Monday, 2 February 2015

Useless Box and Icy Geese Flocks

Squidge and Gruff finished soldering/wiring/constructing the Useless Box together and he was delighted with the result!

Sprout woke up telling me he loved how rivers change the shape of land (following the documentary about the Yellowstone wolves), and I asked if he'd heard of oxbow lakes. He hadn't and I briefly explained, and he was interested so we watched a video about it.

He and Moppet played with Lego and water for a while.

While Squidge watched Power Rangers, Moppet had some monkey nuts, and a friend online asked if we knew about the peanut rabbit. What??? But look!!! How cool is that :) The three of them then opened the rest of the bag of monkey nuts to check for rabbits :)

Sprout and I were talking about apex predators, and I showed him the video on YouTube of a porcupine defending itself from a pack of lions, he was amazed. I told him about when I used to look after the porcupines at Chester Zoo and I think I went up in his estimations a bit ;)

They all wanted to know what the 'rabbit' was in the peanuts so we looked it up and it turns out that's the germ, which led to a conversation about the different meanings of the word 'germ'. 

Then they wanted to know about peanut plants, and were surprised that the peanuts grow underground.

Sprout watched some Skylander Boy and Girl and they were doing a vlog at a water park and he wondered how the camera was still working, and we talked about waterproof cameras and gropros and this YouTube video inside a dishwasher.

They watched some programmes together.

Sprout played Waking Mars where you explore the caverns and collect data about the organisms you find and extrapolate theories as to the workings of the ecosystem, it's brilliant. He especially liked the 'Megazoa' creatures and wanted to know what the 'zoa' bit meant as he already knew the 'mega' part meant large.

Squidge and I played Story Cubes.

It was home ed park day the next day, and it was surprisingly warm considering there was still snow on the ground in some parts of the park. They'd set themselves a mission to find some squirrels...

...they investigated...

...put some nuts down, found places to wait and watch...

...and were very pleased to find this little guy! Sprout took loads of photos of him, fed him, and even touched him, so he was really excited.

They spent the rest of their time playing with their friends.

We headed to their grandparents' house next, where they played some mini table tennis...

...dressed up, and put on puppet shows.

We'd planned a trip to the skate park the next day, and it was cooooold. The lake was frozen but still looked like water, so the birds looked like they were walking on water and Sprout joked that they must be jesus birds... I showed him this cartoon which he got the joke for.

They liked the new street art at the skate park...

...sung their own version of Hakuna Matata...








...and pretended to be 'silent jeep engines' :)

We finished off with hotdogs, hot chocolate, and, bizarrely, ice lollies :O

I showed Sprout the Single Dad Laughing video of people trying to sing Hakuna Matata...

...then we looked up the actual words...

...then went home, where he changed some settings on minecraft in order to maximise diamond spawn rates and create caves full of diamonds :) Later the kids made Sprout's invention of pizza pixels (recipe only given out to select people who Sprout deems worthy :) )

We watched Master of Disguise, in which Sprout recognised the illuminati symbol and wanted to know why it was there, so we talked a bit about symbolism. Afterwards Squidge played Scribblenauts and Sprout played on a new food chain app I found, and noted that the sun was at the start of every chain, and always followed by a plant.

The next morning Sprout prepared a survival map for our monthly LAN Minecraft meet up that we've restarted, then he quizzed me on some minecraft trivia.

We watched 10000BC together.

Moppet got her baby to sleep.

We all watched a documentary about gorillas, and they were amazed at their sharp teeth and excited about a baby gorilla.

I helped Sprout look up some crafting recipes.

Then we had lots of friends round for minecraft day, some played on pocket edition and some on PCs, it was lovely :) Sprout also enjoyed telling his pizza pixels recipe to someone :)
Later on while I did some work, Gruff and Moppet played with the camera on my phone, hence about fifty photos like this...

...and another fifty like this.

The uv pen I'd ordered to replace the one out of Sprout's charity shop spy kit arrived, so the three of them spent about an hour and a half writing secret messages and pictures :)

Squidge had a friend round to play and they watched The Lego Movie, as well as going up to the shop together, getting some sweets for everyone, and bringing back the right change. 

I worked late and Moppet had napped, so once everyone else was asleep and I was still working, Moppet snuggled up with a snack and Curious George on her tablet and waited for me to finish.

Moppet drew some pictures the next morning, between watching episodes of Dora and Diego.

Sprout and Squidge played on Lego Marvel Superheroes together.

Then Sprout followed the directions in a TSMC video to build a modern minecraft house. He usually does his own designs so this was a new thing to do.

Squidge watched some minecraft videos too...

...while Moppet ate chocolate spread from the jar and played with ALL THE TOYS (because I'd just put them all away ;) )

Next day Squidge had a morning of watching Ninjago episodes and Skylanders Boy and Girl videos, one of which gave us an idea for a game.

Sprout worked some more on his Minecraft houses...

...and looked into crafting some things he hadn't crafted before, and various generators.

Moppet discovered Horrible Henry and Milly, Molly, which she watched a bit of both of, and then played on Endless Reader for a while.

Squidge and Moppet danced along with Skylander Boy and Girl to lots of Skylander character theme tunes... did Sprout.

A friend told us about a pilot day for this and all three kids were keen to go along. They watched a presentation about light, the spectrum, perception, microscopes and lasers, and each built a uv torch which they thought was awesome!

Sprout was maybe the most excited that's he's ever been, that they had an oculus rift to try out, so he played a space game and went on a sheer drop simulator. 

He had a look at Google Cardboard too, and we googled a bit to see if there is any way to get it to work with Apple devices.

Squidge and Moppet made some pipe cleaner and dough monsters...

...and used some connected to a Makey Makey piano, which prompted us to get ours out again at home.

They all played a bit with a Leap Motion controller which was fun.

Someone showed Sprout app inventor 2 and he played around with it for a while and came up with an idea for a Creepy Pasta app, but ran out of time so we took down the details of how to carry on at home. We watched the lights and lasers presentation again and Sprout held a balloon while the guy burst it with a laser, as well as answering some questions the guy asked the audience about how they thought it worked.

On the way home Sprout played Red Herring, and this led to him wanting to know what the sodium/water reaction looked like so we found a video.

While I did some work the next day Sprout played Blocksworld and Moppet and Squidge built a Mixel with Gruff, then we all watched The Master of Disguise again. 

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