The VIIs Build Their Social Skills

Right as they got back from Spring Break, the VIIsR had to dismantle

Chinatown, a project they had worked hard on and were sad to take it down. While building Chinatown, Sasha Greer and Leo McGowan worked on three buildings with fellow classmates.

Sasha worked on a fish market, Dragon Kiosk, and tamwoe. Leo worked on two of the same buildings as Sasha, which were the Dragon Kiosk and the fish market, but he also worked on making dim sum. During the building process some people did get into some disputes.

Sasha had an argument with her building partner about the placements of the shelves and counter. “He said he wanted to arrange the shelves a different way, but I said that we’d have less room for the counter if he did it that way. Cause he wanted to put the shelves, which were very thick, behind the counter.”

So Sasha and her partner learned how to compromise. They ended up placing the counter in a different section of their building and putting the shelves where the counter was. Despite not being what Sasha wanted she “could agree with that.”

Even though Leo did not have an argument he did observe one. While building the fish market, he saw two of his classmates argue over “put bricks in the front, for where we put the fish, [arguing whether they should be] down or up or in the back.”

Another argument Leo observed, between two different classmates, is that one of them wanted to build on top of the kitchen while the other one did not.

Sasha also remembered that one of her classmates wanted to wait to “put down the rugs [in her building]” but since she was painting her paper-mache animal head they did it without her. From all this, the VIIs learned to pay attention to others requests, and that people do not always wait.

Chinatown was not only a fun project for the VIIs but helped further the VIIs’ compromising skills. Although according to Sasha and Leo, the Brooklyn Bridge is still the VIIs’ favorite project.

Now the VIIsR are working on free-build. This is time when they are allowed to build anything that is a part of New York City using blocks from their classroom. During free-build, the VIIs chose groups of three or four by picking names with popsicle sticks.

Leo was working on the Freedom Tower which is very tall although it cannot be as tall as he wants it. This is because the group built the Empire State Building made their build so tall that it is “at least three feet from the ceiling” although Sasha claims that it is “less than that, it’s more like 5 feet.” Of course, the huge size of the Empire State Building meant that the Freedom Tower could not be bigger, and “Egypt [Dean] is the only one who can reach that high.” This means that the VIIs classroom the Empire State building is taller than the Freedom Tower.

The VIIsC, have finished building the Brooklyn Bridge, which they will have to take down soon. When asked if she liked building it, Valentina Mafaro said that she enjoyed playing with the completed bridge, but did not like building it because it was “a lot of work.”

Both Valentina and River Barna worked on the caissons, while Imani Passley worked on the roads and ramps. When asked if they liked working on that part of the bridge River replied, “not really since we have to do them [take them down] last.”

The three VIIsC girls we interviewed Imani Passley, River Barna and Valentina Mafaro, are good friends. When told that they would be in the newspaper, Valentina and Imani looked excited. Valentina explained, “My brother is going to think I’m so rich and important.”

In fact, they were such good friends that they burst into fits of laughter during the interview and had trouble focusing. They have all gotten to know each other and have learned so much over this past year.

The VIIs have sprung back into their daily routine with smiles on their faces and ready to work. They are happy to continue projects such as the permanent city.

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