Solar Energy Education! Why Not Use Solar in Communities? Schools and Homes?

Solar energy is radiant light and heat from the Sun that is harnessed using a range of ever-evolving technologies such as solar heating, photo voltaics, solar thermal energy, solar architecture, molten salt power plants and artificial photosynthesis.
But simply, so·lar en·er·gy
/ˈsōlər ˈenərjē/
noun
radiant energy emitted by the sun.
another term for solar power.

The Sun
?sun

How is it used?

Talk about an energy revolution. Not too long ago, solar energy was a pipe dream. Now it’s the cheapest and most abundant energy source in the world. In fact, there are more than 1.8 million solar installations in the U.S. alone (and counting).
Energy 101: Solar PV a video How Solar Energy Works..

alternative alternative energy clean energy close up

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There is Community Solar
A community solar project—sometimes referred to as a solar garden or shared renewable energy plant—is a solar power plant whose electricity is shared by more than one household. ‘Community solar’ can refer to both ‘community-owned’ projects as well as third party-owned plants whose electricity is shared by a community.

What Paris Agreement? Washington DC , Does Solar

In Washington , DC. There is a commitment to uses of energy to help with the concerns for the environment. Washington leads the way.

Photovolaic_array_on_top_of_the_James_Forrestal_Building_-_US_Dept_of_Energy_-_2008_800_380_90

Solar Works DC Program celebrates the 100th installation of Solar in the community. Solar for all. the video that celebrates the solar installation

Solar for All aims to bring the benefits of solar energy to 100,000 low to moderate income families in the District of Columbia. The DC Department of Energy and Environment is partnering with organizations across the District to install solar on single family homes and develop community solar projects to benefit renters and residents in multi-family buildings. All Solar for All participants should expect to see a 50% savings on their electricity bill over 15 years and can be proud to have gone solar! In order to be eligible, residents must meet the income guidelines below.

Options for Single Family Homeowners in DC

Two Solar for All grantees are currently installing Solar for All projects for single family homeowners. Solar United Neighbors of DC and GRID Alternatives Mid-Atlantic.

Communities all over the country are installing Solar to help with the energy demands.

You will remember Vice President Gore. When he started the initiative, some of us powered solar energy in our classrooms.

We had solar balloons , solar cookers. A parent in my community taught us solar cooking. We did hot dogs, and brownies. We even had a solar race car.
You can build a solar race car , here. Make Your Own Solar Car

In this project you will need creativity and experimentation to design and build a car powered by two solar cells and a small electric motor. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory has a PDF curriculum that will also give you ideas and help you learn about the scientific and engineering principles behind building a solar car. (Adult supervision is recommended for this project.)

High schools had it better. They have the Solar Car Challenge is an annual solar-powered car race for high school students.The event attracts teams from around the world, but mostly from American high schools.

The race was first held in 1995. Each event is the end product of a two-year education cycle launched by the Winston Solar Car Team. On odd-numbered years, the race is a road course that starts at the Texas Motor Speedway, Fort Worth, Texas; the end of the course varies from year to year. On even-numbered years, the race is a track race around the Texas Motor Speedway.

Here is the site, if you want to do the High School Challenge.
http://www.solarcarchallenge.org

Bottle Biology? Using Plastics in an Interesting and Academic Way!

I was teaching in a school and I had access to a book on Bottle Biology. Sounds weird, but it is not. I started collecting plastic bottles to do the work. They were washed and then stored.

assorted plastic bottles

Photo by mali maeder on Pexels.com

The custodian reported me to the office because I had about 200 plastic bottles in my teacher’s closet. I am sure he thought there would be insects. Why was he was in my closet? I am sure some teacher told him ? Well maybe the kids bringing the bottles in , made him suspicious.I have no idea why he was reporting me. I was doing science.


What is Bottle Biology?
home_03

I lived in a community where lots of the people worked at the National Science Foundation. A parent gave me the book. I liked it.Here is how the book is introduced.

OUT OF THE TRASH , INTO THE CLASSROOM

“Like many good things in life, the inspiration for Bottle Biology arose unexpectedly — in this case from a pile of autumn leaves. While raking his garden, Paul Williams, a professor of Plant Pathology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, asked himself what might be going on in the middle of the large compost pile he was creating. Why not put some of the leaves in an empty soda bottle and watch them to find out, he wondered. The result: The Decomposition Column and the beginning of Bottle Biology.

Hands-on, eyes-on, noses-on, mouths-on, minds-on: If you combine science with a soda bottle, what do you get? Two liter soda pop bottles orbiting Earth with NASA, might be one result. But did you know you can use bottles to create an ecosystem, explore the concept of niche, and model a lakeshore? You may have made a tornado in a bottle but have you used bottles to pickle your own cabbage? Have you made a bottle microscope, a bottle timer or bottle tweezers?

This website is full of ways you can use recyclable containers to learn and teach about science and the environment. The projects on this website promote science as a tool everyone can use to explore the world. These explorations can be integrated with history, art, music and other creative endeavors.

Out of the trash, into the classroom: You’ll find the inexpensive materials you need for Bottle Biology in your trash can, backyard, supermarket, neighborhood park and recycling center.”

Here is the book. BOOK

With a pair of scissors and your imagination, you can turn plastic soda bottles into tools for exploring the world. This book fueled my imagination. Look at the illustrations on the website about what to do and how to do it.

I think that the custodian thought my closet looked like the photo.

Plastics
can be recycled they can make new bottles and containers, plastic lumber, picnic tables, lawn furniture, playground equipment, recycling bins and more. We use plastic bags to carry home groceries. They keep our bread and other food fresh. … They also can be recycled into new plastic bags – and then recycled again.

I just wanted to show that there were some other uses for the plastic bottles .

I had some parents who met with me about project based learning who were experts on plastic. So we talked about getting the tools and what projects from the book
we were going to have the children make, but then we decided to let them learn about the book and decide what if anything they wanted to do.

boy child clouds kid

Photo by Porapak Apichodilok on Pexels.com

Then, there was an awareness of recycling. Some states had done model programs.
But there were not a lot of library or media resources as there are now.

Now there is a National Geographic Magazine that I would have been able to get for the students, this one.

Planet or Plastics

But then, I was on my own, except for the fact that the students had done project based learning with the National Geographic. Trash led them to go to the school board about food wastes, and what the kids called airplane lunches.

The National Geographic Kids Network included seven 8-week curriculum units focusing on “increasing the time spent on inquiry-oriented, hands-on science instruction, strengthening science process and data analysis skills, raising public awareness of the value and feasibility of appropriate science instruction, and publishing and widely disseminating curricular materials that further these goals.”

While students researched, collected, analyzed, and shared data with their peers they also problem solved and collaborated with students at other schools. In addition, the network also features a scientist who mentored students electronically to evaluate their data, make comments, and offer suggestions. The seven 8-week units included:

Hello!
Solar Energy
Acid Rain
What Are We Eating?
What’s in Our Water?
Too Much Trash?
Weather in Action

So you can see why we decided to ask the students what Bottle Biology projects we should do.

They chose these at first. http://bottlebiology.org/investigations/

Oh Joy! Decomposition.
Decomposition The U.S. generates 190 million tons of solid waste a year — enough to fill a bumper-to-bumper convoy of garbage trucks halfway to the moon. So why aren’t we up to our necks in garbage?

Nature recycles garbage all the time, and this recycling is essential to the availability of nutrients for living things. Nature’s recyclers are tiny bacteria and fungi, which break down plant and animal waste, making nutrients available for other living things in the process. This is known as decomposition.

KimChee!
What pickles a cuke? Is yogurt alive? Where does Swiss cheese get its holes? How is pizza dough made?Kimchee

We had already had a science fair. SIGH. The kids wanted to do a Bottle Biology Sharing. So we took on a few more projects. The smelliest projects had to go to homes. The book does not tell you about the side effects of the smell. But it was all good . Kids had to journal the changes they saw. In the classroom much to the relief of the custodian, we modeled some of the other projects. He even helped us to construct the hanging bottles. Ok, I am not so good at creating them.

The hanging bottle that I think I liked the most was this one.
The kids liked the messiest , hardest ones that were involving the use of fish.
http://bottlebiology.org/investigations/terraqua_main.html
Every one of them wanted to build this. The TerrAqua Column provides you with a model to explore the link between land and water. The model has three basic components: soil, water and plants.

By varying the treatment of just one of these components you can explore how one variable can affect the whole system. How does salt affect the growth of plants? How does adding fertilizer to the soil affect algal growth in the water chamber? What type of soil best purifies water?

Experimentation with the TerrAqua Column is practically unlimited. You can define a question, and then design your experiment to explore it.

You will want these links.

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Wisconsin Fast Plants Program

bottles clean close up cold

Photo by George Becker on Pexels.com

The book has a lot more information than the website . Buy the book.

Why Children Should Code from an Interview by Tim Berners-Lee

You may not know who Tim Berners-Lee is. Hang on…

Creator-of-the-Internet-Tim-Berners-Lee-In-Favor-of-Blockchain-Technology-696x449
You do know what the World Wide Web is?

Sir Timothy John Berners-Lee OM KBE FRS FREng FRSA FBCS, also known as TimBL, is an English engineer and computer scientist, best known as the inventor of the World Wide Web. He is currently a professor of computer science at the University of Oxford and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.


Sir Tim Berners-Lee invented the World Wide Web in 1989.


But wait, there is more.

He is the Director of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), a Web standards organization founded in 1994 which develops interoperable technologies (specifications, guidelines, software, and tools) to lead the Web to its full potential. He is a Director of the World Wide Web Foundation which was launched in 2009 to coordinate efforts to further the potential of the Web to benefit humanity.

A graduate of Oxford University, Sir Tim invented the Web while at CERN, the European Particle Physics Laboratory, in 1989. He wrote the first web client and server in 1990. His specifications of URIs, HTTP and HTML were refined as Web technology spread.

He is the 3Com Founders Professor of Engineering in the School of Engineering with a joint appointment in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the Laboratory for Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence ( CSAIL) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) where he co-leads the Decentralized Information Group (DIG). He is also a Professor in the Computer Science Department at the University of Oxford, UK. He is President of and founded the Open Data Institute in London.

In 2011 he was named to the Board of Trustees of the Ford Foundation, a globally oriented private foundation with the mission of advancing human welfare. He is President of London’s Open Data Institute.

In 2001 he became a Fellow of the Royal Society. He has been the recipient of several international awards including the Japan Prize, the Prince of Asturias Foundation Prize, the Millennium Technology Prize and Germany’s Die Quadriga award. In 2004 he was knighted by H.M. Queen Elizabeth and in 2007 he was awarded the Order of Merit. In 2009 he was elected a foreign associate of the National Academy of Sciences. He is the author of “Weaving the Web”.

On March 18,2013, Sir Tim, along with Vinton Cerf, Robert Kahn, Louis Pouzin and Marc Andreesen, was awarded the Queen Elizabeth Prize for Engineering for “ground-breaking innovation in engineering that has been of global benefit to humanity.”

Sir Tim has promoted open government data globally and spend time fighting for rights such as net neutrality, privacy and the openness of the Web. He is not finished yet. He wants to enable a new project.

adult book business cactus

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ENABLING STUDENTS

These people, Vint Cerf, or Ron Brown, or George Lucas, Larry Irving . Dr. R.N. Panoff ,and Elliot Soloway,enabled new ways of learning. Teachers and technologists learned from these people and from DARPA.

The University of Illinois hosted the National Center for SuperComputing and the National Geographic helped educators to focus on projects, and then led us to GIS and ESRI. NASA had modules of learning for free, for teachers who would take the time to learn the information.DuFJWElUUAEHYFJ-2

abstract business code coder

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Local mentors for teachers in Virginia? Dr. Chris Dede then at George Mason University, now at Harvard. Don Mitchell was the bridge to learning about SuperComputing and working at NSF to enable learning in education. Scott Lathrop helped educators to join learning initiatives that now are commonplace, but that then, were completely futuristic.

There were educator conferences connected to SuperComputing, the conference where educators could come and learn.Your mind would be stretched. To learn there was amazing. Think about visualization and modeling. Think about the beginnings of AI and VR.
It is called Cyberlearning.

Now we learn at different places.

There is the Center for Cyberlearning!

New technologies change what and how people learn.

Informed by learning science, cyberlearning is the use of new technology to create effective new learning experiences that were never possible or practical before. The cyberlearning movement advances learning of important content by:

Applying scientific insights about how people learn
Leveraging emerging technologies
Designing transformative learning activities
Engaging teachers and other practitioners
Measuring deeper learning outcomes
Emphasizing continuous improvement
helixonly-up

data-visualisation1

Think GIS. The Science of Where

It can be fun learning these new ways of teaching and back in the day permission was granted by Dr. Frank Withrow, and Jenelle Leonard at the Department of Education for some programs that integrated technology use in a STEM way.We did STEM before the word was coined as a symbol for practice.

To use technology well we had to synthesis and put into practice new ways of learning and defend the use of technology.

This morning at the WashingtonPostLive program. Tim Berners-Lee walked through the history of technology.

Sadly , there are students who still have no digital inclusion.
Sir Tim Berners-Lee has new ideas for inclusion.

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I have been working to get children interested in learning, the use of computers , in coding and in the use of technology since it entered the learning space.The easiest entry was is using games and small projects.
Now there is this

There are many people who have inspired teachers to continue the advocacy to assist students in this type of learning. The beginning of the use of technology was relatively easy mostly because most people did not know its reach or what could be done with technology. They did know how children were drawn to learn with various utilizations of technology. We used the Internet, we used Project Based Learning with special subjects, we followed NASA initiatives and with school permission we did very well in bridging the gap between reading, learning, adding hands on science and installing technology as a special way of learning. ISTE helped teachers as a guide to best practices and even guide new practitioners.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/video/postlive/sir-tim-berners-lee-on-how-he-came-up-with-the-world-wide-web-and-why-your-kids-should-code/2019/03/05/13e0a62a-bcc7-423f-987d-788b8497696a_video.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.ec13d7c2f55e

Here is one way to go.
Code.org® is a nonprofit dedicated to expanding access to computer science in schools and increasing participation by women and underrepresented minorities. Our vision is that every student in every school has the opportunity to learn computer science, just like biology, chemistry or algebra. Code.org provides the leading curriculum for K-12 computer science in the largest school districts in the United States.

research-era

For STEM you can go to Concord.org. HERE

Studying the Human Body ,Is Virtually a Whole New Experience!!

Those of us who started teaching before technology took hold had some hard lessons to teach. Talking about most of the human body was not correct. ( sex) and then to explain the systems. What a job! What was allowed, and what permission did we have?

This is the Me Too Era… there are more resources and perhaps extended permission. We think in new ways about teaching about the human body.
human-anatomy

My friend Delores Davis had each child to use brown wrapping paper in large sizes to make a body. The systems we were allowed to teach were then carefully draw and attached to the brown paper ” body”. And we learned to take a pulse , measure height and weight ,to talk about nutrition.

person using black blood pressure monitor

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I taught from the inside out. I loved using skeletons of small animals that were dis-articulated to have students think about their skeletal structure. Of course I did it around Halloween. One year my brother, who was studying to be a physician brought a whole skeleton to the study.

selective focus photography of skeleton

Photo by Chris Mitchell on Pexels.com

I had a cat, skeleton, a rabbit skeleton, a snake skeleton and a mounted chicken skeleton.

The bones were in boxes and we had a blue velvet sort of box to make the display.

Reading about the human body does not tell you much.  A nurse could come in and talk.

The Red Cross helped us with some little charts to teach about the circulatory system.

And there was a lung that smoked to show children the effects of smoking.

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INTERACTIVE DISPLAYS

The Franklin Institute in Philadelphia has a walk through heart. There is also an exhibit 

that goes to communities for the study of the heart.

Museums did a great visualization job in sharing the body systems.

Now there is online BioDigital, and there are many other iterations of ways to study and learn about the human body. You have to establish an account to take a look but it does not cost anything.

The BioDigital Human visualizes anatomy, disease and treatments in interactive 3D.

Some question the use of VR because it requires different teaching strategies. Here is an article that shares those concerns.

Common Sense has reviewed and commented on applications for K-12.

Best Anatomy Apps and Websites for Students

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Learning anatomy and physiology can be tough for students, especially at higher levels; not only is there a lot to remember, but it can be difficult to comprehend how the body systems all work together.

As students dive into the organs of the respiratory or digestive system, they’ll gain an appreciation for structure and function, and they’ll understand how our anatomy influences our health and the medical field.

Give Gray’s Anatomy a rest with these picks that provide some amazing interactive models, let students perform virtual dissections on animals, and reveal every detail of the human body.

https://www.commonsense.org/education/top-picks/best-anatomy-apps-and-websites-for-students

For younger students ( 3-8) There is Tiny Bop ! It is an app.

Immune Defense

Immune Defense is a strategy game for big kids and grown ups (ages 10+). Players use various types of white blood cells to fight off real pathogens, using real surface molecules and signaling molecules. More information about Immune Defense here.
Available for PC, Mac and Linux computers. The video is here.

SEX EDUCATION?

Harvard takes us to new levels with this curriculum in sex education. (from the article)

“Sex education in America is still often taught as abstinence-only, despite decades of research showing that this approach results in higher teen pregnancy rates and STDs. Absent a more complete sex education — or any at all — children often learn from peers, siblings, or the internet, Brown tells EdCast, opening the way for misinformation and a lack of understanding of what is and isn’t appropriate when it comes to respect in sexual relationships. Students need to be prepared for the world we live in and become part of a broader conversation about “communication, intimacy, desire, and healthy relationships,” Brown says.”

 

Although the federal government has moved to reduce access to intervention tools such as sex education, there’s also some good news: Many states, fueled by the #MeToo movement, are taking initiative to make change, Brown says. “#MeToo is the catalyst for better consent and sex ed in schools and states around the country,” she says, citing Georgia, Illinois, Missouri, and Maryland as states that have updated laws to include consent.

https://www.gse.harvard.edu/news/uk/18/12/state-sex-education#.XDe-v4oh1bg.twitter

Welcome to the future.

Study the human body

The Future of Education
Teaching and learning have gone beyond the norms of reading from a book. With the Virtual Reality technology, students are able to better understand concepts at a much profound level.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cooking Up STEAM, by Bites and Bytes,YUM!

Delicious Doings in the Classroom or After School Program!!

Mucca - Learning about the Cow and Milk

Hands on Learning

Many of us have had a fascinating whirl on the Internet learning about foods,recipes and ways to involve the joy of cooking, or eating.

I like this site.   http://www.exploratorium.edu/cooking/  

You can discover how a pinch of curiosity can improve your cooking! Explore recipes, activities, and Webcasts that will enhance your understanding of the science behind food and cooking. No need for package services to deliver ideas to you.

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It has in the “Science of Cooking”, sections on candy, bread, eggs, pickles , meat, and seasonings.

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CANDY

BREAD

Person Holding Egg

EGGS

PICKLES

Variety of meat products including ham and sausages

MEAT

The series of live Webcasts explores the science and culture of cooking. The guests include noted chefs, food chemists, and nutritionists, and they take field trips to investigate famous kitchens and farms!

 

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National Geographic taught us how to think about the way in which foods traveled to our world. There used to be a lesson on a Chocolate Bar. ( How it Becomes a Chocolate Bar_)

Here is that lesson. http://www.iupui.edu/~geni/documents/Worldinacandybar.pdf

Here is a story of chocolate, a kind of story map. http://www.magnumicecream.com/us/en/the-history-of-chocolate.html

                              INVOLVING FAMILIES , and COMMUNITY

I like to get recipes from the class, and sometimes I would have a potluck dinner and parents and I would make a class cookbook. Each student brings in a special family recipe and when compiled together, you have a class cookbook.  I was lucky to have parents who wanted to be a part of helping to teach the Accidental Science of Cooking.

My classes were multicultural. My school had grants that were given to teachers for classroom work. The county also funded projects. With the funding our class got utensils, pots and pans , a two burner hotplate ,and a convection oven. Cooking was gently inserted into the curriculum. STEM, STEAM, whatever.

National Geographic has this :

https://www.nationalgeographic.org/media/matter-taste-wbt/

 

There was also a Kidsnetwork  NGKN unit on Nutrition and “What are We Eating”.

A great starting point. 

Planet Food

The Planet Food interactive aggregates the contents of your meal to generate a map showing the global footprint your plate makes before it even gets to your plate, and puts you in charge of the world wide journey a bar of chocolate will take before it gets to you.

PLANET FOOD

Welcome to Planet Food. Win lots of virtual badges by completing challenges that get you thinking about where food comes from, and how it gets to your table.

Eat: The Story of Food

Documenting dinners around the world. 

These days, documenting our dinners for the Internet is a universal pastime: sharing your food means that you don’t dig into your plate until you’ve taken a picture of it with your phone and posted it to your social networks. National Geographic gives us photos from around the world.

It is easy on the Internet to look at pictures of food.  Families , schools and communities often come together to explore, examine, and eat food.

 

There are these wonderful areas to explore and tailor to your programs

My favorite is the accidental science of cooking 

The program is from the Exploratorium in San Francisco.
Discover how a pinch of curiosity can improve your cooking! Explore recipes, activities, and Webcasts that will enhance your understanding of the science behind food and cooking.

 

At the Department of Educations Game Expo I found Chef KOOCHOOLOO

 

After School Programs

Chef Koochooloo’s after school program blends humanity’s oldest means of socialization—cooking and eating together—with its most modern lessons. Their master chefs lead classes leveraging  iPad applications, framed around recipes from a specific country or culture. As they prepare food together, kids learn about cooking-related math and science skills, and social-responsibility. Additionally, we emphasize healthy cooking techniques. Most after school sessions are one hour long, unless the school requests a two hour program. Their teachers have been trained in food safety and culinary arts. Each classroom experience includes a food science experiment, and a fun unique geography lesson.

Their mission is to excite kids by discovering the world through healthy, collaborative cooking classes, enriched with STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics learning). Their vision, to improve the health, happiness and education of children worldwide, through dynamic curriculum and engaging gamified technology.

There is an APP for that. Chef KooChooloo !!

 

  Go Graphic, Story Map

A fun thing to do is to have students map how a food got to America, building a story map from ESRI. Here is where to start.

MAKE A STORY MAP

 

adult book business cactus

Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

 

                                                            USING ESRI TOOLS

Start telling stories here. https://storymaps.arcgis.com/en/my-stories/

Some outcomes that I had were unexpected. Families helped my class to build a classroom garden. There were grants that we found , one parent turned over the earth and started us growing. I had quick learning to do.pexels-photo-704818.jpeg

 

Another small miracle is that we began to grow herbs. A parent brought us plants which we put in the school window. Francesco De Baggio, shared with the class how to raise herbs in the classroom windows.

That was a big hit. I had never used fresh herbs. Not being Italian, I did not know that much about pasta either. It was a fun learning journey.

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You need a grant?https://www.nationalgeographic.org/grants/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Game On… Learning with Serious Games

I am excited !
I am taking students to the Game Expo at the Kennedy Center. You may want to read this blog because their are links for some serious games and for the online part of the program that was / and will be aired.
https://blog.ed.gov/…/time-play-learn-2019-ed-games-expo-k…/

 

Game-based learning is gaining popularity in education as more young people and adults learn from games both in and out of the classroom. Well-designed games motivate students to actively engage in content that relates to coursework and master challenging tasks designed to sharpen critical thinking, problem solving, employment and life skills.

Every year, the ED Games Expo promotes game-based learning though the display of exciting educational games and technology.

 

As a teacher, when I initially used games in education , I got push back . My students were having fun in education. That was back in the days of MECC.

 

Eventually , I was on the board of MECC and other game based learning initiatives . I think pioneering games was a little difficult. ( It was FUN!) I learned that the students who were best in remembering information, might not be the ones who could best play a game. I was able to infuse confidence in students with their games based performances. I was able to personalize their learning by letting them explore using authentic games based learning. I had to learn the games too. Worked for me. We had something to talk about.

The ED Games Expo took place on January 8 from 4-8PM at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. The Expo was free and open to the public.

Expo attendees were able to  demo 125 educational learning games while meeting the developers. The games and technologies were for students of all ages in education and special education and cover topics including STEM, reading, social studies and social development. Many incorporated emerging technologies, such as virtual reality, 3D printing, engaging narrative adventures and puzzles.

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Here are some games for your involvement and examination.

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Physics Playground
https://youtu.be/1TolHLe_uRg

Reading
https://youtu.be/3tvquxy9PeU

Social Studies
https://youtu.be/v9XqLo4hCEU

Zoo U
https://youtu.be/Vfyax3F3_ck

Hololabs Champion Trailer
https://youtu.be/OaIUD-6hSGA

Parametric DESCARTES PhaseII Proposal
https://youtu.be/DC1iTxzx40o

MidSchool Math
https://www.midschoolmath.com/empires-video

Alpha Bear Trainers #2
https://youtu.be/xtqd9AvUrmU

internet-of-things

This year the Expo hosted activities to showcase the role of STEM and the arts in the development of learning games. On January 7 from 10AM-2PM, eight learning game developers provided TED-style talks to Washington, DC-area students titled “How The Game Was Made.”

The talks will be live simulcast and available as recordings on the Kennedy Center website.

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The talks illustrated the many roles that it takes to develop games, including the concept creator, engineer, coder, web designer, graphics artist, script writer, musician, teacher, education researcher, learning scientist, business expert and more. The talks were intended to inform and inspire students in their own education and future career aspirations, from STEM to literature to the arts to thinking like an entrepreneur.

The Learning Game Awards, a special competition launched this year, will showcase the original “Art,” “Musical Scores” and “Video Demonstrations” in the Expo’s learning games. Be sure to check out the entries and vote for your favorites.

https://edgamesexpo2019.weebly.com/

Many of the games and technologies at the Expo were developed with funding from more than 25 government programs, including ED’s Small Business Innovation Research program, the Institute of Education Sciences, the Office of Special Education Programs, the Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education and the Office of Innovation and Improvement.

You can link on Facebook to learn more.
https://www.facebook.com/ED.gov/

BLOG.ED.GOV
Game-based learning is gaining popularity in education as more young people and adults learn from games both in and out of the classroom. Every year, the ED Games Expo promotes game-based learning though the display of exciting educational games and technology.
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photo of person typing on computer keyboard

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Children Being Mistreated and Incarcerated!It is still happening!

CagesWeb

Often, we are being bombarded by pictures of animals in cages and asked to contribute to their welfare.  My heart hurts because of them, but I have tremendous angst about the mistreatment of children.

There is an unspeakable , horrible cruelty that is happening. I don’t use politics to tell you about it. If you have a child if you love a child, you will understand. If you remember your own childhood , it will make you think.

In the past, we know that there have been 2 deaths. The director of Homeland Security says in an article that the open borders are the cause.

As human rights groups, Democratic lawmakers, and the United Nations demanded an independent probe into the deaths of two Guatemalan children in U.S. Border Patrol custody, President Donald Trump’s Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen sparked outrage on Wednesday by declaring that “open borders” advocates and the kids’ “own parents” must bear the blame.

As a child when I read about the Holocaust, I could not believe that no one did anything. As an adult now I read about these children and I wonder why we are doing nothing.

Well, nothing enough  to stop it.

There are powerful people in Washington.They could change this.
Powerful people have children. They understand, or do they?

The First Lady seemed to be interested. After all, she is a mother. She is an immigrant. Her perspective is hard to tell. Nor do I understand the message on the jacket that she wore to a detention center.

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We are mystified by her actions, but she did visit.

What is going on with migrant children is variable and we don’t know all of the stories.
littlegirlpassport1

Here is a new story, a new twist.

It is more than frightening.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection detained a 9-year-old U.S. citizen for more than 30 hours this week, then refused to explain why it took so long to verify her identity.

Thelma Galaxia and her children, 9-year-old Julia Isabel Amparo Medina and 14-year-old Oscar Amparo Medina, live in Tijuana, Mexico. Julia and Oscar are U.S. citizens, though, and they attend school in San Diego. One of Galaxia’s friends drove Julia, Oscar, and her own children to the border so they could get to school on Monday, but decided it would be quicker for them to cross the border on foot due to traffic.

That’s where Julia ran into trouble. While she has a passport card, the picture on it was taken when she was younger. Customs agents believed she was impersonating her cousin, Galaxia tells KNSD. The agents also accused Oscar of smuggling, the children say.

Here is the article from Time Magazine
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The care and treatment of children? What is going on?

You remember the old stories written about here.

Reporters and Democratic lawmakers have been allowed inside a detention center that lies at the heart of a growing storm over a new US policy separating migrant children from their parents.

Authorities did not allow photos or videos to be taken inside the center, but US Customs and Border Protection later released several images.

Nearly 60 miles away, in the town of Brownsville, some 1,500 boys are being housed inside a building that was once a Walmart superstore. The boys, aged 10 to 17, were all caught illegally crossing the border. It is America’s largest facility for such minors, and numbers have increased in the past month by several hundred.

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There are supposed to be tender aged shelters.

https://apnews.com/dc0c9a5134d14862ba7c7ad9a811160e/gallery/media:f93054354a7f40ea91f54089bc18fd42

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Lawyers and medical providers who have visited the Rio Grande Valley shelters described play rooms of crying preschool-age children in crisis. The government also plans to open a fourth shelter to house hundreds of young migrant children in Houston.

The stories seem to have disappeared from the news until two children died.

Two children have died in government custody in recent weeks after crossing the border into the U.S., prompting renewed scrutiny of the Trump administration’s treatment of immigrants.

Jakelin Caal, 7, died earlier this month from dehydration and shock after being detained with her father after they crossed the border illegally. Attorneys for her family said she did not receive water for hours, but had been in good health earlier in her journey.

Felipe Gomez Alonzo, 8, died last week after being hospitalized in New Mexico with flu-like symptoms, high fever and vomiting. He had been detained with his father after crossing into the U.S. without documentation. The Article from the Hill

McAleenan also said on ABC that a “multi-faceted” approach is needed to address broader immigration issues.

“We need a sober-minded, nonpartisan look at our immigration laws to really confront and grapple with the fact that children and families are coming into this cycle, that’s first and foremost,” he continued.

“We also need to invest in Central America. The State Department’s announcement of an unprecedented increase in aid, I think, is a tremendous step forwards.”

 

Former First Lady Laura Bush has compared it to the internment camps used for Japanese-Americans during World War Two. A Democratic congressman who visited the site said it was “nothing short of a prison”.

The Texas facility is known as Ursula, though immigrants are reportedly calling it La Perrera – dog kennel in Spanish – in reference to the cages used to hold children and adults who have ended up there after crossing the border from Mexico illegally.

“One cage had 20 children inside. Scattered about are bottles of water, bags of chips [crisps] and large foil sheets intended to serve as blankets,” the Associated Press reports.

Here is the whole article from the Associated Press and here is a video that talks about us , America as a land of opportunity.

Lieu Refuses Order Not to Play Audio of Child Detainees

Listen to it.

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I the Spy..in the Footsteps of Harriet the Spy, Having Fun with Math!!

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I recently have been involved with a new kind of math. It is more Dick Tracy math, more Spy math than I have ever used in a classroom.Actually I have only used this in a Computer Camp. I would love to teach it in a classroom. Maybe it should be called Eye the Spy. It is so much fun once you get the hang of it.

cryp·tog·ra·phy
[krip-tog-ruh-fee]
NOUN
1.
the science or study of the techniques of secret writing, especially code and cipher systems, methods, and the like.
2.
the procedures, processes, methods, etc., of making and using secret writing, as codes or ciphers.
3.
anything written in a secret code, cipher, or the like.
Source: Dictionary.com

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The first time I taught this to students I entered their learning space through Harriet the Spy.  It happened to be tomato time, and I was going to teach in a group that I thought would not want to enter cryptography for its name sake. Harriet the Spy is a book and a video about a little girl who had a diary and who kept notes on everyone in her class. And then.. and then she lost the diary.

            People could read what she said about them!

Written by Louise Fitzhugh and published in 1964, HARRIET is set in New York City and describes the adventures and personal growth of an eleven year old girl. Harriet lives on the Upper East Side, the only child of an affluent couple; they have a cook, they send Harriet to a private school, and they employ a nanny of sorts in the form of Miss Golly, an acerbic woman of sharp intelligence who is given to unexpected quotes.

The book is funny and there is even a YouTube Video you could use but I did not have to introduce Harriet the Spy. The kids were intrigued by the notes that were about them written in code. They wanted to see what was said about them.

The CryptoClub Cipher Handbook is the centerpiece of the CryptoClub curriculum. It is a student reference and workbook that is recommended for use in informal learning environments such as afterschool and enrichment programs. It introduces ciphers in a way that encourages problem solving and reasoning and provides engaging messages to encrypt, decrypt and crack.

Harriet is a self-regimented child who likes the stability of repetition. Her room must be precisely so. She always takes tomato sandwiches to school for lunch. She always has cake and milk when she returns from school in the afternoon. She then goes out to spy on a number of people—a rich woman, an Italian family, a cat-crazy man, and a married couple who consider themselves perfect. Harriet writes about them in her notebook … but she also writes about her classmates and her best friends, and the brutal honesty of her thoughts causes five shades of hell when her notebook falls into their hands.

When the world changes around her in unexpected ways, Harriet finds herself unable to cope. In order to bring herself back into focus, she must learn to take responsibility for her actions, to show a little tact, and to be emotionally as well as factually honest. The resulting story is remarkable. Times have changed quite a bit, and eleven year olds seem to be knowledgeable beyond their years, but Harriet is still a winner. She’s rambunctious, laugh-out-loud funny, and yes, inspirational.

So here I am in Southwest Washington DC, prepared to teach Cryptography. I had my tomatoes, my passports , my spy glasses and the lessons from a project that I have been funded to teach. Here is my guide.

Crypto Club Leader’s Manual.

Guess what? They kind of listened to the bit about Harriet the Spy, but I forgot. I am teaching in FBI, CIA, country. I am in Washington DC. I am in the city that the spy museum is a big draw. NSA is a field trip away. The kids were eager to encrypt or learn about it. To be fair we  had written up a single paragraph about each of the students in the class and they had to figure it out.The kids went straight for the puzzle of finding out what was said about them. I did not really need the “Spy Stuff{ I guess it was to make me feel comfortable.

I know I can follow up with trips to the Spy Museum, and to the NSA.

There are ways to link students with jobs of the future with NSA. You do not have to live in Washington DC.

NSA Partners with Schools

What does NSA do with schools?

To meet future national security challenges, NSA partners with schools to develop the talent and tools we need by:

  • funding skill development programs like summer camps
  • promoting development of curricula for growing career fields such as cybersecurity
  • sponsoring skills and research paper competitions
  • hosting student interns and co-ops
  • awarding research grants and funding research labs and projects

These partnerships help cultivate the next generation of experts in science, technology, engineering, math, language and analysis. They broaden the pool of skilled cybersecurity professionals who can protect our nation from cyberattacks. Our academic partnerships foster interest in critical need foreign languages. They also advance science through research and innovation that benefits the country even beyond NSA’s need to apply emerging technologies to our mission.

What’s available for me?

We have partnership opportunities at both the college/university level and the kindergarten-12 level. If you are a student, an educator or an academic researcher, check out what we have to offer below.


Date Posted: July 2, 2018 | Last Modified: September 26, 2018

We do have a Spy Museum in our city.

Here is the site   

The Internet of Things,Part 2

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I have spent time at NIST studying the Internet of Things since my last post on it. There are some new things to share including this video from the National Institute of Standards. NIST.

What is the Internet of Things (IoT) and how can we secure it?

Video https://cdnapisec.kaltura.com/index.php/extwidget/preview/partner_id/684682

So you may think well what has that got to do with me? I don’t care about IoT is what a lot of people say initially until they learn more.

Oh Yawn…some would still say!

How about this headline?

A company that sells “smart” teddy bears leaked 800,000 user account credentials—and then hackers locked it and held it for ransom.

https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/pgwean/internet-of-things-teddy-bear-leaked-2-million-parent-and-kids-message-recordings

Internet of Things Examples

Mostly people care about personal uses:

These are a few of the examples on the link

Remember to take your meds

Monitor an aging family member

Check on the Baby

Stay Out of the Doctor’s Office

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YOUR CITY

Engage with the data exhaust produced from your city and neighborhood

Light streets more effectively

Monitoring flooding

There are many  examples to show how IoT can affect you personally.

internet-of-things

 

In the next century, planet earth will don an electronic skin.
It will use the Internet as a scaffold to support and transmit its sensations.” – Neil Gross 1999

 

IoT solutions can be built for large amount of application areas. In manufacturing industry sector even a new concept has been created to describe the new generation IoT enhanced manufacturing: Industry 4.0. IoT can essentially improve manufacturing process monitoring, analyzing, optimizing and managing. In healthcare sector wristbands connected with smartphones can tell heartbeat rate, steps taken and sleep pattern to encourage healthier behavior. Energy consumption of buildings can be controlled intelligent ways. There are even developed fridges which can send the content information to the user’s mobile phone.

In logistics IoT is widely in use and will spread to new logistics application areas in the future. Traffic infrastructure has lots of data collecting points. This data can be used to help traffic control centers and infrastructure users to have real-time information on congestions, weather conditions, accidents etc. Vehicles’ and vessels’ movements can be monitored by location technologies and forwarded as estimated time of arrivals for the waiting customers. Load space and cargo temperatures can be remote monitored and if exceptions arise, the drivers or other users will be notified.

One of the most advanced new logistics IoT solutions is for waste collect transportation. The garbage bins have sensors which measure the free capacities of the bins. The system calculates the predicted time when the bin should be emptied. This information is sent to the route optimization program which produces the schedules and routes for the garbage truck drives.

Maintenance needs and driving of vehicles, forklifts and cranes can be monitored by IoT. Measuring can produce information on economical driving, safety, failures, performance etc. Based on this information the amount and models of machines or vehicles can be optimized, safer driving can be enhanced, work tasks can be optimized and many other improvements can be reached. Also emissions reducing have a big role and there is a need to collect reporting for greener logistics. Congestions increase harmful emissions and waste time – the data collected from navigators can dynamically produce alternative route options for users to select less crowded roads.

There have been large tests to monitor sea containers using boxes which can send for example location, temperature, humidity, movement shocks and door opening data to the shipment controller. This data helps with operation scheduling and risk management. There have been also pilot application where food packages have had sensors to monitor possible contamination risks. The sensor communicates with the back-end system using radio waves (rfid tag) and RFID technology is one the key enabling technologies in logistics IoT solutions.

Sensor systems can produce data several times per second, thus cumulating data amounts can become very large. Sometimes it’s reasonable to use big data –methods to store, handle and analyze data. Also the role of artificial intelligence technologies can help to find relevant information from IoT data. For example heart health can be evaluated using ECG curve analysis and instead of doctor the interpretation of the curve is done by intelligent algorithms. IoT applications can be taken into use as cloud solutions where the users see reporting results using web or mobile applications. Different kind of technical IoT platforms, devices and ecosystems have also developed rapidly and building applications is now faster and easier than in the past. On the other hand security risks have become real challenges because many IoT solutions were originally thought to be used in closed network and not in open Internet. Source;

http://www.logistiikanmaailma.fi/en/logistics/digitalization/internet-of-things-iot/

Oh Boring…some would still say!

Look at Education for the Future. We need to be aware of the excellence of ideas but also help oarrents and caregivers monitor and manage the relationship that their families have with media.

IOT is already here.iho

NCTA  

Click the link above!!

 

 

 

 

Indigenous People’s Curriculum Day and Teach-In

 

 

 

 

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It is almost the month and day when people celebrate Columbus Day. The D.C. Area Educators for Social Justice a Project of Teaching for Change ,offered a workshop that has resources that you can use.

We engaged with curriculum and strategies for teaching students about Indigenous People’s history and life today.

You can explore the collections and learn about the features of the  museum here.

 I chose to attend this topic, first.

Trail of Tears

                                    What Does it mean to Remove a People?

We learned about the US Government’s American Indian removal policies of the 19th century and their lasting  effects on Native nations. We used Native Knowledge 360 in a guided lesson using documents. map, and multimedia resources.

The case study is here.

                  Potawatomi Nation Case Study

How did members of the Potawatomi Nation, who originally lived in Michigan, end up living in Oklahoma? Sources allow you to further investigate this story of American Indian removal. There is an online  treaty, map, document , quotes, and an object to study and think about this case. You  don’t have to use technology to explore this but it is easier. You can request that the paper copies be mailed to you.

We used both paper and the online resources so the attending teachers could explore and examine both ways of teaching the lesson.

Image may contain: 1 person

The real history of the Americas has been lost by trivialization and by being omitted from the textbooks.

We have new tools to teach with and ways to access information. We have groups who want to tell the real story of the Indigenous . Who are the Indigenous ? Wikipedia says”Indigenous peoples, also known as first peoples, aboriginal peoples or native peoples, are ethnic groups who are the original inhabitants of a given region, in contrast to groups that have settled, occupied or colonized the area more recently. Groups are usually described as indigenous when they maintain traditions or other aspects of an early culture that is associated with a given region. Not all indigenous people share this characteristic, usually having adopted substantial elements of a colonising culture, such as dress, religion or language. Indigenous peoples may be settled in a given region (sedentary) or exhibit a nomadic lifestyle across a large territory, but they are generally historically associated with a specific territory on which they depend. Indigenous societies are found in every inhabited climate  zone and continent  of the world.[1][2]

 

https://mashable.com/article/indigenous-map-america/?utm_cid=mash-com-fb-main-link#V0V5kYZOYaqG

To teach about the Indigenous people of the Americas, we go to the National Museum of the American Indian. Or we learn with the people, visiting and listening to their stories.

To learn from the Smithsonian you can just log into the site. There are many resources.

                                     CARETAKERS OF THE EARTH

My second workshop of the eight offered was “Caretakers of the Earth: Continuin the Legacy in Elementary Classrooms.

We created a colorful collage book showing the life of the American Shad fish and the importance of shad to inland waterways and to local Native peoples such as the Pamunkey and Mattaponi. This activity provided the opportunity for showing students how we can each take action to improve our environment

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The newest one is the 360 site using it as a tool. Native Knowledge http://nmai.si.edu/nk360/, Here are new perspectives on Native Americans. From the site,

                        About Native Knowledge 360°

Native Knowledge 360° (NK360°) provides educators and students with new perspectives on Native American history and cultures. Most Americans have only been exposed to part of the story, as told from a single perspective through the lenses of popular media and textbooks. NK360° provides educational materials and teacher training that incorporate Native narratives, more comprehensive histories, and accurate information to enlighten and inform teaching and learning about Native America. NK360° challenges common assumptions about Native people—their cultures, their roles in United States and world history, and their contributions to the arts, sciences, and literature. NK360° offers a view that includes not only the past but also the richness and vibrancy of Native peoples and cultures today.

 

Lessons & Resources are here. 

Explore featured educational resources, below, or search all educational resources using the search tool. Many of these resources are also available in print. Use the teaching materials order formto order print versions.

The museum and the DC Area Educators for Social Justice sponsored this event.

Plains Nations' pipes and pipe bags

The museum offers professional development for educators.
history, cultures, and contemporary lives. It is a powerful tool.

                               The Campaign to Abolish Columbus Day

              https://www.zinnedproject.org/campaigns/abolish-columbus-day

Rethinking Columbus: The Next 500 Years (Teaching Guide) | Zinn Education Project: Teaching People's History

It is time to stop celebrating the crimes of Columbus and stand in solidarity with the Indigenous people who demand an end to Columbus Day. Instead of glorifying a person who enslaved and murdered people, destroyed cultures, and terrorized those who challenged his rule, we seek to honor these communities demanding sovereignty, recognition, and rights. We encourage schools to petition their administration and for communities to introduce legislation to rename Columbus Day to Indigenous Peoples Day. Below we provide information and resources to join the campaign to Abolish Columbus Day.

Resources here Abolish Columbus Day Packetimg_0797

Toward Responsiility: Social Studies Education that Respects and Affirms Indigenous Peoples and Nations. HERE  A Position Statement of National Council for the Social Studies
Approved March 2018

 Commit to responsible representations. The rampant misrepresentation of Indigenous peoples in the media and popular culture contributes to continued settler colonization and racism toward Indigenous Peoples . Social studies education specifically needs to address how the presence of stereotypes in school settings  ( e.g.Native mascots), teaching materials ( e.g. Hollywood movies) and the wearing of costumes during the school  day ( e.g. Halloween parties, Thanksgiving lessons)reinforce overgeneralization and false understandings of Indigenous peoples. Such misrepresentations harm Indigenous peoples. Such misrepresentations harm Indigenous students,  negatively impacting their self-esteem, while at the same time giving non-Indigenous students a “psychological boost” and false sense of superiority. Responsible representation first requires that educators that educators counter racist stereotypes , misrepresentations and caricatures of Indigenous lief. ( e.g. that all Indigenous people live in tipis or go to pow wows, that Native communities are “stage/uncivilized” or “lazy). Following this, educators must also emphasize the diversity of of Indigenous peoples and nations, utilize diverse representations of Indigenous life ( e.g. Indigenous leaders, athletes, authors, artists) , use specific names of Indigenous People and Nations ( e.g. Indigenous leaders, Navajo or Dine: Iroquis or Haudenosaunee Confederace : Seminole Nation of Oklahoma, Nottawaseppi Huron Band of the Potawatomi) and focus on the contemporary people and issues.

Teach Current events and movements. The growing movement by the Standing Rock Sioux Nation and hundreds of other Indigenous Nations to protect their homelands and resources from destruction presents teachers an opportunity to introduce students to lessons based on the environment, government, history, economic, cultural studies and civics.

 

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