Twestival – What You Need To Know

Now, what exactly is a Twestival? How does it differ from Tweet-ups or similar events? Now, this website is mostly about education, but we all know in what way modern technology and communication is essential for up-to-date education. So there’s the link between Twitter and education.

A Twestival (or TwitterFestival – Twitter & festival makes Twestival) has some similarities to any Tweet-ups in a way that Twitter people will connect offline for social catch-up or networking purposes.

There are 3 main elements that make Twestival so special:
1) The scope of Twestival is much larger than other events and there are many volunteers involved.
2) Twestival is open to all sorts of people within the Twitter communities, So although most participants tend to be early adopters still, there are many different and diverse new people and industries present.
3) The third and most important element of Twestival is that it supports a social cause by raising funds collectively and bringing awareness.

So when and how got Twestival started?
Well, about a decade ago, to be precise (in September 2008), a small group of Twitterers (or Twitter fans) from London, UK, set up an event that allowed local Twitter community members to meet in an offline setting and to meet the individuals and the faces behind the platform’s avatars. Now I’m a highly active Twitterer and a highly engaged education mom. So this website is all about tweeting to education moms!

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The Birth of Twestival

In September 2008, a London, UK, group of Twitterers came up with the idea to set up an event for the local Twitter community where they had the chance to socialize offline, meet some faces behind Twitter’s avatars, have a good time together with the local community, enjoy some nice entertainment, have some drinks in combination with a food drive, and try to do some fundraising for a local charity that supports the homeless.

The entire event was set up in less than two weeks. The local Twittersphere used all of their talent and a bit of financial support to make this London event happen.

Then from all across the world, similar events started to get organized. Local Twittersphere communities started to come together and also took action to support a good cause. So Twestival came from the idea that cities could work together on a global scale but organize an event on a local level. If this could take place, a spectacular impact could be generated.

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Skin Color According to a Five-Year-Old

Children begin to notice the difference in people’s skin color fairly early on. They innocently make comments that an adult would never get away with. Sometimes those comments about skin color are ironically spot on. This is the current understanding of skin color according to our five-year-old.

So a few days back, we replayed a video of the second presidential debate (October 2012) and watched this recording together as a family. Although our kids are still very young (probably too young to truly understand the election process), we thought it’d be a good idea to try to watch at least some portion of that debate and use it as a teachable moment.

While we were watching, we explained a bit about the election process (very briefly and simply). We also explained that Barack Obama was our former president and the candidate running against him was Mitt Romney, and a debate was an opportunity for candidates to share their views.

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Does School Size Matter?

People often ask me, “Does school size matter?” In a nutshell…yes, school size matters.

Historically large schools (especially for middle and high school) have been the norm for many reasons. A school building, in and of itself, is expensive to operate and maintain. So the fewer buildings that a district has to pay for, the less capital outlay it is for the district.

Secondly, the more students in one building, the more funding for that school. The more students in the school, the more likely it is that the school can offer a robust number of programs. In other words, the more students, it’s more likely that you’ll have a better football team, basketball team, and even a math team.

Despite some of the positives of a large school, sometimes in a large school setting, it’s too easy for a student to get lost. Particularly, students who don’t fit the norm and are not well assimilated into school, for whatever reason. Many students drop out of school and later need to try to earn a GED diploma with the help of online courses like these MyCareerTools GED Resources.

My high school graduating class was roughly 170 students. A high school that wasn’t too far away had 1,000 students per graduating class. Take a minute to think about that from a student to teacher/adult ratio. Of course, large schools have more staff members, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that fewer students fall through the cracks.

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Using Apps in Early Education

The real benefit of using smartphone apps is that they help with connecting individuals without a lot hassle. You may wonder how exactly something so advanced as a mobile app might help in earlier education with regard to children. It’s accurate that kids of this generation tend to be somewhat different than we were at that age.

Nevertheless, a smartphone itself is simply too much with regard to someone of a younger age but when they grow older, they will get very proficient in utilizing advanced cellular apps. Now how can smartphone apps be used for learning efficiently and how can that be productive?

Before we proceed with the actual discussion, allow me to ask you: what do you think mobile applications are for? Are these apps only beneficial for reserving the table in a restaurant or catching the actual trending celeb gossips, or may these apps come with some critically constructive and instructive elements? Well, not all apps are created for providing amusement only; there are also some very good apps that, when used appropriately, bring a lot of good.

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Interview on an RIE Approach with Janet Lansbury

To learn how to practice gentle guidance principles with my daughter, I discovered all about Resources for Infant Educarers (RIE) and the philosophies of Janet Lansbury. RIE is basically about trusting and respecting babies and infants as whole human beings and there are so many ways of doing so.

I’m happy to interview Janet, an RIE instructor for parents who shares all her experience in her blog. Janet’s posts, links, and community are a great source for parents to build and maintain a good connection and use positive discipline with our children.

So, let’s get to it!

Janet, can you describe a bit of RIE, and what your work with RIE is about?

Janet: RIE is a non-profit organization founded by infant specialist Magda Gerber in 1978 that is dedicated to infants, toddlers, and their caregivers. We provide education and support for parents and child care professionals.

The RIE approach is seeing infants and children as whole people – unique individuals – who are capable as well. In the RIE philosophy, infants are, where and when possible, treated with similar levels of respect as adults would be treated with. We adhere to the view that babies and infants have the capability to participate actively in a relationship with adults who are caring for them.

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Preventing Bad Posture in Children with Better Classroom Furniture

While classrooms have evolved quite a bit over the past few decades, in many cases, classroom furniture has not. It’s a typical scene from a school classroom: children sit for hours at a time in hard-backed chairs from decades past, arching their backs at unnatural angles, writing in workbooks or reading at outdated school desks, which lack all the comforts of modern ones.

It’s also a scene that some parents have become concerned about, due to the toll this sort of posture exerts on children’s spines and backs throughout their childhood and in later years. Tips on ‘sitting properly’ from an ergonomics perspective tell us that how most children sit in classrooms isn’t correct:

• The lower leg should be vertical to the floor, the thigh horizontal.
• The lower arms should be resting on the desktop in a relaxed position.
• Desks and scholastic furniture should be height adjustable.

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Should My Child Skip a Grade?

One of my nephews, whom I will refer to as Thor (because he loves the movie character), was born at the end of September. His older sister, whom I will refer to as Rachel Alexandra (because she loves horses), was also born at the end of September.

Neither of them made the September 1 cut off for Kindergarten in their public school district. Both tested for Kindergarten readiness in the month of May after they turned four, and both were accepted to start a year ahead of schedule. My sister and brother-in-law decided to start Rachel Alexandra early and to start Thor on schedule.

 

Fast forward two years. Rachel Alexandra is not only able to keep up with her grade level peers (who are all a year older) but also has been and continues to participate in the accelerated academics program. Thor is well above his grade level peers both academically and in physical stature and participates in the accelerated academics program.

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5 reasons of why being a single mom rocks

I’ve been a single mother since the moment I found out I was pregnant. By the time I was feeling sick and all that, I was as single as one can be. Four years later I keep single and despite our society assumption that happiness is part of having found a soul mate (check any Hollywood movie, sitcom or any feedback given by media in general) I’m very happy indeed.

I quit high school too soon, but later I passed the GED test (I took an online course, Best Ged Classes online prep) so I DO have a secondary education degree, and to be honest, it HELPS.

It might look to you that there must be something wrong here otherwise why would I want to make a point about it, right? Well, I want to make a point about it to go against our typical media feedback. There should me more stories about people being happy just as they are, with no need of a soul mate.

Being single doesn’t necessarily mean not ever having anybody. By single, I understand that someone (like me) dates occasionally or even long-term but doesn´t commit to living together. This non-commitment isn´t something everlasting, who can know this? It’s just what it is and what makes somebody keep the single title for the time being.

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5 steps to make my child stop interrupting my conversations

I’m now into educating my youngest one to let me talk to people in peace. She always interrupts me and it’s annoying, as you might understand.

One of my fears of dating somebody new is that when they’ll be around me and my little one, they might be horrified at how I let her boss me around, interrupt me and make me do things at any time. My girl is not that bad, maybe, but I’m afraid of this.

Children are usually jealous of their mother giving attention to other people, especially when they see some flirtation going on, but I’m afraid that single children from single moms suffer more of this. It’s really a LOT of attachment between us, being just us most of the time, so it can be quite intense.

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