Friday, February 3, 2017

Spices & Silk

This week in the study of history and society, we leaned a little more into the food project by looking at the global effects of the spice trade. In addition to spreading European culture and beliefs to Asia and, to a lesser degree, to Africa, the trade created exchanges throughout the world, cross-pollinating ideas, knowledge, and technologies over routes that were many thousands of miles long. We used readings from UNESCO and an unusual lesson framework in which students (like spice traders) exchanged information with every single classmate, trading new knowledge in a style we call 'free market'. With an eye toward the social justice project, we began to frame connections to art and math within Summers-Knoll, as well as identifying adults with whom to consult from outside the school. 

And we kept reading Twelfth Night!

In math, the algebra group moved toward chapter tests on the standard form of equations (ax + by = c) and ongoing slope-intercept work. They also looked at Rene Descartes' contributions in connecting geometry to algebra in making equations visible. The pre-algebra kids worked with scientific notation, exponents, and fractions, especially simplification and common denominators.

In PE, we ran the Arctic Mile (six laps around the school in freezing temperatures) and went skating at the Ice Cube.

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