Posts Tagged ‘maths’

As we nibbled our rhubarb crumble cake and gingerbread loaf at Cake and Chat this morning, we were discussing (as usual) the state of the neighbourhood. Our local PCSO was visiting to eat cake catch up on intelligence and he and I were talking about the broken Vicarage windows and the local children who play together most evenings. Often there are more than a dozen of them, and they can often be playing out for four hours until the dark drives them home.

We decided that there is likely to be a mathematical formula for the likelihood of trouble eg broken windows that could be developed, using the number of children (C), the number of hours they spend unsupervised (H) and the amount of trouble (T). Something like this I would guess:

CxH = T

So if there are fewer children, or they are driven inside by rain after only an hour, or parents come and supervise, the amount of trouble is much less. The broken Vicarage windows didn’t happen first thing in the evening, but towards the end of things, and there were always a good few kids playing together.

Of course, the formula is really more complex than that, and should include such factors as emptiness of tummies, sugar recently consumed, time since the last big telling off and air temperature. Perhaps if I work on it I can develop the definitive predictor of Trouble and head it off before it comes. Or maybe I should stick to prayer and building relationships.

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This summer I was looking for ways to help the Queen to improve her ‘working memory‘. She struggles to hold facts and numbers in her head for long enough to manipulate them with ease. Or where she just put something down.

So I went on a little google hunt and found a brilliant game, which  is designed to teach facts and improve working memory. It’s called Brainbox and consists of a series of cards on a variety of subjects. The set we got this summer was on nature. Other topics include maths, history, football and the World. You take it in turns to study a card for ten seconds. You can play on line to see what sort of cards are included (you’ll have to concentrate!). Once your ten seconds are up, you roll a die and answer the question with the corresponding number from the back of the card.

The children loved this game – it’s quick to play, interesting and doesn’t seem like hard work, as you might expect from an educational game. It comes in a robust box which means that it will last. So many games seem to come in boxes not designed to store their contents for longer than a couple of plays, which drives me loopy. I have the maths and a history one tucked away for Christmas stockings. Mind you, as these evenings get darker and more uninviting, I might be getting them out before then.

Prices on Amazon seem to range between £5-£10. I originally bought them from the Happy Puzzle Company, who do an excellent range of games, but they charge £12.99.

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