I mostly worked with the 6th and 7th graders and I learned a lot about the new kids. One thing that stood out is how big of a difference in learning curve exists between an incoming 6th grader who is 1300 and started playing chess one year ago and a 6th grader with the same rating who started three years ago.
I only took pictures the first day though... they started looking all the same to me and I felt discouraged.
We won the 8th, came second in 7th, and tied for 3rd in 6th.
There was a Brookstone at JFK where an employee was flying little planes around the hallway, and it looked too awesome to pass up and on sale for $25. So I played with it happily for an hour at the start of round one, then I said goodbye, gave it to a kid to try, and it was broken within 10 minutes.
Watching Mubassar intently preparing with my laptop before round 7, I thought: Why haven't I borrowed the laptop cart every day, install Chessbase, Mega2013, and chesspublishing databases, and an engine, and had the top kids make a tree of all their opening lines and make game files for every variation and spend all their time looking at GM games in their lines? They would be totally into it, and I wouldn't have to do anything except install the programs and explain what to do/what the final product should look like. I'm very happy to have had that realization.
I am happy Elizabeth Warren has been appointed to the banking commission.