October 2013 | Mum In The Madhouse

October 2013

Hands on Maths for Maxi (year 4 or 8 year old) – Shapes

axi is currently working on shapes at school in maths and this week brought home an Islamic pattern sheet and he had to identify a number of polygons on it and colour them all in different colours. Maxi is 8 years old and in Year 4 at school (key stage 2).


For someone like me that finds this type of mathematics really hard it is nigh on impossible to look at that page and see anything other than triangles.

Thankfully First 4 Magnets had sent us a magnetic tangram this week. We were sent the yellow one and it retails at £1.99.

Complete square measures 125mm x 125mm
Seven separate magnetic shapes
Made from high-quality die cut foam on a flexible magnetic backing
These challenging and addictive puzzles are based on the ancient Chinese tangram puzzle. Each puzzle is made from premium foam with a flexible magnetic backing providing a secure grip to a steel surface like your fridge. Each puzzle is die cut and supplied as a square so you can easily break the individual shapes apart to create new shapes. A tangram contains a small square, two small isosceles triangles, a medium-sized isosceles triangle, two large isosceles triangles, and a parallelogram. An isosceles triangle has two equal angles and two equal sides. A parallelogram is a four-sided figure with each side parallel to the opposite side.

When I received it I put it on the fridge and everyone in the house has played with it, including Maxi’s friends who have come to visit. I decided to set some challenges for the boys to follow some patterns using the tangram and it was great fun for everyone.

On the suggestion of Cathy from Nurturestore this weekend will be spent turning a sleeper offcut in to a geoboard.

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Now is the time to prepare for colder weather

No one likes to think adverse weather conditions will hit them, but Britain’s climate is often unpredictable so it’s wise to be ready for anything! Make sure you’re able to clear your paths and driveways in snowy weather by having a shovel (or even better a snow shovel) available, as well as an adequate supply of salt and grit. It’s also worth insulating your pipes as this will keep heat in and reduce the chances of them freezing in a cold snap. You could also add an insulation jacket to your boiler, these are inexpensive and can help to save you money on your heating bills. If you have a little extra cash to spare why not also look in to double glazing your property? This may be fairly costly initially but will keep your home warmer and more secure throughout the year, so it’s sure to pay for itself fairly quickly. You might also like to look in to insulating your roof and walls or draught proofing your home. You might be surprised at just how much hot air is escaping through a little gap under your door. Of course, easy improvements can be made by keeping windows and doors closed, using a draught excluder, taking advantage of brighter spells to let light heat a room naturally and drawing curtains once the sun goes down.

Keep yourself warm

Energy bills can rocket in winter but it’s important to make sure you stay warm enough. There are ways to achieve this without needing to leave the central heating on all day. Make sure you wear layers of clothing around the house and in really chilly conditions cover up with a blanket or your duvet. It’s also important to stay healthy so give yourself enough exercise and make sure you eat a hot meal each day. If you’re out of the house during the day consider turning down the thermostat by a couple of degrees. This should keep things ticking over nicely and you can always turn it up again once you get home. The same applies to your bedroom, as if you’d rather not fork out for heating the whole property all day long then simply make sure it’s warm enough for when you’re ready to get your head down for the night.

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May all your dreams be sweet dreams or 8 ways to help prevent nightmares

 Sleep issues, we have had them all as most of your are aware.  We are also no stranger to nightmares and anxiety at bedtime or during the night.  Most of these things can be helped with some proactive thinking.  Many children around five to nine get nightmares due to becoming aware of the scary things

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