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  Santa Cruz Parent Santa Cruz, CA

March 13, 2014
Introducing Children to Bridge

How to Play Bridge

Steve: "How to Handle a Homewrecker (in Kindergarten)"

Christine: What is Human? Neanderthal Genes Exist In Most Humans

Summer Camp Previews!
This Week
FUN TIMES WITH BRIDGE....DON"T MISS!
Bridge (continued)
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  Introducing Children to Bridge

(Special Event Images / Graphics) Bridge_BoyEcstatic.jpgHow would you like  to have a jolly good time with your tweens and teens while engaging the mind and developing everyone's memory and strategy skills.   In fact, if a child can play chess, why not bridge.

You've been playing games with your children from day one, helping them experience winning and losing, interacting socially and getting ready for the game of life.

We're sharing with you a basic description of the game so you can be prepared for the Bridge Tournament at Kirby this weekend.  Beginners to advanced are welcome.  No longer is bridge with tea, sandwiches and petit fours for ladies in the afternoon.  The game of bridge is experiencing a resurgence and it's in Santa Cruz!  For (Special Event Images / Graphics) Seymour_freeday.jpgmore bridge events and clubs in SantaCruz, go to the Santa Cruz Chapter of the American Contract Bridge League.

Friday is Community Free Day at Seymour.  While there check out their March Madness membership special.  On Saturday afternoon take the kids to listen to the Bannana Slug band and in the evening you can join Ben Jammin leading the audience in singing songs from (Holidays) StPatsShamrockCookies.jpgGrease

Steve offers a powerful way of handling a little person who enters the room like a thunderstorm.  Could the same technique work with all our relationships?

Happy St. Patrick's Day.  Green veggies? Cookies? Hair? Clothes?  Anything to avoid a pinch!

Have a great weekend, Parmalee

 

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  How to Play Bridge

(Special Event Images / Graphics) Bridge_Tournament_KidsandAdults.jpgThe Basics 

Bridge is played with a deck of 52 cards (take out the jokers) and four people sitting at a square table with the players who are sitting across from each other forming a partnership.

About the Cards

There are four suits: clubs, diamonds, hearts and spades. Each suit has 13 cards. In bridge, the deuce is the lowest card in the suit and the ace is the highest.

Getting Started

Draw cards to select the person to deal the cards (the dealer). This person distributes the cards face down, in clockwise rotation one at a time, until each player at the table has a hand consisting of 13 cards. After the play of each deal is completed, the opportunity to deal moves around the table clockwise so that each person has a turn to deal out the cards.

Aim of the Game

Each partnership tries to win (or take) as many tricks as possible.

What's a trick? continued at the end of this newsletter>>>

Thank you: American Contract Bridge League

 

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  Steve: "How to Handle a Homewrecker (in Kindergarten)"

by Steve Spitalny

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Today for some reason I was thinking about Brandi, a 5-year-old girl who was in my kindergarten many years ago. I haven’t seen or heard of her in years and I wonder where she has come to in her life’s journey.

When she was in my kindergarten, Brandi was a "fireball.’ She was strong and did not have any extra padding on her bones. Light weight and solid, she moved easily and smoothly. She was very articulate and intelligent. She tended to be one of the last children to arrive each day, and I noticed from the start that Brandi did not have an easy time joining into the play of the other children. A regular occurrence was her arriving to many other children already engaged in play, houses built and imaginations unleashed in various activities. Brandi would look around the room and then walk toward some play activity and so often what happened next was a house knocked over and another child sad. “Steve, Brandi wrecked our house.” I saw that my work was cut out for me because Brandi was very determined to do things her way and if she thought I was trying to intervene she grew angry. She shouted “I can do what I want!”

One morning, Brandi was headed for an elaborate house made out of heavy wooden "play stands’ that looked a bit tentative in terms of stability.  Read more >>>>

"I'd love to hear from you about what YOU are struggling with so future blog posts can reflect what you are working on.  If you like this blog, please sign up to subscribe - and tell your friends too"! Steve Spitalny is a local educator and speaker.  You can visit him, his writings and speaker events  at Chamakanda

 

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  Christine: What is Human? Neanderthal Genes Exist In Most Humans

(Graphics) FamilyTree.jpgWe humans like to think we are the most amazing creatures in the world. We are the smartest, the most adaptable and we even feel that we can take on Mother Nature. Then a hurricane/typhoon or a tornado comes along and we realize that we can't win them all. We should be looking at a more basic question - What is a modern human - homo sapiens?

Researchers used to believe that our species - homo sapiens - was a special branch on the primate tree. We found fossils of earlier hominids, which may or may not be ancestors. We found fossils of other human-type creatures living at the same time as true humans. Right now, there are multiple candidates for homo species that were living at the same time as homo sapiens. Two of these species have had their genome sequenced - Neandertals and the Denisovans.

The first thing scientists did was to compare the genes to humans. They were surprised.  Read more>>>>

Christine is a local mom and scientist.  You can read more of Christine's science explanations here!

 

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  Summer Camp Previews!
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  This Week

(BUILT IN) (Icons/Graphics) Text_Calendar.jpg(Ads) SantaCruzParentFacebook.jpgBelow is only a partial list of upcoming events and activities so be sure to click on our EVENT CALENDAR so you do not miss anything >>

Use the PARENT PLANNER to click on events and resources you are interested in and click PRINT MY PLANNER to print or email your list.

 

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School Corner

 

Soquel PENS (Parent Education Nursery School) Banana Slug Fundraising Concert 3/15

 

 

Orchard School K-6, Open House 3/18


Mount Madonna PreK-12, Campus Tour 3/19

 

 

Orchard School K-6, CircOrchard, Children's Circus Performance 3/28 & 29

 

 

All School Activities

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 March Clubs

for Kids

 

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Mister Mom

The Bay Area's Only
Live Talk Radio Show
About Parenting

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Sundays 2-3pm

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or online or smartphone
at

ksco.com

mistermomradio.com

Park

Activities

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 For Parents!

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Parenting Workshops

 

Support Groups

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  FUN TIMES WITH BRIDGE....DON"T MISS!

 

Rising Stars Sectional Bridge Tournament

Sat, 3/15 & Sun 3/16, 10:00am

(Special Event Images / Graphics) BridgeTournament.jpg The Santa Cruz unit of the ACBL, American Contract Bridge League, is sponsoring a bridge tournament for novice and intermediate players on March 15 and 16.

Only players with less than 500 master points who are not life masters are eligible to play. There will be free coffee and snacks and a BBQ (burgers) lunch for sale each day.

On Saturday, March 15, there are Pairs games at 10 and 3. On Sunday, March 16, Newcomer Pairs at 10 and 2:30, and Swiss Teams at 10 and TBD.

For further information call 831-465-1102 or go to www.santacruzbridge.org.


Location: 425 Encinal Street, Santa Cruz Map
Phone: 831-465-1102 •website Santa Cruz

Bridge for Fun and the Brain
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  Bridge for Fun and the Brain
Date:
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"Don't Duck, Look Up!"
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  "Don't Duck, Look Up!"
Hartnell College
Date: Every Fri (Mar 7-Mar 28) at 5:30pm
Details: Star shows for young children Pre-K - 3rd grade
City: Salinas view all details >>
     
Bridge for Fun and the Brain
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  Bridge for Fun and the Brain
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Spring Awakening
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  Spring Awakening
Pacific Collegiate School
Date: Every Su, Wed, Th and Fri (Mar 16-Mar 26) at 7:00pm
Ages: All ages
Details: A poignant explor ation of the journey from adolescence to adulthood
Special Instructions: March 16-19, and 23-26, Thursday - Saturday 7pm, Sunday 2pm
City: Santa Cruz Phone: (831) 420-6177 view all details >>
     
Bridge for Fun and the Brain
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Bridge for Fun and the Brain
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Bridge for Fun and the Brain
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Bridge for Fun and the Brain
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  Bridge (continued)

Taking Tricks in Notrump

A trick contains four cards, one contributed by each player. One player starts by leading a card, placing it face up on the table. In clockwise rotation, each player has to follow suit, by playing a card of the same suit as the one led. If a heart is led, for example, each player must play a heart if possible. Only if a player doesn't have a heart can that person discard (i.e., play a card of another suit). The highest card in the suit led wins the trick for the player who played it. This is called playing in notrump.

Taking Tricks with a Trump Suit

Having a trump suit is something like having one suit wild. The rules of the game still require that if a player can follow suit, the player must. When a player can no longer follow suit, however, a trump can be played, and the trump is higher and more powerful than any card in the suit led.

Bidding

Bidding is the language of bridge. The players, through bidding, decide whether the deal is to be played in notrump or in a particular trump suit. The dealer has the first chance to bid. If the dealer has some high cards in the hand and a preference for one suit over another (usually decided by the length of the suit), dealer makes a bid to let his partner know which suit he prefers. If the dealer doesn't have many high cards and doesn't want to make a bid, he says "pass."

Bids must be made according to the hierarchy of suits: clubs, diamonds, hearts, spades and finally notrump. Thus, if 1 is the opening bid, the next hand to bid must bid at least 1, the next hand at least 1 and so on. If declarer were to open 1, the next bid would have to be 1NT or 2, 2 or 2.

After the dealer makes a decision, each player in turn has an opportunity to either bid or pass. At the end of the bidding, each partnership will have decided on the suit it wants to name as trumps and if it has enough strength (high cards) to bid for the privilege of naming trumps. Or one partnership will have passed, letting the opponents pick the trump suit in return for committing to winning a certain number of tricks. The bidding ends when three players in succession say "pass."

Declarer, Opening Leader and Dummy

The declarer is the player who first mentions the suit that ends up being trumps or who first mentions notrump.

The opening leader is the player to the left of the declarer who starts the play by making the opening lead, playing a card face-up on the table.

The dummy is declarer's partner. After the opening lead, the dummy places his hand face-up on the table, and declarer calls the cards during the play for both hands.

Guidelines for Making the Opening Lead

Against notrump contracts, it is a good idea to lead your longest suit because that could be your best source of extra tricks. With a sequence, three or more cards in a row, lead the top card of the sequence. If you don't have a sequence, lead low.

Against trump contracts, you can still lead the top of a sequence, but you no longer need to lead your longest suit. Your opponents have a trump suit and can usually prevent you from taking tricks in your long suit. They can trump in and win the trick. Sometimes it is a good idea to lead a short suit if it isn't the trump suit. Your partnership wants to take tricks as quickly as possible.

The Bidding

Think of the bidding as a pleasant conversation between friends. A bid is a number combined with a word. The word refers to the suit or notrump in which the player hopes the contract will be played. The number refers to the number of tricks the partnership is willing to commit to over the book of six. 1 is a commitment to take 6 + 1 = 7 tricks, and a suggestion of spades as the trump suit. If 1 is the final bid, it would be the contract.

Hand Valuation

The ace = 4; the king = 3; the queen = 2; the jack = 1. In addition to giving points for high cards, points are given for the shape of the hand. A five-card suit = 1; a six-card suit = 2; a seven-card suit = 3; and an eight-card suit = 4. Once you have valued your hand, the next step is to bid according to its strength and shape.

Guidelines for Opening the Bidding

With 0 to 12 points, pass.

With 13 or more points, open the bidding with one of your longest suits.

With 15 to 17 high-card points and a balanced hand (one where all suits are represented with at least two or more cards), open 1NT (notrump).

Contracts

The bidding will lead to a variety of final contracts (a number and a suit or notrump). They are not equal in value since you score more for bidding and making certain contracts. They can be slams, game contracts, or part-game or partscore contracts. They can be major suit (spades or hearts) contracts or minor suit (diamonds or clubs) contracts.

Bonus Levels

Slams: You score highest for bidding and making a grand slam of 7, 7,7,7 or
7NT (notrump) where you can lose no tricks to the opponents. To bid a grand slam, the partnership should have a total of 37 points. The next best score comes from bidding and making a small slam of 6, 6, 6, 6 or 6NT where you can lose only one trick to the opponents. To bid a small slam, the partnership needs a total of 33 to 36 points.

Games: There are five game bonuses which are more attainable than a slam contract. 3NT requires that you bid for and make 9 tricks. 4 and 4 require that you bid and make 10 tricks. All three of these games can be bid when the partnership has a total of 26 points. 5 and 5 require that you bid and commit to making 11 tricks, and 29 points are suggested for a contract at this level. Experience has shown that if you and your partner have at least eight trump cards in your combined hands, you can usually take one more trick in a suit contract than you could in a notrump contract. That means that games in 3NT or 4 or 4 (if you have at least eight trumps) require about the same strength in high cards.

Partscores: In a partscore, the partnership receives points for every trick made. The partnership is not eligible, however, for the bonus it would get for bidding a game or a slam.

The Role of the Responder

The partners on a bridge team have certain roles to play. The opening bidder describes his hand to his partner. The partner becomes the captain and assumes the role of deciding on the best denomination and the best level for the final contract. The partner of the opening bidder knows more about the combined strength of the two hands after hearing the opening bid and looking at his own hand.

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