Traces of the Past: An Old Photo

I connected with my half-brother a few years ago over the internet. I had not met him before, even though I had learned of his existence when a young adult. Now we send messages to one another from time to time and, a couple of weeks ago, he sent me a picture of our dad – a picture that had been given to him by one of his cousins.

I had seen pictures of my dad at this age before in family groups but not a close up. It was strange to see this photo as my memory of him is always of when he was older. The next time I visit South Africa, I will need to check whether my uncle has any more of these treasures put away in a cardboard box.

Do you have any old photos of your dad?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2018

(This post is linked to Paula’s Black and White Sunday)

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Adding Windows

As I look through my living room windows, I cannot help but see the windows that are being added daily to my neighbourhood.

Adding Windows. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2017

At this rate, the little sky that I do see will be blocked by new homes.

Are any windows being added to your neighbourhood?

mergeyes_widget© Colline Kook-Chun, 2017

(This week Paula, over at Lost in Translation, suggests we post a photo on the theme windows for her Black & White Sunday challenge)

Measuring Area

One of the activities at the Math centre this week in my classroom was all about area. How do you introduce area to 6-8 year olds? The grade 1 and 2 curriculum encourages teachers to introduce their students to this concept using non-standard units; that is, blocks and other manipulatives. I have found that the children enjoy this activity (which they do in pairs) and eagerly measure the surface of books, their journal, the seat of a chair, and a book shelf.

A few surfaces are covered by many blocks and the children need to work out some strategies to count up to large numbers. This necessity leads to one of those moments when the grade 2 partner helps the grade 1 student  The students’ collaboration often leads to both grades understanding the basics of area and measuring it.

Which photo do you prefer? The colour? Or the black and white?

mergeyes_widget© Colline Kook-Chun, 2017

(This week Paula, over at Lost in Translation, suggests we post our photo today in both colour and in black & white for her Black & White Sunday challenge)

Imperfect Structures

The culminating (final) task in the inquiry on structures I explored with my class was for them to design and create a structure with recyclable materials.

Recyclable Materials © Colline Kook-Chun, 2017
The children enjoyed the building of their designs.

Building Structures © Colline Kook-Chun, 2017
And lovingly painted their creations.

Painting Creations © Colline Kook-Chun, 2017
The structures may be imperfect but in my students’ imaginations these creations are beautiful.

Do you enjoy creating with recyclable materials?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2017

(This post is linked to Paula’s Black & White Sunday. The theme this week is imperfect)

Black & White Sunday: Mayan Temple

During the Summer, my family and I had the opportunity to go to Mexico and see the Mayan Temple. We were in awe of this ancient structure and I imagined it surrounded by the forest with approaching pilgrims who had come to visit for religious purposes.

Mayan Temple © Colline Kook-Chun, 2016
Mayan Temple © Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

The structures are now beginning to crumble and the modern visitors come to see what are one of the new wonders of the world.

Have you been to visit one of the Mayan Temples?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

(This post is linked to Paula’s Black & White Sunday)

Black & White Sunday: Rural Photography

Last year in the beginning of July, my family and I had the opportunity to visit Arizona in the United States. On our trip we decided to do a few sightseeing jaunts and, while on our way to Sedona, we saw miles of dry land.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016
A View of Arizona. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

The threatening rain clouds did eventually send water to the ground but, thankfully, we had already returned to the hotel.

Have you seen Arizona’s rural landscape?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

(This post is linked to Paula’s Black & White Sunday)

Black & White Sunday: Negative Space

Last night I decided to open a bottle of South African wine that my nephew had brought us for Chinese New Year. As I pulled the cork out, I thought of the many times I had done so in the past before pouring wine to eat with dinner. Not many wine bottles these days are corked and I wondered if corking does make a difference to the taste of the beverage.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016
A Taste of Home. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

The wine is crisp and went well with the dinner my husband had cooked. We do not drink much and we look forward to having another taste of home tonight.

Do you drink wine with your dinner?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

(This post was written as a response to Paula’s Black & White Sunday prompt: negative space)

Black & White Sunday: Light

During the winter months, we need to use lamps in our place in order to see. I try to read by the lamplight but I often give up and switch on the TV as I find the light is not bright enough. Our place does not have overhead lighting and I often find it to be a disadvantage.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016
By the light of the lamp. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

We have made the decision to go shopping for more lamps. Now to find the desire to enter a crowded store on a busy weekend afternoon!

Do you read by lamplight?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

(This post was written as a response to Paula’s Black & White Sunday prompt:light)

A Little Relaxation

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016
Relaxation. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

The weekend is a time for relaxation and putting your feet up. During this long weekend, my daughter decided to do a little relaxing of her own on the sofa. She often has a book in her hand but yesterday evening she decided to watch a few episodes of the anime series she is currently watching. I did not feel envious as I have been doing a little relaxing of my own on the sofa. Instead of watching a show, I have immersed myself into the world created by the novelist I am currently reading. The relaxation this weekend has done me good and I feel more willing to face the challenges of the week.

What did you do for relaxation this week?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

(This post was written as a response to Paula’s Black & White Sunday prompt: surreptitious photography)

A Mother’s Memory

This morning I washed a couple of the pillows that adorn my daughters’ beds. As I lay them out to dry, I smiled. I recalled their excitement when they received these cushions as a gift – I can see their wide smiles in my mind’s eye.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016
Dora the Explorer cushions. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

They were huge fans of the Dora the Explorer programme. They would sit/stand in front of the TV, answer her questions, and vamonos! with her to various places.

I bought my girls a few of the DVDs and they watched them over, and over …. and over again. I did not mind as I knew they were learning from the repetition – and I believe the show to be an educational one.

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016
Dora the Explorer cushions in black & white. © Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

As the cushions reflect the past and stir memories of my children’s childhood, I thought the picture deserved to be presented in black & white. Even though the colours have been taken away, the cushions still evoke pleasant memories.

Paula's B&W SundayHave you watched the children’s show Dora the Explorer? What do you think of it?

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2016

(This post was written as a response to Paula’s Black & White Sunday prompt: still life)