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dmmetler

Annual brag thread! No Brag too big or small!!

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I'll just add a couple summer accomplishments.

Both of my kids got their black belts last week.

My equestrian kid did two horse shows (that is all I am willing to pay for annually at this point).  She got first place in one of her competitions and brought home a total of 6 ribbons, which is in her mind a terrific accomplishment.  🙂

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My oldest dd is joining gymnastics team.  She is so excited.  Gymnastics was the love of her life when she was younger.  Two and a half years ago, she was about to test for team from preteam when her coach’s health failed and the gym shut down.  Then when he died, she said she never wanted to do gymnastics again.  I am so glad she is getting her passion back.

Dyslexic dd2 has started reading for pleasure!  I am ecstatic.  I was truly worried that she would never enjoy reading, and would miss out on one of the great pleasures of my life.

Older ds has been advancing in cello by leaps and bounds.  I thought that it was because most of the songs in Suzuki book 1 are the same as for violin (which he did for a year before switching to cello) and that he would slow down when he hit material he’d never seen before.  It hasn’t happened.  He’s into the latter half of the book now, and still taking about 1-2 weeks per song.  And his tonalization is so good!  It’s really pleasant to listen to him practice.  Also, all his practice has really payed off in increasing manual strength and dexterity—his handwriting and fine motor skills have gone from being his greatest struggle academically to close to normal for his age.

Ds4 is starting Singapore 1a.  He is shaping up to be my most asynchronous yet.

Edited by Michelle Conde
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DD got her back walkover last night! She has been blocked on backwards tumbling for almost 2 years, to the point of having to restart from scratch. She’s on a Level 3 team due to stunting, and isn’t getting pressure to get her tumbling, and in some ways, I think that was the best thing-when she knew she was valuable to the team without the skills, she started progressing again. 

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37 minutes ago, dmmetler said:

DD got her back walkover last night! She has been blocked on backwards tumbling for almost 2 years, to the point of having to restart from scratch. She’s on a Level 3 team due to stunting, and isn’t getting pressure to get her tumbling, and in some ways, I think that was the best thing-when she knew she was valuable to the team without the skills, she started progressing again. 

Congratulations! Backward skills are hard. You have to take that leap of faith into the unknown. She will be doing back handsprings in no time. Is she a base or a flyer in stunting?

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Base or spot-she is extremely good at seeing when a stunt is unstable and how to keep it up, and in directing others how to do so. Level 3 is where twisting and flipping within stunts starts coming into play (and it gets scary to watch as a parent 🙂 )

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DS5 has started reading the Horrible Science series. He's been a fluent reader since 3 but he doesn't love it (he seems to abhor fiction), but "human body books" fascinate him.

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Older DD got 1st stepsister in Cinderella confidential this is probably the biggest part she's ever gotten and its the production that had the most kids audition so she is thrilled.

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On 8/18/2018 at 12:34 PM, SeaConquest said:

Sacha is off to lifeguard camp, and I am a nervous wreck. And, I'm never a nervous wreck when my kids go off to camp. He's just worked so hard to get here, it doesn't come easily for him (the physical stuff), and I want it to go well so much that my insides ache. It is so difficult to just stand back and watch and hope that they get what they desperately desire. This parenting business is rough.

Just saw this, and it brought back memories :)

My kids are in a school board with almost 500 elementary schools. When my eldest was 10 or 11, she wanted to audition for the board-wide string ensemble that would perform in a prestigious concert hall at the end of the year. Even though she had played non-stop for a few years, my first instinct was that she was too young. I said so. That got me nowhere 😀  She told me she was going, and I would drive her. I supported her in preparing for the audition, and she was very ready. She was using an ancient school violin and a bow with not much hair, but knew the material cold.
The day of the audition, we walked into the auditorium, my DD nervous. As I looked around, I saw super confident kids with very very expensive beautiful instruments. The cases for their instruments cost more than my sofa. They had tiger moms who had taped the sheet music to the walls and were glaring at the kids as they practised. 

And this is the first time this had ever happened....I really thought I was going to throw up and could barely breathe. Here was something my kid had really worked for.. had I really given her every opportunity? I made sure she knew where she had to go to audition and that she was tuned and warmed up. I watched her walk down that aisle. Then I left the hall so that she didn't see me start crying. Parenthood is really tough!

She made it... was placed in the back row, but she made it. Within 2 years she was the concertmaster. I noticed that year that she was the only child who tuned her own violin (?!), who helped others when they had problems, and who volunteered to stay to clean up after the rehearsals. Now years later, she is just changing instruments (to have a new challenge) and refuses to be part of the drama that seems to be endemic in that field. So maybe throwing your kid into the deep end (if that is really what they want) is the right thing to do! 

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DS has just started at MIT, and for one of his upper-level classes, all the freshman had to approach the professor after class and explain their backgrounds to make sure they were properly placed.  DS said it was like a 'whose who' as the 15 freshman in the class were each giving their background  --

"I was in blue MOP, I was a USAMO gold medalist, I was in black MOP." 

DS is thinking I've got this, I've got this.

They continued, "I went to the IMO, I was in the TST group, I was a MTS finalist..."

DS: I've got this, I've got this. But he is getting nervous as he waits his turn, listening to all of these amazing kids.  

Then the guy *right* in front of him very casually says to the professor, "I've read a lot of your work, and I got a perfect score on the IMO."  Um..... Oh....... OH!! Oh, goodness, I know who you are!

Then it is DS's turn.  "Well, I went to the IMO, but I did NOT get perfect score." 😀   

Edited by lewelma
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And second brag... DS just became an Emerson Scholar at MIT for 'outstanding achievement' on his instrument!  They only took 5 freshman strings. He is so excited!!

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I like these threads a lot.  It is fun to hear about what types of students are at MIT, for example. Lots of other neat things too.

At his last lesson, my 5 year old’s piano teacher told me he has perfect pitch, or at least close to it. She didn't have a lot of time to check for it.

I wonder what kind of positives and/or negatives go along with this.

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2 hours ago, drjuliadc said:

I like these threads a lot.  It is fun to hear about what types of students are at MIT, for example. Lots of other neat things too.

At his last lesson, my 5 year old’s piano teacher told me he has perfect pitch, or at least close to it. She didn't have a lot of time to check for it.

I wonder what kind of positives and/or negatives go along with this.

 

Oooh, my best friend in hs had perfect pitch and it was often more of a curse than a blessing. For example: she learned her scat part for a very competitive jazz competition on a piano that (it turns out!) was slightly out of tune (half step off). She'd learned it so thoroughly and completely, however, that she could not adjust up the half step needed for her audition and she definitely lost the part! 

OTOH, my grandma has perfect pitch, and it sure makes her one heckuva violin player, so there are definite perks as well!

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12 hours ago, drjuliadc said:

I like these threads a lot.  It is fun to hear about what types of students are at MIT, for example. Lots of other neat things too.

At his last lesson, my 5 year old’s piano teacher told me he has perfect pitch, or at least close to it. She didn't have a lot of time to check for it.

I wonder what kind of positives and/or negatives go along with this.

My DS has perfect pitch and it is very helpful with intonation on the violin. It has also become more sensitive over time. When he was about 5, he could identify by sound the names of all of the notes on the piano except the very highest/lowest and the names of 3 note chords. By 8 or 9, he could identify and name every note in any chord in all the major and minor keys (augmented, diminished, etc.), the notes in a random group of 4-5 notes played together, and he could name the key of any piece of music just by hearing a few measures. Now, at 10, he can identify quarter tones as well. He also does a lot of improvising/composing on the piano and he can record what he plays and transcribe it into Finale just by listening to his recording -- he doesn't have to work out or try to remember the notes he played.

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On 10/7/2018 at 10:09 PM, drjuliadc said:

I like these threads a lot.  It is fun to hear about what types of students are at MIT, for example. Lots of other neat things too.

At his last lesson, my 5 year old’s piano teacher told me he has perfect pitch, or at least close to it. She didn't have a lot of time to check for it.

I wonder what kind of positives and/or negatives go along with this.

 

Dd has perfect pitch. The only negative for her was when she was little, she had a really difficult time in violin group classes listening to out of tune playing. She learned quickly to control her outward reaction though.

Positives for her include really good intonation on the violin, able to tune her violin without a tuner, easily learns music by ear--even longer classical pieces so once she can play something she no longer needs the sheet music, can transpose the music into any key immediately, easily names notes in chords, and can easily name the key of a piece which is a great skill to have when playing traditional music in jam sessions where melody players put tunes together randomly and the accompanist/backer needs to know where to go. Though she has perfect pitch, she does not seem to be hindered by a slightly different "A" so when listening to old recordings, that were sometimes sped up a bit changing the intonation a bit, she is not bothered...she either changes the tuning on her fiddle a bit to sound like the recording or plays the tune in the correct tuning (A=440 or whatever).

Edited by Donna
left out an "and"
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On 10/8/2018 at 11:16 AM, Florimell said:

My DS has perfect pitch and it is very helpful with intonation on the violin. It has also become more sensitive over time. When he was about 5, he could identify by sound the names of all of the notes on the piano except the very highest/lowest and the names of 3 note chords. By 8 or 9, he could identify and name every note in any chord in all the major and minor keys (augmented, diminished, etc.), the notes in a random group of 4-5 notes played together, and he could name the key of any piece of music just by hearing a few measures. Now, at 10, he can identify quarter tones as well. He also does a lot of improvising/composing on the piano and he can record what he plays and transcribe it into Finale just by listening to his recording -- he doesn't have to work out or try to remember the notes he played.

This is all just amazing. Did he have any early exposure to pitch, from before age three?

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19 minutes ago, drjuliadc said:

This is all just amazing. Did he have any early exposure to pitch, from before age three? 

No, he didn't, and we were not expecting him to show any real promise, even though he was generally precocious. DS was about 4.5 when we started with piano (I found an inexpensive one on Craigslist and worked with him myself for about a year before he needed a real teacher).  He never had any formal exposure to music before that. I am a very mediocre musician and DH never had any exposure to formal music study at all. It is pretty remarkable to witness, though I suspect that it won't guarantee much in the hypercompetitive world of music....

Edited by Florimell
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9 hours ago, Florimell said:

He never had any formal exposure to music before that.

What was his informal exposure to music?

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24 minutes ago, drjuliadc said:

What was his informal exposure to music?

We just listened to a great variety of music (everything from Raffi to Vivaldi to electronica) and danced in the kitchen.  Music is like a language to him -- something that just makes sense in a deep way. I don't think we could have done anything to teach that or to bring it out earlier, and I think any forced efforts on our part might have had detrimental effects.

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This is a personal celebration. I just finished giving my talk about  Math Circles at the Northwest Math Conference. Definitely out of my normal wheelhouse and I'm really happy with how it went.

If you're curious I dumped the slide deck here: http://mymathclub.blogspot.com/2018/10/math-circle-talk-slide-deck.html

 

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Pal can play 50 songs on piano. His next goal is to learn 125 songs.

NOTE: I'm not the least bit musical and can't judge his skill level at all but am still very proud of him.

 

 

 

 

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Impressive stories! I hope my DS will also have such wonderful achievement. Whatever achievement he will have, either in academic or in life in general, I will always be proud of him. Homeschooling is a great way to bond with kids while joining them in their learning journey.

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