Archive for Thursday, March 3, 2011

First Bell: Seabury seniors schedule blood drive; former mayor takes on Schwegler kids in cribbage; ‘Sunflower’ video scores LHS students state honor

March 3, 2011

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A few education-oriented items from around the area:

Three seniors at Bishop Seabury Academy are running a blood drive Saturday at school as part of their senior service project.

The seniors — William Wolfe, Jack Hoffman and Qilin Zahang — are hoping to draw up to 50 people to donate blood fro 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday in the gym at Bishop Seabury, 4120 Clinton Parkway.

“I didn’t realize just how great the need is in this country,” said Wolfe, who hopes to become a doctor. “Every 2 seconds, somebody in the United States needs a blood transfusion. I figure it takes about 15 minutes to give blood.

“It’s a good thing for people to be able to do: Give 15 minutes of your time, and 10 percent of your blood, and potentially save someone’s life.”

Personnel from the American Red Cross will be on hand to collect blood. Snacks and other refreshments will be available.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, log on to RedCrossBlood.org or call the school office at 832-1717.

•••

Nobody ever said former Mayor Bob Moody could add. But he sure can play cribbage.

Now nearly 12 years after leaving City Hall — where he often performed calculations on his wristwatch during meetings — Moody is busy spending two afternoons a week teaching the numbers-crunching card game to a handful of second-graders at Schwegler School.

The goal: Give the students a different way to learn math, through addition, patterns and other strategies. In short, players score points by making groups of cards that total 15.

In seemingly countless combinations.

“It’s math,” he says, “in a fun way.”

So far, the four youngsters learning the game in Lisa Clark’s class appear to be picking up the concepts of pairs, royal pairs and other components that can lead to both victory and understanding.

The students enjoy a well-deserved sense of accomplishment by adding up sequences — often three, four cards at a time — to make 15.

“It’s pretty convoluted and complex,” Moody reports. “These kids picked it up real quick.”

Moody has offered to teach me how to play, but I figure I’ll sit on the sidelines. The way I figure it, there’s no way I’d stand a chance at beating Moody — much less the astute second-graders he’s training.

•••

A team of film-production students at Lawrence High School will be honored with a showing of one of their popular works tonight by the Kansas Arts Commission in Topeka.

Sunflower,” a winter court/Kansas Sesquicentennial video created by Room 125 Productions, will be shown during the commission’s big event, the statewide Governor’s Arts Awards.

Representing Room 125 Productions will be senior Kathryn Lunte and juniors Bailie Richards and Max Griffith. Also attending will be their adviser, Jeff Kuhr.

"It's been pretty fantastic for the program," said Kuhr, film and media teacher at Lawrence High.

(Quick aside: Nice garage-band take on Sinatra’s song, the one perhaps best known around here by fans of KU basketball pep band: “I was born in Kansas, I was bred in Kansas. When I get married, I’ll be wed in Kansas... She’s a sunflower, she’s my one flower, she’s the flower of my heart...”)

The video has made a bit of a splash nationally, too. The group sent it along to Rachel Maddow, who posted an item about it on her blog.

Now that it’s on First Bell, who knows what’s next? MTV? HBO?

— The First Bell e-mailbox is always open: mfagan@ljworld.com.

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