Tuesday, August 05, 2008

"You're a natural."

It has been a while since I last blogged, but that is not because I haven't wanted to (if you follow me).

I gathered that an "August post" was needed, and I seem to be finally sat uninterrupted which is a bonus. Last week has been a weird week. I was under the weather for a couple of days which was unpleasant, however this gave me a chance to do some catching up with something. Well this something is black. It has an on and off button at the back. It needs a controller. Have you guessed yet?

Last year Resistance Fall of Man happened to be the game I had to complete, and this year it has been Metal Gear Solid 4. I must confess (ashamedly) that I hadn't ever played that game before! (You didn't hear that from me!) Being even the slightest bit ill gave me the impetuous to become a bigger and more annoying lazy git. I am actually quite appalled at how I behaved in my quest to complete that game. Nevertheless, it was one heck of a game--I could even equip myself with a digital camera!

So whilst I recuperated and played that game, other misfortunes occured around me. I couldn't avoid one problem in particular, and once again I questioned why a person sometimes ends up depending on someone else to such an extent that they are no longer living for themselves. I guess part of this boils down to confidence, and some people always need someone telling them something "nice". Sigh. What made me slightly angry though, was that my practical suggestion was completely ignored and then I was expected to "be reasonable" when more problems arose. (I was reasonable, but I keep my suggestions to myself now). This problem was somewhat draining, but I don't know what the latest is!

Moving on, I have been teaching my brother Maths (when I remember!) and it has been quite fun actually. He does make me want to pull his hair out sometimes, but he really enjoys investigating things for himself. The last thing he did in year 8 was Pythagoras's Theorem, and it came up in one of the circle theorems we studied. Anyway, I have been an "evil git" and talking to him about proofs etc. I'm sad enough to admit that I jotted down a would be post on paper, whilst we studied this theorem and I will find it and post it! (He did ask me what I was writing as he did a problem, but I waved his questions away).

I have been slightly "bad" too because I have been cheating when I write notation, and he does the same now. Yes, the first thing I have tried to get him to do is write his solutions properly, and he seems to be warming to that idea now. Teachers have to be really careful in everything they say or write, for they don't really know what students might take with them. I try not to do that much "heavy" learning, but instead we explore things (eg. how to prove a theorem on circles).

We've also been doing logic puzzles, and I learnt a thing about my brother by doing these. One day I told him to work through a puzzle on his own, and to write everything down too. He declined and said that I would laugh at him if he got the wrong answer. He doesn't agree with me when I say that maths isn't about the right answer for at school all that matters is the answer. I know that he's mathematically more able than me so I'm going to work on his attitude too!

Once again, any suggestions on any activities that I could explore with him are most welcome. They could be anything he can investigate to interesting questions. He will be liking maths by the end of summer!

I haven't really done any maths myself, and with the holidays rapidly diminishing, I begin to worry. Instead I seem to have once again taken up my interest in photography! I now have a 2GB memory card, and am always looking to snap away. (This annoys the life out of my mum, as she once again wonders where I went wrong in life. :D) I don't think any of my to do list will be accomplished! (Do you detect a hint of happiness in that?! I hope not...)

The other day I went fishing with a group of people, and it was great fun! Hence the title of this post, but I think John was being kind as I narrated how useless I was at ice-skating. It was a pleasant experience as the weather held out for us, and time flew. We went for a two hours introductory lesson and I caught three chub! I didn't catch any small fish because having caught three "big" ones, I wasn't delicate enough when it came to the smaller ones. I will definitely be going again sometime, but a word of advice: don't squeeze the darn maggots.

John was supposed to tell us a poem about fishing, but he forgot and was saved as our session ended. He was pretty cool and the conversation flowed as we sat staring, waiting for the float to disappear. I pretended to be a school kid because most of the group happened to be school leavers, and I think I pulled it off rather nicely! (Well I had to bite my tongue on a few occasions as I was going to mention University, but I think James Bond should eat his heart out...) The people working there were really friendly which was nice. I can't remember some of the jargon, but that's what next times for.

Now to finish: Sometimes I wish I was busy in the way I want to be, but other times I believe you sometimes have to ride the wave and see where it carries you. However, that might not always be the wise thing to do, for it might carry you to jagged grounds.


Abg said...

I don't know about you, but I would consider 'explorations' as 'problems worked by yourself.' In light of that definition, I would say that the BMO would be the best route?

Beans said...

Hi Abg,

Thanks a lot for your comment! You've just reminded me that I could give him questions from the UKMT (UK Maths Challenge) as well, and I will also look into the BMO.

Cheers. :)