Saturday, May 30, 2009
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Wednesday, May 20, 2009
Monday, May 18, 2009
This past Wednesday I went on the Lady Maryland for a field trip. The Lady Maryland is a replica of a Chesapeake Bay pungy schooner that was used to carry perishable cargo in the 1800’s. The Lady Maryland is 104 feet long and 85 feet tall.
There are many interesting facts about where the Lady Maryland sails. The place where the Lady Maryland sails is the Chesapeake Bay. The words Chesapeake Bay mean “Great Shellfish Bay.” The Chesapeake Bay is 200 miles long and is usually 21 feet deep, but in some places it can be 175 feet deep. To keep the Chesapeake Bay full of water, 15,000 streams that cover 100,000 miles altogether feed into the bay. That distance is enough to go around the world four times.
My field trip was better than I expected. Before the field trip everyone on the Lady Maryland went into one classroom and split into groups of five or six people. Within those groups we made group names and theme songs. My group’s name was the Bubbly Blue Oysters. On the day of the field trip all of the boys and girls got onto their buses and we drove downtown near the aquarium. When we got there, we put on our life jackets and got onto the Lady Maryland. Then we sat down and the crew told us the rules and what we were going to do. When they were done everybody split up into their groups. Each group went to one of four stations: flotation, navigation, the wonderful world of plankton, and water quality. The station my group went to first was flotation. In that station my group and I got to build a boat and drive the Lady Maryland. The second station my group went to was the wonderful world of plankton. While we were there we had the chance to catch plankton and look at them under a microscope. Then we went to the third station which was water quality. There we checked the salinity and acidity of the water in the Chesapeake Bay. In navigation, our last station we got to figure out where we were on a map. After the stations all of the groups got together to eat lunch. After lunch we let out a trawl net. In a few minutes we pulled the net out of the water and put the fish that we caught in tubs of water. Them we got back into the smaller groups. When everyone got back into their groups there were two more stations. Those stations were fish and oysters. My group went to fish first. In fish we got to touch the fish that we caught in the net. Then my group went to oysters where we got to see the inside of an oyster. Then the boat pulled into the dock, and we all left. I think the Lady Maryland is a great boat.
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Kitchen Aid Mixer (Kneading by hand also works well and is more fun)
7-8 cups of flour
1 Tablespoon active dry yeast
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 Tablespoon salt
½ stick of butter
2 ½ cups warm water (divided)
Add the yeast and sugar to ½ cup of warm water. Let it stand for 5-10 minutes. Add the yeast mixture to the Kitchen Aid mixing bowl and add the other 2 cups of warm water. Add about 5 ½ cups of flour to the bowl and turn the mixer on medium speed with the dough hook in place. The flour should clean the sides of the bowl after a minute or two but will start to stick to the bottom of the bowl. Slowly add flour to the bowl to keep the dough from sticking. Continue this process for five minutes. Add the butter in small pieces and then the salt. Continue adding flour to keep the mixture from sticking to the sides and bottom. The total kneading time should be about 12 minutes. Place the dough in a greased bowl in a warm spot in the kitchen and let it rise until it doubles in size (about 1 ½ hours) Punch it down and divide the dough in half. Place the dough on a floured surface and form each half into a loaf. You may use a greased loaf pan or a cookie sheet with corn meal on it. Let it rise until nearly doubled and bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes.
Monday, May 11, 2009
Thursday, May 07, 2009
Wednesday, May 06, 2009
Last week we went on a great field trip with Living Classrooms on the Chesapeake Bay. One of the shipboard activities was opening an oyster and examining it. This week we wrote a composition about oysters and pearls. I thought the boys would like the chance to open a different kind of oyster and find a pearl inside. The information that came with the pearls said that most would be white or pink. Of the fifteen oysters opened today, five were white, seven were pink, one was silver, one was light purple, and one was either very dark blue or black. The black pearls are rare so the student who opened that one was ecstatic. Enjoy the slide show below. The class helped to pick out the music.
Saturday, May 02, 2009
I shot more than 30 short videos of the students doing a wide variety of activities on the Lady Maryland. Whittling the list down to these eight was difficult. The amount of hands on learning on this field trip was phenomenal.
In this video the students start to set the first sail.
The first sail is almost there.
The students were divided into four groups and in this video they sing the songs that the wrote and practiced at school in the days leading up to the trip.
There were many learning stations the students visited while on the boat. In this video the plankton catcher is tossed over the side to catch some plnkton, and on the other side of the boat a bucket is tossed over to haul in some water to do a water quality study.
Every student got a chance to main the helm. Our captain was superb and allowed the students to take complete control. He told them where he wanted them to head and if they turned the wheel the wrong way he allowed them to see that the boat wasn't going the correct way and let them get it going in the right direction.
As part of steering the vessel, the captain had the students peer over the stern to see the tiller move as the wheel is turned.
In the afternoon one of the highlights was learning about oysters. This station is the basis for the first paragraph of our composition this week.
The students built boats out of tin foil and popsicle sticks. The completed boats were floated and weights added to test their bouyancy. This boat did very well.