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God Grew Tired of Us

God Grew Tired of Us | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it

The story of the "Lost Boys" of Sudan is a heartbreaking and inspiring tale of youth caught in cultural and geopolitical conflicts and fored to leave their homes. The film God Grew Tired of Us " tells a moving story of young people overcoming incredible challenges and struggling to improve their own lives and those of family and friends left behind."  Linked here is a lsson plan from National Geographic "to teach students about concepts of migration, cultural mosaics, sense of place, and forces of cooperation and conflict among communities" using this 90 minute documentary.  The film can be viewed online on HULU as well as other media outlets.  

 

Tags: culture, Africa, political, conflict, war, migration, development, APHG. 


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Video -- Dive into the Deep

Video -- Dive into the Deep | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it
March 26, 2012—In a state-of-the-art submersible, National Geographic explorer-in-residence and filmmaker James Cameron reached the deepest point of the Mariana Trench, breaking a world record for the deepest solo dive.

 

For those who haven't been following National Geographic news, James Cameron (director of "Titanic" and "The Abyss") entered a submarine named DEEPSEA CHALLENGER, and dove to the bottom of the Mariana Trench, the deepest point on Earth. Enjoy this video describing this "lunar-like" environment that is so deep it is lightless and near lifeless with extreme pressure. For more on the expedition, read: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2012/03/120326-james-cameron-mariana-trench-challenger-deepest-lunar-sub-science/


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Brett Sinica's curator insight, December 10, 2013 5:06 PM

When the show South Park has made an entire episode based around you, you've certainly done something extraordinary.  James Cameron not only risked his life,  but proved a point and set a new standard in underwater exploration.  In a way, he literally went to the bottom of the earth, something that has been a mystical feat until now.  With technology advancing so quickly and people constantly pushing limits and standards it makes us wonder what will be discovered next.

Ryan Amado's curator insight, December 11, 2013 5:45 AM

It is mind boggling how much of our oceans are still to be discovered. Cameron's journey here is one that needs to be taken all over the world. We have more ocean that is unexplored than explored.  We may also find some answers to fundamental questions to human existence if we are able to research the deep sea more effectively.  It is hard to believe we have been able to research 36,000 feet below and still have more questions than answers. 

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 4:44 PM

This is a really cool video, the pressure that exist at the bottom of the ocean has kept humans trapped above a certain depth. Today technology has let us explore areas that have been off limits in the past. Letting an influential filmmaker like Cameron do this is a way to raise awareness about these expeditions to the pop culture obsessed audiences around the world.

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Lurking in the Deep

Lurking in the Deep | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it
Divers on Australia's Great Barrier Reef recently snapped rare pictures of a wobbegong, or carpet shark, swallowing a bamboo shark whole.

 

The diversity of life on this planet and the ecosystems which such creatures live in is something that continually leaves me in awe at the wonders of the natural world.


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Jennifer Brown's curator insight, December 10, 6:44 PM

The wobbegong or carpet shark has amazing coloring! I'm glad they eat other sharks and not people. The camouflage this shark has would be deadly for something not "shark" related. I'm glad someone did capture this photo though because it's probably something I'll never get to see again.

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 4:36 PM

Amazing photos, there are so many different kinds of life that exists in the Ocean. As the Great Barrier Reef falls victim to climate change and pollution, the number of species at risk is almost calculable. 

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, December 16, 1:26 PM

Australia's marine life is amazing, being able to hide by blending in to their environment is a testament to the waters that Australia has. The diverse wildlife of Australia waters is shown to be an adaptive bunch and begs the question: How many more animals are out there that we do not know of?

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Unusual ways to avoid Jakarta's traffic

Unusual ways to avoid Jakarta's traffic | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it
Jakarta's traffic is legendary and locals have now become experts at finding ways to get around the jams, with some even making money out of them.

 

The population of Indonesia is heavily concentrated on the island of Java, and the capital city of Jakarta faces a tremendous strain on it's transportation network.  This video show that resourceful people will find inventive ways to make an unworkable situation manageable. 


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Kaitlin Young's curator insight, December 12, 1:12 PM

As urban population growth rises, transportation systems will be put under greater strain. Jakarta's transportation crisis is one of the worst in the world, and people sit in traffic for hours traveling to work or to do errands. Due to incompetencies in the system, people are finding different ways to make travel easier. Motorbike cabs as well as people standing on street corners offering to be passengers in order for cars to travel in the car-pool lanes are two ways people are getting around. These underground transportation services are illegal, but their extent cannot be contained by law enforcement. 

 

Jakarta, as well as many other cities, are continuing to grow due to the global trend of people moving into urban areas. With more people than ever choosing to reside in cities instead of rural areas, new transportation systems will need to be developed in order to accommodate for growth.  

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 2:35 PM

The amount of traffic in Jakarta is staggering and the traffic itself has built up a business of making commuting to work easier. What is troubling is that the government hasn't made enough of an effort to fix the problem of traffic in its largest and most economically viable city. If Jakarta wants to keep growing the government has to step in and find a way to make getting to work realistic for Indonesians.

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, December 15, 9:38 PM

The traffic in Jakarta is insane, to be in a constant standstill on your way to work is unreal. The reporter in the video says that if the city of Jakarta continues on its current path, it could be "in a state of Paralysis" which for an entire city is not good. The traffic has, for some, become a way to make money, illegally but money nonetheless.

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Turbulence on the Mekong River

Turbulence on the Mekong River | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it
The Mekong River was once a wild and primitive backwater. Today, growing demands for electricity and rapid economic growth are changing the character of what is the world's 12th-longest river.

 

Economic progress for some often entails job loss and environmental degradation for others.  The once isolated and remote Mekong is experiences some impacts of globalization with residents having mixed feelings about the prospects. 


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Emma Lafleur's curator insight, April 30, 2013 8:03 PM

It seems to be a theme that across the bored, people are building things that directly and negatively impact the environment and the local people. There are always two sides to the problem. On one hand, the dam can help with the development of Laos because it will bring in money, but it will also destroy the fish population and therefore many fishermen will lose their jobs and people will lose a food source. It is a difficult problem because Laos needs money because there is a lot of poverty in this rural country and the fishermen do not add a whole lot to the economy, but the people need a way to survive and make money for their families as well. It's a problem that I think will be around for generation to come.

Al Picozzi's curator insight, November 26, 2013 11:35 AM

Seems the price of modernizing will be the local economy that as existed here for centuries.  It is not a small industy either, it is according to the report a billion dollar fishing industry.  However with a growing population and a demand for electricity the river is the perfect source for this power.  This globalization, like all globalization, will help some and will hurt some.  What you have to ask yourself is will it help more than it hurts?  Will it help in the long run, over time?  For everyone involoved in globalization these answeres are never the same everywhere.

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, December 15, 9:21 PM

The Mekong river is a river that many fisherman in Laos depend on for food and income. Plans to build dams that will cause the fish to seek an alternate route to migrate upstream. Critics of the dams say that the dams will cause the fish to abandon the Mekong river and go through their neighboring rivers, leaving the residents without a source of income. Many in favor of the dams say the reverse, that building the dams will boost economy and cause the area to flourish.

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A Keyhole into Burma

A Keyhole into Burma | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it
On my last afternoon in Bagan, I went in search of a meal that would serve as both lunch and dinner, before boarding my flight...

 

As a notoriously closed society, glimpses into Burma become all the more important as Burma shows signs of (possibly) opening up politically for the first time in decades.


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Cam E's curator insight, April 8, 12:23 PM

Yet another collection of pictures I'm scooping, but this time there's over 100 of them! Getting a western view into the insulated society of Burma is a rare opportunity, this shows some interesting pastimes such as Water buffalo surfing, but also things of major cultural significance, such as the importance of Buddhism.

Jessica Rieman's curator insight, April 23, 4:41 PM

This article depicts the differences and the little things that we in the USA take for granted for instance in this case it is a cd that is known as the "Western" type of misc and mass media culture that has been transported in this Burmese society.  It truly is the little things such as the Robbie Williams CD that is being depicted as not only the Western musical society but also being grouped with Bob Marley songs that would depict from the Burmese translation the Western society. And even though the people in this society don't know what the lyrics mean they can still be moved by the melody.  

Hector Alonzo's curator insight, December 15, 10:51 PM

I found the fact that the government of Burma banned certain music, it seems like an odd thing to refuse the people of the country, but we forget that it is the small things that we take for granted in the US, that are seen as luxuries in other parts of the world and that is an interesting idea to wrap your mind around.

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'Geography Education' posts Geo-coded

'Geography Education' posts Geo-coded | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it

I'm pleased to announce that for GIS Day, I created a map that has hyperlinks to regionally specific posts that I put on 'Geography Education.'  This map was created using ArcGIS Online (here's a free tutorial on how to to use ArcGIS Online tailored for K-12 educators).  This is just another way to search for materials on this site.  Feel free to embed this map on your webpage or share the link.  I'll add more tags in the future as well (just click on the icon to get a pop-up, then click on the image to see the posts).  Happy GIS Day!


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Jamie Strickland's comment, November 16, 2012 9:15 AM
How cool is this!! This will make it even easier to teach my World Regional and Global Connections courses! Thanks, Seth.
Matt Mallinson's comment, November 19, 2012 11:40 AM
Overall I think this is a good map. There are a few countries that I think could have better abbreviations, North Korea for example is labeled "N" and South Korea is labeled "SK". I went and looked for an "NK" label and there wasn't one. The map is flawed in that way because of the shortage of tools the program gives you to use. The shortage of tools also leads to many places with the same globe image or same lettering as other places. I think you did a good job with what you had available to use.
Charles Matley's comment, November 19, 2012 11:46 AM
This map is great. I The use of the national geographic map makes it more manageable and appealing to the eye. The categorization of posts into geographic locations is very clever. It could potentially be viewed as more "fun" because it is interactive.
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China's One-Child Policy

China's One-Child Policy | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it

"In 1979, the National Population and Family Planning Commission in China enacted an ambitious program that called for strict population control. Families in various urban districts are urged to have only one child—preferably a son—in order to solve the problems related to overpopulation. What has happened since then and what are its implications for the future of China?"  This is an excellent infographic for understanding population dynamics in the world's most populous country. 


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Yuanyuan Kelly's curator insight, March 4, 2013 9:27 AM

A really cool infograph regarding China's one child policy!

Brett Sinica's curator insight, November 29, 2013 2:26 PM

This was a cool graphic to explain the basics of the birth policies in China.  As a country, it is respectable for them to try and control their global footprint and growth within the country, yet some of the measures that are taken to achieve or sustain them are slightly questionable.  One of the graphics displayed having one child compared to more than one, which were have the chance of being followed by fines, confiscations of belongings, and even job loss.  In a sense, by having more (a child) they actually get less (money, goods, respect).  The goal of reducing the birth rates had actually worked since it was put in place, though it didn't come without some sort of an expense of the citizens.

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 2:04 PM

Very simple and easy to interpret graph on the One child policy in China. When thinking about the "has it been successful" section I was troubled. Yes the government came close to its goal of 1.2 Billion but do so they prevented 400 million births. So its successful because they almost hit the mark but at what costs? Natal policies can leave countries without enough people to repopulate the workforce, we have to keep this in mind. Controlling population is a dangerous project.. 

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Shanghai: 1990 vs. 2010

Shanghai: 1990 vs. 2010 | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it

Globalization has hit...hard and fast. 


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Lauren Stahowiak's curator insight, April 14, 6:35 PM

Shanghai has transformed and globalized so quickly in the last twenty years that it doesn't even look like that same place. Skies that were once seen are now blocked by skyscrapers. Buildings that still remain are overpowered and do not stand out like they once did.

James Hobson's curator insight, November 21, 7:02 PM

(East Asia topic 1)

Present-day Shanghai appears as if it could pass as New York city to the untrained eye. These photos show how globalization affects a city physically, but other aspects are impacted by globalization as well. Many megacities find themselves growing away from their origins: ways of life, employment opportunities, languages & dialects, ethnic background, and cultural traditions all find themselves fending off the incoming competition. However, there is a bright side: in many cases that which is lost from or changed in on place can find itself thriving in another - the same mechanism which brought about the original change in the first place. One could argue that 'Chinatowns' and 'Little Italy's are common examples, just as Western traits are transforming Eastern cities.

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 1:25 PM

100 years ago this type of development would have taken generations to complete. In the post industrial age we can see that in a mere 20 years a city can be completely transformed.

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God Grew Tired of Us

God Grew Tired of Us | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it

The story of the "Lost Boys" of Sudan is a heartbreaking and inspiring tale of youth caught in cultural and geopolitical conflicts and fored to leave their homes. The film God Grew Tired of Us " tells a moving story of young people overcoming incredible challenges and struggling to improve their own lives and those of family and friends left behind."  Linked here is a lsson plan from National Geographic "to teach students about concepts of migration, cultural mosaics, sense of place, and forces of cooperation and conflict among communities" using this 90 minute documentary.  The film can be viewed online on HULU as well as other media outlets.  

 

Tags: culture, Africa, political, conflict, war, migration, development, APHG. 


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Dhaka: fastest growing megacity in the world

A five-part, multimedia series on the coming dystopia that is urbanization.

 

This is a great introduction to the explosion of the slums within megacities.  This video as a part of the article is especially useful.   Click on the title to read the accompanying article.


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Brett Sinica's curator insight, November 19, 2013 2:21 PM

I recently did a project on the topic of megacities in the past, present, and future and how the natural risks they posed.  In past decades there was Tokyo, New York City, or even Mexico City.  I also covered present cities such as Shangai and Los Angeles to name a few.  The city that basically topped the growth charts in my statistics was Dhaka.  The city literally is growing like a chia pet, but with no direct plan or proper use of land.  According to future calculations, the city of Dhaka can reach roughly 23 million by 2025, that's about 600,000 new people coming in every year up until that point.  This video is just an example of how poorly planned this megacity is, and what the future holds for all of the people living there.  It's simply chaos.  There are already squatter settlements and unorganized living conditions for the current residents, picturing the population to grow even more is outrageous!

Meagan Harpin's curator insight, November 20, 2013 11:43 AM

The city of Dhaka has experienced a massivie boom in population. Both the rich and the poor are flowing into this city causing many problems that all complain the government is ignoring instead of fixing. The city is very inefficient, with traffic so bad that it is costing the city millions of dollars. There are frequent water shortages resulting in protests in the streets. There is much infrastructure throughout the city as well. But it is also represents a sense of hope to the people that are coming in and moving into the slums, that with the better jobs and money they will be able to get they can better provide for themselves or their family.

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 6, 11:23 PM

Dhaka is the fastest growing city in the world, as rich and poor people move to the city everyday. So many poor people are moving here due to the fact there is no other place worth living in Bangladesh. The city is facing many problems, such as lack of traffic signals, minimal clean drinking water for residents and horrible housing for many people. However, some feel the city’s slums offer the best chance for an improved life.   

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How did Pakistan get it's name?

How did Pakistan get it's name? | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it

"The name of the country Pakistan has a fascinating history - it is essentially an acronym!  Prior to 1947, the country now known as Pakistan was a British colony. In 1947 the United Kingdom granted independence to the region under a new name, Pakistan. The name had been developed by a group of students at Cambridge University who issued a pamphlet in 1933 called Now or Never."

 

In a country with such great ethnic divisions, a common religion is a powerful nationalizing force.  As the capital city of Islamabad's toponym powerfully states (the house or abode of Islam), religion remains an important element of national identity for Pakistanis.   


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Brett Sinica's curator insight, November 19, 2013 2:27 PM

When you take in the way that the British Empire controlled many colonies and tried to spread their culture to such diverse regions, it is no suprise that Pakistan was named essentially by a game of Scrabble.  I suppose the naming is somewhat creative and certainly unique compared to how other countries get their names, yet just picturing a group of colleagues naming a country is strange.  Though the U.K. did grant them independance, how independant were they really if they weren't even given the right to name their own land.

James Hobson's curator insight, November 11, 12:55 PM

(South Asia topic 5)

The name "Pakistan" can be thought of as more of a "Mexicali" or "Calexico" than an "Afghanistan" or "Turkmenistan." In other words, it is an acronym, which I was surprised to learn. Though is can also be translated as "land of the Paks", there is no specific group by that name. Relating back to a previous Scoop, this shows the importance of validation and reasoning, as opposed to 'blind belief.'

I think the use of an acronym for the new nation's name (a toponym) was a very intuitive option to choose; no ethnic group could complain that their name didn't make it into the name of their nation while others' did. This seems to be a form of equal representation.

Samuel D'Amore's curator insight, December 17, 1:28 AM

This article is very interesting as it explains the origin of the name Pakistan. Like many people I assumed that the name had to do with some old ethnic group but in reality its something of an acronym. Interestingly enough Pakistan is incredibly diverse and really only held together by the common Islamic religion. Names which are acronyms are more common place in government plans or cheesy infomercial products rather than the names of countries.     

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NYTimes Video: Apartheid Haunts South Africa's Schools

NYTimes Video: Apartheid Haunts South Africa's Schools | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it
Celia Dugger reports from the Kwamfundo School near Cape Town on South Africa's struggling public education system.

 

This poignant clip shows that South Africa may be in a post-apartheid era, but most certainly not a post-racial era as schools are as deeply divided as ever. 


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Wilmine Merlain's curator insight, November 5, 1:22 PM

A lot of the issues that the South African education system is facing today resembles that of students living in America who attend underfunded insitutions. A large reason to this is the lack of funding from government officials. Rather than funding education system for those who attend inner city schools, they are spending a lot of the funding in areas that are well off. Another reason why the South African school system is failing for black students is the lack of teacher attendance. Staff have become discouraged at the way the education system treats its students. Students who aspire to learn a skill and return home to save the life of their family, communities, and even their nation. 

Melissa Marie Falco-Dargitz's curator insight, November 23, 12:27 PM

It is a fight for South African children to make it through school. The loss in their lives, the lack of dedicated teachers, and a broken public school system all bring these kids down. The hope and promise seen in the eyes of these kids, who want to achieve great things, is a beacon of better things to come for this nation, if they are willing to invest in the future.

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 16, 8:06 AM

Race is definitely a determining factor in the quality and division of South Africa's public schools. Discrimination is definitely  a problem that is hard to get rid of because it is institutionalized even after public policy may change. This also has happened in the United States. Our school systems are also racially segregated even though the US has passed laws against it. After the Apartheid government took such drastic measures to strip the rights of its Black citizens, the institutions that were formed around those ideas still exist. 

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AfriGadget: Recycling

A Cameroonian boy shows the recycled parts used to construct a toy RC car.

 

I originally found this video on Afrigadget. The website seeks to show people "solving everyday problems with African ingenuity." While the developed world lives in a commercial, disposable society, Africans often need to maximize the useablity of all objects. The solutions they come up with can show students that it is not all doom and gloom in Africa, an represent a triumph of the human spirit.


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Hector Alonzo's curator insight, December 14, 7:49 PM

This video shows how the residents of undeveloped regions of thee world use creativity to give  a chance of hope to the country. By creating things they prove that art can come from places that one would least expect. Using some of their limited resources, this boy made a car that can be steered and is functional. To see a project in everyday objects is a true sign of ingenuity and hope.

Samuel D'Amore's curator insight, December 16, 11:38 PM

This video shows that while we assume poor underprivileged nations are simply stagnate and their citizens simply spend their time consumed with their suffering is wrong. While these children don't have access to toys or quality materials they still show great creativity and ingenuity by creating their own toy using what ever materials they have at hand. 

Wilmine Merlain's curator insight, December 18, 4:00 PM

Africa has an advantage as being one of the youngest continent in the world. With child innovative projects such as this, in the near future, these kids will be able to compete with the rest of the world on a global spectrum. They are not bound by their circumstances but are finding new ways to create a better future for themselves

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Six-Legged Giant Finds Secret Hideaway, Hides For 80 Years

Six-Legged Giant Finds Secret Hideaway, Hides For 80 Years | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it
The insect is so large — as big as a human hand — it's been dubbed a "tree lobster." It was thought to be extinct, but some enterprising entomologists scoured a barren hunk of rock in the middle of the ocean and found surviving Lord Howe Island...

 

Island Biogeography is endlessly fascinating and provides some of the most striking species we have on Earth.  The physical habitat is fragmented and the genetic diversity is limited.  Within this context, species evolve to fill ecological niches within their particular locale.  This NPR article demonstrates the story of but one of these incredible species that never could have evolved on the continents.  In modern society, more extinctions are happening on islands than anywhere else as 'specialist' species are in greater competition with 'generalists.' 


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Elizabeth Bitgood's curator insight, April 24, 8:33 PM

This article freeked me out at first.  The idea of hand sized bugs is just…yuck!  But after reading the article I found it very interesting.  That these bugs managed to survive on a single bush on an island isolated from the world.  The description of them as acting un-buglike by peering off into couples that sleep cuddling with each other is just kind of cool.

Joseph Thacker 's curator insight, April 25, 10:35 AM

On Ball's Pyramid the stick insect is different than any other insect I have seen. The size of it is terrifying, as it as big as a human hand. There are many different kinds of animals or insects someone can find on remote islands, islands such as Madagascar, Australia and even on this small island, which is located off of Australia's coast in the Pacific.    

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 4:40 PM

Isolation can lead to some remarkable examples of evolution. This "tree lobster" is an example of that. On an island cut off from many predators and hold little resources, the tree lobster has found a way to survive.

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TODALSIGS

TODALSIGS | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it

TODALSIGS is an acronym for remembering the most basic elements of a good map.  This interactive briefly explains what each of the letters represents and how it is connected to map-making.  If this particular introduction is either too advanced or too basic for your students, simply run an internet search for the term TODALSIGS to find many other lesson plans and resources that might be more applicable to your institution (including this example-rich slideshow).  


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Seth Dixon's curator insight, September 13, 2013 2:27 PM

TODALSIGS is an acronym for remembering the most basic elements of a good map.  This interactive briefly explains what each of the letters represents and how it is connected to map-making.  If this particular introduction is either too advanced or too basic for your students, simply run an internet search for the term TODALSIGS to find many other lesson plans and resources that might be more applicable to your institution (including this example-rich slideshow).

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Boxing in the Shadow of Pacquiao

Boxing in the Shadow of Pacquiao | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it
Young men in the Philippines, inspired by the light welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao, are training to escape poverty, boxing for a few dollars more than they make as subsistence farmers.

 


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Brett Sinica's curator insight, December 10, 2013 3:51 PM

This guy is super quick, he has seen his day but he is surely a legend especially in the Philippines.  When it is hard for people in poverty to have in interest in something, due to lack accessibility or other reasons, it is good to have someone to look up to.  Pacquiao can act as role model to not only people in poverty, but for anyone who is willing to work hard to succeed.  I have always believed that sport can bring anyone together, but resources such as a ball or equipment may be hard to come by.  Boxing is great in this situation, all you essentially need is your body and something to hit.

James Hobson's curator insight, December 3, 1:26 PM

(Southeast Asia topic 1)

For a growing number of Filipinos, boxing has become not only a hobby, but also a source of income and an opportunity for a better life. Despite the sacrifice, obstacles, and training that they must face, the determination still exists, meaning that their current occupations as farmers is not enough. This is true not only in the monetary sense, but also at a personal level. To me it seems as if many of these aspiring boxers are relatively surprised at the concept of doing something that you deeply enjoy to bring in an income. In this way, boxing may be one of those factors which can help to ease the cycle of poverty in the region.

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 4:01 PM

For those who live in poverty access to skills that allow for upward mobility and prosperity are limited. So even though the odds of becoming a world class boxer are slim, it seems more attractive than being a poor farmer for the rest of your life. In poor areas like the Philippines young people hope to become more wealthy and the opportunity to do is so small that they will train for that one in a million chance of making it as a professional boxer.

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Planting Rice

Thailand...

Feel free to mute the commentary...this video demonstrates the truly 'back-breaking' work that is a part of paddy rice farming. 


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James Hobson's curator insight, December 3, 2:01 PM

(Southeast Asia topic 4)

I think this goes to show that certain people just don't realize how easy parts of their lives are until they've either experienced or come to understand the lives of others. But then again, that could be a matter of stance. What to many business people, for example, may seem as back-breaking labor might be the polar opposite to outdoor lovers. Though obviously ricing is a labor-intensive task, I'm sure some people would prefer picking the crop to being stuck in an office all day.

    On a slightly different topic, it's extremely ironic how those who make basic life necessities possible (such as rice farmers) are paid (and even valued) so little compared to those in other occupations. Life can exist without luxury cars and fine jewelry, but not without staple foods like rice. In this way, these farmers are who really keep the populations fed.

Samuel D'Amore's curator insight, December 17, 4:46 PM

This video truly highlights how some forms of agriculture today are still without mechanization and require incredible labor to harvest. Where we make use of massive machines that render planting and harvesting of crops incredibly easy the farmers of Thailand must rely solely on man power. Rice is already a difficult crop to grow as it must be dry at some points of it's growth and wet at others. This is just something to consider when eating ones rice at dinner. 

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 17, 10:41 PM

Doing this all day must be exhausting. To imagine women and men who do this for their entire lives makes me respect their dedication and work ethic. It also makes me think of the toll it must take on your body doing that day in and day out.

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Does democracy stifle economic growth?

TED Talks Economist Yasheng Huang compares China to India, and asks how China's authoritarian rule contributed to its astonishing economic growth -- leading to a big question: Is democracy actually holding India back?

 

This compelling TedTalk explores the links between economic development and governmental style, oversight and influence.  While the speaker mainly discusses politics and economics in the context of China and India, Pakistan, Russia, North and South Korea are all mentioned.      


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Matt Mallinson's comment, November 21, 2012 11:11 AM
Democracy can stifle economic growth. War will definitely stifle economic growth. North Korea doesn't look like they're going to stop fighting South Korea, if only they would combine their lands, they would probably be a much better nation as one.
Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 2:17 PM

For Americans the idea that democracy can be anything but sunshine and rainbows is a hard pill to swallow. There is evidence that supports the contrary. Although democracy has the moral high ground, authoritative governments can grow at a faster rate because it does not have to address resistance where democracy fosters debate and dissent. In India, millions of people will not agree on everything and therefore progress can be slow going. 

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Hiroshima after the Atomic Bomb

Hiroshima after the Atomic Bomb | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it
360° panoramic photography by Harbert F. Austin Jr.. Visit us to see more amazing panoramas from Japan and thousands of other places in the world.

 

The interactive panorama is eerily compelling...this is a haunting image. 


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Cam E's curator insight, April 8, 11:26 AM

The thing that always stumps me about pictures after bombings and other disasters is the reason why some things are left standing. Here we see buildings destroyed and utterly annihilated as far as the eye can see, yet the telephone poles are still standing in some areas. The picture can't capture the true scope of the destruction, but it also shows how destruction is a bit random in its own way.

Lauren Stahowiak's curator insight, April 14, 6:32 PM

This panoramic photograph shows the devastation of Hiroshima after the Atomic Bomb. Everything in sight is destroyed. Houses and poles that were lucky enough to still be standing are even lost causes. 

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 15, 2:10 PM

These images are chilling and sad. The United States is the only country to ever use the Atomic Bomb on another country, a status I am not proud of. We can see why for 60 years people lived in constant fear during the Cold War. Also some would argue that the Atom Bomb has prevented world wars since WWII. It makes you fearful of the one leader who has access to A bombs and chooses to use them.

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Industrial geography and internal markets

China's reputation as a low-cost manufacturer hasn't translated into low-cost prices. Many goods, particularly luxury items, have higher price tags in China than abroad. One economist blames the transportation system and corruption.

 

Industrial geography in today's climate shows that China has clear economic advantages over most of the world to manufacture good cheaply.  Why would this not necessarily translate to cheap consumer goods for China's domestic market?  High taxes, steep internal shipping costs and a market flooded with knock-offs all contribute to this paradox. 


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Matt Mallinson's comment, November 19, 2012 11:08 AM
To be honest I always thought items were made cheap in China due to all the items I see with the "Made in China" tag. This was interesting to me and definitely gave me knowledge on the topic.
Meagan Harpin's curator insight, October 9, 2013 1:29 PM

Almost everyone knows that products are cheaper to produce in China which is why so many of our products are manufactured there today. BUt one may think that would mean it was cheap for Chinese consumers to purshase as well right? Surprisingly no, it actually costs more for them. This is because the country has a high transportation fee and the government is corrupt, CHina also has a very high tax on their products. But because of the major price differences much of the Chinese population purchases their products while traveling overseas.   

Marissa Roy's curator insight, December 5, 2013 1:37 PM

Although the products we buy from China are cheap for us, it is not necessarily cheap for the ones making it. The tax on goods in China is very expensive. It is also because the government is plagued with corruption, and that is where the taxes come in. It is suprising that many cannot afford the goods they make.

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The Rise of Megacities

The Rise of Megacities | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it
By 2025, the developing world will be home to 29 megacities.

 

Through this interactive mapping feature will rich call-out boxes, the reader can explore the latest UN estimates and forecasts on the growth of megacities (urban areas with over 10 million residents).  These 'cities on steroids' have been growing tremendously since the 1950s and present a unique set of geographic challenges and opportunities for their residents. 

 

Tags: urban, megacities.


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Matt Mallinson's comment, November 19, 2012 10:27 AM
If that's what is predicted for 2025, how populated will our world be by 2050? Scary to think about.
Seth Dixon's curator insight, January 16, 2013 12:28 PM

Through this interactive mapping feature with rich call-out boxes, the reader can explore the latest UN estimates and forecasts on the growth of megacities (urban areas with over 10 million residents).  These 'cities on steroids' have been growing tremendously since the 1950s and present a unique set of geographic challenges and opportunities for their residents. 


Download the data yourself as a CSV file and your can import this into ArcGIS online and symbolize your map with any of the columns in the dataset.  


Tags: urban, megacities.


Peter Steffan's curator insight, October 9, 2013 5:00 PM

Very cool!

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South Asian floods take economic toll

Environmental degradation, seasonally high rainfall, a low elevation profile and climate change combine in a very bad way for Bangladesh.  Flooding, given these geographic characteristics, is essentially a regular occurence.   For a more in-depth look at these issues from the same media outlet, see: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wj0iZiivYJc&feature=player_embedded#!


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Matt Mallinson's comment, November 7, 2012 3:41 PM
The people that live here understand that they will have flooding every year. They're smart to build elevated roads so they have some way of transportation over flooded areas. It's weird to think that this is a normal thing for them and for us we close everything down and wait in our houses.
Elizabeth Allen's comment, December 7, 2012 12:17 AM
In an area already stricken with poverty, the floods manifest the problems. High rains and low elevations cause massive floods in areas such as Bangladesh and Nepal. Most areas do not receive aid, especially the remote areas of the villages.
Paige McClatchy's curator insight, December 14, 2013 4:55 PM

The "socio-economics of flooding" is a side of the natural disaster we don't normally think about. People most affected by floods tend to live in areas with poor infrastructure and large populations. Their displacement to cities, like Dhaka, has incredible cost. For both the family and the new place they relocate to. 

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Pakistan Trees Cocooned in Spider Webs

Pakistan Trees Cocooned in Spider Webs | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it
Documented by an aid worker, millions of spiders took to the trees to spin their webs after heavy floods inundated Pakistan in 2010.

 

Besides being an aesthetic wonder, this image is a great way to start a discussion about so many distinct issues. The floods of 2010 devastated the human population, killing over 2,000. These same floods also altered the ecosystem as spiders have needed to adapt to their new inundated landscape as well. For the human population, this has had the shocking benefit of lowering the incidents of malaria since the spiders have more effectively limited the mosquito population. Interconnections...geographic information are a spider web of interconnections between nature and humanity.


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Cam E's curator insight, April 1, 11:07 AM

As cool as it is creepy. I'm reminded of entire fields of spider webs after similar heavy flooding in Australia. I certainty would get nowhere near those trees if this were to happen locally.

Kaitlin Young's curator insight, December 12, 2:29 PM

Intense flooding occurring in December 2010 left 2,000 people dead in Pakistan. The flood waters left both the people, and the insects, with no where to go. Spiders, trying to escape from the flood waters, climbed into trees and bushes in order to avoid drowning. Almost every type of vegetation was covered in webs, making the landscape appear as though it was planed in cotton candy trees. While definitely peculiar, the massive amounts of spider webbing averted a mosquito crisis. While something positive did come from this occurrence, most of the trees were killed since their leaves were smothered by the webbing and unable to collect sunlight. Now the landscape contains little to know shade for the people living their. 

 

When observing geographies, it is important to understand not just the people, but the other organisms that affect a place, and how they too can make an effect. 

Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 16, 8:19 AM

These floods damaged the ecosystems in Pakistan. It also manipulated the natural order of things. With he heavy floods lots of mosquito were attracted by the water and then millions of spiders followed for food. What resulted are these remarkable images. For those who suffer from arachnophobia this may their worst nightmare but it has an odd beauty to it.

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The Golden Temple of Amritsar

The Golden Temple of Amritsar | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it
The Golden Temple is the holiest shrine of the Sikh religion. It is also home to one of the largest free eateries in the world.

 

This two-minute video clip is an effective portal to alternative religious traditions on the South Asian subcontinent.   While students might not at first relate to the theologies of diverse religious traditions, they connect with the underlying ethics of many world religions.  This video is an effective tool to help them gain greater cultural understanding and demystify unfamiliar cultural practices. 


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Matt Mallinson's comment, November 7, 2012 3:25 PM
I like that the Sikh religion allows people of all religions to visit their holy temple. These people seem like good people.
Brian Nicoll's curator insight, December 12, 2012 1:18 AM

I was impressed by the fact that the people of the Sikh religion are very accepting of people who remain outside their system of beliefs.  They acknowledge the fact that there are other religions and don't see any reason to treat them with anything but respect.  These people are most definitely good people.

Samuel D'Amore's curator insight, December 17, 2:46 AM

This temple is amazing because it is not only a place of worship but also a huge free eatery. This temple plays a role in the poor relief of the area because all poor people are welcome to come and eat. The fact they welcome those of different faiths as well into this temple of worship is something that is really remarkable because of the fear and distrust many faiths seem to have of one another. If only more places of worship acts as this one.

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The Ethiopian town that's home to the world's greatest runners

The Ethiopian town that's home to the world's greatest runners | Classwork Portfolio | Scoop.it
What do Kenenisa Bekele, Tirunesh Dibaba, Derartu Tulu and Fatuma Roba have in common, apart from being Olympic gold medallists?

 

What is it about this place that has produced so many world- class runners?   This is a great profile of the "Town of Runners."


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Seth Dixon's comment, April 12, 2012 10:53 PM
And I was feeling proud of my 7.8 mile run today.
Matt Mallinson's comment, November 5, 2012 2:50 PM
It's amazing to me that some of the world's fastest runners come from such a poor place and a very misunderstood place. Good for them.