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Showing posts from July, 2015

21 Months

Little An turned 21 months last week and here is another letter to her.

Dearest An,

I love you!

Your greatest development this past month was in the area of speech:

You can say 3- and 4-syllable words now. Today, you said "heliconia" with ease. "Beh" has become "umbrella", "nana" has become "banana" and "co-nut" has become "coconut tree". Good job, girl. :)

You can also combine 3 to 4 words like "knock head, painful" and "fireworks... loud... cover ears".

You can carry out a short decent phone conversation. This was one that took place recently:
Popo: Hello, An.
You: Hello, Popo.
Popo: What are you doing?
You: Read book.
Popo: Oh! Read book. What book are you reading?
You: Dora book.

You can sing Happy Birthday and the first line of Twinkle Twinkle with acceptably discernible pitching. May God grant you the gift of music so you can praise and worship Him with it.

Today, you counted from 1 to 12. …

Fractions ~ Equal Parts

I have been wanting to do this activity with J for ages and finally managed to make some time for it.

I gave him some pieces of square paper and asked him to divide each piece into four quarters in at least 5 ways. He managed to do the division in three conventional ways easily.


After that, this conversation took place between us:

J: I don't think I can think of any other way.
Me (pointing to one part of the orange paper): Can you tell me what fraction of the paper this is?
J: One quarter.
Me (pointing to one part of the yellow paper): How about this?
J: One quarter.
Me (pointing to one part of the green paper): How about this?
J: One quarter.
Me: If they are all quarters, are you able to combine the information and think of another way to divide this piece of paper into 4 quarters?
J: Ah! I think I can.


J proceeded to show me the folding on the bottom left. Hurray for that answer!

He then used the pink paper and drew two squares. He got stumped after that. I had to provide a hint…

Thankful Tuesday ~ An Exciting July

July is not over yet but we have already done many enjoyable things together. Here are some highlights:

1) ION Sky

From the 55th/56th floor of ION, we enjoyed a bird's eye view of Singapore.






The ION Sky is opened to the public from 3 to 6 p.m. daily and entry is free. Besides the spectacular view, J liked looking at and learning about landmarks through the viewers located at the gallery. I liked it that there were signs informing us which location we were facing. There were also scientific facts about clouds and Singapore's weather plastered on the glass walls, so the visit was made educational. 
2) Building the Lego Dragon Playground 
We contributed to the building of the 8.5-foot Lego Dragon Playground at Raffles City. 
We were also impressed by the SG50 Lego contest submissions and my favourite was one with lion dance and fire crackers. 


3) Polliwogs at Suntec
We had fun at Suntec's Polliwogs, thanks to the generosity of our friend A who treated us with her prepaid pass. T…

Fireworks Craze

We went to watch fireworks on Saturday - again! This time, we wanted to be at the forefront of the action, so we booked a restaurant at One Fullerton, knowing that it was right next to the Marina Bay. We also jio-ed (colloquial for invited) the extended family so we could enjoy the celebratory atmosphere together.

When we arrived at One Fullerton, it was close to six and there was already a substantial crowd. Our restaurant booking was not till seven, so we lined the railings along with enthusiastic others.


At around 6.05 p.m., we witnessed the five-star tribute to Mr Lee Kuan Yew for the first time. Little An was suitably impressed. Unfortunately, I was taking photos with my phone and did not manage to capture the magnificence of the display.


Following the tribute came a LONG wait. We anticipated that the helicopters bearing the national flag would arrive at around 6.30p.m. Little An decided to remove her shoes and I had to coax her to leave them on as we were so close to the waters …

Twisted Fairy Tales

Our NLB libraries categorise children's books based on age - babies; preschoolers; ages 7-9 (or 6-9 in some libraries) and ages 10-12. When J was in K2 and not yet 6, he was still enjoying Oliver Jeffers' books, Norman Bridwell's books (Yes! Clifford the Big Red Dog) and the Berenstain series from the preschoolers' section. I got a little k.s. and gently nudged him over to the 7-9 section. After all, he could recognise sight words at two plus and should be moving on to chapter books by then. My 'encouragement' worked and soon he was delving into the world of Geronimo Stilton and climbing up the Magic Faraway Tree.

I recently looked at the picture books on my book shelves. I had acquired quite a collection of these during my NIE days and later when I taught English. I remembered admiring the creativity of the authors and how some of my pupils caught on the creativity and produced impressive work when I got them to write their own twisted tales. I knew I had to i…

Help

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Ps 46:1

Last night, I doubted if I was a good mum. The circumstances leading to that unhealthy thought were trivial - 1) J was reluctant to do his Chinese work. 2) He got distracted by a library book before he started on the work. 3) He discovered that his pencil case was close to empty when he was about to do his work. 4) He was bewildered over how his stationery went missing. Having spoken to mothers of other boys, I realised that these phenomena were not peculiar to my son. I was however not very forgiving and I will leave you to imagine what happened.

As I was pondering over my reaction, I started missing the good old days when J was totally cooperative and mild-tempered. We hardly had to raise our voices at the sweet child. Then I wondered where I went wrong and why I had more issues to handle than before.

I read my devotional and the title of the devotional passage was "Help"! It brought a smile to my face…

Rich

Dearest J and An,

We are not rich in the material sense, but we are rich in that we have everything we need and lack nothing. Remember the verse "The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not be in want" (Psalm 23:1)? God is our Provider.

Since we are richly blessed, it is only right that we bless others. With our church members, we distributed face masks to residents in the neighbourhood recently. (I personally would have preferred giving other items, but we supported the decision of the church.)

J, you were the spokesperson at three homes and you were confident as you recited your memorised speech to tell the residents what the gift was about. Good job, son!

An, you were very enthusiastic about knocking on doors and pressing doorbells. You also learnt to say a new word - nobody. Many residents were not at home and you imitated us when we said that nobody answered the door. One lady was quite glad to play with you.

We finished the task quite quickly and I think we all felt happy tha…

Fireworks and New Sentosa Cable Car Line

Dearest J and An,

We recently went to Gardens by the Bay again and this time, we timed our visit such that we could catch both the Garden Rhapsody and fireworks from the NDP rehearsal. I was even ambitious enough to consider bringing you on the OCBC Skyway to watch the fireworks, but as there was a snaking queue to get up the skyway, I decided to sit under a supertree with you and enjoy the show instead.

The timing was impeccable. J and I were walking towards one of the restaurants at the Supertree Grove at 6 plus when we heard the sounds of helicopters. We ran and had a closeup view of these vehicles bearing the Singapore flag. This was a bonus as we had not planned to watch the flypast.


After dinner was when the Garden Rhapsody started. As usual, we enjoyed the mix of music from Disney, Star Wars, Angry Birds and more. While the supertrees show was going on, burst of fireworks lit the sky. These were short bursts, and everytime I got my phone camera ready, the fireworks had ceased. …

Creativity

Dearest J and An,

We chanced upon the Singapore Youth Festival Art Exhibition at Raffles City. I was very impressed by the creativity of the primary school pupils. The young artists used different medium to portray the same theme and the wealth of ideas amazed me. I pray that you two will also be creative and think out of the box. I took plenty of pictures to remind ourselves not to restrict our imagination.

Aren't they pretty? Let's crack our minds and reuse our unwanted things. :)

J, you were quite fascinated with the Overhead Projector (OHP) at the exhibition. Your generation is spoilt by visualisers and PowerPoint presentations, but when I was a student, our teachers used to have to use transparencies to diaplay information to us. In fact, in my early years of teaching, I remember printing notes onto tranparencies too. I was glad you got to experience how to use an OHP. :)


An, you were eager to interact with the art work and we had to watch you closely to ensure you did no…