Friday, March 26, 2010

Age is Strictly a Case of Mind Over Matter...

If you don't mind, it doesn't matter! Recently I've been feeling older (not that I'm old at all), but last night reminded me that it doesn't matter! E and I went to a surprise party for a friend of ours 30th last night at a place called Jump On It! It's a trampoline gym and it's pretty, dang cool!

We got there 20 minutes till J showed up with his family. There was a ton of family and friends there. I got to meet a lot of E's friends from the mission in Peru. I've been hearing so many stories about them all over the past four years, it was nice to be able to put faces to names (although I did meet quite a few of them four years ago). We mixed. We mingled. We ate food from L & L Hawaiian BBQ. Just as a side note: L & L is good, but if you're ever in St. George eat at Honolulu Grill - you won't regret it.

After all the time spent hanging out, J FINALLY showed up. When you're waiting to surprise someone, it feels like forever until they show up. He was so surprised! His kids were so excited that they were able to surprise Dad. J really is one of the nicest guys I've ever met and it was so cool to see all his friends and family celebrate him.

It's amazing what people can do on a trampoline. I never grew up with one, so I stuck to bouncing around and off the walls, but some people are daring! I kind of want to take a trampoline exercise class because by the time I was done, I was totally spent. Which was good because it was present time!

A few years back - because the times were kind of tight - J had to sell his motorcycle. He was telling us that he cried because he had to give it up. His wife (who is amazing) tracked down the guy they sold it to and bought it back. She had it hidden at the gym and started it up. The noise was deafening. As soon it was rumbling, J got a HUGE smile on his face. He was so excited to have it back! It's nice to see your friends so happy.

Either way, I have to say, it really doesn't get better than spending time with friends and family and being a kid!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

It's Going to be an African Daisy Day

These are the flower seeds that one of my favorite students (I'm not going to lie, I have some) gave me today. It's amazing how things pop up unexpectedly and at the exact moment you need them. This one almost brought me to tears...

Dear Mrs. Adams,
You are an amazing reacher! YOU ROCK!!! You have taught me so much! You have helped me developed into that young woman I am! I know if I follow what you have taught me, I will be successful!
Love, G

This note (which I love all of the exclamation marks, by the way, because she talks exactly like that) was accompanied by this note (which makes me think it was a YW activity):

Teacher Seeds

Students are like seeds
you plant in the soil.
Each takes patience,
nurturing and toil.

You are a great teacher.
You do your job well,
planting seeds of knowledge,
Just look at us to tell.

Now plant these seeds
and over each one fuss,
so they'll grow up bright
to remind you of us!

YW activity or not, I like it! Today is going to be a good day!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Questions for Answers

Geez Becca. You ask such thought-provoking questions! I’ve been giving your question a lot of thought. I talked it over with Eli and I think that we’ve reached our opinion, but I think I have to ask you, what do you think?

I think there are two definite answers. I don’t know if my lost thought counts as an answer, but it’s definitely a suggestion. First, I think it’s okay to tell your child “I don’t know.” It’s good for them to know that parents don’t always have the answers to every question. For me, this is probably the least helpful of the options though. It would be the simplest answer and definitely the least time consuming, but I think in that quote I wrote before, this would be the disservice part. Again though, I don’t think every question has to have a definite answer.

The answer I think that would provide more experience to your kids would be your second answer, “I don’t know, but let’s find out together” In this situation your child knows it is okay not to know the answer and it could be fun to find out. There are so many different resources available to find out answers. How much fun would it be to ask your grandparents questions? How about taking a fieldtrip together and going to museum or the zoo and asking an expert there? What about teaching (at an appropriate age) how to use the internet to find answers? I personally LOVE going to the bookstore and finding answers in books. And don’t forget, even if YOU know the answer, help them find out the answer. There’s nothing wrong with a little hard work.

And then when your child gets to know all of these options, how much fun would it be to say, “I don’t know. How about you find out the answer and I’ll look for the answer and we’ll compare!” I know it’s kind of cheese-y, but honestly, I think it’s a great way to teach your child research skills, but also a way to encourage their curiosity. And that way, when they get to be old, like me, they might find something else that interests them and they can make a career or it. or they make an awesome new discovery.

I (in my opinion, of course) think these are some good ways to encourage curiosity. And let’s face it, we don’t have all the time in the world to satisfy every question, but I think it’s important to help them find answers to some of their questions. That way they know that their questions are not dumb or are important and that they can find answers on their own.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Daughter of Sintin

Apparently this is the time to move. Within the past two weeks, I've had one student move and two students move in. That puts my class count at 31. I'm not going to lie. My student that moved out is a sweetheart, but a little socially awkward and always caused trouble. One of my new students that came is a sweet, shy little girl. It was a nice break.

And then this past Tuesday, I got my 31st student. I met Mom on Monday after school. These were the first words out of her mouth (with a chuckle, I might add), "Hi! Good luck with R!" Great. I love it when parents start out with that. She brought him to class on Tuesday. I shook his hand (it makes kids feel more grown up) and he smiled at me. Not 2 minutes later he was interrupting, throwing stuff, putting his hands in other students' desks, a nightmare. After lunch he was 25 minutes late to class. I had 5 students tell me that he was bragging about leaving school. What a mess!

I sat R down and told him how things were in my class. I told him that I would never lie to him and I would always treat him with respect. I expected the same in return. We respect each other's time, property, etc. That seemed to sink in because the next day was a lot better.

R is still getting used to the routines in class and so, understandably, he forgot to turn his math notebook in. I decided I'd grab it for him so he could get create for the work he was so diligently working on in class earlier. I grabbed the notebook and found this where his quiz should have been (Italics added for clarification, in case you need it):

My Techer is the daughter of Sintin [Satan]

take a good look around/this is my class room/ I know it's H**/it's becaus my techer is the daughter of Sainten/ She turns around and she shaks my hand and I say F*** you/ Now go back to H** you Demon

I walk up to the front of the class/ and I say F you/ you guys like to be in H**/ So I walk to Mis. Adams/ I say Hay you Demon go back home to the firey pit of H***/ You can kiss my A**/That's why humeas [humans] are the top of the food chain

I will tell you what to do/ you will bow down to me/ because I am the tru king of H***/ All of the kids at school call me Hades...

And I'll just leave it at that. It goes on for another five pages or so. I'd say that this kid has a few troubles at home. And here I was thinking that he was working so hard on math. I'm really not up for this, especially with three months of school left. Needless to say, I'm meeting with his dad today to figure out if we can get this kid what he needs. A little discipline, a little respect, and a listening ear. He's crying out for something; I just don't know what.

Monday, March 1, 2010

How to Help in Chile

How to Help in Chile

posted by PETER ROTHBERG on 02/27/2010 @ 4:11pm

A deadly 8.8-magnitude earthquake struck central Chile early this morning, collapsing buildings, shattering major bridges and highways across a long strip of the country, killing at least 122 people and creating tsunami warnings in more than 50 countries along the Pacific basin. (The Washington Post has a good page of breaking news with maps, videos, twitter feeds and aggregated broadcast news accounts.)

The quake was vastly more powerful than the magnitude 7.0 earthquake that caused widespread damage and death in Haiti on January 12, but Chile is a much more prosperous country than Haiti, with average living standards among the highest in Latin America, and about 18 percent of people living in poverty, compared with 80 percent in Haiti.

So while Chile's relative affluence will help the country head off the dire humanitarian crisis that we're seeing in Haiti, enormous resources are still needed for reconstruction, and especially for providing a safety net for the country's millions of citizens already mired in poverty.

Numerous international organizations already operating in Chile can act the most quickly and can use the most immediate support. Jonathan Daniel Harris did a nice round-up of groups at Huffington Post, many of which are on the list below.

How To Help

Save The Children -- Save The Children is sending an emergency assessment team to Chile, and is asking for contributions to its Children's Emergency Fund to aid these efforts.

World Vision -- The international development, relief and advocacy organization has already sent its first relief flight, from Bolivia this afternoon, with supplies like tarps, blankets, plastic sheeting, and collapsible water containers for survivors. Support these efforts with earmarked gifts to families that need them.

AmeriCares -- Vice President of Emergency Response, Christoph Gorder, says AmeriCares is sending medical supplies and humanitarian aid to Chile. Make a direct contribution toAmeriCares' Chilean earthquake fund.

Habitat for Humanity -- Habitat for Humanity has a continual presence in Chile, where the group has constructed more than 1,300 homes. Habitat will be essential in reconstruction efforts, especially in hard-hit rural areas.

International Medical Corps -- IMC has a presence in dozens of countries around the globe, providing immediate medical care to those affected by natural disasters. Contribute to itsemergency response fund.

ShelterBox -- International disaster relief agency ShelterBoxhas mobilized a team to bring aid to Concepcion, Chile's second largest city, which saw the worse damage.

Watch this space for updates and please add links and info on other ways to help in the comments section.

PS: If you have extra time on your hands and want to follow me on Twitter -- a micro-blog -- click here. You'll find (slightly) more personal posts, breaking news, basketball and lots of links

I found this article here: How to Help in Chile