Category Archives: Uncategorized

Earth Day: The Future of Food

Last Friday we celebrated Earth Day with a myriad of activities that engaged and educated students. In the build up to Earth Day we explored The Future of Food through conversations, videos, and a hands on project that measured how much food is wasted each day at Hamlin.

We investigated the following questions (among others): How is our food made and how far does it travel? Why are we wasting so much food? Why doesn’t everyone have access to healthy food? What can we do with excess and imperfect food? How can we help those who can’t afford food?

The following array of events took place:

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Hamlin 7th Graders to Launch Experiments into Space

Cubes in Space™ a program by idoodledu inc., in collaboration with NASA’s Langley Research Center, NASA’s Wallops Flight Facility and Colorado Space Grant Consortium, offers global design competitions for students 11-18 years of age to develop STEAM-based experiments for launch into space.

Used in formal or informal learning environments, students and educators are exposed to engaging online content and activities in preparation for the design and development of an experiment to be integrated into a small cube. Throughout the experience, students develop key 21st century skills; communication, collaboration, critical thinking and creativity.

Since 2014, Cubes in Space has flown nearly 400 experiments representing 1500 educators and over 20,000 students from 57 different countries. This year nearly 600 educators and thousands of students from 39 countries participated and proposed experiments for placement on a NASA sounding rocket or high-altitude scientific balloon mission.  A total of 160 experiments were selected and were designed by students from Australia, Austria, Canada, Colombia, Ecuador, India, Mexico, Serbia, the United Arab Emirates, Uruguay, the and the United States of America.

The experiments will be launched via sounding rocket in late June 2017 from NASA Wallops Flight Facility on the Eastern Shore of Virginia or by high-altitude scientific balloon in late summer 2017 from NASA’s Columbia Scientific Balloon Facility in Ft. Sumner, New Mexico.

The following Hamlin student experiments will be launched this summer:

Maya W. and Sofia I. “Graphene Filament Voltage in Stratosphere versus on Earth”
They are looking at using a special carbon 3-D printing filament that is electrically conductive. The girls want to test the affects of the filament in space to see if it could be used as an electrical wire on Mars for possible colonization, since Mars has a lot of carbon as a building material source.

Della W. and Annie S. “How do high levels of UV-A/UV-B rays affect the efficiency of protective sunglass lenses?” They are looking at how polarized and regular sunglasses protect against UV rays with the higher UV intensity of space. Higher intensities are seen in different areas of the Earth, day to day while flying in an airplane and often from human interaction or after a global event such as a tsunami. Pollution or a tsunami can release toxins into the air that affect ozone protection and increase the UV levels.

Special thanks to Hamlin teacher Melissa Alfred, for her guidance with this important work.

For more information about Cubes in Space, please visit: http://www.cubesinspace.com/

 

Thrive Global Interviews Wanda Holland Greene

Read the article here: https://journal.thriveglobal.com/wanda-holland-greene-on-reclaiming-her-space-and-sanity-a81f2c2b8b28

 

Hamlin 1st Graders Interview Local Businesses

First graders have been studying neighborhoods and community. As part of their work they have been conducting insightful interviews.

Click here to listen to the interviews: https://sites.google.com/hamlin.org/neighborhood-interviews/home

Click here to learn more about the 1st grade community project work: http://pubs.hamlin.org/blog/2016/10/28/hamlin-1st-graders-explore-community/

 

Hamlin 3rd Graders Speak about Dolores Huerta

Today four Hamlin 3rd graders spoke in front of the entire lower school about the importance of Dolores Huerta and Cesar Chavez. The presentation was given in both Spanish and English. Two students spoke in character as both Chavez and Huerta.

They shared the following (among other points):

-Huerta and Chavez drove from farm to farm and town to town speaking to people about the need for better working conditions and the need for children of farmworkers to attend school

-Chavez went on hunger strikes to bring attention to the plight of farmworkers

Si Se Puede or Yes We Can became the mantra of the organized farmworkers

-To show support for farmworkers, Californians boycotted grapes, strawberries, and lettuce

-The United Farmworkers marched 340 miles from Delano to Sacramento to champion the rights of workers

-March 31st is the birthday of Cesar Chavez and is recognized as a California State holiday

Special thanks to Judy Ching and Kate McGinnis for helping to organize this thoughtful assembly.

Hamlin Welcomes the Author Avi

On March 20th Hamlin welcomed back the prolific and talented writer, Avi.

Avi is the author of more than 60 books for children and young adults, including Newbery Award-winning Crispin: Cross of Lead.

Avi mesmerized Hamlin students by both reading from his work and sharing facets of Bay Area history. His upcoming book Rotten Row is set in 1848, San Francisco, and includes details about that time period.

As he has in the past, Avi imparted some wonderful pearls of wisdom for our students and faculty alike.

Here are a few choice quotes:

The job of a writer is to get you to want to turn the page. 

If you write something one time and think it’s good, you are in trouble, because you can and have to make it better.

Writing is not writing per se, it is rewriting. The more you rewrite the better it gets.

Robert Frost said, ‘the ear is the best reader.’ If your read things out loud you will catch things that make the piece better. Ultimately writing is about speaking to someone.

The more you read, the better the writer you will become. Reading is guaranteed to help your grades go up across all subjects.

Below is a brief video of Avi:

For more information about Avi and his books, please visit:

http://www.avi-writer.com/

 

 

Hamlin Engages with MoAD in the Classroom

MoAD in the Classroom (MIC) is a visual literacy and arts program offered to third-grade classrooms across the San Francisco Bay Area. The program is an evidence-based arts program that is consistent with recent research showing that coordinated school visits to museums increase children’s confidence and ability to retain knowledge while adding to their depth of knowledge in critical content areas such as social studies and history. The objective of the program is to work collaboratively with teachers, MIC Educators, and MoAD teaching artists to build an integrated arts program highlighting themes of the African Diaspora through art and culture. The program seeks to provide professional development opportunities to teachers and add to the content of the classroom teacher’s existing curriculum, while seamlessly blending into the existing learning goals of the classroom teacher.

The program includes two visits to the classroom by a MoAD in the Classroom Educator and two field trips to the Museum of the African Diaspora. During these four visits, MoAD Educator’s will facilitate a visual arts literacy-based curriculum unit based on themes of the exhibitions at MoAD, which include: an introduction to the concept of the African Diaspora, an introduction to visual arts vocabulary, activities to help students observe art and talk about art using visual arts vocabulary, and hands-on art making activities. MIC Educators meet with classroom teachers prior to the visits to ensure learning goals are aligned with the overall learning goals of the teacher.

“The program connected nicely with our social studies themes: how people move, change and discover themselves. The girls really connected with the artists and learned about expressing ideas in abstract ways. They had so much fun making their own art during the two sessions at MoAD.”

-3rd Grade Teacher, Nicole Silva

To learn more about MoAD, please visit: https://www.moadsf.org/

 

Hamlin Welcomes Lenore Skenazy, Founder of Free-Range Kids

 

Today Hamlin welcomed the insightful, intelligent, and humorous, Lenore Skenazy to speak with parents and San Francisco community members. Lenore Skenazy is the founder of the book, blog, and movement “Free-Range Kids,” that emphasizes how to raise safe, self-reliant children.

FREE RANGE KIDS has become a national movement, sparked by the incredible response to Lenore Skenazy’s piece about allowing her 9-year-old to ride the subway alone in NYC. Parent groups argued about it, bloggers blogged, spouses became uncivil with each other, and the media jumped all over it. A lot of parents today, Skenazy says, see no difference between letting their kids walk to school and letting them walk through a firing range. Any risk is seen as too much risk. But if you try to prevent every possible danger or difficulty in your child’s everyday life, that child never gets a chance to grow up. We parents have to realize that the greatest risk of all just might be trying to raise a child who never encounters choice or independence.

Ms. Skenazy shared the following thoughts (among others):

-Contemporary culture makes us think that our kids can be perfect and sells us products with that in mind.

-It is a myth to think that we can shape our kids into whatever we want.

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Hamlin Tech Program Featured in The Huffington Post

Article excerpt:

“We are never in one place with technology,” says Mark Picketts, director of program innovation and professional development for Hamlin. “We model design thinking by constantly evolving and taking tech to the next level.”

You can read the whole piece here:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/lynn-perkins/5-radically-different-app_b_14681544.html

 

Hamlin Thespians Thrive in California Competition

On February 18th our Hamlin thespians demonstrated their impressive skills at the Middle School Theater Festival in Pleasant Hill. Competing with almost 300 students (Grades 6-8) from 19 different Middle Schools from all over California, our girls earned 22 gold medals, 10 silver medals, and 4 bronze medals from the adjudicators for their monologues, scenes, original pieces, and musical solos.

Special thanks to the dedicated and talented Heidi Abbott for helping to make this success possible.