Last night LM and her friend SC joined me while watching a three-part mathematics doco: The Code. We were all entranced. Naturally, we decided to look a little further into codes today. We briefly touched on geometry, equations, pi and fractals and generally discussed the notion that there are ‘laws’ of the universe. It caught on enough for LM to create a circular critter called Pi.
We also discussed the idea that when we make things we often create patterns and replicate what we have seen before so we created an ‘art game’ that involved random (eyes closed) selection of a little craft square, dice rolling and coin flipping. We established ‘rules’ to guide our random creation. It was SO much fun. Oddly relaxing and we adored the outcome (pictured on the bottom row).
At eight I didn’t think it was necessary for LM to master chaos theory just yet, so we moved on to another type of code: the ‘secret’ code. I love the Bletchley code stories and I’m keen to watch the BBC series with LM over the coming school holidays -might need to do a quick parent screen first.
This took us to a discussion of symbols and how all language is dependent on the shared understanding of symbols, in our case letters and numbers. As LM deeply admires Helen Keller (and has her mini bio on high rotation) I introduced her to Braille by have her first create her name from the braille alphabet in buttons, and then on paper (centre picture). Next she learned her name in sign language. We’re hoping to translate a favourite song into sign language soon.
But for now we stayed with symbols and a few other internationally recognised systems that LM used to make her name and mine. NATO phonetic alphabet = Lima Oscar Tango Tango Echo and Morse Code = o-oo — – – o . We even made our own code 39 barcode – which seems very sci-fi circa 1994.
The day ended with us crafting our names as they translate from International Maritime Signal Flags (my name is pictured at the top). Oh how I loved doing this. LM was not nearly as excited about the crafting as I was… until she saw me making mine. Oh my giddy goodness – these little bunting babies will be going straight to the school room.
Roger. Over and Out.
Echo Lima India Zulu Alfa