Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Art: Pathfinders & Navigators

Tuesday, February 16

Overview and Project
Today was glue day!! Following up our class two weeks ago that begin on the topic of Typography, we began the bones of two projects we will be working on over the next few classes. First, we went over the basic skill of creating Block Letters. Students then created the skeleton of what will be an architectural letter of one of their initials. Second, we decopauged old sheet music onto wooden boards, creating the background of what will become our Song art.

-Bring back in the FONT that students previously chose and printed off.
-Print off or write down the lyrics for your favorite song that you will be using for our Song art.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Art-Younger class
We looked at children's books that we love and read a story by Jan Brett. Then we talked about why we like these stories. We began to organize a story by creating a story board. We talked about their ideas for a story from what we have been studying for history.  The children did some drawings on it. Their was not a strong feeling from all of them that they grasped what we were going to attempt doing. A couple kids understood, but seemed overwhelmed. There was also expressed that they could not do more work on them at home each week. So, in the interest of not letting them get too discouraged, I have changed our plan; each week I will prepare a specific picture for them to do and give them a specific new skill that we will work on in class. For the rest of the class we did some blending with our Gouache paint.

History Elective First Period February 2, 2016

The class discussed the steps that a candidate takes when they are considering a run for the presidency.
1.       Announce the desire to run for office
2.       See if they will be able to get support. The states of Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina would be especially important to get as they vote first in the primary elections.
3.       Once support is assured, financial donations must be sought. These can come from several places;
a.       The candidate’s personal funds
b.       Outside donations
                                                               i.      Small amounts from “ordinary people”
                                                             ii.      Large amounts from “big donors”
4.       Announce official candidacy and assemble their team.
5.       Begin the physical campaign
a.       Create/state the platform they are running on. A platform is the candidate’s own opinions on where he or she stands on foreign and domestic issues.
b.       Enter and participate in debates with other candidates
c.       Travel the country to meet people and get their message out so that the voters will get to know them and what they stand for. This is where the people can ask questions of each candidate.
The Iowa Caucus is the event where representatives of each candidate meet in groups to try and persuade voters to vote for their candidate.
The NH Primary election is where registered voters in NH go to the polls in their community and vote. They have to vote within the party that they are registered for.
The Role of the Media
The media is supposed to report on each of the candidates and their platforms. Reporting is supposed to be fair, neutral and balanced. Editorials are the places within the paper where the writers can air their opinions.

Ads and book covers from various candidates and papers were reviewed for ideas on how candidates and the media could report on each campaign.

The roles of each student for the presidential campaign were decided upon.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Music Period B 2/2/16

The Davidic Cipher- Week 1
      -Before the Exodus - Israel=Jacob-12 families of Israel- Reuben, Simeon, Levi, Judah, Dan,
       Naphtali, Gad, Asher, Issacher, Zebulon, Joseph, Benjamin
     -Jacob's whole family moves to Egypt, because of a famine. They settled down in Egypt and
       lived peacefully for quite awhile. But as time passed, rulers in Egypt changed, and so did their
       attitude towards the Israelites. The Israelites were looked at with suspicion, as a threat, and
       they were made to labor.
      -430 years after they arrived in Egypt, God brought them out under the leadership of a man
        named Moses(from the family of Levi)
     -The Israelites leave Egypt with a wealth of knowledge and skills acquired during their time
       there. Art and music were just a couple of those skills.
     -Pharaoh chases after them, but God makes a way for them through the Red Sea, and Moses
       writes a song!(Exodus 15:1-20)
     -The Israelites set up camp in the desert, and God gives them detailed plans to make the
       Tabernacle. The Tabernacle was the center of worship, and the Levites were separated
        out of the rest of the tribes with the specific job of caring for and maintaining the Tabernacle.
     - The Levites came up with a whole musical system that was used in creating most of the Psalms.
         It is this musical system that we will be deciphering over the next 9 weeks.
Buckets- Intro to bucket drumming, we moved right through drumming levels 1, 2, &3
Homework- Find your name in Hebrew and decide which family of Levi you are descended from. Practice Bucket rhythms, and the new song in Hebrew


Music Period A 2/2/16

     Our first day of electives, we focused on Psalm 100 to open up our thoughts and discussions about worship. The kids need to memorize verse 1 this week- "Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth." In class we talked about what it means to give another person praise, and what it means to give God praise. We wrote down all the ways we could think of to worship God, and we will be using this list in the weeks ahead, jumping in to the heart of worship.
     We also started honing in on learning how to sing, with singing warm-ups, paying attention to our breathing and the sounds we are making. We will continue working on this skill during the next few weeks, as we learn lots of new songs. This week we sang 'God is so Good', 'Lord, I Lift Your Name on High', 'Father Abraham', and 'Gadol Elohai'.
     A very popular instrument, played in many of our favorite Bible Stories, is the tambourine. So, we went to work constructing our own, which we will finish next week. The tambourine will be a great help in making a joyful noise to the Lord!

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Art - Inspiration from the Bible

Class Overview
God's word is alive and powerful, even as an art inspiration! Deuteronomy 6 has descriptive passages that speak of keeping God's word close to our lives and home: "Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframe of your houses and your gates." We talked a little bit about the history behind these verses, and also talked about art in our homes today. Students then filled out a brainstorming questionnaire to use as inspiration for the projects we will be doing this semester.

We started to talk about our study of Typography, the design and art of words. We did a fun worksheet on different types of lines, and then the four basic styles of shading.

Select a FONT style that you love. Print off and bring to our next class the entire ABCs (in capital and lowercase letters) of the selected font.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Archaeology - Stonehenge

Archaeology is the study of our past through systematic recovery and study of material items.  These items are often found through a complex process of digging.  In order to stay on top of everything that is going on, and to help ensure that a minimal number of subtle clues are missed, archaeologists take voluminous notes.  When they need to later write a report or examine data, their journal becomes an important tool.  

Stonehenge is the first archaeological site we studied.  It was built in the late Stone Age during the Neolithic period.  Because this site is part of pre-history (before our written records begin) we know very little about why it was built, but the excavation of cremated bones of adult men within the site has led archaeologists to question whether it was a burial site for respected leaders.  

In class activities:
  • defined the word archaeology and discussed what the job of an archaeologist is
  • learned about the most recent excavations of Stonehenge
  • viewed images of Stonehenge & discussed the late stone age/early bronze age
  • learned that druids were not the builders of Stonehenge
  • set up our own field notes (journals)
  • drew our first dig site grid, labeled locations of finds, and cardinal directions
  • It was beautiful outside, so we ran around the building playing a cardinal directions game 
  • learned about the importance of context & observations in archaeology

Lesson extension activities:

These are great sites, and your child may enjoy checking them weekly for new information.

  • ArchNet: index of quality archaeological sites. Check the "new and uncategorized" section for recent additions

  • Anthropology in the News: The latest finds, discoveries, and controversies. Updated frequently. Great for getting the real story behind a vague facebook posting.
Stonehenge activities

Suggestions for older students:

  • I will not assign any writing, but I highly recommend that older students write at least one paper during the course of this term.  The sites listed above offer plenty of inspiration and resources for research.
  • The following two mysteries offer a humorous way to study the academics of archaeology.  Though not true stories or set in ancient times, they have been recommended to me because of their approachability.  Note: I HAVE NOT pre-read these books, but will be going through the first one with my children during the semester, and will notify you if I find anything inappropriate for young children.   UPDATE: These books contain some inappropriate language and innuendo.  Due to that and the dense vocabulary, I would not assign them to anyone younger than high-school.  However, I found that I was able to quickly edit anything inappropriate during our read-aloud time, so if you are interested in working through the books together these may be a good fit for your family.

  • Bring one measuring implement to class, and begin thinking about why this is one of the most important tools in the field.  Archaeologists are famous for their use of metal tape measures, but any ruler do.  The kids will be leaving these in their dig-kits for the next few weeks, so please label it appropriately.  I want to make sure everyone's items make it home.
Parents - This class is much larger than I originally expected.  In order to keep our projects fun and hands-on, I'm going to need some help with clean up.  If you are available for 5-10 minutes after class to either sweep or fold tables & chairs, please let me know.

Update 2/8/16: I was just looking at the March/April copy of British Archaeology (yeah, I know it is only the beginning of February, but magazines hate to look outdated) and they shared information about new finds that contradict what I spoke to your kids about in class.  There were, in fact, several women found among the cremated remains in Stonehenge, which will change how the data about this society is interpreted.  As always, history is constantly being revealed!