I hope you had a chance to check out the most recent bulletin board outside our classroom that displays the latest happenings with our participation in the One World Futbol Project. Students explained to the school community what we have accomplished this year (and what students from the previous year accomplished as well) through writing and drawings. A map depicts the six countries that we have sent over twenty balls to over the past two years. Thanks to everyone who helped us get these balls to kids around the globe. Here is a brief video on the One World Futbol that was featured on ABC News last night:
Students at HR were challenged over the past 31 days to "walk around the world". A different student in each class wore a pedometer each day to measure the amount of steps they were taking. Totals were tallied and at the end of 31 days, the school had traveled the equivalent of 7,420 miles, getting us from Portland to just off the coast of France. The fourth grade traveled 1,075 miles, the most of any class in the school. For their efforts, they were rewarded with a root beer float party held this afternoon in the cafeteria. Special thanks to Mrs. Mcpheeters and Mrs. Harwood for their hard work on this fun project.
The students of fourth grade have been busy creating a town they are calling "Portlandia". They have created laws, established a government, elected leaders and officials, and started up businesses. A tax plan was put in place to pay the government officials and pay for basic services like waste management, water, and library services. And guess what? Citizens began arguing over how much taxes they should have to pay and where the tax money should be allocated. We are using this as proof that it is a true to life simulation. Entrepreneurs have also popped up when needs of the citizens were recognized. For example, one student recognized that students needed a place to keep their currency (known as "Star Bucks"), so he created a wallet making business. His business became so popular that he had to create a job and hire an employee to help out. I can neither confirm nor deny the rumors that this wallet company may be seen on an upcoming episode of Shark Tank.
Last week we spent part of our day at Peninsula Park with the second and third graders. A brief picnic was followed by ice cream bars, a few games of capture the flag, soccer, a romp around the rose garden, and playing on the playground. Thanks to all the parents who helped make this trip a success.
I have a few photos that I have been meaning to share from recent science labs with Mrs. Galati. The first set of photos includes students creating fossils using shells and plaster and the second set of photos includes the shooting of rockets after a lesson on Newton's Three Laws of Motion. Towards the end of the rocket shooting, I challenged the students to make it into a small basket they were aiming for and told them I would happily reward them with an extra recess break if any student was able to successfully land their rocket in the basket. After dozens of misses, I told the class that they had one last chance. At the last moment, just as students were beginning to believe it was not going to happen, Jenny's rocket hit the bulls-eye and the class went bonkers. Yesterday, the students were given their extra recess for Jenny's accurate shot at the buzzer, but not before we celebrated Jenny's birthday with a few popsicles on a beautiful day.
On Monday, a special guest joined us to discuss life in the air. Captain Emily Brand, a United States Air Force Pilot, came to tell us about the joys of flying giant cargo planes around the world. Emily explained to all the students that in order to become pilots they would need to know lots of math, science, and geography. She then explained the training process pilots go through, including the interesting process to overcome airsickness. We also got to see many photos and videos displaying what her plane, the massive C-17, can do. From flying low to avoid radars to carrying up to three helicopters to refueling while in the air, this machine and its pilots proved to be mighty impressive. It was a very engaging discussion that allowed students to see a unique way to earn a living. As Emily pointed out, her job is enjoyable because she gets to travel the world and have an office that is thousands of feet in the air. Is it possible that this will inspire a member of this class to follow in Emily's footsteps and fly planes? Stay tuned for the next ten to fifteen years to find out! PostScript: Emily, my cousin, was also the person who was responsible for taking the One World Futbol that was delivered to children in Uganda earlier this year. She was traveling there to visit her brother, James, who is there for a year doing ministry work. Emily also was nice enough to take our last One World Futbol with her to deliver to kids in Brazil when her crew travels there later this summer. Stay tuned for photos.