Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Wednesday, January 16. 2013

Today's schedule is B-A-D-C

B Block Geography 12 - Today we look at the ethics associated with resource use along with the different forms of "capital" and understand the concept of "natural capital". We'll also look at renewable and non-renewable resources along with the four ethical views on resource use (economic/exploitation; preservationist; balanced-multiple use; and ecological or sustainable). We'll talk about over-consumption and unsustainable resource use practices using the example of water consumption and the Aral Sea and we'll end the class with a seemingly simple question...."How Much do You Consume?" Don't forget that I need you to continue tracking your family's water consumption for the week and you can use the water footprint calculator at the H20 Conserve website.

A Block Law 12 - Today, we'll talk about annulment, separation (living separate and apart) and separation agreements. Next, we'll deal with divorce, property division and support obligations. We'll look at: the equal division rule and the matrimonial home; spousal support and self sufficiency; and the types of child guardianship, access, and child support. On Thursday we'll begin watching "The War of the Roses" in class and Friday we're back in the library for continued work on our major project.

D Block Social Studies 11 - Today we are going to examine the impacts of developing countries relying upon one monoculture crop as a major source of export income. We'll be in the library today to gather data on an export crop where you are going to create your own infographic on one of the following resources/topics: Bananas, Coffee, Cocoa, Cotton or Tobacco. The end product will be either a glogster on line poster or a hard copy poster that shows the devastating effects of a developing country relying on one monoculture agricultural crop for the majority of its income. The goal of this assignment is to understand the connections between the social problems (gender, health, children, etc.) in HIPC's with economic development.

Take is its largest export crop and the staple of its export economy (some estimate that 60% of its economy is based on coffee exports). 15 million of its 75 million people in Ethiopia depend on the coffee industry for work. The problem is that on the UNDP Human Development Index Ethiopia ranked 170th out of 177 countries and the quality of life for those in the coffee industry is low. If the price of coffee goes down, then so does the amount of money that Ethiopia can generate. This is one example so try to make a connection with your industry and a country that depends on it.

Once you've chosen your topic I will provide you with an information sheet of data on your topic. It is your responsibility to search out more data on your topic (specifically population and the human development index rating for a country where that crop is relied upon). So today look for information about a developing country and their reliance upon a "Legitimate" agricultural crop (no Colombia and Coca nor Afghanistan and Opiates). You can find information at:
CIA World Factbook
Show at World (click on planet and crop resources)
CIDA Developing World Map

Infographics are a great way to graphically depict statistical data so what are they? John Emerson wrote a great little document called Visualizing Information for Advocacy An Introduction to Information Design ( and his explanation of Infographics/Information Design is that…

Information design uses pictures, symbols, colors, and words to communicate ideas, illustrate information or express relationships visually. Effective design is not just a matter of making text pretty or entertaining, but of shaping understanding and clarifying meaning. Information design adds seeing to reading to make complex data easier to understand and to use...Some familiar forms include charts, graphs, maps, diagrams or timelines. These can be big or small, simple or complex, published in print or electronic media. Information design can help you present your information in a clear and compelling way, persuasively convey facts or ideas or discover something new in your data.
So where can you find examples of Infographics?

  1. GOOD is the integrated media platform for people who want to live well and do good. GOOD is a company and community for the people, businesses, and NGOs moving the world forward. GOOD’s mission is to provide content, experiences, and utilities to serve this community.
  2. Information Is Beautiful is the media platform for David McCandless an independent data journalist and information designer. McCandless’ passion is visualizing information – facts, data, ideas, subjects, issues, statistics, questions – all with the minimum of words.
  3. New Internationalist magazine formed the basis of the data we used in today’s class. You can find the issues here: Coffee; Chocolate; Bananas; Tobacco; Cotton
Tools to help you create infographics can be found at:

Pie Color This delightfully easy tool simply asks how many slices you want the pie to have and then begins work. Once you select the number of pieces, the next screen asks for the values, provides options to set the colors of the pieces and the background, as well as the size of the pie graph.
Star Planet This site includes three options--Stat Planet, Graph Maker, and Map Maker. Star Planet has a wide range of already developed maps and graphs while Graph Maker and Map Maker have users create Flash-based maps and graphs with data sets provided from their own research or from various reputable sources available at the web site.
Creately is an easy-to-use drop and drag interface for creating a wide range of charts, graphics, and info pictures. The free version allows you to work on a single diagram at a time. Registration is required for saving diagrams as well as exporting as an image, PDF, Creatly file, or emailing

Other sites include Wordle, Tagxedo, and Many Eyes
C Block Crime, Media & Society 12 - Today we'll start with presenting our ideas from yesterday's class on violence and its portrayal in the Mass Media. After this, we'll look at how property crimes are presented in the Mass Media - again focusing on the difference between the presentation of that ordinary and the extraordinary. We'll look at street and suite property crimes and figure out which gets the bigger play in the media.

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