The first day of school at Star of the Sea has come! Welcome to all my new and returning students who are reading this, and I hope you enjoyed your summer break. I am starting this year energized by my summer of education and travel, and I am so excited to share all that I have experienced with you. Now that I have had an incredible voyage of discovery through Arctic Svalbard as a Grosvenor Teacher Fellow, it is my responsibility and privilege to bring back all I have learned. This year, you will have a chance to investigate Arctic ecology, the importance of polar regions, and the impacts of global climate change. We will examine ways in which Hawaii is connected to the Arctic. Get ready for my personal accounts, photos and video from the Arctic! I want to inspire all of you to protect our planet's natural and cultural resources and, hopefully, become explorers yourselves! This year, we will be asking ourselves as individuals and as a society: How do you mālama Hawai'i? How do you mālama honua?
National Geographic’s definition of geo-literacy is, generally, knowledge of interactions, interconnections, and implications. These will continue to be underlying themes of my science units. This year, I will help you develop geo-literacy by teaching science concepts in a geographical context, both local and global. Local, field-based lessons will help you develop a sense of place. These lessons will engage your senses, enrich science content, and encourage environmental stewardship. Developing a more global awareness will be nurtured through research and thematic projects that highlight all the ways in which human and natural systems are connected.
There are quite a few special things to look forward to this year. All middle school students will be conducting science field labs this year for a unique program called From Mauka to Makai: Understanding Climate Change Impacts in the Ahupua’a. This program represents a partnership with Hawaii Nature Center in Makiki, and as part of it, we will be conducting two field studies, one mauka and one makai, and producing a final environmental service project.
I also plan to select twenty 7th and 8th graders (by application) to take to the Big Island May 14th-16th for National Geographic's 2015 Bio Blitz. Every year, the Bio Blitz is held at a different National Park, and this year it will be hosted by Volcanoes National Park. The Bio-Blitz is a 24-hour event where teams of students, teachers, rangers, community members, National Geographic staff, and scientists work together to conduct a comprehensive biological survey of the park. That is, they work hard to find and identify as many of the animals, plants, fungi, and other organisms that they can! For more information about the Bio Blitz, please visit this website: www.nationalgeographic.com/explorers/projects/bioblitz/
Mahalo for joining me on a science learning adventure this year! Let's all work together to make sure we have a productive and rewarding experience.
6th Grade Welcome Letter/Course Policies
7th Grade Welcome Letter/Course Policies
8th Grade Welcome Letter/Course Policies