Monday, September 01, 2014

Trials

One kind of riding that really pushes the envelope of what can be done with a bike and, I think, exemplifies the human/bike connection, is trials riding. Balance is what trials riding is all about. The skills used by these athletes are the same (though worlds beyond what we will use) as the ones that we will need in riding trails. An amazing example of trials riding is this short feature of Scottish trials phenom, Danny MacAskill. His latest video is here. All I have to say is, "Wow."

Welcome to Sixth-Grade Humanities

Sixth-grade humanities integrates learning in language arts with the study of geography, archaeology, anthropology and ancient civilizations. Language Arts studies are often linked with the social studies curriculum and run concurrently to those explorations. Categories of language arts study include creative and expository writing using a Writer's Workshop model, vocabulary and word origin, conventions/mechanics, literature and genre studies, and thinking skills. Particular emphasis is placed on essay writing. Students will develop skills in writing style and conventions and focus on information gathering and synthesis. The ability to analyze literature is developed through regular reading, reflection and response. Students will learn about the elements of culture, the technological developments required to build civilization, and the events that cause civilizations to collapse by studying the cultural traits and history of several ancient peoples. The year begins with an archaeology primer that prepares students to study the cultures to come. It includes the 5 themes of geography, elements and nature of culture and the role of archaeology in our knowledge of the ancient world. Prehistoric humans, the agricultural revolution and the birth of civilization is next. Units on Sumeria and Mesopotamia, the Egyptians, and ancient Chinese and Indus civilizations follow. The beginnings of western civilization are explored through study of the Greeks and Romans. The survey of ancient cultures ends with the civilizations of Mesoamerica. For those of you who just can't wait to get a piece of paper about the course that reiterates the outline and describes basic expectations and policy, you can access it here—Dubois Humanities. I distribute a hard copy during the first week of school and review it with students.

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BBC World News

  • Ukraine hit by military setbacks
  • Ukraine suffers a series of military setbacks, as hundreds of troops are taken prisoner and its forces withdraw from a key airport.
  • Iraq crimes 'on unimaginable scale'
  • The UN says reports from Iraq "reveal acts of inhumanity on an unimaginable scale", as the Human Rights Council debates agrees to send a fact-finding mission.
  • 'Cloud' concerns after celeb leaks
  • Experts have raised concerns over the security of "cloud" storage sites following the leak of intimate pictures of celebrities.
  • Iran clerics 'must accept internet'
  • Iranian President Hassan Rouhani urges Iran's clerics to be more tolerant of the internet and new technologies after recent criticism from hardliners.
  • Fresh clashes erupt in Syrian Golan
  • Fresh fighting between rebels and government forces is being reported in the Syrian Golan Heights, where 44 UN peacekeepers were abducted last week.
  • Official heckled amid HK poll anger
  • Hong Kong pro-democracy activists disrupt a speech by a Beijing official, a day after China ruled out a direct leadership election in 2017.