|Then we added a switch. Here it's open, breaking the circuit, so the light is off.|
|Here the switch is closed, completing the circuit, so the light is on!|
|This is the little kit we used. It's got some good stuff in it - we will definitely be using it again!|
Another thing we talked about was what it was like before people had electricity; all the conveniences and amusements we're used to, that people haven't always had, and what they must have done without them. So, for the next step, we are planning to have an electricity-free evening. This is the perfect time of year for it too, since it still gets dark pretty early. I need to get a new wick for my oil lantern, and we'll use that and some candles for illumination, cook something to eat over a fire outside, and play electricity-free games and read books for the evening. I'm really looking forward to it!
It seems like our best learning moments are spontaneous like this, resulting from him asking a question and us investigating the answer together. If I had just said "Ok, sit down, today we are going to learn about electricity," I don't think that it would have been as effective. But since his mind had turned in this direction on its own, and he was actively wondering about the concept, he was ready and willing to absorb the information. This is what I mean when I describe "child-led" or "child-directed" learning to someone. My job is simply to be a facilitator - which is why we have this house full of random stuff - so we have what we need handy to jump on whatever it is that comes up next!