Friday, November 24, 2006
the fiveness of five
We were watching my daughter play with some buttons yesterday. She sat there, happily counting.
As she got to 3, things started to sound a bit fuzzy, she could rationalise the word 3 with a number of buttons, 4 was a bit complicated, the word and the buttons were right, but it seemed less certain. 5 was still happening, but all certainty was gone.
"Ah" said my Dad, the former teacher "she can't get the fiveness of five".
When you're a kid, everythings fascinating, and you're piecing together a picture of the world. The big things come in small numbers - 1 me, 2 parents, 3 satsumas - all very important. After that there's just "loads". 5 is loads, and therefore whilst it exists, its not part of your world view.
You could carry on this post in a number of different directions, but I like the idea that kids are happy with simplicity.
Probably true for adults as well.