Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Who is this?

timi test

Question of the day

Here is a graph of the Earth's temperature over the last 100 years.

(graph taken from

Watch this NBC video.

Assuming that this is the new normal, what do you expect to happen based on what you know about how exponential relationships work.  Based on the doubling time, when would you expect the average global temperature to reach one full degree?

Please post your comment.

The Raven

The Raven

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Discussion question (for credit) plus entertainment from the choir drop outs

We I was in school all these years ago I was told be a teacher that the most important idea known to man was compounding interest (exponential growth).  What did they mean and what are the consequences to society and human kind of this mathematical relationship?

Think about this and then respond to this posting.  Here is some music for you to ponder first.
Choir Drop Outs Seek Revenge

Monday, October 29, 2012

Football schedule error - Please pass this on

I made the practice schedule for the year based on the first schedule I saw come out and forgot to revise it when a new won came out.  We have games on Thursday and Friday this week.  We will hold practice tomorrow and not Wednesday.  EXTRA HELP will be on Wednesday during lunch plus a full class period for help on Thursday.
These are the most winnalbe games left on our schedule, so it would be best if we have as many starters be at the games as possible.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Monday, October 22, 2012

Homework Due 10 . 23

ACE 42, 43 and 49-51 in the last ace section

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Sea Camp 2012 Day 4

Sea Camp day 4

After yesterday’s bright sunshine and warm temperatures, the morning greeted us with a scene more out of a Wes Craven movie then the Endless Summer.  The city and Fiesta Island were completely overrun a thick blanket of clouds and strong winds that promised to churn the sea turn even the heartiest of stomachs. 

Breakfast was the usual delicious affair with trays full of Danish, sausage, eggs, and waffles.  Once the bags were packed, team B shoehorned themselves into the familiar white and silver Sea Camp vans for the ten minute drive to the marina.

When I walk in the spot (yeah), this is what I see (ok)
Everybody stops and they staring at me
I got passion in my face and I ain't afraid to show it, show it, show it, show it

I'm At Sea Camp and I know it

Once all seat backs and tray tables were in there up right and lock positions and all carry-on luggage was securely stowed in the overhead bins or under the seat in front of us, the Sea Camp crew explained where all of the emergency exits were located (over the side of the boat once donning a life vest), that any unplanned feeding of fish (throwing-up) was to be done OVER the side of the boat, not the ships head, and that should the oxygen masks be deployed that you should place the mask your own face before assisting a small child, or someone acting like a small child.  Hum, I guess that would mean I would be the last one on the boat to get an oxygen mask.  The safety instructions were so interesting that a huge male sea lion came and popped his head out of the water to listen, pose for photos, wish us well, and remind us to write our parents frequently.  So far the high winds didn’t change the marina’s water typically glass surfaces.  Perhaps things out past the breakers things would be as bad as we thought. 

The first thirty minutes of motoring was uneventful unfortunately yet the staffs predictions of a mad dash to the gunnels didn’t happen either.  The seas were angry my friends, but we were headed with the swell which helped keep breakfast where it belonged.  This season’s boat trips have yielded precious few animal sightings and at first we feared that the dolphins had performed so much for yesterday’s group that they would have nothing left to show us.  As luck would have it, one of the largest pods of common dolphins seen this year was spotted by the Sea Camp owner, Phil, from his office window at Scripps Oceanic Research Facility and radioed to the ship’s captain so the chase was on.  The Sea Watch streaked through the water thanks to the strong tail wind and friendly currents that pushed us towards the commons and in no time we had caught the pod who very kindly jumped and squeaked for pictures.  When the captain rendezvous with a pod he will slow to their preferred bow surfing pace and chart a course that matches that of the dolphins.  The dolphins were headed in the opposite direction which headed us into the swells so everyone on the bow watching the show had to endure the bow spray that soaked even the counselors who normally are able to avoid getting even a drop on their clothes.  The change in direction was the first real challenged for campers and I’m happy to say they passed with flying colors.  It also made taking pictures impractical and staying warm impossible. After circling in a spot that has seen whales in the week to no avail, the ship turned into the wind and headed for home.
Under normal sea conditions, the boat would anchor outside of La Jolla Cove and snorkel in the world famous La Jolla inlets and caves, but the wind and surf made anchoring in open water unsafe, so we motored back to Mission Point where we dropped anchor and snorkeled in Mission bay.  The water was as opaque as yesterday so we weren’t able to see or pull up much marine life for the students to see, touch, and taste.   To finish our water time, the students had a battle of the sexes in a game of king of the raft which was won decisively by the girls (it always is).
As soon as everyone got back on the boat and changed, we were treated trolling in the mission channel.  This is something that I have never done and I am pleased to report that it was really exciting. The bottom scrapping net caught at least a dozen sting rays, ten California Spiny Lobsters, Calico Bass, Giant Kelp Fish, Pipe Fish, and a two spotted octopus.  After a brief description of the specific adaptations that have evolved to allow survival, the students were able to pet and hold everything that was liberated from the bottom of the sea.  Don’t worry, the sting rays didn’t sting and the lobsters behaved themselves.  

Even though the boat trip wasn’t what we hoped due to the adverse conditions, the yield by the end of the day far exceeded our optimistic expectations.  Thankfully we only had a few who got sick in conditions that the Sea Camp staff had openly warned me my produce an epidemic of sea sickness.  The kids did great, learned a ton, and had the time of their lives.  As I write this report, the kids are engaged in the Sea Camp end of trip rite, the camp fire.  I hope they left some s’more for me.

See you at the airport,


Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Sea Camp 2012 Day 3 - Sea World and Kayaking

Sea Camp 2012 Day 3 Group B

Kayaking, Plankton Lab, and Sea World

The fog that blanketed the coast on our Monday arrive was a faint memory as the glowing sliver of new moon faded into the orange red sunrise over the distant eastern hills and mountains of Southern California. It may read October 17th on the calendar, but heat haze lifting off of the asphalt made it feel more like August 17th.    For group B most of the Marquee Sea Camp activities were either ahead of behind us so the mood among the students was one of relaxed anticipation.  Who needs snorkeling, boogie boarding, or dissection labs when you have kayaking, plankton lab, and Sea World on the docket? 

In years past, Kayaking mostly filled the space in between the plankton lab and the departure for Sea World.  This year the activity took center stage in the morning schedule.  Everyone made it on to their red hard plastic double kayaks without flipping which is a real feat and glided into the middle of the bay outside the Camps front doors.  After forming a ‘kayak raft’ we discussed the adaptations and hardships that animals must overcome to survive in the man-made bay just north of downtown San Diego.  Due to the shallowness, large surface area to volume ratio, and storm run-off, the temperature and salinity of the bay will vary widely.  The species that use Mission Bay as a home and nursery must be hardy enough to withstand all of these constant changes to thrive.  Once understanding how humankind’s actions affect the habitat for these animals, we played a simulation game called evisceration.  One of the adaptations that the fascinating sea cucumber has when threatened is to eviscerate(expels) it’s intestines so that the predator becomes distracted by the lure of a free meal so the sea cucumber can escape.  In our adapted kayak game, students were to get a blue ball from the water and into one of the two counselors yellow kayaks for a point.  There were two teams and kayakers could pass the ball from one team member to another.  The defending team without the ball tried to block passes and they could force boat carrying the ball to eviscerate the ball if they rammed the ball carriers boat with their own.  Once the ball was in the open water, boats scrabbled to take possession and start the process again.  The surprise star of the game was Ally who was our group’s top scorer.  The game within the game was to see which boat could capsize the most.  I believe the top team found the harsh Mission Bay water eight times. 

The Plankton lab was riveting, but we will move on to the MEGA fauna that we witnessed in the afternoon.
 I am afraid that my words can’t do the wonders of Sea World justice.  To see an Orca up close is truly awe inspiring.  Their size, strength, and intelligence is unfathomable and watching the shows and the animals during their break times only scratches the surface of these top predators.  In addition to orca tanks, there is also Shark Encounter, Turtle Rescue, Penguin Encounter, Wild Artic (beluga whales, polar bears, and walruses), bat rays, sea lions, otters, bottle nose dolphins, and a top notch aquarium.  The shows are the real attraction.  You have the Shamu’s One World, Blue Horizon (dolphins and divers), Sea Lion show (the most entertaining), and the pet show.  Finely, if the animals don’t float your boat, then you always can cool off on the water coaster Atlantis, air out on the roller coaster Manta, or just get soaked on the Ship Wreck Rapids.  I can’t possible write about all the things to see and do, so just look at the pictures and enjoy. 

The most unique experience hands down goes to Trevor Buetner who got to participate in the Dolphin Interaction program.  Again a picture (or 194) is worth a thousand words, so please vicariously enjoy his time with the Sea World Dolphins.  In addition to working with an Atlantic Bottlenose Dolphins, Trevor and I got to go back stage to feed the pilot whales.  Dolphins and pilot whale interactions in a 90 minute span, truly a once in a lifetime experience.

From sunny and hot San Diego, good night and good luck.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Sea Camp Day 2 Report

Sea Camp Day 2 Group A
The slide show is on the bottom of this post.

As the sun dawned on what was to be another sun soaked day in Mission Bay, anxious students, to excited to sleep but too tired to move, opened there eyes and hoped that the counselors would allow them to fain sleep for just a couple more minutes before greeting the second day of camp.  No such luck.  The openly depressed staff (35-24) moped into the complex and aroused all to the smells of frying bacon and eggs with a side of French toast.  Ah the life of a Sea Camper!

Today the A and B groups had flipped schedules.  In the morning A completed the lecture style fish lab while B group had their introduction to snorkeling at Mission Point along with INSANE seining.  We met at The Point for a group lunch of…sandwiches and sprout ball then B inseined and snorkeled while group A had squid dissection (group A did this lab last night and you should have seen Michael V’s squid ink mustache). 

Students in the fish lab learned about three classy classes of fish, breaded, blackened, and tacoed. OK, they were really Agnatha (jawless), Chandricthyes (Sharks), Osteichthyes (boney fish).  With all the discussion of fish and their various adaptations, the students grow quite hungry, so after grumbling tummies louder than the airplanes taking off over head, the staff allowed students to snack on the available fare…Hag fish mucus.  Not surprisingly Conner was the first to volunteer, however Marina beat him to the ooze and had the honor of being the first of many Sea Camp dinners at the Hag fish CafĂ©.  

 Supposedly it tastes like salt water, but I wouldn’t know, the stuff is disgusting!  Everyone’s favorite fish turned out to be the shark (ok, that’s not too shocking) and the shark portion of the lab didn’t disappoint.  Did you know that every year sharks kill 5 to 8 humans and humans kill 250,000,000 sharks?  Instead of Shark Week on the Discovery Channel, perhaps we should provide sharks with a human week. 
I can just envision little tiger shark pups in the seven seas hiding under the comforter when Nana gets handed a menu.   
As Sean quipped “I am a big bad human!  Fear Me! 
Much of this over harvesting of sharks is due to the popularity of shark’s fin soup.  Sharks fins will fetch as much as $250 a pound in the markets of Chinatown in San Francisco so fisherman will catch the shark, cut all the fins off and then return the helpless fish to its unenviable fate in the open ocean without the ability to swim.  This fact hits home for me since one of my favorite dishes as a kid was sharks fin soup at the local Chinese restaurant.  The fin didn’t taste too good, it is fairly tasteless cartilage after all, but my father and I thought it was cool to be eating shark.  I have tried without success to apologies to each and every shark that I have met since, but they seem to just want to swim away in disgust.  The coolest part of the shark lab is the shark tank.  The circular tank is the home of four Horned sharks, two leopard sharks, two spotted guitar fish, and the only horse shoe crab known to man that actually prefers to lay about on its back on the sand taking in the SoCal rays.  Ah the life of a Sea Camper!  Porsche, one of the counselors, caught one of the Horn sharks and presented it to every student to touch so that the students could feel the epidermal dentils (sharks skin). 

After shark wrangling, on came the Pacific Mackerel dissection.  Students dissected the hearts of their mackerels along with an inspection of the stomach (they found scales from their prey fish, and gills, yummy! I think this is why stray cats come to live near camp.  

Once everyone completely lost their appetites, it was on to lunch at Mission point.     

We pause for a brief radio break in the Sea Camp vans.  Click here for music.
OMG that song will never ever ever get out of my head!

Sprout ball, a modified dodge ball game that never ends, supplied its usual thrills.  Conner, Trevor, and Mikael dominated the Sea Camp staff. 

After getting hot and sweaty the best way to cool down is to immediately get into a cold water wetsuit, so we all scrambled to the neatly piled stacks of neoprene.  Yesterday we were challenged with simply getting them on to go boogie board, today we upped the ante and had to not only get the suit on correctly (no boys, the zipper goes in the back) AND put on a hooded vest with a mask and snorkel.  Once this was accomplished we divided into two groups, while one group snorkeled, the other seined in the shallows and eel grass.  Seining is an ancient method of catching fish.  Two people hold wooden stakes that are attached to a net.  The net has one side that is held at the top of the water by floats while the other end weighted side of the net scraps the sea floor.  While the net is held taught, the rest of the group links arms and methodically marches through the water towards the net.  Frightened fish try to escape the chorus line by swimming … right into the net. We had quite a hull.  We netted a dozen giant kelp fish, bass and pike fish. 

Other than the largest kelp fish I have never ever ever seen caught in the net, the coolest part was one of the male pike fish (like sea horses, the males carry the young) gave birth to a score of babies.  They were tiny, but fascinating.  So fascinating that belly flops were in order.

The snorkeling group had the opportunity to see, touch, and even taste the local sea life that calls the rocky Mission Point home.  Some of the highlights were an octopus, brittle stars, sea stars, sea hares (although they move more like a tortoise), and flitting Garibaldi’s.  But before we could discover the wonders of the rock reef, we first had to navigate through long thick patches of eel grass that seemed to entangle some of the girls quicker and tighter then devil's snare.  Luckily eel grass's kryptonite is a good loud scream, so we were serenaded throughout the snorkel.  How did the song go

You go talk to your friends talk
To my friends talk to me
But we are never ever ever ever getting back together

Like ever...

Ahhhh, that's much better.  Interestingly enough, the octopus had taken up residence in an old heineken bottle that he decorated with a colorful assortment of barnacles and sea weeds.  Eric Carle would have been proud.  Another hit was the giant limpet.  The sea camp guides swear that the giant Limpet or whale’s eye does in fact taste like sweet potato, but Mike was just happy to get the seven years of good luck that comes when you lick the mollusk.  Yummy and good for you too!  Too bad the same can’t be said of Brussels sprouts.  All the snorkeling was just a tease for what is to come on the boat trips which start tomorrow. 

We ended the day with a quick football practice on the dirt field, the sea camp store, and a down home chicken fried dinner with all the fixings.  

Sea Camp 2012 Day One Slide Show

Base Camp
Boogie Boarding @ La Jolla
Tide Pooling @ Bird Rock (fog coming in)

Greetings from Sunny San Diego!

We all arrived at DIA around 7 am, although some were delayed a bit by the amount of traffic – Monday morning seemed to have many business travelers.  We got checked in at the Southwest check in, then lined up and headed for the security.  Mr. Framke led the way, with 49 students behind, Mrs. Du Houx bringing up the rear.  We got to security – along with many other people, so we went back and forth in the zigzag cue, until we finally reached the point where we took off our shoes and put our stuff in bins – about 45 minutes later.

 Instead of walking through a metal detector, you now go into this glass box, raise your arms above your head and the box examines you – I am assuming this is the X-ray security they were talking about last year.  Several students had to go back through this scanning two, three, or four times, but eventually we all got through.  One student had metal decorations on her skirt and had to wait for Mrs. Du Houx to come and be her guardian before the female security guard patted her down.  Two other female students had to wait for Mr. Framke to come and allow the security to go through their back packs and remove the hair gel they had put in the carrier-on-bag just before they left – needless to say the gel was confiscated. 

Once through security, we lined up again for counting, and took the train to concourse C.  Luckily our gate was close to the train entrance, because the plane was about to board.  Students had five minutes to use the restroom and fill their water bottles with Denver water before we started to board.  One student had lost his boarding pass, but he still had his luggage claim tags, so the lady at the check-in was very nice and reissued his boarding pass.

We were able to occupy the back of the plain and students were kept busy working on the algebra sheet Mr. Framke had passed out as we boarded.  The flight was smooth – the views spectacular – and the students were well behaved.  All seats were filled, and several passengers were decked out in their Bronco attire, I assume they were going to tonight’s game of Broncos vs. San Diego. The captain wished Denver well – I guess he is a Bronco fan too.

Once we landed, and started leaving the plane, Ashby noticed that some students had left their pencil bags and a hoodie, which she collected – thanks Ashby for watching out for your fellow students.  We went to the luggage carousels, all bags made it on time.  Stephanie from Sea Camp met us in baggage, and led us outside where we made a large mound of our bags and waited for the Sea Camp vans and trailer to arrive, which they did a few minutes later.  Students were loaded into the 14 passenger vans while Sea Camp staff loaded up the luggage in the trailer and the equipment van.  It took a while for us to make it to Fiesta Island, due to heavy traffic, but we finally made.  It was a sunny warm day – the weather report says that we should have warm clear weather all week.

Once at Sea Camp base camp at Fiesta Island, students were given an orientation about Sea Camp, and were then permitted to move into their dorm rooms.  The rooms were switched from what we have used the last several years, the girls are in the one large room dorm; the boys are in the two room dorm.  After getting situated and putting their bathing suits on under dry clothes, and getting sized for a wet suite, we had lunch.  Sea Camp has changed their catering company so instead of the subway style bread for lunch time sandwiches, students had the choice of different breads with each type of sandwich – chicken salad, ham, turkey, peanut butter and jelly and many more plus Fritos, a cookie and either an apple or orange. 

After lunch we loaded up in the vans and headed to La Jolla shores.  The coastal fog was rolling into Fiesta Island as we were leaving, but it was not present as we drove north.  Group B got to boogie board first, while group A did a beach walk, then the groups switched.  After bookie boarding, students were to change out of their wet bathing suits into dry clothes and put on their close toed shoes. 

We headed off to the tide pools at around 3, since today was a New Moon, the tidal range is large, with the low (spring) tide at about 3 pm.  Students were put into group of four or five students each with a bucket.  We headed down a large cement staircase to the tide pools, and the fun began.  Hermit crabs and fiddler crabs were all over the place, as were sea anemone, and algae.  Groups started screaming in excitement as they found baby fish (including a baby Garibaldi), small octopi, chitons, sea stars, brittle stars, sea hares, and much more.  We had a few casualties; Brandon and Collin were lifting up a rock, but somehow managed to cut both of their hands on it.  A Sea Camp staff person was right there to help clean up the hands and bandage them after disinfecting them.  There was a rumor started that Brandon had cut his palm because he was trying to catch a baby shark (about three feet long – sometimes longer depending on who was telling the tale) but the shark had slipped through his hand and sliced it open.  It was amazing how many students believed this whopper – at first – even though none of the pools were big enough to house a three foot long animal.

After collecting for some time, the group sat down and discussed the types of stresses that affect animals in tidal pools and looked at the cool animals we had found.  The animals were released before we returned to the vans.  As we sat and looked at things, the coastal fog moved in to the point that we could no longer see the water, the waves and the people paddle boarding off the shore from the tidal pools.

We returned to the vans, and drove through more traffic to return to Sea Camp base on Fiesta Island.  There was no fog south of the tidal pools so we had a clear view of Sea World and the area surrounding Sea Camp.  Back at camp, students helped with the wet-suit washing, then had free time to take showers, call home and work on their Sea Camp Journals.  Mr. Framke, Nolan and Peter went for a cross country workout/run in preparation for the state meet.

Dinner consisted of a tossed salad with dressing, lasagna, garlic bread, green beans and jelly for dessert.  As students finished eating; students had a little bit of down time before tonight’s labs. Tonight, one group is scheduled to do the fish lab, the other the invertebrate lab.  The air was chilly, so students were encouraged to put on their hoodies and long pants.

Note: This report will be put on Mrs. Du Houx’s Science Blog for today’s 8th grade entry.