Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Jazz Funeral for the Arts

[Of course our state testing begins in our schools tomorrow. However, I will be there in spirit as I pass on the information. My first job was as an art teacher for high school students. Later as I worked as an arts and cultural enrichments speciaolist I was RIF-ed to "save money" for another program.]

Holley Vaughn- (469) 644-4625
Chris Krejci- (225) 454-0866 or christopherkrejci@gmail.com
Todd Henry- (818) 640-6710 or THactorboy@hotmail.comor join us on facebook http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=90259875389&ref=nf


Calling all artists, musicians, performers, and patrons of the arts!

Join like-minded citizens on Wednesday, April 1 at 11:30 AM in Lafayette Park (across from the Shaw Center) for a Jazz Funeral for Louisiana Arts and Culture in protest of Governor Bobby Jindal’s proposed budget cut that will devastate Louisiana's economy by SLASHING the state budget for THE ARTS and ARTS EDUCATION by 83%.

See email below and attached flyer for more information!

Louisiana’s cultural economy, which is the states second largest industry, is in SERIOUS TROUBLE. On Thursday, April 2nd Bobby Jindal will enact a shameful budget cut that will devastate Louisiana's economy by SLASHING the state budget for The Arts and ARTS EDUCATION by 83%.Yes, you read that correctly... 83%! This budget cut will devastate a 10 billion dollar industry that sustains 144,000 jobs. Investing in the arts is economically productive. Every $1 invested in Louisiana’s non-profit Arts and Culture industry generates $6 in revenue for the state. The Arts and Culture industry is paramount in revitalizing struggling urban centers and dilapidating historic districts. In terms of civic engagement, these programs foster public discourse and debate and critically activate public memory. Moreover, these programs attract tourism, which is a VITAL part of Louisiana's struggling economy.
WE MUST ACT QUICKLY. The Louisiana House Appropriations Committee will be meeting on Thursday April 2nd. They are our last hope to stop Jindal from pursuing this INSANE course of action!
How to help:

1) Write your Legislator- it literally takes 5 seconds. go to: http://www.lparts.org/index.cfm enter your zip and click Write Your Legislator then click Take Action

2) BLITZ THE MEDIA- We are desperately trying to get national media coverage. Write the national networks (CNN, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, Comedy Central etc), blitz the blogs, call local and national radio and tell them to PLEASE COVER THIS STORY. Feel free to post and repost this email everywhere. If you want to post another cool link, Howie Klein has written an awesome article at the Huffington Post- check it out at:

Plan of Action: We will meet at Lafayette Park across from the Shaw Center at 11:30 AM and begin marching at 12:00 PM up 3rd St. and then down Spanish Town Rd. toward Capitol Grocery.

What to Bring: Please wear attire appropriate for a Jazz Funeral. Feel free to bring hankies, umbrellas, and musical instruments. If you choose to carry signs, we suggest the following writing: “R.I.P LA Arts & Culture” or “Funding Arts and Culture in LA is FISCALLY responsible!”

Keep the Protest/ Performance Peaceful: According to Kim Brooks, Legal Advisor for the Chief of Police, we MUST keep moving, stay on the sidewalks, and avoid blocking street and pedestrian traffic. PLEASE ABIDE BY THESE GUIDELINES!

PLEASE do whatever you can to stop this budget cut. This is serious. We need all hands on deck.

Brother Neville

This is my Brother Neville. This picture was taken by another brother, Jim Lambert, as they made their way home to Lafayette from a Kairos meeting in Baton Rouge.

Brother Neville is very active in Kairos Prison Ministry and he is an inspiration. You can see that he has a sense of humor, but what you cannot see is that when Brother Neville was in college, he was in a horrible car crash which put him in a coma for a time and left him with traumatic brain injury, or TBI. Sometimes he is on a walker or a cane and sometimes on long stretches he is in a wheelchair. When the guys go into the prison they have to walk a distance so they make sure they take a wheelchair for him.

Because of the TBI, sometimes Brother Neville may not remember that he's already asked a question of you. Sometimes he can't remember if he telephoned or a word he was thinking of or how he was going to end the sentence he started.

What he doesn't remember is not as important as what he does remember. He knows God loves him so much that he saved him on more than one level. He knows what a blessing the Kairos Ministry is for the prison residents and for those of us who serve. He knows we love him and he loves us very much. He has claimed my husband and myself and we claim him.

When I asked for prayer after discovering I had lymphoma, Brother Neville went into action. He let his church family know to be in prayer and he contacted a sister who had been through the same thing and had her contact me. He would call every other week from Lafayette to keep up with my treatments and he'd keep me in the forefront of the minds and prayers of others. I truly appreciated that.

Now when you are ready to complain when someone asks how your life is going, remember my brother, whose favorite saying is: "It's all good!" Then he points up.

Monday, March 30, 2009


My daughter and I found this site some years ago. Now it is connected to Yahoo. Anyway, it is easier to use now and I'm glad we found it again. It's called Babelfish and what it does is translate languages! Say you have a friend from France who has sent you a note in French. Copy and paste it in the form box and pull the menu shade down to "from french to English." Then click the magic "translate button!" Viola!

Or say you want to send your French buddy a note and you aren't sure how to say it in French. Type the message in English and have it translated to French. Then copy and paste your translation into your email for your friend.

Another thing the tool does is translate entire web pages for you! Cool! Warning though, some phrases don't translate well, in some languages, so if your friend should email or IM a "Huh?" then you will know it's one of those hard-to-translate phrases.

Try it out! http://babelfish.yahoo.com/translate_txt

The Epitome of Wordliness

Posted on Sun, Mar. 22, 2009
The epitome of wordliness
(This classic Dave Barry column was originally published Nov. 28, 2004.)

It is time for another rendition of "Ask Mister Language Person, " the only grammar column approved for internal use by the Food and Drug Administration; the grammar column that puts the "dip" in "diphthong," the "vern" in "vernacular," and the "dang" in "dangling participle."

Today we shall commence right at the outset by starting with our first question, which concerns vocabulary:

Q. What does "decimate" mean?

A. This often-misunderstood word is an anterior cruciate predicate that should be used in conjugal phrases, as follows:

"Noreen was totally decimated when she found Vern wearing her good pantyhose."

Q. What is the difference between an "effort" and a "concerted effort?"

A. An effort is when an individual gives between zero and 110 percent; anything above that is a concerted effort, and generally should result in knee damage.

Q. What is the correct usage of the phrase "With all due respect?"

A. It is correctly used to "soften the blow" when you wish to criticize someone in a diplomatic and nonjudgmental manner, as in: "With all due respect, you are much worse than Hitler, " or "No disrespect intended, but you have the intelligence of a macaroon."

Q. What are "metrosexuals"?

A. They are individuals who have sex (also known as "bling bling") on subways.

Q. I often am confused about the difference between the words "accept" and "except." Is there any way to tell them apart?

A. Not at this time.

Q. I am a real-estate developer building a residential subdivision on a former landfill, and I can't decide which name would be more prestigious: "The Oaks at Hampton Chase Manor, " or "The Estates of the Falls of the Landings of Hunters Run."

A. How recently was the property used as a landfill?

Q. In some of the yards, you can still see refrigerators sticking out of the dirt.

A. We would recommend "The Knolls at Cheshire Pointe Landings on the Greene."

Q. What is the correct pronunciation of "epitome"? I say it's "epitome, " but my friend Bill says it's "epitome."

A. With all due respect, you are both morons. "Epitome, " when pronounced correctly, rhymes with "penultimate, " and is used as follows: "In my concerted opinion, Ding Dongs is the epitome of the Hostess snack line."

Q. What is the best true headline ever to appear in an actual newspaper?

A. In our opinion, that would be a headline from the Petersburg (Va.) Progressive-Index, over a story about a mishap during the 2001 Bike Week gathering of motorcyclists in Florida. The headline, which was sent to us by alert reader Mary Ellen Lloyd, says: "Skydiver lands on beer vendor at women's cole-slaw wrestling event."

Q. Do you have any other true examples of excellent language use sent in by actual readers?

A. Of course:

* An alert Missouri reader sent in a newsletter from Rocky Mountain National Park containing this tip for visitors: "Avoid the traffic by using one of the park's shuttle buses and view the elk rut with a park ranger."

* Nan Bell and Elisabeth Lindsay sent in an Associated Press article concerning efforts to identify the person whose leg washed ashore in Bodega Bay, Calif., containing this quote from an official of the coroner's office: "We were stumped, basically."

* Claudette Knieriem sent in a Manchester (N.H.) Union Leader classified ad for a child-care center that says: "FUN AT PLAY where it's creative, safe, wholesome and neutering."

* Larry and Suzanne Tingley sent in an article from the Watertown (N.Y.) Daily Times stating that the Lewis County Board of Legislators had authorized the creation of a petty cash fund "for the weekly purchase of dry ice, used for incest control."

* Dolores Evans sent in an article from Harrisburg (Pa.) Patriot News headlined: "Smoking organ causes stir at nursing home."

* Roy Winter sent in a New Orleans Times-Picayune article concerning a breakout at an animal-research facility, headlined: "Tulane center monkeys escape; half are captured in time for dinner."

* Alert journalist David Davidson wrote in to point out that there is a collegiate women's basketball team that is officially known as "The Lady Golden Bulls."

Q. What college do The Lady Golden Bulls play for?

A. That would be Johnson C. Smith University.

TODAY'S WRITING TIP FOR JOB-SEEKERS: When writing a résumé, be sure to use "power words" to describe your accomplishments and skills:

WRONG: "I supervised a team of 15 data-entry clerks."

RIGHT: "I can snap your spine like a toothpick."


Saturday, March 28, 2009

Found this photo in my files and tried the "Reflections" widget on it.
This is my dad surrounded by grandkids and grandnephews. This was taken on his birthday July 31, 2005--two years before he passed away. He was very happy on that day! A family reunion was planned to coincide with his birthday. At that time he and my Aunt Carrie were the last of the fifteen siblings left. Aunt Carrie died about six months after this. She was not well enough to attend the reunion.

Both my parents were in education and my dad in particular was inspiration for being a teacher. He was a teacher, a principal and later a professor in education who taught teachers to teach. He also inspired a love of reading in our family. I couldn't help but get certified as a reading specialist on top of my degrees!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Raul Midon Returns to Korea

Source Link

Singer/songwriter Raul Midon (For photo click HERE: )
By Cathy Rose A. Garcia
Staff Reporter

American singer Raul Midon returns to Seoul for another concert, as part of ``The Beautiful Singer-Songwriter Series at the Theater'' in April.

Midon, a blind guitarist whose deep, soulful voice invites comparisons to another blind musician Stevie Wonder, impressed Korean fans when he held a concert in Seoul last year.

In an email interview with The Korea Times, Midon shares fond memories of his concert in Seoul, as well as his guest appearance on the TV music show ``Love Letter with Yoon Do-hyun.''

``The Korean fans are special because they are so open and responsive to my music,'' he said.

Midon will perform April 26, at the M Theater, Sejong Center for the Performing Arts, Gwanghwamun, downtown Seoul. He promises some surprises for his upcoming concert, but declined to elaborate.

``I'll be playing songs from my previous two albums, `State of Mind' and `A World Within A World' and also previewing songs from my upcoming album. If I tell you, it wouldn't be a surprise,'' he said.

Midon attracted fans and impressed critics with his albums ``A State of Mind'' in 2005 and ``A World Within A World'' in 2007. He writes and composes his own music, often described as pop-jazz fusion.

Midon and his twin brother were born in Embudo, New Mexico, to his Argentinean father and African-American mother. Both babies became blind after being placed in an incubator without proper protection for the eyes.

At a young age, Midon learned to play the drums and guitar. He studied music under the jazz program of the University of Miami.

Midon does not think of his blindness as an obstacle to his music career, but rather as a way for people to remember him. ``I think that blindness is a way that people remember me and that's okay as long as they remember me,'' he said.

The 42-year-old singer-songwriter is currently busy writing songs and preparing to record a new album in Los Angeles. ``I'm so grateful for the fans. We're aiming to release the record internationally around September,'' Midon said.

In the past, Midon has collaborated with artists such as Wonder (who played the harmonica on Midon's track ``Expressions of Love''), Herbie Hancock, Roberto Fonseca and Jason Mraz (``Keep on Hoping'').

``I have my dreams of working with Paul Simon, James Taylor, and Joni Mitchell. Here's hoping dreams come true,'' he said.

Aside from Midon, foreign and Korean singer-songwriters will also be holding concerts at the M Theater from April 16 to 26. ``The Beautiful Singer-Songwriter Series at the Theater'' features Rachael Yamagata, Lasse Lindh, Jang Ki-ha & Faces, Jung Jae-hyung, Zitten, Yozoh, Cho Kyu-chan, Kim Gwang-jin and Bulnabang Star Sausage Club.

Tickets for the concerts range from 44,000 won to 77,000 won. Call 02-563-7110 or visit ticket.interpark.com. Email info@privatecurve.com for English inquiries


EYE Facts Sheet for ROP

Some doctors may have this sheet in their offices but here is where they order them.
Retinopathy of Prematurity (ROP) is an eye disease that occurs in a small percentage of premature babies. My preschool class was of all preemies ages three to six with ROP and other complications due to premature birth. A parent may also be able to order this
fact sheet and hand them out to teachers and specialists at the child's school. They are published by

American Academy of Ophthalmology
P.O. Box 7424, San Francisco, CA 94120-7424 http://www.aao.org/

I may see if I can order them to use in my situation. Hmmm.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Still Life Compositions from Zoofari

Kairos Discipleship Retreat Weekend #16

Ben Underwood

I'd found a video about Ben and was trying to relocate it to post here when I found out that Ben Underwood passed away in January. Here is the link to the web site his mom started about him.I will continue to look for the video as kids who are blind due to retinoblastoma are often amazing in their use of echolocation. One of my former students could skateboard and ride a bike as he snapped his fingers while another used to play hide and seek with me while stretching out her hands and listening for me breathing and sniffing the air for my location. She now teaches braille to the deaf-blind and is raising her own little girl.

Ben had retinoblastoma which is a cancer that attacks the eyes of babies and toddlers. His eyes were removed when he was three-years old. I first saw a news story on him about three years ago. Last year I read where the cancer had returned but I was not aware that he'd passed this past January. Click HERE to go to the web site Ben's mom has started about him. Meanwhile, I will be on the lookout for that amazing video.

Oh, yes! There's a place to send condolences and donations to Ben's family. I will certainly be sending up my prayers for them. I am comforted that Mrs. Underwood and her son were saved and that she sheds no tears in knowing where he is.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Prayer Requests

Yesterday afternoon, I met with a few of my Kairos brothers as we went up to have a prayer vigil for our brother, Hermann Schluter. Brother Herman has had pancreatic cancer for a while. Something was going on in his liver but it had him so down that he was in ICU and telling his wife what he wanted for his funeral. We all went into prayer mode. I called "Mr.Kathy" on my way and told him what time to start praying with us from where he was in another city.

Yesterday Brother Hermann had just come form ICU and was able to sit up and talk to us very clearly and with much alertness. He was happily in a regular room! They'd discovered that he had much infection in his liver and the medical staff was able to drain the infection once they figured out the problem. Please keep him in your prayers as he recuperates.

This weekend--starting today--Kairos will sponsor our Discipleship Retreat Weekend. Please keep us and our guests in your prayers. I will be leaving immediately after I visit my last school for the day.


The other day I went to a school to observe a little girl and give her a function vision screening as part of her educational evaluation. The child was in a pre-K class. I will call her "BabyGirl" here. (So cute!)

This happens to be the same school where Mr. Hebrews 13:1-3 is enrolled. [By the way, that little rascal has not returned to school YET!]

The kids were coming from breakfast and I introduced my self to the teacher. She seemed delighted to see me. During the time I was there I discovered that she was a truly dedicated teacher, thus to have someone come to help one of her babies---well, certainly she would be happy to meet them! I can appreciate that as I have been the same way when I had a classroom of children--or students under any situation.

She pointed out the child to me at the rear of the line--a cute baby with two little Afro-puffs on top of her head. You could tell that mom took time to make sure she was dressed neatly and that the hair was just so. The whole class was cute--full of little people about waist high! The child was very quiet and although she looked at me and gave me a half smile, she did not speak, She focused on her spot at the end of the line.

I knew that part of the morning routine was a line to the potty after breakfast so I told the teacher that I would just follow the class rather than interrupt the routine. I unpacked my vision testing equipment and my camera while the kids went to the restrooms just outside the classroom.

When some of the children began to return to the class, they found their names on a table and began to "sign in" meaning that they took another sheet of paper and attempted to copy or scribble their names on another sheet of paper before going to their seats.

BabyGirl was one of the last of the little girls to return. She happily came outside with me to have her picture taken. I heard her gasp as she covered her face from the direct morning sunlight.

"Oh my!" I said. "It is very bright out here. Let's have you face this way so that the sun is not in your face so."

Even sideways, from facing the sun she continued to squint a bit.I made a mental note as I showed her several photos on the camera's view finder to see if she could point out her own picture on the two-inch by two-inch screen. She looked at the screen but didn't point to anything.

When we went back inside, I realized why she was not interested in the camera any more. The children were gathering on the carpet at the front of the class for circle time. Each child sat on his/her name on a piece of tape on the carpet. BabyGirl was letting me know that she had to follow the routine to feel comfortable--so I let her go. I'd observe her in her routine and jump in there with questions or get something out of her while she did her usual thing.

The teacher sat at the front of the circle next to the calendar which was at eye level for little waist high beings. "What did you do at home yesterday?" she asked each child.

"I played my games and I ate my supper. Then I went to bed," said one child.

The little woman next to BabyGirl who is obviously a 44-year-old impostor, ran off a list of things she did at home the day before after she got off from work. I believe she cooked dinner for her family and righted a derailed train after leaping a skyscraper with a single bound. Her teacher grinned at her: "You're full of baloney, aren't you?"

They both chuckled and the forty-four year old laughed, "Yes ma'am, but I did eat hotdogs last night."

Then it was BabyGirl's turn. She didn't say anything. "Did you play?" the teacher asked. BabyGirl nodded.

Modeling the Amslang for "I played" the teacher slowly said, "Then say 'I played'."
That signaled the whole class to sign and say "I played!"

By this time I was on the floor behind BabyGirl. She barely shook her hands to sign "play" when Forty-four said to me, "She didn't learn to talk yet."

I smiled as I thought of one of my husband's favorite lines from the movie "Inside Man." Thank you bank robber! I'm learning so much today!"

The teacher called the children's attention to the calendar. It was another lovely little girl's turn to use the pointer for the days of the week. She chose the star pointer, which the teacher said seemed to be everyones' favorite. I was partial to the ones with the Mickey Mouse-looking white gloved fingers on the end. Those were cool. I think I will find one for myself.

The children had a rhyme and rhythm for saying the days of the week. BabyGirl moved her hands to the rhythm like the other children and smiled---but she didn't say anything. Nor were her hand movements for any Amslang for the days of the week.

I noticed, too, that as the teacher pointed to anything on the calendar, BabyGirl was not focusing on anything in that direction. Of course she knew that the teacher was in front of the class, but by the unfocused look, she was not aware of anything that was being pointed out up there. She simply was not seeing it. She was following the routine and following along with the other children as often children with low vision will do.

Then it was center time and Babygirl was to take a card with her picture on it and take it to the center where she wanted to play. Since she was a bit more comfortable with me, I followed her to the block center.

There I saw some manipulatives that looked like miniature poker chips. They were either yellow, green, red or blue. There were also some giant pegs and Legos in those colors. If she was going to confuse colors I had to give her a choice between the green blue and red objects. I pretended I wanted to play with some of the objects and asked her to help me with the red chips, then the green pegs and the blue pegs. She never confused the yellow objects as obviously they are lighter, but the others seemed always confused. As I explained to her teacher, it is difficult to tell if some of that would be cognitive or true color blindness. But when the teacher told me later that she follows directions very well it made me think. When I returned to my office, I saw my notes on her and in the email from my supervisor BabyGirl has been diagnosed as having optic nerve atrophy. Some sensitivity to light and color blindness is common with optic nerve atrophy.

The teacher asked if there was something she could be doing. I mentioned the calendar and that I was unsure bout colorblindness. I told her about allowing her to step up to certain charts rather than pint them out across the room because she was not seeing clearly beyond a few feet in front of her. Arms' length was no problem, though.

The teacher started to feel bad. "I haven't been thinking about her vision! Just handling the other things like the speech...and that she needs time to keep up--she sometimes moves very slow. I didn't even think that that poor baby..."

"No, no, no," I comforted her. "It is easy to see total blindness. Children with low vision will fool you. Not because they are trying to deceive you at this age, but they just do what the other children do and that gets them by."

I suggested I take her out for a few minutes. Iusually see if a child can take me to three places on a school campus. She gave BabyGirl the lunch envelope and told her she was picked to take it to the cafeteria. We would walk behind her and she could lead us there.
The little hands took the big envelope. Then a finger of one hand went into her mouth as if she were saying,"Hmmmm.I'm not sure bout this."
When we got outside, BabyGirl stopped and waited for guidance. She didn't seem sure of which way she should turn when she was asked. She just stood and looked back and forth between the two of us.

Finally her teacher took a few steps ahead and said," OK, where do we go from here to get to the cafeteria?"

BabyGirl stepped next to her teacher but that was a far as she was going. her teacher prompted her to walk ahead. She did so very reluctantly, looking behind her for her teacher. She did not know her way to the cafeteria without prompting. On the way back I asked her if she'd feel more comfortable holding hands with one of us adults. of course she reached for her teacher's hand.

For about a month, BabyGirl had been walking in the middle or at the end of the line using the other children to get around the school. the teacher felt so bad. "That is why there is so much confusion at the end of the day when our line meets with other lines in the building. All of the children wear the same color uniform shirts and she gets totally confused in the halls with large groups of children!"

I assured the teacher that I would have a good report written and that she would be fine. When I got back to my office, I wrote a report of my observation with my recommendations and emailed it to the appropriate pupil appraisal personnel.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Big Money!

I found these giant plastic coins at a dollar store--Dollar Tree, to be exact. As soon as I saw them I scooped them up because I thought of them as a good tool for kids with low vision and regular cognitive abilities for learning coins. I have put coins under the CCTV before, but suppose you're traveling from school to school and you don't have one in your back pocket? besides that these are accessible by touch and just plain fun. I may take close up photos of these--front and back-- to use in an Intellitools activity. The program comes with some photos of coins but they can be enlarged only so much without losing clarity.

More Zoo-fari Photos

Zipper Pull

I found this pull at Wally World. Although it is the right size, on never knows who may find the design inappropriate. I actually found this before I found the bag of 80 rings 'n' things. It's functional though! This is light weight and easy to pull on the pants zipper of a child with cerebral palsey.

The clip next to it (left) came in the bag of rings 'n' I spoke of in an earlier post (March 4).

Monday, March 16, 2009

Deeeer Booty: Weighty Matters

Deeer Booty,
Sorry if you should feel so neglected lately. The chemo tired me so that after all I wanted to do was sleeeeeeep. The hypothyroidism doesn't help either. Then when I'm not seeing consult kids at work, I have to sit on you in front of the computer. We're both getting better. When we're really good, I will buy us some size 8 jeans. OK?

Ghostship: Voices from the Grave

I will be helping my friends, Luttermaker, with their blog, Ghostship: Voices from the Grave. We met as volunteers in prison ministry some years ago. They have a vested interest in the effects of antidepressants on some people. Some may be dangerous to the user as well as to those with whom they come in contact. I will let them explain after some tutoring about how to maintain and post.

Whether you agree or not, you may find what they post to be intersting to say the least.

My assisting them in this endeavor means only that I find the topic of interest in terms of the children I work with. I'm open to differing views on the subject. Being in prison ministry, I will not express partiality or biase concerning justice or injustice of the court system concerning doctors' prescribing these meds and the results therein.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

In Memory of Beverly Part 2

Yesterday I signed out for a few hours to attend my class mate Beverly Robinson Downs' home going celebration. It was held at the church where I was baptized. She was still a member there and very active. My family moved membership to a church closer to home. I am comforted when I know the person was saved and had declared Romans 10:9-10 while they were alive. So I know where she is.

Some of our classmates still live in the area. Some in other states. But many of them keep in closer contact than I do. I was invited to join them after work. I was not too comfortable with going to a club atmosphere. I don't drink and I don't care to be around people after they've had a few too many. However, it is not that often I get to see my classmates. So I went to be sociable and I took pictures and traded emails and phone numbers. We attended a small, semi-private school so our class was no larger than about sixty-two.

I loaded these and more up on my Kodak Gallery and shared them by email today.

Words of the Day Part 9

Affable: (Adjective) Friendly; easy to talk to. Christy's sentence: "I think Barack Obama is the most affable because I've been hearing him on the news a lot."

Ephemeral: (Adjective) :Lasting a short while. Christy's sentence: "I had a fish that had an ephemeral life."

Adjective: (noun) A describing word. "Adjectives can tell us color, size, shape and how many."

Friday, March 13, 2009

Words of the Day Part 8

Elevate: (verb--School wide WOD) To lift up of make higher. "You can elevate your hand for the teacher to call on you."

Physical: (adjective--School wide WOD) Active. "We go to physical education at 10:00 on Mondays and Wednesdays."

Mysterious: (adjective--SuperKids word of the Day) Puzzling. Hard to explain. Something to make us wonder. "The historian cannot understand the mysterious inscription on the ancient tomb."

Thursday, March 12, 2009

I started out the day at the center school where I installed a program for a student who is paraplegic as well as visually impaired. This kid is a charmer. I wanted to make sure I was out there as early as possible because the kids go to work at a nearby WalMart and I wanted to make sure I had time to go over the program with the teacher. She stays busy with her kids and wants to get as much done with them as possible. I like that. I have run across teachers who don't want to do anything with kids they consider too low functioning so they have a lot of down time in the class.

The program takes a while to install and I added some activities based on what she works on with the kids by downloading some activities from on line. While the kids were working I took pictures of each of them and added their photos to the program. Each student can sign in to their own activities by clicking on their pictures. Mr. Charmer uses a switch to access the computer and had asked for more age appropriate activities on the computer.

I was able to have lunch at my home school. When I checked my email a coworker needed help at the high school. My former student who is now her student, has a large TV monitor for his CCTV which he uses for writing. His homeroom teacher wanted to know if the projection could be in color. I seem to remember that the TV was a color one but it had not been showing up in color. The teacher wants him to see traffic signs on it in color like the other kids. I recalled color on the TV when it was at the middle school. But the O&M teacher set it up. We'd worked on it together when it was transported to the high school.

I believe it was also connected to her DVD and the picture was in color. I'm thinking the camera is black & white which is the problem. Anyway, the original remote had the batteries left in it over the summer when Matt was in 9th grade.

At the start of 10th grade, he had a teacher who really wasn't into too much work with the kids. Rather the opposite of the one I described above. She really didn't want to make accommodations with anything electronic because she felt I could pull him out and teach him "V.I." To get any purposeful teaching done, that is exactly what I had t do. She wanted to use the TV for the kids to watch DVDs. I finally ran up to the WalMart and bought a new remote to see if that would help. She and her favorite para promptly asked me if I'd brought any batteries to go with it! Finally after several months the CCTV was being used in the class but she wanted to be able to give him worksheets and set him in the corner with his CCTV to work on them independently and with little or no instruction.

Matt's new teacher has been actually working with him AND his class. I've heard good things about him. When I got their the kids were on work patrol. They visit classes with cleaning supplies and they get to work doing realistic work. I introduced myself and we discussed the CCTV problem. He told me that there was no remote to the TV when he got it! The teacher from last year obviously took it with her.

Anyway, I got to talk to Matt and some of his classmates. Matt's buddy Arness told me he missed me and "EVERYBODY miss you! You know that? That's the truth! EVERYBODY miss you!"

Right after school I had a three-hour workshop about technology for diverse learners. It was interesting. I have some more links and info to share with the other V.I. teachers and specialists.

My plan was to go to Beverly's wake right after and just show up late. I was so tired i forgot where it was so I called my mother and my sister. But they, of course, were at the services and didn't have their phones on. I'm thinking I'm too far across town and still in work clothes. I called my daughter to see if they'd mentioned to what funeral home they were going. It was after 7:00 PM by then and the wake and Omega services started at 6:00PM. I will just have to make the funeral tomorrow instead of trying to make both.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Words of the Day Part 7

Arsonist: (noun) A person who burns building on purpose. Sentence from a news story article: "Some of the California fires may have been started by arsonist." We also talked about how the suffix "ist" helps determine that this noun is a person.

Qualify: (verb) To fit by training skill or ability; trained. Terrance's sentence: "You do not qualify for this job." Obviously in different handwriting, possibly by the para on a day I was out for chemo.

Stymie: (verb) To block progress [The kids loved this word.] Christy's sentence: "He stymied her by not letting her throw the ball."

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

In Memory of Beverly Robinson Downs

These flower photos are from our zoofari. I'm posting them here in memory of my classmate Attorney Beverly Robinson Downs who passed earlier this week of an apparent heart attack. Beverly was running for a local public office.

My daughter took this picture of one of Beverly's campaign signs.