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Logs, reports and experiments


Wow, it’s starting to get hot (and wet) again. Please stay healthy everyone!

The Middle School began the week with a little bit of weight lifting. Continuing on with our theme of the carbon cycle, we began by going outside and forming a circle. We took a moment to consider our recent observations of planet Earth which began with the photograph “Earthrise” (1968). We thought about Earth floating in the huge void we call space and orbiting the Sun and the strange illusion we call day that causes us often to forget the void that lies beyond the blue sky. Following on from this, a question was posed, “Where does matter come from?”, and while contemplating this question they were handed a log to pass forth between them. The log was somewhat heavy and gave cause for some giggles as they did their best to carry it to each other. Next they shared their answers with each other and we returned to the classroom, where we shared our answers together on the board.

We then followed this with an experiment. Three test tubes were filled with a Bromothymol Blue solution. This is a dye which is used as an indicator for the presence of carbon. One was marked “Control” and sealed. The other two test tubes were then breathed into using a straw. Immediately, they both turned yellow. Students were then asked why this might have happened. They correctly reasoned that it was because of C0². They were then asked how they thought we could get the solution to turn blue again. They speculated that plants absorb C0² and perhaps if we placed a plant into the test tube, this might change the colour back again. And so we did. The experiment was given a test duration of one week.

However, as you can see from this photograph, the transformation has already taken place. We will follow up the experiment later in the week by returning to our initial question as to where matter comes from before moving on to look at the role of farmers in the carbon cycle.

We began reading a new book together, “Holes” by Louis Sachar. The students read another of his books earlier this term, “Fuzzy Mud”. Given the positive responses to that work I thought they would appreciate reading another of his books, that is actually better known. So far, so good seems to be the initial feedback.

In our IGCSE class, and continuing with the theme of crime, we have been looking at passive sentences and reported speech. We firstly looked at the difference between active and passive sentences, before creating imaginary which we then wrote police reports about. The students had some fun with these crimes and they ranged from a pop group trespassing in a bedroom to a mass looting in the centre of Matsumoto.

And finally, on Friday of this week we will start the day bright-eyed and bushy-tailed with our class photo. Following this, we will heading out for our woodwork workshop at a local wood shop near to the school. This workshop was kindly created by Vice Principal Takizawa. Many thanks to him for helping with this and I look forward to letting you know how it went next week.

That’s all for this week. Hope you have a great week.