Sunday, November 18, 2007

Biography Fair
What: Third Annual Biography Fair: Guess Who is Coming for Dinner?When: Sunday November 18, 2007 3 PM
Who: All ages invited to participate
Cost: None
Organizer: Laura Riesenberg
Where: Jr. OUAM Hall in St. Bernard (directioned will be emailed when you RSVP)
What to bring: Your project and a dish to share*

We have decided to put a little twist on this year's biography fair. The question you need to answer is "If you could have dinner with any person living or dead, who would it be? Why?" Use this question to direct your project! Each child can pick anyone, living or dead, as thier dinner guest to do for their presentation. The child chooses how to present the infomation. They can write a report, make a display board, a photo montage, a video. The possibilities are only limited by your imagination. The great thing about this opportunity is that any age child can participate and present their research to the best of their abilities. No competing! Certificates of participation will be given to each participant. The hall has plenty of electrical outlets so feel free to use one (or more)!

There is a great article online that explains the biography fair in detail.

Contact Laura if interested in participating. If you don't feel like doing a project but would like to come and check out the work of our aspiring biographers, feel free to join us for the fun. Remember to bring a snack to share.

Projects can be set up from 3-3:30 PM at which time we will give each participant a chance to present their project to the group. At the conclusion of the presentations, certificates will be given to the participants. Similiar events have run until about 5 PM in the past.
*Please bring a nut-free snack to share. No popcorn please! It might be fun to try to tie your treat to the subject of your biography fair project, for example, if you did your project on George Washington, maybe a cherry pie or if you chose Johnny Appleseed, some baked apples. Plates, drinks, napkins, silverware and cups provided!

It amazed me how excited the kids were to work on their projects this year. Grant chose Mike Schmidt, Jacob chose Reggie Bush, Cade chose David Ortiz, Sophia chose Marie Tallchief and Will chose Eric Carle. Grant had originally wanted to do a serial killer, but given the topic asked who you wanted to have dinner with, he opted for a baseball player instead. Better dinner conversation and no threat of being killed during the meal!

I was surprised at the confidence of each of my children (actually of all the children who participated) as they presented their projects to the entire group. When we first started doing the fairs 3 years ago, the kids were quiet, and no one wanted to present anythng to the group. Now they confidently stand next to their projects and tell everyone about them! Even Will at 3 years old will engage the group and talk about what he did. This year he even "read" part of a book by Eric Carle "Have you seen my cat?" Of course he knows it from memory, but it was so adorable to watch him read it to everyone! My mommy pride was swelling as I watched each of my kids present their projects! So as we trudge through our lives, unschooling as we go, we must be doing something right!

All of the projects were great. One of the girls, True, made a wonderfully creative cake ala Duff (the subject of her project) using fondant (sp). I had never eaten a cake with fondant on it before, personally I think fondant tastes that sweet playdoh, but her cake looked awesome. This guy Duff does amazing work.

The only real mishap of the day, one participant showed up with POPCORN....luckily Jacob didn't flip out about it (typically even the smell of it will send him into a frenzied panic) but it annoyed me that she didn't read the announcement about not bringing popcorn. I try so hard to keep Jacob comfortable and avoid the thing that seems to trigger his most bizarre reactions! So I am doubly proud of my son, who when he smelled the popcorn, looked at me and let me calm him down and REASON with him that everything would be OK!

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