The blessing of the curse

I know it sounds controversial and even downright dismissing.

So, please know that is NOT my intent with this article. I feel terrible for everyone who has had their life turned upside down by the COVID-19. We are currently in the midst of something that many of us have not experienced ever in our lives. We are “shelter-in-place” / “lock-down” mode as we all try to “flatten the curve” so that we can all move on.

I can’t fully understand the pain and the losses that people have been subjected to as we have been fortunate not to be affected by it (in terms of our health). Having said that, I am not dismissing the presence of pain for others. I do wish that this really hadn’t have happened. But it has, and now, we must face it and that reminds me of this quote

“I wish it need not have happened in my time,” said Frodo.

“So do I,” said Gandalf, “and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”

― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

The quote is so apt for me, personally, because we just happened to do an experiment last week. Last week was supposed to the kids’ spring break. We were supposed to be in Tokyo for their spring break. But instead, they were about to have a break from their “online learning” and we had no idea what to do with all that time they were going to have on their hands. So, we decided to have a week of experiment. An experiment to live without something that we THINK WE NEED all the time. WiFi.

This was going to be a week of “No Internet”

No internet, whatsoever. Shut down that Orbi, shut down the mobile data on our phones and just spend time together as a family. Turned out pretty good week for us, all in all.

And as I said in the topic, there is a blessing for us here if we choose to see it. Here are some of the blessings we had last week:

  • We slept in
  • We slept longer
  • We made meals together
  • We cleaned dishes together (oh yes, we even stopped using the dishwasher)
  • We watched movies (including The Lord of the Rings)
  • We played video games, we played board games

I understand, this is made possible for us because we have a fortunate life. But, it seems like so many people are waiting so badly for them to get past working from home. So many keep saying “when is this lock-down going to end?”. So many “can’t seem to take it anymore of their children fighting an.

But, if we just look at this an opportunity to do something new, do something different, get better, we can all come out of this pandemic a better human race

I will leave you with some of the pictures from journals of my daughters as they were writing everything we are doing at home these days (for a school project).

Home made Chocolate Milk
How we wash our hands and our morning schedule
We make a schedule everyday
The birthday cake the girls made for their Mama
Just one of those things that we now have more time to do
Yes, they most certainly are getting independent making meals now
Staying honest, this one was made by Mama 😉
Things we do
Learning to count in different languages
Staying healthy by working out at home
Some changes in our habits
Things we do online (except for last week when we went off-the-grid)
Home made quesadillas
home made veggie patties
Chia seed pudding with fruits (girls’ creation)

Hope you are all safe and healthy and hope you get to experience some form of “blessing” as well.

Data+Kids: Their First Assignment

It’s amazing how much you can learn when you let others speak a bit more. I know this is something I struggle with; I often find myself dominating so many conversations at work and at home and I am trying to “learn how to listen”. I thought given my kids an assignment with Tableau and explaining what they did might be a great way for me to “learn to listen”… enjoy the videos

About the videos:-

So, after been doing a few things with Tableau, I asked the girls if they would like an assignment on the same. They liked the idea so I sent them a list of questions for each of their topics and asked them to present; “if they were able to get to the answers” and “What did they learn along the way”. As they presented, I definitely learnt a few things along the way. Hope you learn a few things as well.

Lavanya’s Assignment

a) Which singer has the most songs? (you can choose the chart type)

b) Which singer has the highest popularity? (on average across all their songs) (please create a bar graph for this)

c) Which year had the most number of songs with their popularity above 80?

Livienne’s Assignment

a. Create a pie chart showing which manufacturer has lowest sugar on average

b. Show which cereals have the highest level of potassium and lowest level of carbohydrates

c. Which cereal do you the think will be best (in your opinion) when eaten cold?

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Chapter 4: Circle Views

The data+kids project lives on as does the “Stay at Home” order. Today, we looked at few ways we can create “Circle Views” along with a few other tips&tricks along the way. Hope you enjoy this one, especially, the first minute 😉

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Chapter 3: Scatter Plots

The kids picked to create a scatter plot and we discussed the use of scatter plots to understand data quickly and meaningfully (and covered some formatting and annotations)

We started our exploration today with data about cereals and picking a type of chart that we wanted to create. Line graphs seemed the obvious choice until we realize that our dataset has no date component. We discussed scatter plots as the chart we will create (my fav type of chart) and made a few observations about what cereals we would recommend based on the data. Formatting and annotation found their way into our discussion as well. I, personally, loved some of the things that my daughters notice that I sometimes miss because I am so focused on the next step. The exploration with my daughters is giving me a completely new sense of wonder. Hope you enjoy this one

Sharing Lavanya’s exploration with data about music

Lavanya wanted to explore data about music and in our video, she shares her perspective about research on the topic, understanding the data and showing us how she learnt

Sharing Livienne’s exploration with data about cereals

Livienne spent about 2 hours (well, she said about more than 1 hr 45 mins but less than 2 hours, she likes being specific) on Tableau since we last spoke.

Here is a video of her work so far using cereal data

Chapter 2: Building Maps

Today we continued from where we left off yesterday and build some maps