Sunday, October 23, 2016

St. Dominic's Annual YAG Reunion and Mass

We all look forward to this annual get-together with old friends. I didn't get many photos, but the one I wish I had was the Mass itself, with Father Tony presiding. We all met him when he was the organizer for the YAG group and when he finally left, it was to become a priest, much to everyone's surprise (including him). He clearly belongs in this vocation and it was an honor to see him celebrate Mass and a joy to be with so many friends who will travel to sing, praise, pray, and worship together. Plus it is just wonderful to catch up with everyone.

Perhaps the brightest unexpected joy is that the girls look forward to this day as much as we do! G had to leave for a volleyball game and she was so disappointed to miss the play time with friends of our old friends whom she only sees once a year (unless we are lucky). The kids enjoy each other's company and immediately arrive and gravitate toward one another - so awesome.

The girls and Puck with (Sister) "Just Diane"

K with more old friends

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Sunset by G

Gorgeous! And G caught it on camera. From a backyard in Oakland....

Shakespeare's Henry V

A smaller class this week, but a favorite teacher was substituting for the regular one and that made K happy (though she likes her regular one too... it's just that "Phil is awesome.")  Here he is explaining the reasons for the pronunciation of certain words and how you can tell from the iambic pentameter how to pronounce them, a topic she'd been complaining hadn't been covered in previous classes.  She's got some great lines as the French Constable and we had a fascinating post-class discussion about the differences between various film productions of Henry V and the political reasons that Sir Lawrence Olivier's Henry V is so much more patriotic than Kenneth Branagh's version.  Need to watch/rewatch...

Friday, October 21, 2016

Book Club: Pride and Prejudice

Debate class and soccer kept us from attending the discussion, but we did have our own.   In the end, the girls didn't like it:  "a bunch of teenyboppers who think about nothing but boys."  Viewing the plot from a modern feminist perspective does weigh sadly:  despite the beautiful writing, moral dilemmas, and development of kind and ethical characters, the kids are right about the plot and that says a lot about the sad limitations of women's lives historically.

Reminds me too that I recently read "Longbourn," by Jo Baker, which tells the tale of Pride and Prejudice from the perspective of the servants.  A great read!

Earlier this year we read "Wuthering Heights" and then I read "Nelly Dean," by Alison Case, which is similarly about a servant in the house also a great read, adding depth to an understanding of the original.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Math Circle Updates

This week: They worked on making hexaflexagons of two types. Students were allowed to choose between a simple easy and a complex lengthy flexagon. This link was provided by our teacher and shows how it is done:

 Last week they worked on two puzzle type problems:

 1) Analyzing a real life situation for fusing five pieces of chains of same length (4 links each) to make a circular chain. They discussed the optimal plan and then figured out how to generalize this to any number of chain pieces. What should be the length of each piece? From that they generalized even further to pieces of variable length and the optimal strategy for that situation.

 2) To encourage students to visualize 3-D polyhedra, they worked on a problem related to fusing faces. They fused two cubes, two (regular) tetrahedron, and then one (regular) square pyramid with one (regular) tetrahedron. After students agreed upon the answers, they looked at 2-D projections of these polyhedra. In the end, they talked about the symmetry of a (regular) tetrahedron and ways to work with a tetrahedron.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Soccer games!  Great team, great fun, great kid.  Love the first photo especially for her intense stare!  These were all taken by the team photographer - thank you Lara!

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Drama Class

Learning about acting, singing, and Chinese mythology... here she is a Chinese dragon in rehearsal (usually wise and kind, in this case being attacked by a tiger and so more vicious).

Up close

With friends