Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Things we talk about

Hunter and I have always tried to do our best to raise children with a good general knowledge. When we do not know the answer to a question we will find out and find the answer. In fact, we are teaching them to slowly and in a very basic form find out the answers for themselves. Be it in books or into the big pool in cyberspace. So the type of things that get discussed around the breakfast table may be coloured just a little by this.

Sunday morning A kicked off the discussion with "Dad, was Einstein really the most intelligent person that ever lived?" He immediately answered suggesting other possibilities and that it is truly impossible to define or label someone as most intelligent. Some of the examples the two of us fielded were: Dr Chris Barnard(heart transplant pioneer), President Paul Kruger (ever heard the story of the division of a farm between two brothers?), King Solomon of the Bible (and the story of the two woman and one baby), Dr Ian Player (conservationist who we all had the honour to meet) and Leonardo da Vinci were all mentioned. Also the fact that there are different types of intelligence. I also had to mention Marie Curie as it was her birthday on Friday. I highlighted for the sake of simplicity her role in developing medicine to fight cancer and that she was the first woman to win the Nobel prize.

And so the discussions ranged on - we touched on where chocolate came from - and the mention of the Aztecs and Mayans moved on to pyramids and then Africa and where the queen of Sheba came from. And possible places where Kind Solomon's treasures may be hidden here in Africa. And so on and so on.

Gosh, they do challenge our general knowledge at times but I do believe somewhere it will pay off - at least they think further than what they learn in school. I hope that we can continue with enriching their knowledge every day - they are certainly helping us to enrich ours.

What I do find challenging however is current affairs. I try to shield them against the harshness of the world we live in  I do realize however that this will have to change soon. As they grow older the discussions in class and amongst them grow. The grade 3 girls for instance had wide opinions on the Oscar Pistorius trial.

BTW - I use a wonderful mommy blogger and home schooler in Cape Town Se7en's blog every month to find themes to discuss in the car.She does a lovely monthly blogpost with the main calender happenings in history on her blog - here's Novembers'. I do not discuss every topic - I keep to the main or big things. This morning we discussed the Great wall of china as it was opened to tourists yesterday in history. I may not always be exactly on the day, but use it as a general guide. BTW I am trying to find a list of dates for South African history , art etc. Anyone know of one? And do you actively promote general knowledge at home?

On to #blogvember:
11. Favorite spot in your city:

For this I felt it could not be a restaurant or shop, it must be a place to visit. Two spots very quickly came to mind - hiking up the koppie at the Faerie Glen reserve and taking the kid's bikes to Rietondale park. Both are lovely family outings and both can be done with the dogs if we want to.

There is a small entrance fee at Faerie Glen reserve and as some game has been released there this year dogs have to be on a leash. The kids love to feel the accomplishment of walking to the top of the koppie and taking in the view.

There is no entrance fee at Rietondale park and dogs must preferably be on leash.  Near the tennis court is a lovely play equipment park and some tracks for cycling but the real gem is to the west where there is a wide open park with benches and a long cycling/walking track/


  1. What a lovely post!

    As you know, Se7en is one of my favourite people, nevermind bloggers!

    I can't say I've ever consciously thought to broaden their general knowledge - they already ask so much about everything, but I am conscious to broaden their thinking, like...

    what makes you say that?
    is there another way this could have happened?
    how do you think this worked?
    why do you think she said that?
    and on and on and on

    you know I ask lots of questions anyway :)


  2. OMG kids definitely challenge adults with he questions that ask. I have to admit I love how the question on Eienstein was answered - genius

    I've heard about Rietondale park. Should take a trip there soon

  3. Oh thank you for the mention, that is too kind of you!!! And Marcia... (blush!!!)... you do give me an idea for a post on stretching our General Knowledge brains... and I have found a couple of good resources for current affairs for kids this year... So a general knowledge post will be on the cards and I love the idea of a South African Resource... I am going to get onto that and have it ready for next year. My December brain will only be thinking of the beach and sunshine!!! Thanks again and have a most fabulous day!!!

  4. Kade and I are having some awesome convo's at the moment. I love general knowledge and will keep this post in mind when trying to expand his knowledge as he grows.


  5. You are raising some really awesome little people there...and you are doing it so very well too.

  6. Brilliant...our just before we leave home convos usually feature a lot of no, if you wanted to do so and so before school you should have got up when I woke you the first time, and so on.

    We do chat in the car quite a bit, and sometimes current events do come up if we happen to catch the news on the radio.


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