Friday, February 20, 2009

Guest blogger: Gwenn. (My mom)

Hello blog readers, (as Nia is so fond of greeting you)

This is Gwenn, Nia's mom. I wanted to have a "guest blog" post on Nia's blog to explain a few things about why we're working on this project.

  1. Nia is very artistic. She loves to draw and paint and well, anything like that. I thought this might be a fun new medium for her to explore.
  2. Being that Nia is homeschooled, I thought this might be a cool, different way to teach her a bunch of different concepts... computer skills like typing and photo editing, yes, but also more basic things too... Things like math, "Go find 5 things and line them up and take a picture." Things like science, "Go take pictures of 6 things that are alive." Things like creative writing, "Tell me the name of this picture." etc. etc. etc.
  3. It's fun to see the world through the eyes of a 5 year old. It's interesting to me the pictures she chooses to take. It's funny sometimes and nauseating at others-- IMAGINE HAVING A REAR-END LEVEL KID TAKING PICS OF YOU AROUND THE CLOCK. I feel like I have paparazzi. I think it's going to be neat to see the regular "household" things she snaps pics of in Haiti. I think that transition to her "new life" will be super-cool through the eyes of a kindergartener.
  4. Nia is funny. She doesn't try to be funny most of the time, she just is. She cracks Nick and I up every single day. I love the way kids her age talk-- the expressions they use and the ways they try out their new language skills. It's funny and super-cute.
  5. I wanted to give her a project that was something special we could do together very often that wasn't something strictly academic. I feel like we do a lot of the "boring" kind of school work together with me as her primary teacher, I also wanted something both of us looked forward to doing. Since I am a pretty... ehm... "prolific" blogger, it seemed like a good fit.

So, how much is Nia and how much is me?
  • The words. It is honestly mostly Nia. I do most of the typing at this point and she dictates. Sometimes I will ask her a question to get a thought going, but all of the words I type are her words. I try not to interject my opinion when she wants to name her posts, "Oh, hey!" "Oh, hi!" "Oh yes, hi!" or when she wants to name every single picture starting with the word, "my." Which means that sometimes it will probably be not-so-clever or repetitive, but I wanted to try to let her find her own voice.
  • The pictures. Unless I say so (like the pics of her in her "ball gowns") they are ALL taken by her. 100%. She is particularly fond of self-portraits. Together we download them, select several to use and then work on editing them together. I will ask her what she wants to do with the pictures and we will work together until she thinks they look good.
  • The layout. That's just blogger. :) But she picked the templates and colors.
So, blog readers, thanks for all your encouragement. She LOVES seeing her "map" from where everyone lives, she LOVES hearing how many "hits" she has, and she LOVES getting new comments.

So long for now... And keep coming back. And all my Haiti people out there-- keep coming back. I think experiencing Haiti through Nia's eyes is going to give you the warm fuzzies...

With a grateful heart,
Gwenn. (Nia's Mom)

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