Just want to make sure you know where to find me now….www.ScholarFit.com. Thanks for all your encouragement. Keep it up…your questions, additions, comments, etc.!
There’s an easy way to get updates. Just go to the ScholarFit site and put your e-mail into the RSS Feed (in the top right corner of the site).
Thanks….and happy Spring day!
My 4 Peak Performer students (Clarke Whitehead, Nathan Hyde, Zack Kierstein and Jordan Trout) and I challenged our Academy to raise $2,500–working with Habitat for Humanity– to help build a permanent home in Haiti following the recent earthquake.
You rose to that challenge.
At our Board Break-a-Thon Saturday, Ms. Michelle announced that everyone (so far) have collected…
…with some pledges still outstanding. So, if you are thinking, “oops, I missed it,” you have this week to get your donations in. Let’s break $3,000 before we send a final total to Habitat for Humanity.
The Silent Auction run by Ms. Michelle is what put us over the top. This was our first silent auction at the Academy and the timing couldn’t have been better. Thank you to everyone for the generous donations to the auction.
I’m so proud, not only of the Peak Performers for leading a successful fundraiser, but for everyone who participated, helped and donated. We know our recent recession is only temporary, but most Haitians live in daily poverty and raising money to build a home for people we will never meet has been the high point of 2010, so far.
Thank you, thank you, thank you for contributing to our Academy Mission–To Change Lives.
Keep your eyes open for pictures of the event which I will post was soon as I get them from un-official school photographer Tatum McKenzie who took some super shots of the break-a-thon.
There are many things we take for granted, and many things we just assume. Many people assume, for example, that the best position from which to read a book is sitting. Or that someone studies better at a desk, alone on a chair. Our schools in particular base many of their activities around outdated and silly theories that completely ignore the importance of physical movement in helping to activate neural connections in our brains.
Granted, many talented teachers figure out ways to incorporate movement into every day classroom routines: kids get up to pick up handouts, a student walks up to the board to solve a problem, groups of kids move from table to table after each completed assignment. When I taught high school history, I sometimes had my students get up and turn around 4 times, supposedly a lucky number in Kwaikutl culture. I also just told them to get up and stretch, walk around if they needed to, get a drink, etc.. I didn’t know specifically how much movement was necessary to liven up those teenagers’ brains, or even specifically what type of movement was absolutely necessary – neither do cognitive scientists! Researchers have yet to determine just how much and specifically what type of movement is absolutely required for optimal brain performance. Ratey’s book Spark can fill you in more with the latest peer-reviewed updates in the mind-movement arena.
But No Movement?!? Whoever said we read better when we sit still? Ever tried reading standing up while reading…and continuing to stand up? It can be pretty cool. Too bad we often don’t let our kids do it. Or what about sitting on a ball-chair, the new craze in the ADHD Intervention world? I’m sitting on one right now. Someone somewhere finally said – enough with solid, stiff chairs! Let’s move, or at least subtly work our core muscles while bouncing in the blogosphere.
Saturday we hosted our annual Academy Easter Egg Hunt, and despite the heavy winds, it was a great morning and all the kids had tons of fun. Siena even got to participate in her first egg hunt ever. Thanks to Nathan Ooms for backing off and letting her find some eggs. That was very kind of him and it made her day.
After our Easter Egg Hunt, I witnessed two other Egg Hunts that I just need to contrast to our well-disciplined and courteous egg hunt.
The first was directly following our egg hunt in Boulder. We went to get Siena’s hair cut for the first time and stumbled across a toy store’s egg hunt in their tiny concrete square outside their store. Coming right from our hunt in a nice, spacious park to this cramped quarters was striking.
You couldn’t really call this an egg hunt. It was more like an Easter Egg Scramble because all the eggs were just dumped into this concrete circle and all the kids were unleashed to shove and jostle to collect as many eggs as they could. It was a frenzy and had none of the FUN of exploring to find hidden Easter Eggs.
Dr. Karla and I were a bit repulsed and both said, in unison, “Siena’s never going to be a part of that.”
On Sunday — with the second Easter Egg Hunt Incident — It got worse!
I happened to catch a TV news report of an “Easter Egg Hunt Gone Wrong” in New Hampshire. Again, not really a hunt as much as a piranha-like feeding frenzy.
Hundreds of kids were in a field where eggs were dropped from helicopters. The best efforts of the organizers were to no avail in keeping the ravenous kids under control. They stormed the field, running each other over, knocking each other done in a mad dash fueled by pure “id” to collect more eggs than they could possibly ever need.
Of course the TV announcer was aghast at how this could happen, but as a martial arts teacher my first response was, “really, what else did you expect”? I sometimes joke that our kids are like locusts at our Easter Egg Hunt, but it’s a joke. Our SMAA kids were the pinnacle of restraint and just plain NICE as they searched for eggs, even going so far as to help others who didn’t have many eggs find more eggs.
These kids, in such overwhelmingly large numbers, really were like locusts. File that Easter Egg Riot under “you had to see it to believe it.”
This Easter tale has one last component. Sunday morning Siena, now 2, had her first Easter Egg Hunt at home. On Saturday we colored eggs with her, an event in itself. Watching her face as she helped dunk eggs and see them change color was priceless, as any parent would know. As fun as that was, guiding her to find the eggs the Easter Bunny had hidden was better. Seeing her scan the house, then spot an egg on the ledge, then exclaim, “there’s one!”– MAGICAL.
Some things are better in small numbers.