romans; I drew one on paper, and we counted using pennies). Tomorrow, we’ll learn how to add on the Abex – the site assures us that this is preparing us for working with the actual Abacus.

It was FUN! And C learned a lot – I don’t think anyone had ever explained to him before how our base ten/decimal system works, even with the numbers that he’s familiar with using. Oh! And we also learned how to write numbers using the ancient Egyptian system, which used a different symbol for each power of 10 (tally marks, arches, spirals, etc.). Since we’re studying Egypt in history right now, that fit in very nicely.

Oh, and the best thing about it? Today, when I gave him the options about what he wanted to do first (the options being read the next chapter in our history book, play a game of Scrabble – that’s spelling and vocabulary, you know – or do math with the Abacus), he chose MATH! does gigantic happy dance


( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 11th, 2006 06:31 am (UTC)
This is awesome; you are so clever! :)

Can I recommend a book I had when I was just a little older than Connor? It's called the Mathematics Encyclopedia and I remember loving to read it. It's out of print, but you should be able to find a second hand copy and it has content that should keep him busy for the next few years.

Also a favourite of mine, in the science/engineering side of things was What Makes It Go?. Some of the machines in it are dated, but on the whole it holds up very well in terms of both science and science-history.
Oct. 11th, 2006 06:40 am (UTC)
YAY! Yes, book recommendations are ALWAYS welcome! :) I will find copies of both of them.
Oct. 11th, 2006 02:57 pm (UTC)
That reminded me of a site I found years ago that I've found useful and accurate. howstuffworks.com
Nov. 21st, 2006 01:40 am (UTC)
Oh! I just realized that I never remembered to thank you for these book recommendations. Actually, I did thank someone else for them - I got confused and thought my friend Amy had recommended them for some reason. She never said anything like, "What? I never recommended books!" so she probably just thought I was crazy (although, she has recommended other books, so maybe that's what she thought I was talking about).

Erm, I'm rambling, aren't I?

ANYHOW . . . I was able to get both of them from somewhere (Amazon marketplace, I think), and they're both GREAT! Connor especially loves the mathematics one, which is very cool, considering he's NOT math boy, as well you know. So, YAY! Thanks for these recommendations. Only a month or so belated. :D
Nov. 21st, 2006 01:51 am (UTC)
I'm really pleased you were able to find them - considering that I was reading them twenty years ago, I thought you might have trouble finding copies. So glad to hear Connor is enjoying the math one! :)
Oct. 11th, 2006 08:40 am (UTC)
sounds like you are doing great!!!
Oct. 11th, 2006 02:54 pm (UTC)
That's excellent! I think I remember the abacus being shown to me and maybe even some glancing info given on how to count with one, but it wasn't anything ever emphasized. And now that I think of it, that may have been during a special summer science program. It's not something that I'm aware of being taught to the kids I mentored.
Oct. 11th, 2006 04:07 pm (UTC)
I wish my kids and I could go to your school. :)
Nov. 21st, 2006 01:42 am (UTC)
You can! Just move up here. ;)
( 9 comments — Leave a comment )
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