Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Class Update: Last Post of the Year!

This is my last post of the year - we took our final today. Overall, I feel that this year in history was very successful. I got to learn how to utilize new types of technology like VoiceThreads and desktop documentaries to further my own knowledge and effectively share my work. I especially learned about the history of my country, and what it means to be an American through civic values. After this year, I better understand what qualifies a true American, and I am ready to become one.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Class Update: 6/11 & 6/12

Over the past two class periods, we continued working on our immigrant guides. It will be interesting to see how the final guides look. Even though many of us have chosen different immigrant groups, I believe the guides will all be similar because all of the groups are moving to the same place. The guides will be due tomorrow.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Class Update: 6/7 & 6/10

Last Friday, we continued to work on our Immigrant Guides. This project is helping me to organize the information I have learned over the past two quarters in both English and history.

Today, we discussed the Triton 16% Time Badges. I was surprised that half of the class chose the same quest, which was about marine biology. I think this process was valuable because it allowed us to use our research and application skills in an area other than traditional school topics. I believe the skills and technology I learned to use throughout this process will help me later in life and will give me more options for creatively presenting a project.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Class Update: 6/4 & 6/5

Yesterday, we worked on our immigrant guide projects. I am enjoying this project because it allows me to connect history and literature. As I review the information we have learned throughout the year, I am able to compile it in a creative way through my guide.

Today, we completed our Smithsonian Quests. I finished my second badge, Eco-Journalist. I researched and addressed water issues through a news article and a visual representation. My reflection on the process and the work from my quest are posted below.

Triton 16% Time

Notice of Badge Completion

Issued to: kflodman
Badge issued by: Smithsonian Quests
Badge awarded by: 10th Grade
Badge Issuer Contact:
Issued on: May 29, 2013
Also issued to: 2 others

I just completed my second Smithsonian Badge, Eco-Journalist. To earn the badge, I had to create an enticing title about a water issue, write an article using the title, and create an infographic to represent the article. I chose to research the water problems in Africa, where many people do not have access to a clean water supply. This issue causes millions of people to contract diseases, and one in five children under the age of five die from a lack of clean water.

I found this badge important because it allowed me to learn about problems in other parts of the world, as well as about what people can do to solve those issues. I also learned how to write an article that is both informative and engaging. With this skill, I could teach others about issues in our country by writing an article that would attract the reader, then teach him or her how to help with the problem. Additionally, I learned how to use online tools to make infographics. I now feel that I could make a visually appealing infographic to support any information I want to promote or share.

In addition to helping me developing critical skills, the Eco-Journalist Badge allowed me to make connections to the material I am learning in history class. Creating a captivating title is like yellow journalism, a technique used to sell newspapers. During the late 1800s, journalists would create titles that were not always accurate, but interested readers. Though the Smithsonian Badge did not require embellishing the truth, I had to entice readers with my title, just like historical journalists attracted readers by using yellow journalism.

I value the knowledge I have gained from completing the badge, allowing me to develop my own skills for the future while connecting to Americans of the past.

The article and infographic I created are posted below:

One Drop at a Time

How you can change the future of clean water in Africa one well at a time.

Try to think of how many times you turned on the faucet today. Think of how many times you watered your garden, or brushed your teeth, or had a nice glass of cold water. Water is everywhere, always at your fingertips. But what if that water wasn't clean?

In developing and impoverished areas of Africa, many people do not have access to clean water, which we take for granted. According to The Water Project, 1 in 5 children under the age of five die from a lack of clean water. Sometimes people do not have water near their villages. Other times, the water they do have was carried to the village or city in outdated systems that allow human waste and bacteria to seep into the water. In 2010, the UN World Health Organization believed that 343 million people in Africa did not have a clean water supply in their homes or in public places. The intensity of this issue is shocking.

Because of the lack of clean water, many African communities suffer. Women and girls have to walk miles to fetch water from dirty rivers and ponds. This task exposes women to violence along their journeys and prevents them from going to school or earning money. Most schools are closed anyways because the diseases from the water spread to the students without proper sanitary measures.

Though this situation seems hopeless, there are many ways you can help eliminate the horrible water situation in Africa. Americans can spread their knowledge of the issue and encourage other people to act on the issue. Additionally, people can donate money to organizations like The Water Project to help install wells and water systems in impoverished areas. The next time you turn on the shower or pour yourself a cup of water, remember the people in Africa who cannot take clean water for granted. Think about how you can help the water issue in Africa one village at a time, one well at a time, and one drop at a time.

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Class Update: 5/31 & 6/3

On Friday, we spent class time working on Immigrant Guides. The guides are focused on immigrant pioneers who moved to the United States prairies. Each guide will address a specific nationality, and will give the immigrants information about living on the prairie. My guide will focus on Swedish immigrants.

Today, we do not have class due to the half day.