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Changemakers

I have to brag a bit on the students and staff at Anastasis.  Last week, we turned school into a mock sweatshop where students learned what it would be like to be child laborers.  The adults were mean.  No bathroom breaks, no drinks, no smiles.  It was a rough day for all of us.  The kids spent the half day of school learning about child labor and then breaking bricks in our sweat shop.  The transformation in their understanding of what 200 million children around the world endure daily was astonishing.  They were able to put into words how helpless they felt. How tired, hungry, sad, angry, frustrated they were.  How mad they were when the result of their hard labor wasn’t enough to feed their family. Lessons we learned: As a teacher it is HARD to be that “cruel” to your students.  It was hard not to give them a smile of reassurance, a kind word or a pat on the back.  It was hard to be that uncaring. We all learned that many of the brands we purchase every day employ child labor. We learned that poverty is a major contributing factor to child labor. We learned that some of these kids are considered lower than the livestock…they are expendable. We learned that our students are compassionate and care about one another. We learned that we have to be the change we want to see in the world. As a result of the day, @leadingwlove’s class decided to start a foundation.  They are calling it the LSGW foundation and it is worth checking out!  I am SO proud of these students for going above and beyond just learning and into action.  They aren’t using age as an excuse and they aren’t willing to wait for someone else to fix the problem.  These are 11 and 12 year old students.  Changemakers. I wrote more about the details of the day here:  From Out of the Dust, Dreams

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Eyes on the Earth 3D

Posted by admin | Posted in Analyze, Evaluate, Geography, Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Science, Secondary Elementary, Understand (describe, explain), Websites | Posted on 06-05-2011

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What it is: I’m still on my NASA/space kick, this time with Eyes on the Earth 3D from NASA.  This is a neat website that lets students track missions as they are happening with the satellites that are collecting information about the Earth from space.  Students can learn about the earth by choosing a mission to follow, zoom in and out of the globe, view satellite paths, view city and location labels on the map, replace the sun with an “artificial light” and see the view from Earth’s surface.  As students click on the satellite, they will be able to view and discover more information about the mission.  Students can choose to view the 3D Earth in real-time or speed up/slow down the Earth with a time control.  Students can choose to learn more at any time by viewing the official mission home page linked at the bottom of each page.

How to integrate Eyes on the Earth 3D into the classroom: This is a way for students to assume the role of NASA scientist to learn more about the Earth and collect data.  Students can view real data about sea levels, the Arctic sea ice minimum, carbon dioxide readings, global temperature and the ozone hole.  Students can study each mission to gain a better understanding of  what NASA scientists do and study.  If you teach younger students, the 3D globe is a great way to help students understand continents, oceans and earth rotation.

One of the features that I enjoy about Eyes on the Earth 3D is the ability to view the Earth from the satellite view or the satellite from the Earth view.  This will help young students better visualize and understand how satellites work and orbit the Earth.

If your students are studying satellites or NASA missions, assign each student a different mission to study in-depth.  Students can present what they have learned to the class as an oral presentation using the Eyes on the Earth 3D site as a visual.

Tips: Missions can be viewed by what their focus is: atmosphere, oceans or land.  If you are studying any of these, the missions would be a nice tie in.  Students can read or hear about all of this data but I think it is just as important to understand where it all came from and how it was collected.

Please leave a comment and share how you are using  Eyes on the Earth 3D in your classroom!

 

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