Things are continuing to go well at work. I'm trying to enjoy the peace and calmness of not having a lot of tasks to complete right now because I'm told that next month will be very hectic, but sometimes I struggle with appreciating the slow pace and feeling unproductive. Thankfully my current research project is a broad one, so there's always work to be done on it.
At work I'm doing research into how other programs and organizations transition their young children/clients/[insert your own descriptive word here] from practicing isolated fundamental motor skills (throwing, catching, jumping, balancing, etc) to combining those skills to create sports skills. A lot of programs kind of just push kids into the proverbial swimming pool and expect them to just pick it up, or modify the rules so it's a little easier (I personally have some big issues with the latter, but that's another bunny trail). I haven't really found anyone who ahs described their program as transitional, although a few descriptions I've read online kind of hint at it. I'm a big fan of the transitional model where you integrate skills and help them learn them along the way rather than going straight from "Point A" to "Point B" with some kind of Star Trek-esque transporter device. A lot of programs seem to be missing the importance of the line that connects the two.
I cannot describe how excited I am to be working on something that has to do with developmental motor skills. I had two classes last semester with Dr. Culpepper (who I adore as a professor; he challenged me to really think, and while I don't remember everything from those two classes I think that a lot of it stuck with me because of the challenge) on motor learning (Motor Learning and Control, and Lifespan Motor Development). Those two classes literally changed the way that I look at people. Now I watch their gait, and how they demonstrate motor skills. Kids in particular. It's no wonder that people watching is so fascinating to me; though I don't care to guess people's stories, I am interested in how they physically interact with their environment.
I called and emailed Dr. C. today to ask him a few questions. It's the summer, so he may be gone. hopefully we can get in touch to chat! He's knowledgeable, so I think he'd be a good resource to tap for my research, but I also miss talking with him. When you find those teachers you connect with (and, at least for me, push you to go further), you don't forget them.
I probably should take my own medicine and email some other people this weekend.
The weeks have flown by so quickly here in DC. I can't believe that the fourth week of my internship is winding up.
Have I really been here over a month?
After work I power-walked to Dupont Circle with one of my officemates. He was heading to meet friends, I had plans to meet up with family friends for dinner. Their daughter is a bit older than I am, and she's been working on the Hill for a while. It was fantastic to reconnect with them. We went to Nando's for dinner, which seemed like an upscale El Pollo Loco. It was really great. Definitely somewhere to go back to. We grabbed custard for dessert (where did we put it??) and talked some more. It was sad to part ways from them after only a couple hours, but I thoroughly enjoyed what time we were able to spend together. Hopefully their daughter and I will meet up again in the coming weeks. I had been texting her to try to set up dinner plans for this evening, and never received a response: we laughed, discovering that her phone number, somewhere in the communication between her dad and mine, had changed a digit. With each other's proper phone numbers and a last photo, we said goodnight.
I hadn't thought of how lonely of an experience DC would be. Yes, you're surrounded by all kinds of new and exciting things--- but that familiar face and history go so far towards soothing the homesick ache that every intern here will feel at some point.