Mughals and the art of learning

One of the things that surprises me is the interest Sibi builds up when he is into something he likes. The latest is the 'Mughal emperors'.
I am not sure how or when it started but I can guess it might be sometime after our April 2008 vacation to Delhi and thereabouts. I did remember telling him the story behind Taj and the imprisonment of Shah Jahan in it. But I don't remember him showing a lot of interest anyway.
But it all started may be 3-4 months back when he got his GK book for his III standard. That had the photos of Humayun's tomb and Taj. When trying him to identify the correct pictures, Jeysri told him a few details on Humayun and rehashed the Shah Jahan story.
Sibi built up an enthusiasm for the stories and he started asking who is Humayun's father, wife and when they were around and what they did etc. We tried to answer as much of his questions and finally I taught him how to search for
'Babur' and read the articles in Wikipedia.
He did that and started reading on Akbar, Humayun etc till Aurangazeb and tried to make sense of the timeline. He couldn't really place the 17th century in context as he kept asking questions on when the British came and when his grand father was born, who was ruling etc.
I got him to the
list of Mughal emperors page and showed him the table with the timeline and showed him that along with the story on the last emperor of Mughals. He got that and started reading through the information.
Yesterday, Jeysri showed her MA-History book on the Mughals and Sibi interestingly wanted to read through the book than asking his mother to tell him the story. I asked a few questions (on when Babur reigned, when Akbar was born etc) and pat came the answers. He also let me know that he knows the 6 emperors and 4 of their successors and he is going to figure the entire line till Bahadur Shah II. He is able to identify the emperors by their portraits as well.
It never stops fascinating me to see Sibi learning things. I know how he 'studies' but when he learns it is very difficult to dislodge information from him. He is a studious learner. It takes time and his interest, but like I told Jeysri yesterday, he is like me in terms of learning all the 'irrelevant' things and keeping it handy for a day that may never come. That aside, what I am seeing is that once he sets his mind to something, he has that tendency to get to the bottom of it.
That said, we went to Bangalore last week for 3 days. The original plan was to go to Wonderla but the monsoon came early and it was raining 2 out of the 3 days and so we went to the
HAL heritage museum (which was good) and the Baneerghatta National park (which is overrated).
Also watched the complete
'John Adams' last week and must watch for all the American revolutionary history students. In a way, I am like Sibi in my interest in the American revolution and the Civil war related history (watched 'Gettysburg' as well, one word, fantastic) but that's for another day.

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ராமானுஜர் - நாடகம்

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