The 5 Habits Framework

1) Evidence (How do I know what's true?)

2) Perspective (Who might think differently?)

3) Connections (What other areas of knowledge are connected?)

4) Supposition (How might it be different if..?)

5) Significance (Is this important?)

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

The President is on Twitter

President Obama Sends First Presidential Tweet

In a Thursday, May 14, 2015 file photo, President Barack Obama speaks during a news conference at Camp David in Maryland.
(AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

1)  How do we know the President actually sent the tweet himself?  How can we tell if other accounts are fake?  What proof is required for authenticity?  

2)  Why might Sasha Obama feel differently about this than the White House Press Secretary?  The same?  To what extent might Biz Stone be more excited about this than Mark Zuckerburg?  

3)  In what ways is this connected to the first Presidential telephone call?  First train ride?  In what ways is this connected to the concept of democracy?

4)  To what extent would it change the perceptions of the President's political party?  What if a Republican had been the first President to adopt Twitter?  

5)  Why is is relevant that the President has a Twitter handle?  In what ways is this significant to the future of his fundraising abilities?

Extension Activities:

1)  Students can trace Presidential firsts and create a timeline of these events and place them on a scale of importance

2)  Students can write a news story from the future where a future President marks a major milestone for a future technology (first ride in a driver-less car, first trip to the moon).

AoK:  Human Sciences

WoK:  Language

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Attention Spans Comparable to Goldfish

Canadians now have shorter attention span than goldfish thanks to portable devices: Microsoft study

This undated photo shows a common goldfish.
 (AP Photo/Peter Ponzio)

1)  What evidence is convincing in this article?  What might be the limits to surveying different populations?    

2)  Why might a Canadian view this differently than a Moldovan?  In what ways would a CEO and a worker have similar views on this issue?    

3)  How is this connected to the school day?  In what ways is this a science issue rather than a moral?
4)  In what ways would this study be different with a smaller sample size?  What if t was sponsored by Apple?  By the National Education Association?  By Wal Mart?  

5)  What is the significance of this study on new parents?  For future generations?

Extension Activities:

1)  Students can create a time log of their online and mobile activities.  Students can analyze their collected data and develop a plan of action associated with their attention and multi-tasking goals.  

2)  Students can study the Stanford Marshmallow Test and identify the characteristics they feel are necessary for improvement in this area on a personal or societal level.

Friday, May 8, 2015

20 Year Old Elected to Parliament

UK Elects Youngest Lawmaker Since 1667 

Paisley and Renfrewshire South constituency winner Mhairi Black of the Scottish National Party (SNP) and Labour's Douglas Alexander react at the Lagoon Leisure Centre in Paisley, Scotland.
 (David Cheskin/PA via AP)

1)  What is an appropriate age for legislating?  Why?  What prevents a similar situation from happening in the US? What evidence do we have that makes the laws in our country?  How do we know the ages they prescribed are appropriate?  How reliable are the accounts of 1667's parliamentary sessions?  

2)  Why might her father feel differently than the Prime Minister of the UK?  Than a leader of Saudi Arabia?  How might her competitor feel similarly to her mother?  

3)  In what ways is this connected to human rights?  How is this related to Math? Sports? 

4)  What if this story was of a young man?  What if this paves a way for younger citizens to be elected?  How would this story be different if she studied biology?  

5)  What is the significance of this event?  What are the long term consequences?  On which issues will she most likely be effective?  To what degree will the future of Scotland be affected?     

Extension Activities:

1)  Students can research the youngest rulers of all time and rank their effectiveness or trace their rise to power.

2)  Students can write a fictional diary of a citizen living in country where there are age maximums for public service.  

Monday, May 4, 2015

Modern Day Treasure Hunt goes Awry

$2 Million Treasure Hunt "Out of Control"

This undated photo provided by Forrest Fenn shows a chest purported to contain gold dust, hundreds of rare gold coins, gold nuggets, and other artifacts.

1)  Why should we believe that the clues are real?  The treasure itself?  Do you believe his reasoning for the contest?  Why? What questions of evidence in this article are not associated with the treasure itself?

2)  Why might his relatives feel differently than others about this contest?  To what degree should the New Mexico Tourist Board promote this contest?  Why might the director of a non-profit feel differently than a stock broker about this?

3)  How is this connected to gym class?  In what ways is this connected to "pirate treasure hunts"?  Is this more geography or math?

4)  What if someone else got injured in the search?  What if it's never found?

5)  What are the long-term effects of this story?  What should be done by the person who finds the treasure?

Extension Activities:

1)  Students can research the value of the coins and create an itinerary to find the treasure and see if it is worth it?

2)  Students can compare this to famous searches for treasure (real or fiction) and rank which would have the highest value?