PokemonGo: So much HYPE!

I know there is a lot of HYPE about this game, both positive and negative. I want to be clear that I absolutely condone and support this game!

Pokemon Teams

The negative I’ve run across personally is mostly negated by the fact I always go with a group. I think we ran across one set of people (Blue team) that turned their noses at us because we are Valor, but we just shrugged and moved on. I have seen a lot of bad attitudes in social media between the teams and I view it with some confusion because we are all people playing the same game.

The other negative is when we do go out (and we don’t out every night) we tend to be VERY tired by the time we get home and mornings are a little rougher. Working on timing that part better! I know we will find a happy median that balances playing this game with our responsibilities.

I will cover one more negative outside of the rare instances of accidents, murders, and robberies I am sure you would have read all about: Not everyone is respectful of the location and times they are at. If you are hunting late a night, be considerate. I know we all really want that Pokemon, but if we are to prove to the naysayers we are not all “10-year olds” we have to act with tact, politeness, and awareness of what is going on around us.

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Everything else has been mostly positive: A friend we have known for years have now come out with us TWICE the past few days. It’s is really nice catching up with old friends! You will, of course, be making new friends as well playing PokemonGo. Not only that, I have finally been able to share something with my best friend. She has been into Pokemon a long time, because of her kids “she says”. She is a font of knowledge when trying to figure out “What the heck Pokemon is that?!”.

I also got to hang with my nephew, and we all had a really great time with him as well. My husband and I have something neat to share and talk about, which improves our marriage even more. Our sons, who do not really play, have even gone out to walk with us. They stop to look at the sights or swing on the swings in the parks we come across. Family time is a definite positive for PokemonGo.

Pokemon FamilySource

Now, if you are on social media, I am sure you have seen many a meme, especially the first couple days, about sore legs. All those actively playing this game are getting a decent amount (if not more!) of EXERCISE. There is even a meme that mentions everyone should take a “before” picture and then post a follow up every 30 days to show their personal progress in getting into better shape. If this is not a plus to those living in a country that is known for being the most obese country in the world I don’t know what to tell you.

Before and after PokemonGo.pngSource

Finally (and I am sure there are more!), I’ve discovered places in my town that I’ve either never realized existed or forgot about (Been here 40 years now). Taking pictures has be a fun part of this game! I have seen neat murals, amazing buildings, natural and gorgeous spots, and rediscovered the joy of being out on a breezy day along the river’s edge. Being able to get out and go while dragging along the hubby, friends, and family that actually want to join me for PokemonGo has been one of the greatest blessings I’ve had in a long time.

So, yes…I play PokemonGo and I am proud of it.

Andrew and Michael SnS August 2014

BROTHERS

A bang, a groan, loud complaining.

“Your mean!” and “Ma! Tell him to stop!”

Every day, all day. Or so it seems.

Ma wants to hide in her closet until…

…they get over it.

 

Brothers. Fighting. Always, it seems.

 

A laugh, a cheer, loud exultation.

“Your turn!” and “Ma! Come see what we did!”

Every day, all day. Or so it seems.

Ma wants to join in and play until…

…they get over it.

 

Brothers. Playing. Always, it seems.

 

Kridina-8/27/2014

Teaching High School: Week 1

July 2014 sprint phone 092

I started teaching High School to two teens this week. I was so worried it would be very challenging and overwhelming. Perhaps I should have had more confidence considering I’ve done this for four years and I have prior teaching experience with younger children. Still, this was High School I kept telling myself!

As we close up our first week, I’ve already had the Friday meeting with my nephew. I asked him what he thought about this year’s curriculum. He told me he found it much more interesting. he also informed me he was looking forward to French next week!

I decided I would share with you not only his Argumentative paper, but my son’s. They chose two completely difference topics. I’m very proud of both of them. My nephew’s was a very challenging topic for a 15 year old to take on. Not because of his writing skills, which are actually quite good, but in how to word what can usually be a sensitive topic for many. Religion and politics are both such sensitive topics and he chose religion. I admit, it would have been much easier for both of us if he had chosen a topic like my son did. Still, I feel he did very good for his first attempt at an Argumentative paper. Please keep in mind I do not share my nephew’s paper to try and convince anyone what to believe. I am sharing it to show his work. If you comment, please keep them professional and focused on the actual writing style and ability. So, without further ado, here are the two papers.

Putting the “Team” in “Team Fortress 2”
By <Name removed for privacy of a minor>
August 1, 2014

I play quite a few games. My favorite game is “Team Fortress 2”. In this game I have to work with others on my team in order to successfully achieve the current objective. It is also extremely important that team members interact in a positive manner in order to win the match. “Team Fortress 2” can provide a way to learn teamwork skills and mutual respect for others.

One time I was on a team who went off to do their own things. They did not work together at all. The other team however, did not have such a problem. Despite the fact that I warned my team that there was a sentry gun ahead of us, they would rush in blindly and get mowed down. This experience taught me that good communication is quite important.

Many times, I would plan ahead with one or more friends. Usually we easily defeat the opposition and win the round. An example of this is I would choose demoman (demolitions) and my friend would be a spy. I would distract the enemy while he or she would sneak up behind them and backstab them. Also, when we find our path blocked by a sentry gun, my friend would disguise himself as a member of the enemy team, walk in, and sap a disable the sentry gun. Then, I would come around the corner and blow up the sentry and the engineer who built it.

One person I’ve known for years is Lion of Sparta. Lion is a great player, able to sneak up on someone as a spy without getting caught. He can also pull off headshots without missing as a sniper. However, his true merit is that he is a good team player. He listens to whatever other players ask of him, be it to switch to another class so they could play as that class or to protect a specific area against the enemy. Lion is one of the best people I’ve ever played with. Not just because of his skill, but also because he goes out of his way to help his team.

Team Fortress 2 can teach you how to work as a team and have a mutual respect for one another. This applies to real life as well as in a game. Working together as a team and respecting each other will help you achieve your objective, such as constructing a building such as a hotel. If people didn’t work together, they couldn’t accomplish much. How could we have built the Statue of Liberty if the workers went off and did their own things and didn’t respect each other? It is through teamwork that some of mankind’s greatest feats have been accomplished.

It Had to be Jesus
By <Name removed to protect the privacy of a minor>
August 1, 2014

The evidence of sin is all around us. Yet we continue to sin. We can sin due to Ignorance and denial of consequences. Because of this, God needed a way to provide humanity with a way to avoid eternal death. There was only one way. We needed Jesus, the only perfect sacrifice, to be willing to die for us so that God’s justice was satisfied.

We mentioned the ignorance of God’s will as a reason some people sin. Not knowing what God wants from you can easily be leading you to make choices that can harm not only you and others, but your relationship with God. Being ignorant will not save you from eternal death any more then you not knowing your car breaks went bad will prevent you from being in an accident. Ignorance of God’s will is dangerous and can prevent us from realizing our divine potential. Lack of knowledge is not the only reason we needed the sacrifice of Jesus.

Sometimes we sin even after knowing it is against God’s will. We think that somehow, the consequences will not apply to us. This can be similar to ignorance, but denial of the effects of our actions reveals a lack of understanding faith in God’s plan. Learning God’s will and trusting in it can go a long way in helping repair our personal relationship with our father in heaven, but only if we recognize that Jesus provided salvation when he died on the cross. So, why did it have to be Jesus?

Why did he die for us? He died because Jesus and God love all of us the same. Jesus was nailed to the cross, suffered every sickness, and was beaten. He was the only perfect man to ever walk the earth. God himself had to give up his only son so we may be forgiven and have the power to follow in Jesus’s footsteps. There could be no other sacrifice. There is only one, and he served us. So the least we can do is trust in him and strive to be like him.

The only way God’s justice could be satisfied was to sacrifice the only perfect man, Jesus. Not only that, but Jesus had to be willing to die. Ignorance and denial of God’s will, results in eternal death. We must not only accept what Jesus did for us, we also must follow his example. Trusting in Jesus is the only way we can repair our relationship with God, and return to heaven.

My thoughts on the upcoming MMO Game: WildStar

This video is based on the “almost here!” game called WildStar. The video is pretty clean, so should be safe for the workplace and kids.

The game has a Teen Rating and should be considered carefully before you allow younger children to play it. Mostly, it’s a language issue when compared to other MMOs. It’s pretty cartooney and does not have a dark realistic appearance or true gore. You can probably use language filters to get around the frequent cursing. If your fine with MMOs in general and are concerned with language, then WildStar is fine with language filters from what I saw in open beta.

So…what caused this game to catch my eye? Well, it’s a bit reminiscent of looney toons in it’s “personality” with a dose of adult humor. I consider myself a rather clean person and normally do not seek out any sort of entertainment that is overtly rude when it comes to language and themes. Still, I want a game not geared at a child that is still fun with the option of not dealing with constant profane language. You can achieve this with WildStar in my opinion, just use the usual language filters and choose who you game with as you would any friend. With some consideration and thought.

What are some of the features of this game, anyways? Oh..where does one start?! To take directly from the game website’s latest promotional video :

“WildStar, a deep, sprawling space adventure set on the mysterious planet Nexus. This isn’t just another sci-fi MMO with pretty colors. It’s a completely new frontier. Know what else? The game play is awesome. Plain and simple…

(It continues)…Double jump…epic battles…player housing …lots of customization (look, craft, fight, mounts)…battlegrounds, arenas, and war plots…the ability to level entirely through PVP. Into epic stories? Adventures, group choices, dungeons, and epic raids…”seriously they’ll rip your face off..Hardcore.”

“It is full of mystery, adventure, and pure unadulterated awesome-sauce. the only thing missing is *you*.”

So, there you have it…most of that was straight from their own video with a few edits for space. want to see the video, just go to http://www.wildstar-online.com/en/news/wildstar-features-trailer-is-live/ for the full dialogue.

Life Hacks: Using apps to teach without a lesson plan. Ingress the Game

Life Hacks: Using apps to teach without a lesson plan

Ingress.

This app is just plain FUN.

The premise is your an agent. You belong to one of 2 factions. Are you here to keep humanity free or are you here to control them? You decide.

Once you decide, you take your handy dandy *comm unit* aka..phone..and…WALK. yes, boys and girls, you have to walk. You will be searching for *portals* to *hack* them and other actions for your faction. Portal locations happen to coincide with real historical events or places.

Life Hack#1: Exercise

Life Hack #2: Get to know whatever area you happen to be in.

Life Hack #3: Learn about historical events that have really happened.

Life Hack #4: My nephew came up with this. Metric unit conversion, since the game uses that.

Life Hack # ??: I am sure there could be more.

The trick isn’t that you do anything. You just play the came. This all just sorta part of the experience. Your going to automatically accomplish these things.

So far, it’s on Google Play and android. I believe they are making an apple version. I hope they do just so more people can get out there and Hack Life!