Weekly Update for 11/21/14

Blog Posting for 11/21/2014

This week news4kids.org aired the following stories:

Tokyo Robot Show K-2

Australian Outback Opera 3-5

Orangutan Turns 1 at San Diego Zoo K-2

Plastic Bottle Houses in Columbia 3-5


Newscast: Tokyo Robot Show K-2

Essential Question: What purposes do robots serve?

Vocabulary: Star Wars, ATM machine, robotic device, assembly line, NASA, rover, humanoid

Learning Objectives:

         – Identify some uses for robots in daily life.

– Define a space rover as a robot that is sent into outer space to explore and collect            data.

Summary: Much like in the popular movie Star Wars, robots are starting to become more common in day-to-day life. We visit the Tokyo Design Expo and learn about the latest and greatest new robots on display. Students also learn about how robots are used in day-to-day life.


Newscast: Australian Outback Opera 3-5

Essential Question: What is Opera in the Outback?

Vocabulary: outback, wildlife, amphitheater, dingoes, kangaroos, kookaburras, Dafne, La Traviata

Learning Objectives:

         –Define the Australian outback as a vast, remote, dry area of wilderness located f   ar outside the main Australian cities.

– Identify kangaroos, dingoes, and kookaburras as native Australian animals.

– Define opera as a dramatic performance in which all or almost all of the words     are sung.

– Provide a brief history of opera, including where and in which century it began.

Summary: People from all over Australia recently made the trip to the Undara Volcanic Park, located in the depths of the Australian outback, to attend the annual three-day event: Opera in the Outback. The event gave the audience a rare opportunity to listen to a famous opera outdoors, in the midst of the sounds of Australian wildlife.


Newscast: Orangutan Turns 1 at San Diego Zoo K-2

Essential Question: What makes an orangutan special?

Vocabulary: primate, orangutan, diet, ape, solitary

Learning Objectives:

         – Identify an orangutan as an especially intelligent primate that has reddish-brown            hair, spends lots of time in trees, and lives a largely solitary life.

Summary: Recently, the San Diego Zoo celebrated the first birthday of their youngest ape, a baby orangutan named Aisha. Over the last year, Aisha has grown from about 3 pounds at birth to about 10 pounds today.


Newscast: Plastic Bottle Houses in Columbia 3-5

Essential Question: What is the mission of “Organizmo?”

Vocabulary: Organizmo, wattle and daub, adobe, carbon dioxide (CO2), emissions, greenhouse gas, climate change, precipitation, electricity, transportation, industry, residential, architect

Learning Objectives:

         – Identify “Organizmo” as a design school in Colombia that teaches people how    to make homes out of recycled materials.

– Define carbon dioxide, CO2, as a primary greenhouse gas that is contributing to   global climate change.

– List some major causes of global climate change.

– List some major effects of global climate change.

Summary: A couple who runs a design school in Colombia have begun offering workshops on how to build sustainable homes made out of plastic bottles, sand, and earth. The couple, architectural designer Ana Maria Gutierrez and her husband, landscape designer Itamar Sela, co-founded the design school, “Organizmo” which is based at their ecologically-oriented farmhouse in Tabio. At the farmhouse, students from local and international universities learn to build homes using environmentally friendly techniques.

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