Sunday, October 17, 2010

Google Earth and Old Connections

I must have spent an hour cruising around my old birth place of Gallup, New Mexico. I don't think I have been back there for 40 years or so.  I didn't appreciate how beautiful it really was until I spent some time looking around the natural settings of sandstone cliffs, red soil, and high mountain desert.  My only recollections were of Kit Carson's cave
where he hid out during the Indian Wars, and my dad telling me it was easy to spot me in the nursery at the U.S. Indian Hospital  where I was born;  I was the only white baby born that day in a sea of Navajo brown.

What a neat lesson.  I would love to use this for an introductory lesson before I start Earth sciences.  I try and personalize lessons in astronomy by letting the kids find their birthday moon and letting them explore the phases of the moon from that.

I have been using the TD videos for several years now and find them a valuable resource for introducing units and complex concepts that help those visual learners grasp the topic a little bit better.

I believe the connections between the western world of science and local knowledge to be a valuable part of my curriculum.  I use a lot of stories from the native people of the world to illustrate the viewpoint of everyday astronomical occurrences such as the moon and sun cycle, and the northern lights.  These myths are fun to read in class and I think the kids get a kick out of learning about other cultures and how they viewed the world.

I was cruising the participants in our class and have found even MORE connections.  Sandi's family has a Colorado connection  as does my family.  What a beautiful state.  It seems Esther and I share a love Bristol Bay while Janet and I share a great respect for the stunning Prince William Sound.  Neat stuff.


  1. I was glad to see that you incorporate Alaska Native cultures within your lessons! You probably know my husband Demitri Gust he worked there at Portage Creek!

  2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.