Hello VDACFLL, (My thoughts with a question at the end) I am a first-year coach with a very young team of 5th graders. Earlier in this listserv there was some conversation about coaches who do not feel that they are ready for the competition. We have a week until our day at JMU, and I can definitely say that ateam and bteam from Thomas Harrison Middle School will be bringing up the rear. It will be quite amazing if our group is able to complete one task on the table, and have any sort of powerpoint with a linear thought process. We have not completed any of the requirements on the rubric for our research. HOWEVER, as coaches we are looking at the process rather than the end result. Learning has happened on the part of both the students and the coaches (for example, some of our students are learning that it is not a good idea to completely dismantle the robot a week before the competition). On the whole, it is a good example of how this particular group of 5th graders has some significant growing to do in the thought-process and maturity departments. As coaches, we have done significant scaffolding for them to try to break down the problem into smaller chunks, but we will just call our students 'creative thinkers' rather than linear or result-oriented thinkers. But this is OK, because we have made progress, even though very little of it will appear on Saturday. We are trusting that this will be a learning experience for this very young team. At this point they don't even realize what they don't know. Seeing other teams will be a good opportunity for them to realize their potential for the future. If we work together a few times in the spring to go back and solve a few of this year's tasks, and then get an earlier start next fall, we may be more in the middle of the pack next year (I'm thinking optimistically). This is to assure all of you that are feeling worried--it's OK. Question: will there be an opportunity for my teams to watch other groups' research presentations? I think they never really got a full understanding of what we were going for on the research end of things. Seeing a successful group could be helpful for them. Thanks. -- Mr. Brian Nussbaum Mathematics Teacher Thomas Harrison Middle School CONFIDENTIALITY NOTICE: This email message and any attachments are for the sole use of the intended recipient and may contain confidential or privileged information. Any unauthorized review, use, disclosure or distribution is prohibited and may be a violation of law. If you are not the intended recipient or a person responsible for delivering this message to an intended recipient, please contact the sender by reply email and destroy all copies of the original message. Thank you for your compliance. Copyright (c) 2006 Harrisonburg City Public Schools. -- To UNSUBSCRIBE or CHANGE your settings, please visit https://listserv.jmu.edu/archives/vadcfll-l.html and select "Join or leave the list". -- VADCFLL administrative announcements are sent via VADCFLL-ADMIN-L. Visit https://listserv.jmu.edu/archives/vadcfll-admin-l.html to subscribe.