Happy Blog Birthday!

Sprite’s Site Blog celebrates its birthday in June and all the characters get together for a group picture.
The theme of the blog birthday party this year is The Flowers of Giftedness.
Click on the picture to see an enlargement of it. To see an enlargement of the Flower bowers for the Twitter Birds see https://spritessite.wordpress.com/2012/06/26/flower-bowers-for-twitter-birds/

The blog has now received 82,615 individual page viewings since it started.
For the stories of all the previous blog birthdays see https://spritessite.wordpress.com/tag/birthdays/

Language Garden

While Sprite and I were setting up the Flower Bowers for the Twitter Birds for the blog birthday celebrations many of the Twitter Birds were still busy bringing me links to great education sites.
One pair arrived with a link to David Warr’s language program Language Garden.
“As you are already in the garden, come over here and see this!” they chirped.

I have been intending to visit Language Garden again for several weeks.
I first met David Warr and learned about Language Garden when I participated in David’s webinar at the Reform Symposium https://spritessite.wordpress.com/tag/reform-symposium/ and we have corresponded several times since.
Language Garden is a combination of a language learning program and a mind-mapping program.
It is great for visual learners as it shows clearly the structure of a sentence and its parts of speech.
Nouns are shown in blue, verbs in red, adjectives in green, adverbs in yellow, determiners in grey, prepositions in purple and connectives in brown.
I can see that it would be a useful tool for learning English language or foreign languages.
Read all about Language Garden, have a go at making a Language Plant and playing with some activities on the website http://www.languagegarden.org/

There is also a Blog at http://languagegarden.wordpress.com/
I loved the post about depicting a Chinese saying as a Language Plant in the Spanish language at http://languagegarden.wordpress.com/2012/06/17/reap-what-you-sow/

I knew Sprite, who is very much a visual learner, would love Language Garden and, sure enough, she did!
She started to create a Language Plant of her own. Intellectual Dabrowski and P’est pour Parfait are telling her that she must finish it properly!

Language Garden also has a Facebook Group where members can share the language plants they have created http://www.facebook.com/groups/331499710262972/
The Facebook Group is described on the blog at http://languagegarden.wordpress.com/2012/06/25/the-king-is-dead/

Flower Bowers for Twitter Birds

Here are the Flower Bowers for the Twitter Birds who are attending the Birthday Party for Sprite’s Site blog.
Click on the picture to see an enlargement.
I think there are 100 Twitter Birds in the picture but when I recounted the score was 101 – maybe I counted one twice!
See if you can count them all and see how many of them you can name. You probably recognise Tweet and Retweet, Tweetil, Tweetelle and Great Aunt Hashtag. But what is the name of the lone bagpipe player?

Preparing for the Blog Birthday Party

Preparations for the Sprite’s Site Blog Birthday Party are in full swing.
Sprite has made floral garlands for the Dabrowski Dogs and is bringing out her poster for the Flowers of Giftedness theme.
Imaginational is helping with suggestions for setting up the party area.
Intellectual noticed that Lisa Conrad of Gifted Parenting Support Blog http://giftedparentingsupport.blogspot.com  had left a basket of morning glories in the Comments box and is bringing them to her.
And Psycho Motor is contributing a stick with the comment “Throw the stick! Throw the stick!”

Sprite has made floral garlands for the Black Dogs

The Taste Tester Dogs have been summoned and have posed for a group picture.

The Topiary Tessellation Flower Leaf Tree has been installed and the Topiary Tree Octopus, Octopus Topiarii, has very quietly taken up residence there.

Imaginational suggested that Flower Bowers would be the best way to accommodate the growing number of Twitter Birds who would be flocking to the celebrations.

In the News

On Tuesday 19 June 2012 Victoria experienced its most powerful earthquake in 109 years. The quake struck at 8.53pm and lasted for 30 seconds. For the full story complete with maps and diagrams see The Herald Sun report at
http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/more-news/strong-tremors-rock-victoria/story-fn7x8me2-1226401623358

People flocked to the Internet for information and to share the news with friends via social media sites. The Geoscience Australia website crashed under the load.
#earthquake and #Melbourne were trending Twitter topics.
When I next signed in to Facebook I was greeted with concerned messages from the US, Ireland, New Zealand and Denmark.
One was even so thoughtful as to ask after the safety of Sprite who was seen only the day before on the beach at low tide waving to New Zealand and the mental state of the Dabrowski Dogs.
My reply was
“Emotional is feeling a bit shook up! Sensual thought the fleas were being hyperactive. Psycho Motor thought it was really exciting. Imaginational was wondering whether the planet had hiccups and Intellectual was telling him not to be ridiculous – that it was a 5.5 magnitude earth tremor with its epicentre 9.9km underground in Moe. Sprite was feeling very confused by all the conflicting opinions of the Dabrowski dogs!
Then Sensual  told me that I had seriously understated his feelings (typical -he said – just like calling him Itchy!) He said that he had felt distinctly uneasy all day – a feeling as if something was not in balance.”

Yesterday Wednesday 20 June 2012 the report of the Victorian Parliamentary Inquiry into the Education of Gifted and Talented Students 2011 was tabled and the report posted at http://www.parliament.vic.gov.au/etc/article/1341
with the full 336 page report in PDF form at http://www.parliament.vic.gov.au/images/stories/committees/etc/Past_Inquiries/EGTS_Inquiry/Final_Report/Gifted_and_Talented_Final_Report.pdf 

The Age newspaper reported on the findings of the inquiry at
http://www.theage.com.au/national/education/gifted-students-go-dumb-to-fit-in-20120620-20ogw.html
I have not had time to read and digest the full report as yet.

(You may remember that at about this time last year I was busy writing a submission for this inquiry and had delayed celebrating Sprite’s blog birthday because of it.)

And in very local news, which, as far as I can see, has not been recorded in any newspapers, last Saturday night a young man had a miraculous escape from death when his car hit a telegraph pole. Apparently he was not drunk and not speeding but as he rounded the corner there was a car coming towards him on the wrong side of the road. He drove onto the nature strip to avoid it, hoping to go between the fence and the pole.
The pole almost snapped and part of it speared through the windscreen missing impaling him by only centimetres. At the time he was not complaining of any injuries.
God certainly took very good care of him!

Blog Birthday

While I have been busy writing posts for the New Zealand Gifted Awareness Week blog tour  http://ultranet.giftededucation.org.nz/WebSpace/696/ Sprite has been planning the celebrations for her blog birthday.
She has chosen the theme The Flowers of Giftedness and created this poster to use for decoration and promoting the event.
It combines the stationery P’est Pour Parfait, the perfectionist poodle had produced belatedly when she was searching for invitation cards and the Flowers of Giftedness that Imaginational Dabrowski had suggested.
Intellectual Dabrowski insisted that I should include references to the reasons for including the various flowers.
So…
Sunflowers and  irises were  included because of the paintings by Vincent Van Gogh, one depicting a jug of sunflowers and the other a bed of irises with just one white iris in a large group of purple irises.  The symbolism of the one white iris was explained in the film Little Man Tate. 
Orchids were included because of an excellent blog post poem by Lesley Graves at http://innreach.wordpress.com/2012/04/26/giftedness-and-nurturing-blooms-66/

Poppies were chosen because of Miraca Gross’ article Small poppies: Highly gifted children in the early years at http://www.davidsongifted.org/db/Articles_id_10124.aspx
NZAGC magazine Tall poppies http://www.giftedchildren.org.nz/national/tallpoppies.php 
The logo for The Soul of Giftedness 20th World Conference on Gifted and Talented Children is a poppy http://www.worldgifted2013.com/

The tree in the centre of the poster in the Topiary Tessellation Bird Leaf  Tree decorated as a Topiary Tessellation Flower Tree

Sprite has already received some greetings for the card shelf for her blog birthday. If you would like to send a greeeting please reply in the comments box.

New Zealand Gifted Awareness Week 2012 – TBA Post 4 Part 4

I am very happy to be participating in the New Zealand Gifted Awareness Week blog tour again this year.
For news of the events to be held during New Zealand Gifted Awareness Week 2012 see http://www.giftednz.org.nz/awareness.html
and for links to all the posts for the blog tour see http://ultranet.giftededucation.org.nz/WebSpace/696/

This is Part 4 and the final part of my post on the topic TBA

“Clear the landing bay for the Twitter Birds who are bringing the links to the gifted Associations (A) in Australia and New Zealand” barked Intellectual Dabrowski.
“Here are the links to the national and state Gifted and Talented Associations in Australia and the links to the New Zealand national association and a PDF of all the New Zealand associations and organizations which are participating in New Zealand Gifted Awareness Week 2012.”

AAEGT http://www.aaegt.net.au/

A.C.T. http://actgifted.net.au/actgt/

New South Wales http://www.nswagtc.org.au/

Northern Territory http://www.ntaegt.org.au/

Queensland http://www.qagtc.org.au/

South Australia http://www.gtcasa.asn.au/

Tasmania http://www.tasgifted.com/info.php?id=1

Victoria http://www.vagtc.asn.au/

Western Australia http://www.gatcawa.org/

New Zealand

The New Zealand Association for Gifted Children http://www.giftedchildren.org.nz/

PDF File of all the Associations and Organisations participating in New Zealand Gifted Awareness Week
http://www.giftednz.org.nz/GAW%202012/ORGANISATIONS%20SUPPORTING%20GIFTED%20AWARENESS%20WEEK.pdf

“Now we can go down to the beach and wave to New Zealand like we did last year!”