April 15 will be Sibi's last day in school for 3rd standard. He has learnt a lot this year and I am sure he will continue to do so. What fascinates me (and has always fascinated me) is the way he learns. Though his fascination for the Mughals hasn't faded yet, he has picked up a new interest, the Atlas.
He has owned one for the past few years but hasn't shown any interest in it till recently. He started looking into it a couple of months back and started to learn the states and capitals. Now he can tell the state names or the capital names in whatever order. But thats ok. So he learnt the names of cities in the maps and can tell the state names if you can tell the city name (say like, Belgaum). So our little routine these days is for me to tell a city name and he will tell me the state name. Of course, there are places he did not know yet but he keeps updating himself.
He has this habit of writing down what he is reading, I mean, he writes down the entire thing. He has drawn the maps of the states and has noted down the cities and tries to recreate the atlas in his notebook! He has done this multiple times and I am not sure why he does that but then thats what he likes. Not just the atlas but the biography of the Mughal emperors he read in Wikipedia as well. Costs a lot of notebooks though.
And when I asked him what he wants from Odyssey last weekend, he promptly replied 'Atlas'. So he has got himself another one now. This is more a world atlas and he has already learnt about 30-40 states and their capitals in USA and this morning he told me that he has found that there are states in Canada as well. So I told him that almost all countries have states and he has a quizzical look on his face and said "'Then I need to learn all of it, huh". Happy that he has found something for the summer holidays.
Beyond taking a father's pride in stating this, what strikes me as odd is that I too owned 2 different atlases while I was in 4th or 5th standard and have had the habit of 'reading' through the names of places and wondering what lies in those places. I remember the name of one city particularly, Sofia, which intrigued me for weeks (I had a cousin named Sofia) to figure what and who lived there. I never found that out but I underlined whatever interested me and pretty much teared the whole book by the time I reached 8th standard.
Looking at Sibi, in a way, I am looking into myself.