Tuesday, February 23, 2010

All the World's a Bookshelf

We made this beaded spiders this morning; Emily's is the blue one to match her blue room, mine is red. We have this Beaded Critters book and also Lovable Beaded Creatures, with the latter being much harder than the former! Going to try to get into these properly over the next few weeks with all the beads Emily had for her birthday.

Emily's fascination with computer viruses continues apace -- she's been finding out all she can and wants to order The Giant Black Book of Computer Viruses from the library... it's very expensive!! With Gramps on Monday afternoons she's been working away too - one week they looked in depth at logic gates; with Gramps' help Emily's also written two programs in Just Basic... one is a random number game where the user has to guess a number between two parameters while being given "too high" or "too low" clues. The other one allows the user to input a list of (for example) animals and it will then sort them into alphabetical order :-)) They also started to look at assembly language but have dropped that for the time being; it was extremely difficult, I gather.

For one reason or another we haven't done that much formal work during this last fortnight, but among what we have done has been a fair bit of introductory Shakespeare work adapted from the Shocking Shakespeare unit I mentioned in the last post. We looked at elements of comedy and tragedy, working out why Bottom is funny and why Juliet is tragic, using quotations from particular scenes to back up Emily's ideas. We also looked indepth at the "All the world's a stage" speech from As You Like It and Emily wrote a piece inspired by it, tracing the ages of man from baby to school child to lover to ambitious hero to successful midddle age to early old age to eventual decline. I think it's superb :-))

All the World's a Bookshelf

All the world's a bookshelf
People are mere books
All have twists and turns
Everyone in their plots

First on the left, the picture book
A few pages in the chapter
Rapturous delight in bright colours

And then the tattered workbook
Ticks, crosses, doodles, misspellings
Reluctantly scribbled in tiredness

Next comes the lovingly thumbed romance novel
Seeking Cupid through rose scented paper
Heart adorned cover beckoning love

Then, the action thriller
Ticking bombs and super villains
Characters leaping out of battle ridden pages

Next to the right, the proud autobiography
Tales of rich and poor and ups and downs
Pages crisp and new - money well spent?

And then the photograph album
Memories trapped in a single frame
Wisdom embellishes the yellowing photos

Finally, the last book on the shelf, another picture book
Dignity lost in a second childhood
Helpless, frail and tired
Tired from a journey from page to page
This is the end


We've continued meeting up with Hazel, Romy and Tansy once a week for me to teach some history to the girls and for Hazel to do psychology with them. History-wise, we're still ploughing through Cromwell and the civil war. Jon has started to do some GCSE level law with Emily too, which she's enjoying. He was going to take her to visit the magistrate's court, but apparently they won't allow anyone under the age of 14 into the gallery. Sigh, moan, grouch. Wasn't very pleased about that. Jon has decided to apply to become a magistrate in any case, as our nearest town currently has four vacancies. He's been along to observe the court twice, as required by the application form, so now we've just got to send that off and see what happens.

Finally, we've bought a pattern for Emily to make herself a halter neck top; we're off to buy the material tomorrow before taking Romy ice skating :-))

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