The old meets the new learning styles

Teaching my great nieces (9y & 16y) remotely with the cell phone and laptop can be quite a challenge for anyone. Have you read the USA President’s Handbook for Health, Fitness, and Nutrition lately? (not exact title but should be)  Talk about a mind blower. It is lengthy and has many links to it for further research. My niece Makayla was telling me about how much she could walk at a time, which was wildly exaggerated or she is a gifted athlete but balked at the idea that she had to do a timed run of one mile, for her pre-test.

Well, she lives in the mountains up a steep grade 1/4 miles from the main road. I was doing the calculations of a mile equivalency based on endurance and how steep the road is.  She threw a fit at my numbers and I finally caved in and ended the call- she still hasn’t done her pre-physical test that the President says she must do. So, We go into YOGA – I don’t know the first thing about yoga except you try to bend like a pretzel.  My sister bought 4 video series starting with the basic concepts to expert yoginis. That has worked better as a 1 hour of physical activity requirement for children and 30 minutes for adults per day. She is up to 20 minutes of trial and error but confident that she will eventually master it.

I chose a digital microscope/endoscope for my nieces to use in Science classes. I had to walk sight unseen my 9 yr old through computer installation and calibration of said microscope over the telephone. She was blown away at the 1000x strength imaging of an ordinary leaf. She could see the membranes and cellular structure within on her computer screen.  Her grandma was really excited as they tried different materials, onions, paper, pebbles, etc.  It made the headache of choosing new and modern vs traditional microscopes worthwhile and hoping I didn’t get too much overkill.

When you live on a mountain you have to take technology with a grain of salt. I ordered a cell phone through T-Mobile to use the hotspot feature for the internet- wouldn’t work. Then we went to Verizon, wouldn’t work despite the fact that the local tower is from Verizon. They can’t get a landline service either. So my sister went to Walmart (28 miles away) and bought a Straight Talk 5 Gbyte prepaid card and it worked with the Verizon tower but ran out of time after three 8 hours days of being online. So that can get expensive at $50.00 per card real quick. So our next option is the public library over 35 miles away.  My sister had to convince the librarian to allow them to bring in their laptops and remotely connect to their (hotspot) internet so they could do their assignments. They are attending Alabama Connections Academy for their online education. We’ll see how that works out as I have to interact with them over the phone; I live in Texas, they live in Alabama, to teach the assignments so they can join the weekly online webinars and stay up with the classroom teacher.

 

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