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Sunday, June 30, 2013

Lego Mindstorms and WeDo

I have just spent the last two weeks teaching gifted children from first through eighth grade Lego robotics. It was the best group of students I have had. They were polite, quiet, focused, and creative. How often in my career as a special education teacher I had students who were not especially motivated to learn! It is so much fun to teach gifted kids something they want to learn that I hardly notice the passage of time. In fact, I am guilty of forgetting to clean up on time with regularity.

This was the first time I had worked with gifted students since learning about Dabrowski's Theory of Positive Disintegration. I really noticed and responded to situations that clearly demonstrated his "hyperexcitabilities." I have been reading a book by Willem Kuipers, Enjoying the Gift of Being Uncommon, who refers to these reactions as “extra receptivity.” The school bell that rang several times a day made both children and adults jump. I saw one girl cover her ears and twist in circles while it rang. Two other incidents that occurred were notable. In one situation, a young boy was dropped off and left in the room alone while I was in the bathroom. He was inconsolable until Mom came back and brought his folder for the day. Another child became paralyzed with dread when he noticed all the parents visiting the last day. He also could not stop crying until we reached Mom who returned and stayed. In the past, I would have been uncomfortable and tried to talk the students into overcoming their feelings. This year, I sat and talked with the students and helped them meet their needs. We never stop learning.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Pinterest Fail

My friend Darlene Andre referred me to a web site called Pinterest Fail when I posted my "Cake Pops" on Facebook. I love it! I laughed so hard when my cake pops fell apart, and I had to share it with my FB friends. When I went to check out Pinterest Fail, I laughed again. What a great idea! Kinda like the Martha Stewart jokes in the 90s. I am posting to Pinterest Fail, although technically, I wasn't using a Pinterest recipe - just a Pillsbury package.
Did I mention that last week, Kim and I attempted to eat spaghetti I had made while quilting. My mom used to say we were having thread for supper, and that accurately describes how much we want to cook when sewing. Anyway, I had put the spaghetti noodles (sadly, I can't remember the brand), into the water, which was not yet hot. I had left-over sauce that only had a couple of days left before I threw it out. It was good, thanks to Whole Foods Traditional Spaghetti Sauce, but the noodles were an unusual culinary experience. Some of them were undercooked, some were mushy, and then there was this big glob of noodles that was stuck together. I hadn't stirred them very often, and who rinses when you can just drain?! While we were eating, Kim was trying to be nice while complaining. I finally said, like a woman over tea, "I think this is the worst spaghetti I have ever made." She agreed and we both laughed. I shan't go into my crock pot shrimp recipe, which was my worst meal ever!