Friday, September 17, 2010

This blog has been moved...

The Groton Earth Science blog has been moved to MrWiech.com.
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Friday, September 25, 2009

Why Critical Thinking is an Important Skill

video

Earlier this week we had a discussion on why becoming a critical thinker is an important life skill to always be developing. Whether you are asking a friend, adult, politician or even a teacher, like myself, to provide evidence that supports their convictions, critical thinking can help you become better informed and make good decisions as you grow into adulthood.

The problem we looked at was from the 1970's and how the local government dealt with the removal of a whale carcass from their beach. Students in all classes discussed burial, on land or sea, dissection, helicoptering it away as well as ideas I care not to discuss here, although they were creative. There were no students that suggested blowing it up with 1/2 ton of dynamite. That is, however, what the local government decided was the best option with questionable results. Check out the video above as well as the site TheExplodingWhale.com!

WHAT ARE SOME OTHER REASONS THINKING CRITICALLY IS IMPORTANT?

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Friday, September 18, 2009

One of Our Class Pets

Here is a photo of one of our class pets. This raspberry danish was purchased from our vending machine and soon became a class pet. Why a class pet and not eaten? It had a 12.1 cm hair included in its cellophane packaging! We had discussed nutrition and the fact this was not a good breakfast choice but one student still chose to eat it. The hair deterred her and we set it under glass to see what would happen. Well 18 months later and there is still nothing eating it. Mold chooses not to grow on it and it still smells like it did out of the package, which wasn't good in the first place. So if you have a chance stop down to room 223 and say hi!
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Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Voyage of the PLASTIKI

WOW!! Check this guy out! His name is David de Rothschild and he is planning on sailing 7,500 miles from Sydney, Australia to San Francisco, in a boat made of recycled bottles. A brief story was done on NPR, for your listening pleasure. This story revolves around the Great Pacific Garbage Patch which is a floating landfill half the size of Texas. This garbage dump is composed of plastics that to ocean currents is a collecting material that finds its way into the ocean. Read the articles to see how our world is being affected and check back to see what is happening with the "Plastiki".
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Monday, March 2, 2009

Pileated Woodpecker

We were fortunate today and saw not one but TWO pileated woodpeckers. Although their range is quite large they are usually heard and not seen. Here are some cool facts about the pileated woodpecker.

video


  • The Pileated Woodpecker digs characteristically rectangular holes in trees to find ants. These excavations can be so broad and deep that they can cause small trees to break in half.
  • A Pileated Woodpecker pair stays together on its territory all year round. It will defend the territory in all seasons, but will tolerate floaters during the winter.
  • The feeding excavations of a Pileated Woodpecker are so extensive that they often attract other birds. Other woodpeckers, as well as House Wrens, may come and feed there.
  • The Pileated Woodpecker prefers large trees for nesting. In young forests, it will use any large trees remaining from before the forest was cut. Because these trees are larger than the rest of the forest, they present a lightning hazard to the nesting birds.

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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

What is TWITTER??

Anyone who is paying attention to the changes in our world has heard about Twitter. It is being used by politicians to reach their constituents, people building networks of friends and even teachers as they continue conversations that started in the classroom. Twitter is a social networking site that can be used appropriately as well as for unacceptable interactions.


What does this mean for us at Groton? Currently Twitter is blocked on our computer system so the need to promote it in a positive manner is of the utmost importance. We all need to post thoughtful, polite and sometimes controversial tweets that cause us to discuss topics that we can't always address in class. We can also begin to use some of the additional tools such as Twitpic to share photos we take while outside checking out our world.

I think Twitter can expand our class and experiences as well as bring some additional fun to an already great class!

TWIT ON!
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Monday, January 26, 2009

Crazy Volcano Cartoon

video
While looking for video clips to show how igneous rocks differ when the cool in intrusive versus extrusive environments I came upon this funny AND informative video. Check it out and be sure to listen during basketball games for this song to be played.
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