Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Our Rap Song Is Ready

I’m the best from the west
While you’re messing with me
Why don’t you let me be
Now be like a bee
And fly away to your hive
In the leaves surrounded by many bees
Why everyday do you want to mess with me
Don’t you all see
it’s just Who I want to be.

This is a spiritual lyrical free style.
Meanwhile, haters think my rap is fragile
So don’t be a hater
Be a player of the game
Night slayer

Why are you taking my beat man you better hop off the streets before you get beaten
I just told you man go back home and eat some spam
If you can’t hit this beat you better go back living on the streets
Just like I told you man I ain’t your boy so hope my swag cause you ain’t class learning what I am
Just tell me what you want
What you want my money man
I advised you back up as far as you can
Before I call the police man.

No goggles no problems
Surgery is a waste
Got goggles on my face
Looking goofy all over the places
Walking all over
They‘re looking at me like I am discreet
No goggles no problems x3
I wear these goggles to play some sports
They look at me like I am ugly
They hate it cause I got more skills
Then you ain’t part of the team
We ain’t trying to start beef with you.
I am just a man with goggles x3
All right peace

This is a spiritual lyrical free style.
Meanwhile, haters think my rap is fragile
So don’t be a hater
Be a player of the game
Night slayer

When we were with our friends playing here and then
We went to the moon and then came back soon
I went to my room, I saw a big balloon
Then it said that we should go out soon and then find another balloon
I would like to bake a soft sweet cake
My sister is always rude when it comes to sharing food
I love pretty girls in pink swirls
You get the best of both worlds, chill it out, take it slow then you rock out in the snow.

We are ready for rehearsal…

Trip to the Morgan Library with the New York Institute for Special Education

Students did not want to go back to school this morning. Rather, they wanted to stay at the Morgan Library, where we discovered some of its wonderful collections. It was no surprise – the library staff gave us a real treat.
Bel and Nicole, Morgan Library educators, introduced us to a variety of writing instruments and papers from different times and regions of the world. Students had no difficulty remembering where Egypt was, and what was once Mesopotamia. We first explored and compared different kinds of materials on which people wrote: from stone and clay with the cuneiform system, to papyrus, parchment and sheep skin, and to today’s familiar white paper. Bel and Nicole explained why and how people started writing. Students handled quills, wooden styli, brushes, and silk. Students even got a chance to use a trading seal.
The second part of our workshop consisted in going into the library built by Pierpont Morgan where the students got to explore the architecture of some of the rooms. Everyone had wonderful questions. We will just have to come back.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Creation and Production of a Rap Song- part 2

The talent at Van Cleeve is outstanding: the students created their own rap! Zaire, Carlos, Michael, Koby, Raheem, Nelson, Isaiah, Jordan, Ravonne, Adam, Antonio, and Brice created the following lyrics:

“This is a spiritual, lyrical, freestyle, while meanwhile, haters think my rap is fragile;
So don’t be a hater, be a player of the game, night slayer."

Visit from Mariebelle Chocolatier

The Students at PS 102 were lucky this past Tuesday. They got a wonderful visit from Rodolfo who works at Mariebelle Chocolatier!
Students learned that chocolate comes from a pod that grows on a tree – it’s called a calabash and inside of it we can find…cocoa beans! Rodolfo explained to us how white, milk, and dark chocolate are made. We even got to touch some cocoa powder, a calabash and cocoa beans and eat some cocoa nibs. Then students got to taste different kinds of chocolate, from the sweetest to the bitterest. Now we are all experts at tasting and recognizing good chocolate: smell, listen, if it breaks in a snap it was baked at a good temperature! And taste it, no need to chew, let it melt in your mouth, and pair it with some hot chocolate, orange juice or white grape juice. What a treat!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Kudos to Anaiah at PS 201, Queens

Students from Ms. Agati’s class are fast learners. In less than 4 weeks, they have all become skilled at zipping their jackets and buckling their belts. Today we started working on tying our shoes. All the teachers were amazed by how quickly the class learned to do the first knot. Kudos to Anaiah, who was able to do a nice bow, and then showed Destiny how to do it. And guess what? Destiny, too, can do it now. ”So easy when you know how.”

Standing Tall is Working Wonders

Justin, Araceli, Samantha, and Rita made such a good impression today. After learning how to greet and introduce themselves to strangers, they demonstrated that they feel at ease carrying on interesting conversations. Ms. Shawna’s song seems to help! Remember: look the person in the eye when shaking hands and add a smile!

The Art of Debating

Over the past few weeks, students from the Schermerhorn Program at the New York Institute for Special Education discussed the value of sharing their opinions while respecting and understanding others’ views. Students learned to better appreciate the variety of interpretations for artworks while taking a guided tour at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. They are also currently exploring the diversity of lifestyles and personalities by corresponding with students in other states (see last week post).

On Monday they held a debate at which students teamed up to defend their point of view. Students were instructed to take turns in arguing their viewpoint. While Clyde, William and Davon argued that videogames are a productive activity for young teenagers, Andrea, Vivian and Guiliana gave us reasons to believe that videogames can promote violence.

In the second group, courageous Michael faced the rest of the class and respectfully explained why the TV show “The Simpsons” is better than “Family Guy.“ Everyone on both sides showed great debating skills: they listen to each other, acknowledge other points of view, and built their arguments upon what they heard. Thanks to his skilled explanations, Michael rallied 4 other classmates to his side of the debate!

Working Together on a Rap Song

Students from the Van Cleeve Program at the New York Institute for Special Education are in the process of writing and producing their own rap song. Copies of the CD and a video clip will be shared with their fellow students and teachers.
This week students first organized themselves in smaller teams: the Talent Team was composed of Isaiah, Branden, Carlos and Jordan; the Production Team had Brice, Antonio, Zaire and Nelson. The Talent Team has already written lyrics. They still need to find a title, figure out who will sing, create a choreography and rehearse before they can combine their efforts with the Production Team, which is in charge of the recording (sound and video), the design of the stage, and the editing. Hopefully in a couple of weeks, they can share their work with everybody.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Preparing for the supermarket

While studying tactile maps of a supermarket, students discussed what products could be found in each department and made a shopping list in preparation of our trip to the supermarket in a couple of weeks. Students also discussed how to organize their shopping list: produce first,2. deli and cheese, 3. bakery, 4.meat, 5.dairy…
They also estimated how much it will cost for us to get all the ingredients for a healthy snack. Hopefully no more than $25. We’ll see if we’re right in a couple of weeks.

Big day for Ms. Rawson’s class

After a few weeks of rest from tying, zipping and buttoning, Bashir, Jonathan, Tayjah and Delano came back in full force. What a day! Kudos to Jonathan who, for the first time, was able to tie his shoelaces with two beautiful “bunny ears” AND to zip his jacket on his own. Tayjah learned how to button up her jacket, and Bashir is just a step away from tying his shoes.
“Focus and determination” is their motto.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Student using Draftsman Drawing Board from APH

The Draftsman Drawing Board from APH is a favorite tool in the art room at California School for the Blind.