Monday 23 June 2014

Teaching Math to Preschooler 2

When I was in kindergarten, my mom hired a tuition teacher who made me do sums that looked like this:


Holly molly, how I HATED math. I was a little Dragon girl then, I wanted to run and climb trees, catch bugs and scream and shout. Instead, I had to do sums.....imagine doing pages and pages of that. Thanks ma, I am allergic to numbers now.

It's not that my mom was kiasu. She couldn't teach us herself and therefore, she did what she thought was best for us. I vowed never to do the same to my own children. I never thought I would have a little math nerd for a son.
I brought Tiger to Eye Level the other day, just to see if he would like it. Basically, the FREE SCREENING test for his age was to see if he could write 1 2 3. Since I've never forced Tiger to write lines, he squiggled legible but fugly numbers. Alas, that meant he must start from Book One. Tracing numbers & writing lines. My allergy sky-rocketed.

"You want me to pay fees to trace 1 2 3?" 
*I didn't say it out loud la*

Instead, I asked Tiger if he would like to join the class. 
He replied, "I like math with mama only"
*Mama did imaginary Kozachok dance and backflips*
I smiled and said, "Never mind, we can write at home. Maybe when he is 5? Bye"

Like what Madam Pow Yew said, Math is magic!
It should be fun, exciting and intriguing.
What we do at home is:

Sometimes, we write/scribble

Sometimes, we just count

Occasionally, he uses his Logico board.
If we bring the board  to my room, he will ALWAYS ask for popcorn.

It's like the book, If You Give The Mouse A Cookie.
In this case, I gave the Tiger some Garrett Almond Popcorn
while we played with this in my room last July.

Associating popcorn with math. Genius, no?
I need a popcorn maker.

 I snapped a craft stick into two to make a "bigger/smaller than" sign

I recently purchase some magnetic numbers from ELC during its member sale
but I needed a sorter...tadaaaaa
                     category box              +      magnetic letters

Tiger was over the moon.
"Mama, nice!"
 Never be afraid to teach new math concepts.
They think it's a game!

 Something for Teacher Mama.
After he completes a worksheet, he gets either a stamp
or a sticker.
Not like I get to stamp because Tiger will do it himself but
ain't that the best part about homeschooling?

Our goodies from Bookxcess!
I really like this book Math Wizardry by Kenda & Williams
(ISBN-13: 978-0-7641-4176-8)

For example, her guidelines for young math wizards are:
  • Make math hands-on
  • Take math outside
  • Take math on a vacation
  • Encourage kids to keep a sketchbook/observation notebook
  • Make charts/graphs with your children
  • Encourage an interest in architecture
  • Keep sports stat
  • Play with codes
  • Take math into the kitchen
  • Make math a holiday event
  • Don't step in too fast
  • Don't be reluctant to expose children to difficult concepts
I feel like I can teach math when I look at her guidelines. Haha! Very much like Madam Poh Yew :)

Only rm 17.90 from Bookxcess! 

Sunday 22 June 2014

Product Review: SNUGG Ipad Mini Cover

Anybody with kids know that a good tablet/phone cover is essential.
Otherwise you may have to buy a new tablet every few weeks.
I have a friend who used a cheapskate cover from the pasar malam
and when her son decided to test if his Ipad can defy gravity...sigh...R.I.P.

My Tiger boy is not volatile, so his iPad ONE is still functional.
That's the thing about Apple products, they really last.
So it only makes sense to protect your device with a great cover.

Now, I was expecting a new iPad mini from hubby's supplier.
So, when this lovely purple Snugg arrived, I called hubs,
"Hey, where is my ipad mini?"

"Oh, that. I forgot to tell you that the supplier changed the target.
It seems we cannot get the iPad mini."

""What?? WTF? I already asked people for a Snugg.
It's gorgeous. And purple. So, what am I going to use it for? A wallet?"

This is the model that I received
Snugg iPad mini Executive Case Cover and Flip Stand in Purple Leather

I was already thinking about going out with my credit cards
all 'snuggly' in it

There is also a handy spot for your stylus.
I intended to keep my pen there because I tend to lose it in my bag.

You can also keep a small book or a wad of cash in it.

I was very sad to let my lovely purple Snugg go.
But the nice poeple from Snugg shouldn't have to wait for a review.
So, I passed it to my friend, PK and asked her for an honest opinion.
Since she didn't get the product directly from Snugg, her review would not be biased.
Besides. mothers and children are the best reviewers.
We are the shrewdest people okay?

Take diapers for example:
We know every different brands, their absorption power,
night use, day use, pants.
We are all pseudo-professors in many subjects.
Don't play play.

Btw, this woman's got TWO iPad minis.
If that doesn't make her an expert, the fact that one is a fake cover
and the other a branded one will probably impress you.


An imitation product bought from taobao at only RM15

Bought this slim design as a result of strong influence by the apple original smart cover and easy to carry around

Chose black color for easy maintenance as the original iPad2 bright orange smart cover that I have got stained easily

However, as you can see, the threads are coming off though hardly used.

Got a 2nd iPad  mini  and a friend of mine introduced a branded cover to me
Bought it at Low Yat for at RM80
My daughter was the one who chose this baby blue as she is a big fan of BLUE~~~~
The quality is quite solid

  • The overall quality is superior to my previous covers. The material is very durable and the workmanship is excellent.
  • This design is excellent for children in terms of protecting it as children tends to drop the tab easily (my iPad2 is broken as my daughter dropped it even though it was covered with the original iPad cover)
  • It is also handy for people in sales to use as a namecard holder as well.
  • The cover is magnetic, hence it closes neatly. 
  • Pleasantly surprised that the cover is somewhat like the original Apple smart cover with auto on/off function
  • And it comes with life time guarantee after you registered your purchase online
  • The only complaint I have is it is a little bit bulky for me to keep in my hand bag.

PK also sent me this when I asked about the spaces for volume and power button.
"Easy access," she replied.

Thank you, PK for your excellent feedback.
When I finally win my wrangle against hubby's supplier,
I am going to buy a Snugg for myself.

 Snugg manufacture and sell high quality premium cases for the 
latest and top devices on the market such as the iPad, iPhone and Nexus products. 
 They are platinum sellers on the Amazon marketplace and 
as a result we supply cases to over 200 countries worldwide. 
We also have a physical presence in 8 countries and to date have sold over a million cases.

For the design reviewed, they  have it 14 different colours
You can get your from
The Snugg (local)

Tuesday 17 June 2014

The "Yes" Mom

"Can't you ask her to sit down?" 

"Aren't you going to scold her?"

"If she's my kid, I am going to whack her",

said my mother and brothers. My darling dad just shook his head.

Obviously the person they were berating was me and the subject of their despair was Dragon girl.

I just shrugged, "That's just who she is and she wouldn't understand even if I beat her. Watch this,"
I grabbed hold of my daughter to keep her still for 2 seconds. She started wriggling, kicking and shouting. I looked over at my mom and said, "See? You come and try la"

After 5 minutes of going nuts, I asked for a high chair, sat her down and fed her. In 15 minutes, she went bonkers again. Usually, I will just let her be but this time, I was a little apprehensive because it was a steamboat restaurant. But it was one of those classier ones with clean floors and electrical stove. Still,  we all ate quickly and left.

Oh, Dragon girl. What am I going to do with you?
I heard all children who are born in the year of Dragon are like this. 
Haha, blame the zodiac. How professional!

I do not hit my kids. I try not to even scold or yell unless they:

1. Attempt to injure themselves. Like trying to leap of the first floor or play with fire.

2. Attempt to cause harm to others. No hitting/biting other children.

3. Think they can get away with bad attitude such as shouting at elders or kicking doors.

**Fighting among themselves are allowed as long as nobody gets killed. Bones can be mended. Wounds can be cleaned.

Coming back to my boogie woogie girl. 
That her on the stage, dancing for everyone.
Fell of the stage once and didn't even flinch. 
She just hopped right back on and continued dancing and running.
Mama is her biggest fan

I already know she will need lots of outdoor time. Probably taekwondo, ballet, gymnastics, rock climbing & drama classes just to burn off all that excess energy.

And I know she doesn't like studying like her brother. Despite being exposed to so many letters, numbers, shapes, etc......she just wants to play and play she will.

I have no expectations for her to meet. Neither do I want to force her to perform academically. She will be who she is and we will let her creativity and stubbornness shine. This one will not be a typical grade A student. She will be the one giving the teacher a headache, not doing homework, wearing nail polish, skipping classes, etc. I can feel it already.

She will always be my sweetheart and papa's little girl.
I cannot imagine how anyone can hurt little girls.
They are just so, so precious.


She is oh-so-brave, she scares me.
Never one to back down from a fight.
Ain't afraid of heights
Attempts anything without a second thought,
Not frightened of strangers, animals or the dark.
Loves the stage and attention.
Anything Tiger can do, she will try to do it better.

 I choose to believe that she is meant for big things.
And who am I to tell her no?
So, let me be the 'yes' mom.

Go, be fearless. Do your thing.
I will right behind you, guiding and supporting you.

Sunday 15 June 2014

Tiger's Officially Four!

Officially a four-year-old!
Every time we try to get a proper picture, he is doing this.
Not that he is posing as a monkey but he is generally itchy. Eczema. 
Poor boy.

I didn't plan for any big party but we did go to Penang the week before.
Considered party la?
I guess not. So I prepared some last minute party packs.
His birthday is always during school holidays =.="
Double the usual amount of friends.
So, I went the cheapskate route and bought everything from wholesaler.
About rm5 per bag

 Tiger's special pack.
In it, I included a special present.

When I got home from work, it was still unopened.
It was this whiplash set from Cars.
Kesian my boy. Grandma said to wait for mama.
The power of delayed gratification. He does it way better than I can.

I made a card for him and asked all his teachers and friends to sign it as a keep sake.

At night, we celebrated with family.
Hubs bought him an ice cream cake in the shape of a rose.
I was like WTF??!!
No other chocolate ice cream cake available it seems. Issshhh...

For his birthday wish, I helped him,
"Mama will always be beautiful, Papa will be wealthy and good health for everyone!"
Tiger said, "No, I want Cars!" and everyone laughed.

His fav friend at the moment is Dee Dee.

Luckily my BIL bought some party packs waaay before his birthday.
Otherwise its just plain plates and cups.
And no noisemakers.
Thanks Clem, no wonder you are his fav uncle!

Then, it was present time!
His big present! A manly dollhouse. 
A marble run and a race track.
All from mama.
Told everyone else not to bring gifts.
I didn't even wrap the dollhouse, I mean the fire station.
God, I have to stop calling it a dollhouse =.="

My sisters helped and it still took an hour.
Thanks, guys!

Amazing, ain't it?
I have to take more pictures before it becomes scratched and ugly.

The monkey sister.
 This girl was just interested in the box :)

My precious niece, Dee Dee who cried when 
I declared that I was Elsa and She was Olaf.
She'd rather be the storekeeper than Olaf.
Hahahaha....too cute, this girl!

Some of our favoritest people in the world

At four:

Fav colour: Purple and blue

Fav subject: Math

Fav food: Ebiko 

Fav dessert: Chocolate

Fav drink: Vitagen

Fav fren: Pei yi and li zhe

Fav cartoon: Mickey Mouse Clubhouse 
Doc Mcstuffin

Fav 'whatever': Anything with Disneys Cars on it

Fav person: Grandma

 Fav teacher: Mama

Best friend: Mama

 Fav hobby: Going to the park (with mama)

Best Mother in the whole wide world award: Mama (obviously)

Btw hubby gets worst dad award.
He forgot to pick up Tiger from class today.
And he kept laughing whenever he thinks of it.
I am going to delete this pic I collage for him!

Wednesday 4 June 2014

Preschooler Update: Almost Four!

Almost Four!

How quickly this chubby baby became...

.....this lanky kid. 
He is still the sensitive, thinking child I've always had.
In this shot, he was pondering about which prop to add to his 'frog pond'


He is a little nerdy at heart. Okay, very nerdy.
Too skinny.
But handsome (haha!)

At almost 4,  he decides on what he would like to do.
Usually its some cut & glue or math.
When I suggest Ready? Go! (right brain practise)
He gives me a determined, sour face, "No. I don't like ready go"
"Why? I never scold you anymore" 
"I don't like it. I like math. You say ready go one more time, I go downstairs.
You study alone."

So, we do some math everyday.
Still dunno whose math genes he got. 
Must be Winnie yiyi's, cause nobody else likes math.

He is quite good for his age.
Not a genius because 3 year old geniuses would be doing quantum physics by now.
Here, he figured out skip counting by 2 without my help.
Btw, zero here represents 10 (according to him)
 I took the opportunity to introduce him to tadaaaaaa, the times table!
Sorry la, cannot resist the Asian Mom in me. 

More math. 
He actually enjoys tracing numbers and counting.
We danced to some skip counting by 2 songs from Youtube.
And then I decided to teach him odd vs even using the red counters.
He got it in 10 minutes. End of lesson.
I must be a damn good teacher la *flips hair*

 He was down with some viral infection.
High grade fever for 5 days and lost some weight again....arghhhh.

 Still he requested for school but we just played during that time.
I love this set of building toys on loan from Winnie.

He made these that I posted on fb.
Got some money sense, this one.

I also posted some laughing pics of him.
Now I recall what it was that made him so happy.
I was telling him that the creature was llama
He said, "Blama? Clama? Clement??"
Hyena laugh.

Tiger is also keen on writing at the moment, so we focus on skills that strengthens his grip:

Coloring within lines

Writing in sand.
These are leftover from his sand art kid. I added some salt for volume

 He is always excited when I change the trays.
This set was meant to entice Dragon girl but Tiger insisted on doing it.
I replaced the red rods with marbles.

 Major tip to get their attention:
Just add water.
Now they are learning to share without whacking each other.

 He has completed B cards from Baobei after almost 1 year.
Not too bad for a non Chinese speaking boy.

With strangers, he still still very shy.
The sister is as much an extrovert as Tiger is introverted.
Dragon is the first on stage and Tiger would only dance after everyone's left.
 Oh, actually he didn't dance. He was just running around.

 With his darling Grandma

Cognitively he will have no problems.
Socially, he has improved a lot. 
He has two friends in Baobei now. 
Hahahahaha....versus one friend last year.

I love you, my darling boy.
I wish you a very Happy Birthday in advance and my only
wish for you at 4 years old is to gain some weight and to be in the pink of health.

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