Day 176: Locker Tags

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Our in-house design studio run by students just delivered these locker tags. Student council will hang one on every locker for the first day of school in August. Thanks to the design studio for such a great job and such wonderful presentation.

Day 175: Ancient Technology – Slide Projector


“Oh my gosh. Mr. Whiteley, what is this and do you know how to use it?” I got that a lot when I busted out the slides to show my students photos of my college research in Central America and Utah, my graduate work at UNM in Albuquerque (and of course some balloon fiesta photos), and my semester in Granada, Spain in 1980. I am 19 to 22 in most of the photos and have to apologize for the fashions (although the Ray-Ban Aviators are very chic). They were a bit surprised to find that I had done such interesting things.

Day 173: Welcome to Jeopardy

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With 15 minutes to spare on a Friday I decided to share my love of Jeopardy and tell the students about the current run of Julia Collins (19 wins and counting). Some had never seen the show and few knew how it worked. They loved it and tried to beat me and the contestants to some of the answers. I think I may do this once a week in advisory next year. To girls who feel like they need to dumb themselves down, she offers this piece of advice: “If someone doesn’t like you because you’re smart, that’s their problem.”

Day 171: Density Tanks

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After losing the seniors, we worked on a neat lab that I used to use when teaching meteorology. I used it to show how warm and cold air met along a frontal boundary. I used it today to reinforce how ocean water density is affected by temperature. The students loved the lab. Lots of Snapchat videos and photos of the warm water sliding over the sinking cold water and smiling students. They replaced the divider and then mixed one side to create warm purple water. They were so interested to see what happened when the divider was removed and were amazed when it wedged between the red and blue water.

Day 170: Class of 2014

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Graduation is on 5/29 and today (5/27) was the last full day for seniors. We are one of the few places where the students get their senior prank approved by the administration. Last year the Class of 2013 parked two cars in the lobby and surrounded them by 2013 cups of water. This year they plastic wrapped the breezeway, and strung string across the walkway. Some seniors grilled in the parking lot at lunch. Good kids!

Day 169: Salinity by Evaporation


IS II students determined the salinity of a sample using evaporation. Clearly this is not a great method but it is good for them to practice a procedure and they better understand the concept of salinity in parts per thousand (S o/oo). They are able to calculate experimental error and discuss the reasons for it. The samples are placed in a drying oven overnight.