Climate Change

12 Dec

This video has been going around social media. It’s a short, but powerful video about climate change and the effects of it.

 

Paul Salopek – Trekking across the ‘unknown’ Afghanistan, untouched by war (PBS Story)

7 Dec

Paul Salopek is one of the few people to have crossed a roadless, mountainous part of Afghanistan by foot. The journalist had previously reported there during the war. But as part of his Out of Eden walk around the world, he’s encountered a completely different Afghanistan than the one he had come to know. Hari Sreenivasan from PBS NewsHour talks with Salopek about the latest leg of his journey and what’s next. Click HERE to read the story. 

Creation of Written Language

5 Dec
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Cuneiform tablet from Mesopotamia

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Tokens from Mesopotamia

In class this week, you will learn about the development of writing in Sumer, a society in ancient Mesopotamia (pages 101 – 103 in your textbook). Here is a video playlist that supports the reading and the work we will do to answer our supporting question (#2): How did the development of agriculture in Mesopotamia lead to the development of writing?

December Birthdays

5 Dec

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Happy birthday to the following students celebrating a birthday this month: Yash (2), Kavya and Rajiv (6), Marc (16), Thibault (17), Caio (20), and Seunghyun (24). Let me know if we forgot anyone or made an error. Have a GREAT day!

 

From Hunters-Gatherers to Early Farmers

29 Nov

This playlist features videos that show the gradual change from migration to our earliest villages and the development of agriculture. Our current question that we are focusing on is: Was the development of agriculture good for humans? Explain. I hope you find these videos helpful. If you find other helpful resources, please share them with me, and I will add them to our class site.

Our Greatest Innovations

27 Nov

What were the best inventions or innovations in history? I saw this article on History.com: 11 Innovations That Changed History. I also found this article from The Atlantic magazine, The 50 Greatest Breakthroughs since the Wheel.  Finally, here is one other article from International Business Times: Top Ten Greatest Inventions That Changed The World. What do you think is the greatest innovation or invention in history?

 

Where is Paul?

23 Nov

Have a nice long weekend and see you on Monday (2G Day). All students should have have written their reflection for their Trimester 1 summative assessment (Why do people migrate?). That should be on your e-portfolio. If you have not finished it, please do it this weekend. Otherwise, there is not homework. I am sharing a few photos of Paul Salopek from his journey. He is currently Pakistan. 

Neighborhood Maps

21 Nov

Here are a few of the many great maps that were created for our Out of Eden Learn Project. We hope you slowed down and explored your neighborhood and noticed new things about where you live. As we prepare to begin our unit on settlement, we hope this was a good activity to help you think about where you live. The purpose of this activity was for you to think about your own relationship to a place. It is also a chance for you to share more about yourself! We are also happy to have our guest speakers, Balajee and Karthik, come to our class to talk about the history of Chennai and how it was settled. 

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Stories of Migration: Escape from Raqqa

15 Nov

The story of Ahmed and his family, who were caught up in the fight against Islamic State militants in Syria. We have learned about why people migrate or leave their home. This is a very powerful video from the BBC that a friend shared with me. Ahmed is just one of nearly 250,000 people who fled Raqqa during the military offensive to drive out the Islamic State group from the city.

Produced by Nader Ibrahim, BBC Arabic and Coda Studio; Animation by Alessandra Cugno; Illustrations by Sofiya Voznaya

News Brief: Pollution in India

13 Nov

The pollution problems in New Delhi have been featured in the news a lot in the recent weeks. Thick smog blanketed areas of northern India, exceeding 10 times the recommended safe limit. Low visibility from the pollution has been blamed for an 18-car-pileup about 30 miles from New Delhi. Breathing the air has been likened to smoking 50 cigarettes in one day. Cold temperatures and slow winds have been blamed for the dangerous rise in pollution. – National Geographic

 

Sharing our Learning – Migration

9 Nov

Students in Social Studies finished their presentations on why people migrate. They shared their learning in small groups and received specific feedback from classmates on what they did well and an area they could improve. We also began Footstep #2 for Out of Eden Learn (Creating a Neighborhood Map). Students are exploring their neighborhoods, slowing down and looking for things they might not have noticed before. Be like Paul and practice slow journalism! The directions and rubric have been shared via email and has been posted on PowerSchool. 

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Student feedback on maps made last year. Photo by Rob Martin

 

November Birthdays

2 Nov

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Happy birthday to the following students celebrating a birthday this month: Catherine and Hanae (3), Eunseong (6), Clara (9), Ema (15), Ellie (16), Adesh and Emily (25), Joao Pedro and Jaehui (27). If I forgot anyone, let me know. Have a FANTASTIC day!

India Week and Guest Speaker

29 Oct
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Photo by Rob Martin

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Photo by Rob Martin

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Photo by Rob Martin

We celebrated India Week at AISC this week. Parents came to advisory to talk about Rangoli or Kolam designs and their importance. We also finished our research to answer our compelling question (Why do people migrate?). In class this next week, students will be creating a Google Presentation or poster to show their understanding of a group of a people in history and why they migrated. Mr. Phan gave a presentation to a few classes and told his story about his escape from Vietnam after the war. If you were not able to ask him a question, feel free to ask him one when you see him at school.

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Photo by Rob Martin

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Photo by Rob Martin

Walking the Wild Rim of War (Out of Eden Walk

24 Oct

Paul’s most recent blog posts, Walking the Wild Rim of War and Heart Like a Wheel feature his journey in Afghanistan. His photos and videos are amazing and show a part of the world we often associate with war. Here is a quote that I found very interesting when he described the process of turning wheat into flour to make bread:

“Isolated by 20,000-foot mountains and years of civil war, and rich in tumbling glacial creeks, the people of this remote territory of Badakhshan Province depend on the flexed green muscle of running water to survive—to eat.”

Check out the videos. Not many people are living this way in anymore. It’s a land far removed from the comforts and access to technology we have in our lives. 

Buckshot gravel: facing the bodi Wakhan winds, in ‪#Tajikistan #Pamirs

A post shared by Out of Eden Walk (@outofedenwalk) on

Why People Move: The Rohingya Crisis

23 Oct

After a long break (Week Without Walls and our fall break) we are returning to our compelling question: Why do people migrate or move? During last week’s vacation, I watched the continuing coverage of the Rohingya crisis in Myanmar. Here is a case of a group of people or ethnic group who are moving, in order to survive. 

Who are the Rohingya? The Rohingya are often described as “the world’s most persecuted minority” according to this article on Al-Jazeera. They are an ethnic group, the majority of whom are Muslim, who have lived for centuries in the majority Buddhist Myanmar (Burma). Currently, there are about 1.1 million Rohingya who live in the Southeast Asian country. Due to ongoing violence and persecution, hundreds of thousands of Rohingya have fled to neighboring countries either by land or boat over the course of many decades. Look at this visual from Al-Jazeera and watch the videos to learn more about this group. 

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Other related or recent news stories:

There’s only one conclusion on the Rohingya in Myanmar: It’s genocide (CNN)

World Book Online -> Log-in -> Student -> Search: Rohingya (translate to your native-language, if necessary). We will make hard copies. 

In class this week, we will finish our group work where we are collecting information on historical events or periods where people migrated or moved for various reasons (ancient humans, African-Americans during the Great Migration, Vietnamese after the war, and Syrians who have fled their country). 

We will also have a guest speaker this week to talk about his story of migration and movement – Mr. Phan!

Week Without Walls (Oct. 9 – 13)

16 Oct
Photos by Rob Martin

Week Without Walls in Panchgani was great! Here are a few photos I took during the trip. Your teachers, along with the Utsaah staff, will be creating a Google folder to add all of our photos. We got very lucky with the weather and it did not rain as much as we thought it might. I enjoyed the hike and the village visit, in particular. The opportunity to interview people in the small village about their lifestyle, local economy, health care, infrastructure, and educational opportunities was a great learning experience. You will find connections between this activity and what we will do for one of the footstep projects for Out of Eden Learn. 

Enjoy your fall vacation, whether you are traveling or staying in Chennai. See you in class on Monday, October 23 (2G day).

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Research and Collaboration – Migration and Out of Eden Walk

6 Oct
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The “UN Group”  – South Korea, Germany, Thailand, France, and Japan

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Looks like an Apple Store with a better view of the palm trees!

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A friendly visitor in class.

In class we are answering the compelling question: Why do people move or migrate? We are seeking connections to Paul Salopek’s Out of Eden Walk as we build some background knowledge on his motivation for his 9-10 year walk that will follow the path of human migration. In class students are conducting research that focuses on migration during four different time periods: ancient history, the “Great Migration” (African-Americans in the U.S.A.), Vietnam and the boat people, and Syrian refugees. We want to learn about where they migrated to, why they migrated, and what challenges they faced. 

Here are two current photos from Paul’s walk in Tajikistan. Here is a current story from Paul’s walk, The Ruby Sellers of Vrang. All students should be finished with posting footstep #1, Setting Off, for Out of Eden Learn. You should also be engaging in conversations with other students from other schools in our walking party. We will do Footstep #2 after the vacation. 

October Birthdays

3 Oct

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Happy birthday to the following students celebrating a birthday this month. Let me know if I made any errors or forgot someone. Have a great day: Adam (6), Yumin and Gwenole (8), Ahsir (12), Chanak (14), Taiyo (18), Fuuka (27), Vel (28), William (29), Shinnosuke (30). 

Why do people move?

27 Sep

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Why do people move? 

Watch the videos below and answer this question? Some other resources you could use:

 

Great Quotes

26 Sep

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You are quickly learning that Social Studies is not about memorizing facts and dates. You are learning many new routines to show your thinking as you make connections to what you know and the world around you.

Out of Eden Launch

20 Sep

Think about it/Discuss:

Everyone should do what Paul is doing. Agree or disagree? Explain.

Who Paul Salopek? What is Out of Eden Walk?

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Image Source: Out of Eden Walk

 

Spirit Week!

18 Sep

Spirit week

Show your school spirit this week! I will add some photos during the week. If you want to share any photos with me, email me. – Mr. Martin

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Sixth grade shows spirit! – Photo by Rob Martin

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Best PJs in 6th grade – Photo by Rob Martin

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Formal Day – Photo by Tommy

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Formal Day – Photo by Rob Martin

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Formal Day – Photo by Rob Martin

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Multiples Day – Photo by Rob Martin

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Multiples Day – Photo by Rob Martin

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One Color Day – Photo by Rob Martin

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One Color Day – Photo by Rob Martin

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UN Day of Peace – Photo by Rob Martin

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UN Day of Peace – Photo by Rob Martin

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UN Day of Peace – Photo by Tess Welbes

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UN Day of Peace – Photo by Rob Martin

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UN Day of Peace – Photo by Rob Martin

Snapshot Autobiographies + Out of Eden Learn

17 Sep

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Photos by Rob Martin

Here are a few photos of your work on your snapshot autobiography from class on Thursday and Friday. Most of you nearly finished in class. Finish them before class on Monday and Tuesday and be prepared to share them with your classmates. Review the expectations and rubric that has been emailed to you and also shared on PowerSchool. Out of Eden Learn begins next week! More details will be provided in class. 

"Sadness is but a wall between two gardens." —Kahlil Gibran

A post shared by Out of Eden Walk (@outofedenwalk) on

New pack donkey. Alai mountain crossing, #Kyrgyzstan. Photo credit: Sunny Lambert

A post shared by Out of Eden Walk (@outofedenwalk) on

Poll Question: What is your favorite phone? Claim, Evidence, Reasoning

13 Sep

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Advisory class almost didn’t start today because of a passionate debate between some students about their favorite phone. In light of the release of the new iPhone X, it sparked a debate among some students, so I thought this might be a nice opportunity (optional) to connect what we are doing in class to another topic. In the comment section, write a paragraph where you make a claim (ex. “The Samsung Galaxy smartphone is a better phone than a…”). Make sure you support your claim with evidence and reasoning (your explanation).

If you don’t own a phone, you could also make a claim about a different topic, such as: Why you think people your age should not have a phone. (ex. “Sixth grade students are too young to own their own phone because…”). Another one? “My parents should let me own a phone because…”

Although I now have an iPhone 6+, I owned a Nokia phone for nearly eight years. I loved it! When you post your comment, you need to add your first name only and your email address. Leave the box that says ‘website’ empty. All comments are moderated meaning I must approve them first before they are visible to everyone.

G6 WWW T-shirt Design Contest

12 Sep

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Here are some examples of some of the COOL designs we have received, so far, for our Week Without Walls T-shirt design contest. We look forward to seeing more examples. The designs are due on Friday. Please submit your design to your advisory teacher. The finalists will be selected and invited to meet with the man who makes the t-shirts – Wednesday, September 20th during lunch. Pizza provided!