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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. 

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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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

 

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

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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. 

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

 

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

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

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Out of Eden Learn is Coming Soon!

30 Aug

Support vehicle: cargo horse and rider, Alai range, #Kyrgyzstan.

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Seven levels of nourishment: village feast, #Kyrgyzstan.

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Asking Follow-Up Questions

12 May

As we prepare to do interviews for our next Out of Eden Learn footstep (Learning from Past Generations), we will talk more about the importance of asking follow up questions. Here are some helpful videos that tells you more about these questions.

OOEL Footstep #2 Projects

12 Apr

OOEL LJ2 #2 ShivOOEL LJ2 #2 LokeshOOEL LJ2 #2 GyuboOOEL LJ2 #2 GauthamOOEL LJ2 #2 FinnOOEL LJ2 #2 ChaeyoungBTSLoverGoldenFlashOOEL LJ 2 #2 SumanOOEL LJ@ #2 HakinOOEL LJ2 #2 Annie

Here is a roundup of some more of the diagrams from our last Out of Eden Learn project. I will be adding some more examples. I was very impressed with the diagrams and the connections you made between your life and the past. There are several I would like to save to share with future students I teach. If you are wondering when we will begin the next Out of Eden Learn projects, they will start again when we are done with our Comparing Places project. 

Featured in Out of Eden Learn (Instagram)

7 Apr

Out of Eden Learn (Instagram) featured Amy’s diagram from our recent footstep project (Making Connections Between Out Lives and the Past). Great job, Amy! I will add some more examples soon.

 

Google Hangout with Paul Salopek

3 Mar

Students –

National Geographic Education hosted a live event last night where teachers and students could ask Paul Salopek questions about his journey. He got quite a few new questions in this interview from Bishkek, where he is spending the winter months. Check it out!

A Perspective on Chennai

21 Feb

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Here is an excerpt from an interview that Riley (S.S.AllTheThings) did with Ms. Megha in 5th grade. This is a really interesting answer to her question – How has Chennai changed since you have been here?

If you feel you got an a really interesting answer to this questions for Out of Eden Footstep #4 (Learning Journey #1), let me know, and I will add it here. Good job, Riley.

 

Learning Journey 2 Begins!

17 Feb

Students –

We have been working hard on our new project, a country comparison project. We will take a short break for next class and begin Out of Eden Learn – Learning Journey 2. Listen to Paul’s special message to students:

Here are the instructions for the first footstep. These have been shared with you too, as a Google Document. 

You will have an opportunity to view many of the excellent photos on the Out of Eden Walk Instagram site and to choose one to do a See-Think-Wonder visible thinking routine. Here are two of his photos.

Goodbye to Aziz, Tolik, Haram, and Mouse—and #Uzbekistan. #Kyrgyzstan border.

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Crossing the Tien Shan mountains to the Fergana Valley, #Uzbekistan.

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OOEL – Footstep #4 – Listening to Neighbor’s Stories

22 Jan
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Image source: Clipartfest

This week we will be learning about the art of asking good questions during an interview. You will interview a local person who lives in Chennai and write a story or the highlights of the interview (Question and Answer format). We will brainstorm a list of possible subjects you can interview and what makes a good question. The directions and rubric are on Moodle in the Out of Eden section and folder for 2016 – 2017. There are also exemplars or good examples of interviews done last year. They can help give you an idea of what is expected. 

Paul on the Silk Road

8 Jan

In class we have been learning about the Silk Road. Here is a new article about Paul Salopek and his walk. You can also listen to the interview with him as well. Here is a script of the interview. In his article, he says this about the Silk Road and globalization, something we will discuss this week:

For the past year, Salopek has been following the ancient Silk Road trade routes that once connected China to Mediterranean. Merchants used to move precious cloths and spices. Now they move precious oil and gas. Globalization has made it possible to extract the region’s abundant natural resources, which has brought prosperity to a small but growing middle class in the region. However, that prosperity has also created resentment. Many locals are being left behind. 

“That’s happening in North America too, of course,” he tells Chattopadhyay (the interviewer). “That’s what’s driving some of these movements against globalization.”

Happy New Year & Welcome Back!

8 Jan

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Photo by Rob Martin

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Photo by Rob Martin

 

Greetings and Happy New Year! I hope you and your family had a wonderful vacation with family and friends and that you are ready for school tomorrow. Tomorrow is a 1A day. I had a nice vacation with family in New York State. Here are two photos I took in New York City, one of Rockefeller Center where they have a huge Christmas tree and ice skating rink and the other of the Empire State Building showing Christmas colors. 

I received this message from Out of Eden Learn the other day. Jinwon received a personal message on her photos from Paul Salopek. You can see her photos if you click on the link and read his comment. I have pasted it below too:

This is a reply from Paul Salopek:

Your text and photos are great examples of keen observation. The physical details, the noting of time and place, the background (a bit of recent history), all these elements are what journalists like me use to build a good story. It requires close attention. Keep at it. Carry a small notepad around with you to jot such things down—you can use them in later stories.

 

Google Q & A – Paul Salopek

16 Dec
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Image source: Photo by Kevin Crouch

I hope you enjoyed the Google Hangout with Paul Salopek today. I received many good questions via email and will save them for future ‘hangouts.’ If you want to see the places where our students asked questions, skip to 22:54 (EJ) and 41:44 (Amy). Here is an excerpt of what Paul said:

EJ: What is trade like on the New Silk Road? 

Paul: Cool! That’s a really good question. That’s a great question because when you mention the two words Silk Road together you have images of camels…and yet the Silk Roads continue today and that’s something I am writing about now. China has invested trillions of dollars in something called the “One Road, One Belt” project. It’s the most expensive infrastructure project in the history of the world, and it’s designed to tie Europe and Asia together with shipping routes, highways, and railroads throughout the Eurasian continent. From foot level today, it looks like Turkish trucks roaring past on a highway built by South Koreans. It looks like railroads built partly by Australian technology that are being plied by trains from Belarus. So what it is…is a miniature snapshot of globalization….”   

Google Hangout with Paul Salopek – Tomorrow!

15 Dec
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Image source: Screen from Google Maps

Students –  We have an exciting opportunity tomorrow at 10:30am in the CIC. Paul Salopek and Out of Eden Learn will be hosting a LIVE Google Hangout Question and Answer (Q & A) session for students and teachers. He is in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. Please comment here or send me a question you would like to ask. He has been walking the the ancient routes of the Silk Roads, so this is also a great opportunity to ask him questions about this topic. Your A block teacher will release you to go to the CIC. Here is a great CNN story about the Silk Roads today with interactive maps and stories about the countries along the present day ancient networks for the Silk Roads. Click HERE to see the stories. 

Samarkand fast food: plov, bread, rice soup. #Uzbekistan.

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"Tamerlane’s Gate"—an ancient pass north to China. Near Jizak, #Uzbekistan.

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More Out of Eden Photos!

7 Dec
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Photo by Amelie

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Reflection by Amelie

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Photo by Yejin

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Reflection by Yejin

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Photo by Clara

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Reflection by Clara

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Photo by Arnav

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Reflection by Arnav

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Photo by Hayden

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Photo by Florian

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Photo by Ava

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Photo bu Seojin

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Photo by Natalie

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Photo by Sanjeev

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Photo by Amy

I am sharing some more photos and a few very thoughtfully written reflections by students in their e-portfolios. I am really impressed with your photos and I have enjoyed reading your reflections. The ones I shared here are among several that really impressed me and where students made strong connections between Paul’s walk and your work with Out of Eden Learn. Keep up the good work. We will start Out of Eden, Footstep #4 as soon as we return from winter break and we will aim to finish the remaining two footsteps by the end of January or early February. Keep up the good work!

Out of Eden Learn Footstep #3 Photos

20 Nov

Here are a few photos from Out of Eden Learn, Footstep #3 – Neighborhood Walk Photos. We are enjoying the photos and stories from this footstep project. Please remember to post your photos and story on Out of Eden Learn, reply to any questions your receive, and thank other students from our walking party who comment or praise your work. Continue to comment and share your questions in our walking party.

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Photo by AllbyMyself

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Photo by Don’tStealmyPotato

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Photo by Donoughtman

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Photo by Jeveboss

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Photo by Keeptrekking

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Photo by the DiscoDog

 

Photography Workshop

15 Nov
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Photo by Rob Martin

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Photo by Rob Martin

We look forward to seeing your photos for Footstep #3 this week. I am happy that Mr. Aneesh and Mr. Carl stopped by our classes to share some of their knowledge about taking good photographs. We hope you apply some of their ideas, as you take photos of your neighborhood. The directions for the project have been shared with you and are on Out of Eden Learn. I have also shared both of these presentations and will add them to Moodle under Out of Eden Learn. Remember to write a story to go along with your two photos. Prompts or directions have been shared as well, along with a rubric.

 

Taking Neighborhood Walks (OOEL – Footstep #3)

11 Nov

We are launching Footstep #3 today and Monday (11/14). The footstep is posted on Out of Eden and you can see the directions there. They have also been added to the Moodle folder for Out of Eden Learn, along with a rubric. Here is a video of the directions, along with a a video I made of some photos made by students. You will see more examples of photos by looking at examples done by other students in our walking party. Out of Eden Walk has an Instagram page where you can see Paul’s photos. Click on the link to see some amazing photos! 

Gallery Walk & Reflection (Out of Eden Learn)

11 Nov

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Photos by Rob Martin

In class this week, students learned about SMART goals and created a one goal for a learning habits or area they wanted to improve in our new trimester. Students also reflected on Out of Eden Learn, Footstep #2 and responded to these two questions in their notebook:

What did you learn about your neighborhood or what did you notice about your neighborhood?

How does this activity connect with Paul’s journey and/or the Out of Eden Project?