Stuart's Spectacular Students

This is dedicated to my amazing students. The goal is for each and every one of them to feel unstoppable by the time they walk out of the classroom door for the final time in May. This chronicles their journey; their own Chronicles of Self-Actualization.

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Thursday, September 27, 2007

Don't Just Believe in Your Dreams ~ Believe in YOURSELF

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Facts Tell ~ Stories Sell - H.O.P. Project

The facts you're getting from your history research are just that, facts. It's up to you to tell your famous person's story.

How do you do this using only six slides? Well, how do YOU think you do this........?

That's right (I feel like I'm a writer for Dora the Explorer). You fit the facts in your head or notecards, and then spit them out in a story for us. The six slides should only be triggers that get you to link to the story in your head. They are not meant to be filled up with one fact after another that you read verbatim during your presentation (yawns and boredom for the viewer).

Remember, facts tell ~ Stories Sell! Just make sure the stories are real. What is his or her real story of struggle and adversity, failure and victory? Dig into the life of this person, see where you can relate in your own young life, and discover lessons that you will use to Dream Big and Do Big for the rest of this year and the rest of your life!

Create more meaning from this project than just a good grade. Dig Deep and Relate!

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Give Me Dinner Before Dessert

Florencia and Miguel - you two were looking for cool pictures on the computer and creating fancy word documents BEFORE finishing what you set out to do, which was working on the context clues for tomorrow's test.

That's like eating dessert before dinner, which sometimes is very fun to do, but probably should only be done if you're in good shape.

So I'll tell you what. Show me you're in good 5th-grade shape by testing out of 5th-grade work, and I'll let you start eating dessert before dinner. \

But as your teacher, give me dinner (the completion of the task I gave you), before giving me dessert (making it look nice).


Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Making History in the Present

History DOES NOT have to be a boring list of facts and dates. MAKE IT COME ALIVE by making it applicable to your life, right now, in the present. I find this especially easy to do with historical people. These are people who lived their lives fully, overcame great obstacles, and made a difference in the world.

And the historical pattern will show, that usually the greater the obstacles a person overcame in their lives, the greater they became by it.

Overcome your obstacles today. Be strong! Seek them out! Attack your problems versus letting them attack you.

LEARN FROM and become INSPIRED BY the past!

1. What does this quote mean to you? (KNOWLEDGE-COMPREHENSION-APPLICATION)
2. How can you apply this meaning to your own life, and MAKE HISTORY - TODAY? (APPLICATION-ANALYSIS-SYNTHESIS)

"If there is no struggle, there is no progress. Those who profess to favor freedom, and deprecate agitation, are men who want crops without plowing up the ground, they want rain without thunder and lightening."

- Frederick Douglass

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Thursday, September 20, 2007

Two 2gether ~ To Gather ~ To gether

Together we gather together

And learn 2 hear the same battle cry

We will not fight against each other

But stand fast alongside of our brother

The war is NOT against another man

The real battle within ourselves

And only by working together

Will we learn to save us from ourselves

- Adam Stuart (September, 2007)

Working together is so much better than working against each other. I'll tell you what; I'll see the best in you today, and you see the best in you today, and we'll spend the day developing the best in you today.........and being pirates.

It's hard building this type of community in the classroom. It makes me tired. And Laughter and love renew me....and coffee.

So I don't ask you to love me, but I do ask you to let me enjoy this hard work as much as possible.......and laugh as often as possible.

Deputy Drake, the school's terrific D.A.R.E. officer, and an important part of building the "community" within a classroom.

Last year the entire 5th grade had 100% participation, which was the first time Deputy Drake has ever experienced this.

What Does it Mean to Go Over a Test

Going over the reading test. It's OK, especially in the beginning

If you got an answer wrong, the bad thing isn't that you got it wrong, but that you don't know why.

Ask yourself, or REFLECT, did you:

1. misinterpret the question
2. guess at the answer (which is not thinking, and not thinking is not allowed
3. poor RESEARCH/REFERENCE skill development

Who should grade the test? The teacher always? Why? Is the studnet incapable of learnign how to research and find the answers themselves and EVALUATE their own work, telling themselves IF they got the corr3ect answer or not?

We have one student say the question out loud
2. give time for EACH student to find the answer in the book (if they can't - that's where the problem is)
3. ID what skill the question is asking for


Revealing Your Character

As water changes according to the soil through which it flows,
So a man assimilates the character of his associates.

By knowing his thoughts, a man’s mind is discovered.
By knowing his associates, his character is revealed.

Tirukkural 46:452-453

Every time I learn something from my Hindu brothers and sisters, I think of you Sandeep. I am fortunate to have had you as a student last year. My new students are lucky to have you as the writer of Thor's Travels this year. Your character is strong. And your present, and presently your future, is marvelous!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Thor's Travels

This is from Sandeep. He is an incredible student and an even more incredible person from last year. Although the smallest kid in the class, just as I was up until high school, he was so big inside that I called him Thor's Hammer. He is going to help you guys learn geography in a fun way.

Hi Mr. Stuart well I am going to make a question for the "Thor's Travels" and here it is:

Hi students how are you doing? Well here is your question. The place is in Europe and it's around Germany and not in Germany. It's at the bottom right of Germany and it's a country. Another hint is the first letter is an "A".

p.s. Oh ya don't tell me there is no such place. I have been there before. Also if you need help, go on google maps or google earth at home.

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Within Yourself Lies Everything.....

"Within yourself lies everything you ever dreamed of being." - Jessica

I urge you my wonderful students (this includes all past and present) to read that statement every day, until it becomes a part of your belief system, and therefore truth for you.

I just saw this statement today, and am going to put it on my Deliberate Creation Vision Board to make sure I see it everyday for the next 30 days. I want you to put it in your Plan of Attack books.

Chad - you made me so happy when you lost your science worksheet for our "working lunch" assignment, but brought a sheet of paper to still accomplish the task - YOU MADE MY DAY, BY FINDING A WAY!

This week we talked of our two class rules:


....and in order to do that we need bigger thoughts....that give us bigger ideas.....that give us better feelings.....that produce greater action

This, as Courtney would say, is reaching "transition and inner evolution", and "It is not WHAT you fear that holds you back in life...but HOW you allow it to affect you."

This is the changing of you. This is the application (and the third level of thinking) to the following words you hear so often from me:

"Every day is a new life to the wise man." (Emerson or Frost)

Now, your homework is to find out which of these guys said this. Doing this helps you develop your research/reference skill. As soon as you find out, let me know your answer by clicking on the "comments" link below.

Tainecea, you are doubting the idea that you CAN become great. I cannot allow someone with so much inside of them to doubt themselves, and I will bring you in front of the great spirit of Martin Luther King, everyday, and ask you what your dream is, until you not only know it, BUT IT BECOMES A PASSION INSIDE OF YOU THAT YOU MUST ACHIEVE - WHICH WILL BE YOUR GREATEST SELF!

I see it, and will continue to see it, until you see it. Then, we can really start to achieve something!

Friday, September 14, 2007

Make Claims, Provide Evidence

Here with Andrew, getting him to give me intelligent reasons why he shouldn't have had to take his name off of the board for being off task.
If you're going to make a claim, back it up with evidence. The stronger, or more intelligent you can make your claim, the more likely you are to affect positive change into your life.

His misbehavior was being unfocused during a task. The task, or challenge, was to get in groups of reading skill strengths, and create test questions based on the week's reading story.

Interpersonal intelligence, getting along and working effectively with others, seems to be of as much value in today's world as any of the other multiple intelligences. The development of this is high priority. Andrew was able to communicate that his group had finished the task, that in fact I was wrong in my assessment, and therefore he didn't deserve to have his name taken off of the board.

I agreed with him and he was set free.

James, my assistant for this challenge, is pretending to be a Triceratops dinosaur. Hey, he is strong in all areas of reading, so he is allowed to keep his mind active via imagination. I asked him to follow me and learn to see the big picture of how all the individual reading skills come together as a whole.

Plus, I taught yesterday while balancing a yardstick on my head, so who am I to talk?

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Tell Me

Now that class is over
And it's time for you to go

Tell me what you learned today
And tell me how you've grown

Tell me that I did my job
And gave you wings for flight

Tell me that you'll fly so high
In your dreams tonight

- Adam Stuart
(just another peaceful warrior with just another young dreamer - Amanda)

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Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Pick Your Favorite Crayon (Learning Style)

Don't have the time to write a full write about everything about these pictures that is so right. It would be wrong to force this when it comes better in a flow.

Yesterday's dancing and goofing off;
a free flow of happiness and love ~
dancing to believe it or not - Bobby Brown

Every Little Step I take....... will be there

every little step I make

...we'll be together

Such a cool labor of love on Labor Day
between a father and daughter

Making the father feel he is nothing....nothing but a spirit....

and around certain people his spirit is wild and free...and his daughter is one of these people.

yesterday was an explosion of more than "love", it was a connection within myself, perhaps my highest self....

...allowing me to pick up vibes of connection elsewhere in the universe...

and laugh....

....and play

...and go to bed, saying.....

"Today, a day that started off not so very good....

....ended up being a very very good day

AND....our Italian lesson for the day was "Dove andate alla scuola? (Where do you go to school?)...

Answer - Alla scuola del mio papà. (At my Daddy's school.)

Where he visits me in class and learns from my teacher Mrs. Munoz about picking our favorite color crayon to learn, and has his students pick their favorite way to learn.

*There's strong evidence that the only grade left where natural and real long-term learning is in Kindergarten. After that there is too much pressure on teachers to teach and "prepare" students to do well on state testing, versus allowing students to learn and build long-term knowledge and problem-solving skills. You know, the kind that actually allows them to operate and thrive in life after school.

Teaching today is tougher than ever. I recognize this. But my answer is...So what! Young dreamers depend on our ability to get tough with it. Confidence is being created and destroyed every day. We are meant to be creators. (I am so jazzed by this picture. Thank you Sofia for being who and what you are.)

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Monday, September 03, 2007


In your own words, what is "water" to you. Avoid copying or even paraphrasing what's in your textbook or on the internet. Close your eyes, say, see or move as if you were in water.......and tell me what water is to you

Happy Labor of Love Day

We are here for a reason, probably many reasons. And the less I think the more I feel, and the more I feel the more I know....

And I know more than ever that we are all here to make our countries and our worlds a better place for our children through our labor....

We ARE NOT here to labor away eeking out a living, to labor away seeking love and approval from others before seeking it first from ourselves, or to labor away pursuing the disappearing power of titles and salaries, all to prove to ourselves we are important and all of our laboring away hasn't been in vain....

That is no way to live, and our egos only serve to wear ourselves away, physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually.....

And I know our children hold the answers. I can see it in their smiling faces, feel it in their energy, hear it in their laughter, and LOVE it in their love. They unconsciously know the things we've forgotten as we've grown up and grown disenfranchised, often as a result of being taught how to forget this, by those who have forgotten themselves....

We've forgotten how to play. We've forgotten that we best learn in a spirit of fun, curiosity, wonderment and discovery....

We've forgotten that all lasting abundance comes from a deep sense of inner joy....

....And that pursuing this inner joy allows our labors to be labors of love, and our efforts to become effortless as they are driven from within, coming out of us in a flow, and unforced as we freely develop our inner gifts, in a fun and natural way....

And from this deep inner inspiration, we become truly unstoppable, and our labors produces our gifts of creation out onto the world....

Today is Labor Day in America, just one country among many. Let today be a labor of love in this ONE country, connecting with that inner source so much that it spreads out over and among the rest of the countries in our ONE world.

Happy Labor of Love Day. May we all find ourselves laboring in what we love to do, what we would do for free, and perhaps being so good at it that we're repaid in all kinds of abundance.

And THANK YOU to all the children of the world, who remind us of what work should be and could be. You are our angels and warriors. Let us protect you in your childlike innocence, and learn from your natural brilliance.

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Saturday, September 01, 2007

What's on Television

No matter what Bobby Buchea's (spelling?) mother says in the movie, The Waterboy, television is not the devil.

Television could be such a great tool, for education, entertainment, time together, versus a distraction that separates by different programs on different TV's in different rooms in the same house.

Me to Sofia who's sitting on my lap right now: "I want you to be beautiful, bold and free."

Her response, "Why would you want me to be bald?"

Here are some shows on basic cable TV this weekend that I recommend. These shows are a good way to introduce school subjects in a very stress-free way that is effective for both auditory and visual learners.

There are many more channels for science, math, history, etc on the larger cable/satellite packages. I was very sad to give them up this summer, but as we all know, there was more summer than there was money, and I had to have it disconnected. If you have TIVO or DVR, I highly recommend you recording these shows for your young genius to watch during downtime, and in a relaxed, stress-free way. Watch them together. Have family time.

I tell my children that for every one of their shows. For example, for one Hannah Montana episode we watch one History Channel show. For every Jimmy Neutron cartoon (I so dig the character Sheen) we watch a black/white Jimmy Stewart movie. If nothing else, the family is spending time together, my grandmother's concern that this is the main reason why marriages are failing and families splitting at a record rate.


The History Channel
The States of America
*In the Spring your child will have to pick a state to do a project on.
*The narrator is the same guy who did The Presidents, and is fantastic.


The History Channel
The Universe
*Introduces some basic concepts they will have to know AND enlightens them to just how fascinating and grand our world is (and could be the trigger that internally motivates them to REALLY learn science this year. Last year a student went from refusing to read science to me giving him the nickname Doctor as he would help me teach science in class. And it started with him watching these shows.)

The History Channel
The Universe
*replay of Sunday's shows

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