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March 23, 2007

Precocious Child Genius This Way

I don't post all that many stories about the brilliance of my kids. Honestly. Jonathan's reading book this week is the very fabulous Spells and Smells by Nick Sharratt and Hilary Robinson. It's one of those books where the pages are cut into four horizontally and the book is spiral bound. So by combining different part pages, you can produce many different spells, each of which turns an <adjective> <noun> into a different <adjective> <noun>. Marianne and Jonathan were reading it gleefully. "Hey, if we spill some beans, have a nice cup of tea, wait for a blue moon and eat seven lettuces we can turn a loudmouthed Mum into a luminous rabbit!" "Ok" said the loud-mouthed Mum (or possibly the luminous rabbit), "tell you what, Marianne. Tell me how many spells there are in total and I'll give you a pound." This is made slightly harder than it might be because the book's been used in a school and some of the pages have fallen out. But still. Marianne is ten, so it's quite tricky if you don't know how to work it out, but perfectly plausible. She starts to ponder and counted the pages.

Meanwhile, Jonathan, who is six, said "Marianne! We need a calculator." He ran off. A minute or two later, he came downstairs and said, "Mummy, there are 7,920 spells." And so there are. I gave him the pound. He explained it was a guess. But I'm still proud.

Posted by Alison Scott at March 23, 2007 07:12 PM


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