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Fall 2016: Grade 8 Integration Block
In our combined-teaching “Integration Block,” pairs of DCMS teachers work together with one grade to bring different approaches to a single topic. This term, Ms. Schmitt and Mr. Conkling worked with the Grade 8 class to integrate artistic expression with an exploration of Bahamian history, from ancient geology to the Lucayans. The eighth-graders made projects and field trips in locations all over Eleuthera and produced this virtual gallery to record their learnings.
Amos Ferguson: Field Trip + Workshop
Alia & Doniqua: "Amos Ferguson was a self-taught Bahamian artist, and we learned about him on a field trip to Governor's Harbour. We learned that when he was younger, Amos painted houses for money before he had a dream from God to make art. When Amos first began to paint, Bahamians did not see him as an artist because they thought his work looked childish. However, Amos painted only for God, painting on cardboard boxes using common materials like nails, sticks, and house paint in his artwork. Amos’ work is not supposed to be realistic- instead, his work comes from deep in himself."
Darren, Harniqua & Katrina: "Inspired by the work of Amos Ferguson, we made symbols of ourselves and added them to self-portraits that we created."
4th Hole: Field Trip for Clay
Tarryn & Thomas: "We went to 4th Hole to collect clay to make pottery just like the Lucayans did. We learned about many things, like how sand was brought to our beaches millions of years ago and how ocean currents shaped The Bahamas that we know today."
Mixing + Firing our Clay
Darren, Harniqua & Katrina: "After we collected clay at 4th Hole beach, we formed that clay into bowls and 'zemis.' Zemis are totems that Lucayans believed helped them connect with their ancestors and the spirits of the world. Then we put all of our clay into a bonfire that Ms. Schmitt made in order to turn the clay into pottery."
Ooids: Field Trip to the Sandbar
Christiano & Jaden: "On our third field trip, the grade 8’s visited the Sandbar, a strip of land about 1.5 miles off Cape Eleuthera. There, we studied ooids there and we had a lot of fun. Be sure to look at the funny videos and pictures."
...Here's a short, silly video we made about shipwrecked sailors before we learned about ooids!
Ooids skit: How are ooids formed?
Turtle Chasing: Field Trip to the Deep Creek Jetty
Dominique & Rashad: "We went to the jetty in Deep Creek to catch turtles with scientists from the Cape Eleuthera Institute (CEI). We got in the boat that they brought for us and then we looked for turtles to catch. When we caught them, we measured them and took pictures for CEI’s research project."
Joseph's Farm: Field Trip
Alia & Doniqua: "Joseph is a farmer who has a farm near the Island School. He works with his friend Walter, and they grow crops to sell and to send to their family members in Haiti. One of the reasons that Joseph's farm is so successful is that he uses some of the farming techniques that Lucayans used 1000 years ago."
Leon Levy: Field Trip
Tarryn & Thomas: "When we went to the Leon Levy Native Plant Preserve, we learned more about the Lucayans and their history. We also learned about and saw some of the Bahamians’ native plant that we did not know that we had here."