Archive for the ‘Learning’ Category

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Sampler and a POLL

April 26, 2011

To Whom It May Concern:

The following samples of my recommending-writings are from the head of yours truly.  This first one is BEFORE I start exploring the multitude of sample character references.   Please vote, which feels more impressive?  Thank you.

Draft 1 – I have had the pleasure of being acquainted with G_ A_ for almost 7 years as a friend of the family and heartily recommend him as a student and a fine young man.     More recently, I was able to spend a summer as his math tutor;   we met twice a week to explore the basics and more of Trigonometry.

GA exhibited an eagerness to learn, a maturity beyond his years and a fun personality  – especially considering that he was spending time on a summer’s day to devote to mathematics for the sake of his future interests and endeavors. He is capable, dedicated and very bright.   

As a candidate for any program or monies designed to encourage scholarship, GA would make an excellent choice for consideration.    I highly recommend him.

Simple but wordy, yes?

and now …

Draft 2

Paragraph 1
The first paragraph of the recommendation letter explains your connection to the person you are recommending, including how you know them, and why you are qualified to write a recommendation letter to recommend employment or graduate school.

I am writing this letter of reference and recommendation for G_ A_, a fine young man I have had the pleasure of knowing for 7 years as a friend and business associate of his parents.    On a direct level, I was asked to tutor G_ over a summer because he wished to learn Trigonometry and his school didn’t offer an in-depth class.    I was initiating a career move to my current field of education after my years of computer programming and engineering.   G_ and I met twice a week for 2 1/2 months exploring and working through Trig basics and more.

Paragraph 2
The second paragraph of the recommendation letter contains specific information on the person you are writing about, including why they are qualified, what they can contribute, and why you are providing a reference letter. If necessary, use more than one paragraph to provide details.

I am pleased to say that our Trig sessions have been a highlight of my tutoring experience.  G is not only dedicated and capable;  he is a fun kid.   He exhibits a maturity beyond his years and yet isn’t too serious, either.   His attitude towards spending summer days to study math was refreshing and impressive.

I would recommend  GA without reservation to be considered as a scholarship candidate.

Respectfully Submitted,

Curious C

Professional Tutor of Mathematics


Well?   Why am I getting the idea I should combine them somehow?   I think I like the first one…


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What I Said and What I Wanted to Say

December 10, 2010

Disregard the title.   Still not sure what I’m doing with this but I needed to get some odd thoughts out of my head and into black characters on white background…

Dear M__,

Thank you for inviting me over for tea and conversation.   I really appreciate you giving your time and inviting me to help make cookies.  I’m out of practice, I think on a lot of things and probably not what you are assuming right off.  Yes, I’m out of practice on the ‘business opportunity’ stuff both talking about it and DOING it but that’s not what I’m referring to here.

When I was showing off to D___   the cookies we decorated and telling him that you and I got together for tea, he immediately asked,  “Is there anything she needs?   What can we help her with?”  and I felt a bit like an idiot because my answer was, “She needed our crock pot.”   and just why I felt like an idiot is that I know D__  had bigger issues in mind and wishes to help and I don’t really feel I got that kind of answer to his question.

I’m oblivious and likely as ill-mannered as the neighborhood children.   I should have helped you with the cookie cleanup or something!   I’m such a knucklehead.

But I see you as so CAPABLE.   Maybe you roll your eyes and not think that the best/sweetest compliment  but it IS full of admiration.   I think you and I are opposites.   You are a doer;  you’re bizzy-busy.   You do cool stuff!   You GET THINGS DONE.    In contrast, to quote John Candy in Uncle Buck, I’m “the dreamer, the sillyheart”;   I can sit and think and ponder and wonder and circle back to figure out what sparked this thought-spiral and where am I going with this and hey!  two hours have gone by.

OK, the point is, I appreciate you sharing your time with me yesterday and it may seem like not that much, but.   I do appreciate it.    Perhaps, I’m out of practice with knowing how to be a friend.   I am really good at long distance friendships but have maybe never quite figured out how to be a true friend of the physical-presence kind.    Somethings we think are obvious just aren’t sometimes.    I would love if you could teach me how to be a better friend.

Sincerely,

CuriousC

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Volunteerism Quotes

July 27, 2010

Guess what!   I’ve been invited to contribute to the newsletter of the nursing home where I volunteer.    I thought this space might be a great way for me to ‘practice’ a few ideas.       I’ll write here my samples – get an idea how it looks and how it sounds before I submit to the editor.

First, how about some inspiration:

I shall pass through this world but once. Any good therefore that I can do or any kindness that I can show to any human being, let me do it now. Let me not defer or neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again.
Mahatma Gandhi


Everyone can be great because anyone can serve. You don’t have to have a college degree to serve. You don’t even have to make your subject and your verb agree to serve… You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love…

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.


One is not born into the world to do everything but to do something.
Henry David Thoreau, poet, writer, philosopher

Service to others is the payment you make for your space here on earth.
Mohammed Ali

Volunteers are the only human beings on the face of the earth who reflect this nation’s compassion, unselfish caring, patience, and just plain love for one another.
Erma Bombeck

No matter how big and powerful government gets,
and the many services it provides,
it can never take the place of volunteers.
Ronald Reagan

Throughout my life, I’ve seen the difference that volunteering efforts can make in people’s lives. I know the personal value of service as a local volunteer.
Jimmy Carter

We make a living by what we do, but we make a life by what we give.
Winston Churchill

I have been the recipient of love and service, therefore I can love and serve. There is great satisfaction in service to others, in seeing people and their conditions change.
Clarence E. Hodges

How far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving and tolerant of the weak and strong.
George Washington Carver

No one is useless in this world who lightens the burden of it for someone else.
Benjamin Franklin

No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.
Aesop

The miracle is this – the more we share, the more we have.
Leonard Nimoy

Snowflakes melt alone – but together they can be traffic stoppers!
Anonymous

Volunteers aren’t paid, not because they are worthless, but because they are priceless.
Anonymous

“You cannot hold on to anything good. You must be continually giving – and getting. You cannot hold on to your seed. You must sow it – and reap anew. You cannot hold on to riches. You must use them and get other riches in return.” Robert Collier

“All that you send into the lives of others, will come back into your own, tenfold”…..   May Kay Ash

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Women Unbound

December 3, 2009

I’m hosting a reading challenge!    OOps, I mean…  My alter-ego is.

Anyway, just had to share over here what I’m up to OVER THERE… and see if any of my friends in this slice of blogiverse want to join in a year long (plenty of time!) event to encourage reading around a certain topic:  Women’s Issues!

The rules are easy and no one is going to follow up and grade you.

So, click here —->  The Women Unbound Challenge <—

and think about it, will ya?     Or just leave a note here and tell me your favorite book that you think I should read for this challenge.   I’m already wanting to read about 75 books for the darn thing.

Also, since I’m a co-host, I’m reliving all that fun and joy of the early days of blogging.   When you would somehow find yourself on a blog and then click on someone who commented and then jump to their blog and the hop-skip somewhere else in blogosphere and discover NEW.  WORLDS.

and new friends.

and at least, extremely interesting people…

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It seems that everyone’s Google Reader is so full of MUST-READS that I can’t even find time to read a book let alone comment at all my favorite blogs!  It’s just bad, I tell ya.

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OK.  Anyone try any odd pies this past holiday?   I made a cranberry pecan and it was scrumptious.     🙂

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Annoy and Inspire

September 4, 2009

I decided this would be a great place and a good time for me to vent.   But I quickly thought I should balance this with some opposite-rant;  thus the title to this post.    I will list a few pet peeves and then counter with a few things that make me smile.      Let’s see which attitude-influencers WIN!   woo hoo!!

ANNOYING #1:    I get annoyed that people send emails with too few details.   Specifically, the requests I get to invite me to bring my dog to a pet-therapy opportunity.    Seldom do they mention what TOWN they are in!     I’ll get a quick email that announces orientation at Ayer Public Library and…   THAT’s IT!    No, grand thank you for signing up months ago to do this, just ‘hey – here are the dates’.      UM.     huh?  who ARE you?  WHERE are you?   What exactly did I sign up for made you send me this email today?!    SO, now I have to go dig up more details and I really wish I could send an email back, HEY!   WHO ARE YOU!!?!??!

INSPIRATION:     I really have to take a deep breath and just let the faint vague details come to me:    This is an opportunity for me to bring my dog to a program assisting young children learning to read.    Apparently, a child is more comfortable reading aloud to a DOG audience of one and reading scores improve with regular sessions.     I really think Oscar is an excellent calm listener and am eager to do good and help improve a young reader’s ability and foster a love for reading.     Sounds AWESOME, doesn’t it?   At least, I think this email is about that program I signed up for months ago and haven’t heard anything about since…

ANNOY #2:    Husband’s piss-poor attitude this morning.   RRRRrrrrrrrr.     It’s not MY fault you went fishing yesterday and the exhaustion of your FUN day has caused you to be extremely irritable this morning.      He is anything but pleasant this morning.

INSPIRATION:    I must be thankful that my husband has opportunities to pursue his fishing passion and that he left me alone all day yesterday.    I read over half the book I’m currently enjoying AND I got to watch Project Runway without bothering him.     And I’m really glad that he didn’t decide to work from home today.

ANNOY #3:     I get annoyed and SADDENED when people too hastily assume that all creativity and the term ARTIST only means talent for drawing!   COME ON ALREADY!!    what ARE the schools teaching these days!?    Everyone on the planet who has thoughts in their heads are creative.    CREATIVE does NOT mean skilled at pen and paper drawing!     UGH – I can’t express it enough how thoroughly irritated I get that people do not understand the word CREATIVITY!

Here’s what happened yesterday:     I got my hair cut.    I hate getting my hair cut.    I don’t feel pampered, I feel afraid.     I realize this is something I need to tweak my attitude about but it’s still a struggle to set through a session and not wish is was over about 10 minutes after the snipping begins.     ANYWAY, the stylist was complimenting her work and I sincerely said,

“I take it as a good sign that the artist is admiring her work.”

And she replied,  “Oh, I’m not an artist.   I can’t draw at all.   My little sister is only eleven but she’s really good at drawing things.”

sigh…

INSPIRATION:    I love flowers.     I can see my zinnias outside my window as I glance up from the keyboard trying to find a countering inspiration to my wish that all people would consider and appreciate their own creativity…     Flowers.    Flowers, flowers, flowers…

EasterFlowers

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Off to Cash a Check

August 26, 2009

I’m very excited to announce that the school district found me some money.   Well, it’s MY money and I earned every penny of the $168.44 which represents 2 and 2/3 days (huh?) of substitute teaching.

If you regularly stumble over here and read my few posts, you’ll recall that I had gone into the school district office back in July to pick up my last check (they won’t mail them and subs don’t get direct deposit) and was told,

“You already picked it up.”

“No, I didn’t.   I don’t remember coming in here recently.  I don’t think so.”

But, of course, the seed of doubt was planted.   I searched through files and papers and piles of detritus (cool word, huh?) but couldn’t find the paystub.   I speculated that I had just cashed it and so would thus have no deposit record on my bank statement.    I was all prepared to write a nasty CC:-the-Superintendent about how RUDE the payroll clerk is and blahblahblah but just didn’t have the guts.      I mean, maybe she was right and my kindergarten-teacher-friend who told me the payroll clerk is mean and everybody hates her would actually help me figure out what happened.   I mean, maybe somebody posed as me!

Anyway.

I went to Substitute Teacher Orientation today and guess what!   My boss – who had to announce my name to claim the check because of course she doesn’t really know who I am (nor does the rude payroll clerk, ahem) – hands me my money!!  WAHOO!

I’m still not sure about the 2/3 day but that’s OK.   It’s money and I’m happy the whole damn situation is done.   I really only thought I had a day and half owed.   All good.

I also know now that I should send kids to the nurse if they want to and to not touch any kids with bloody noses.     It was BLOODBORNE ILLNESS PREVENTION training…

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ah, happy again

July 16, 2009

Ranting is good.

And, I truly do believe that if you have poison in your attitude, it’s best to yell it out of yourself.

Just to update the 2 or 3 of you who just might care, check this out:

nedmNEW

The sign guy figgered it out!    May blessings be heaped upon all who see and witness.