Sunday, May 13, 2012

Alex's P.E. Report And Japanese Senryu Presentations

Song:  Good Vibrations

Group:  The Beach Boys

Alex had a special project for extra credit in his Social Studies class.

He had put this together on Apple's Keynote software.

One of the options was to recite another country's poem/s in their native language.

As Alex had just completed a full report, and a separate presentation for it...
on the history of Japan's civilization from Ancient times to the present...
he had chosen to recite some famous short poems on three famous
Japanese warlord personalities...each of whom had attempted to unify Japan
(with the last one succeeding).

Tokugawa Ieyasu 
(Japanese put the surname first)...
is the person depicted in the famous book and movie "Shogun"
(in the book and movie, his name was changed to Toranaga, as it was a work of 
fiction based loosely on Tokugawa Ieyasu and the English navigator William Adams...
who was depicted as the character John Blackthorne).

Alex will be presenting this very short recitation to his class in Japanese.

Alex has been practicing his pronunciation of the Japanese words.

Alex has also just completed his report on a famous Olympic competitor
for his Physical Education class at school
(he will also have to present it to his class...
I had him make a modified outline for his presentation).

He had chosen Jim Thorpe.

(I had omitted his title page as his name is on it)

I hadn't even known that such a table existed in MS Word.

Alex knew right away...
as I sat there wondering how to make our own
using the keyboard and multiple dashes :)

Alex knows his way around the computer...
much more so than do I.

Alex does an exceptional job citing his work by numerals in his reports...
 which always correctly correspond with the Bibliography.

I have Alex keep all of his reports, as well as his outlines...
in one folder for future reference.

As he is still relatively new to writing reports...
he will be able to review how he had constructed his previous reports...
as this is just the start of many more to come.

Tomorrow, he will be competing (sort of...all of his P.E. class is participating)...
in a mini Olympiad that his school had set up at a nearby
High School football field.

They have been practicing the events of the Decathlon in P.E. at school.

They were allowed to choose to compete in the whole Decathlon 
or just a pick of four events from it.

Alex had originally chosen to compete in the whole Decathlon.

NO Alex.

I had to nix that immediately.

Alex doesn't realize the amount of effort necessary to compete in all of the events...
one after the other (although I applaud his spirit of adventure :)

I had him choose the...

 (a light semblance of one)

Shot Put
(a six pound medicine ball)

Hammer Throw
(a solid foam rubber ball on a fabric cord)


It is to be an all day affair.
We will be there cheering Alex on...
and taking many photos
(care to guess what my next article will be on?  :)

The next day...
a small (one page or so) description of his experience at the Olympiad is due.

This is to be his final paper to complete before the end of school.

Alex feels relieved as, with the ending of school for the summer...
he may now concentrate on furthering his math...
and preparing for his SATs
(June 2).

We will also be using the time to go on field trips.

I will have Alex involved in the research in finding
interesting and fun places to explore.

Alex will also be attending a special Math competition camp for 6 days
at Lake Tahoe in a couple of months.

He is really looking forward to it.

It will be his first time to be away from home...
and as always, his mother, and I, will be stressing while he just does his thing :)

We will, of course, be just an hour away...
and monitoring our phone in case of any emergency...
and perhaps driving up there every so often to look from afar 
through binoculars to ensure he is doing OK...

you know...all the things good helicopter parents do  :)


  1. Haha, I am sure Alex will do just fine away from home, though I understand how stressful that will be. I cannot yet imagine my son ever being able to do that, though hopefully that will happen one day.

    I continue to be impressed with how well Alex writes. He as come a long way in an important discipline.

  2. Thank you, Alex really enjoys writing. I see improvement in his work each time. With Alex, only now would we have considered letting him go to a camp. He has matured so much in the last year. I am sure Kai will do fine in a few years also.


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