Mi Cuchara Favorita

Day 26

Siempre todo
Cuchara favorita
Mejor comida

My Grape Nuts, ready for the milk

 

I’m trying a #MultiFri again today with a haiku (or make that a zappai). I figured with poetry maybe I can get away with grammatical errors more easily. (But do please let me know, Spanish speakers, if you have any advice on my first Spanish poetry attempt!)

About this poem: Esta chuchara es mi favorita! It is a spoon I reach for every single day! In my entire previous life, I have never been one to have a favorite piece of cutlery. But when I moved here, this found-in-the-drawer spoon became my go-to delight. Though not beautiful, I love the size and feel of the mouth-sized bowl more than the other spoons we bought. Even the thickness of the metal is perfect. Now it’s a habit that both my husband and I pull it out for me. This is my spoon.

I’m always eating
with my favorite spoon, which
makes food taste better

Spelling Bee Wrapped Up

Day 25

So we just wrapped up the third Zoom Spelling Bee of the day! And now we are officially on spring break.

Three weeks or so ago I wrote about initial ideas for our final Spelling Bee. Here’s what I thought then:

  • Round 1–they each write the same word in the chat to the host (judge).
  • Round 2–we’ll say the same word and everyone will write it on a whiteboard. On the count of three, they will turn it around and show the judges.
  • Round 3 would be a traditional spelling bee where each child left in the competition gets a different word and spells it orally.

Here are some of the successful changes we made.

We gave the children a list of words to practice and a book to read.  Here are the lists we used: Amber, Ruby, Sapphire. We had three separate events for each leveled group. (The levels were created by an online Google preliminary round; students were placed according to their scores on the preliminary.)

One big change happened that we didn’t discover until the first group did Round 1. One of the students told us when he and his dad were practicing that the auto-correct chat featured fixes words. OK, yes, indeed! Why didn’t we think of that? Auto correct on Zoom is spectacular. The next time you are in a Zoom meeting try misspelling a word in a chat message! So, the first group got 5/5 correct in Round 1. For the next two groups we didn’t do Round 1 like this. Instead, we had the students in the second group write five words on their whiteboard. Then we checked them all at one time. For the youngest ones, we had them write the words one at a time.

Then we did Round 2, which was spelling on the whiteboards with fewer, harder, and higher-point-value words. Last time I wrote about the spelling bee, Melody Parker suggested the students show their whole body, which we kind of did. We’d have students stand behind their chairs with the whiteboards for Round 2. It was a really good view and we could see them writing.

Round 3 was two rounds in a traditional oral spelling bee style. Three points for each word spelled correctly in this round, and no eliminations for spellers who missed their words.  For Rounds 3 through 5, the students also stood behind their chairs and had their hands up. They could just hold them up or pretend to write on one hand with the other hand as the stylus to help them with the spellings.

We also had Round 4, which had words from a book we asked the children to read (from our online library subscription). We gave each child one word from the book. (Round 4 was especially hard for the youngest ones in the Amber group below. You can see only two spelled their word correctly.)

Finally, we had a Finals Round for the top scorers. It was a single elimination round, which determined the winner. The scores were only used to help determine the other places, if needed, as in the example below.

The school classes were cancelled for today, so other students could watch the Spelling Bees, which were live-streamed on YouTube. We played the national anthem, the principal or vice principal took turns thanking and greeting the participants and spectators and each person introduced themselves. Two or three volunteer teachers came to each room to be judges. There were three of us on the Spelling Bee design team, and we each were able to be in all three groups–to host the Zoom, to answer questions, and help during the scorekeepers breakout meeting.

We were thrilled that each of the three bees went off successfully. They were much better than we thought they would have been. The goal of this project in the Learning Inclusion Department was to give an opportunity for enrichment for our talented and gifted students.  It was a joy to see these excellent students be in the limelight for a day. It seemed like they were proud and happy to be there.

Two suggestions for next time: Schedule 90 minutes for each, instead of 60 minutes. The second group was scheduled right after the first one, so it got a late start. Also, Group 1 needs fewer rounds and a shorter list to study. 

Random Conversation on the Way to the Mall

Day 24

Random conversation on the way to the mall…

Keith: (Noticing someone’s brightly colored pants as he walked by) Wow, look at those green jeans.

Denise: Remember Mr. Green Jeans? And Captain Kangaroo.

K: Yes.

D: Was Captain Kangaroo just on local stations? Or maybe that was Sheriff John who was local on L.A. stations.

K: I don’t know. I was lucky; I could get reception for both San Diego and L.A. stations.

D: You were lucky! You had more choices than I did.

K: The local stations in L.A. were odd numbers–like 9, 11, 13.

D: Yes, 5 too.  And the big three networks were on 2, 4, and 7.

K: CBS on 2, NBC on 4, ABC on 7. I remember those.

D: What were the letters on the local stations? Like KTTV?

K: Channel 11. KTLA was 5.

D: It’s weird how we remember station numbers from our childhood.

K. Yes, I don’t remember the numbers from any other place I’ve lived.

D: Do you remember the San Diego stations from when you were a kid too?

K: I think so.  ABC was on 10.

D: Were we supposed to exit there?

K: Yes, but we were busy talking about television stations.

Where do those random conversations come from? I am filled with gratitude that I get to have a partner to live with during this pandemic. No telling what I would be talking to myself about!

 

Our parents used to let us watch these guys.

 

 

A Prayer of Lament

Day 22

Last night in our family Bible study we wrote prayers of lament, like in Psalm 13 (How long, Lord? Will you forget me forever?) and Psalm 22 (My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?).

Prayers of lament start out with protest, continue with petition, and end with some kind of praise, at least anticipated praise. Here is mine:

God are you here in your church?
Why does it not look like heaven?
Why have we distorted your Body so much?
When will we give up white supremacist
theology for the upside down
Realm of Jesus?
Have you abandoned your church?
Do you laugh or cry
about the mess we’ve made of it?

Can you just start over, God?
Re-transfuse the church with your blood,
and do whatever you have to
to make us serve the Jesus of the Bible,
not the “white” Jesus created
by enslavers and murderers.
I want your will to be done
on earth as it is in heaven,
but it is hard to believe it will happen.

I want to praise you
because I know you will fully come.
I do believe,
but help my unbelief.