SO… today was a really exciting day (but yes, the title is correct!!). I decided to have all of my students be geophysicists today by bringing in all our seismic equipment and doing a demonstration outside with them, with the help of one of our former GK-12 Fellows, Brian Miller.
I started with a small powerpoint again, just introducing basic concepts of seismic and the equipment that we would be using. To explain the title, I asked the kids “Okay, what do I do again?!” It took all the classes a few guesses but they were usually able to get to geologist… except in one class where I had a student go “I know! You look at bodies! Your a sexologist!” I laughed out loud at this one, I couldn’t help it. I then explained to him that no, I use geophysical equipment to search for archeological sites, sometimes at a site there could be burials with yes, bodies. But I am NOT a sexologist… Oh well, at least he kinda sorta remembered something from the beginning of the year?? Anyways… I had some demonstrations in class to show them, and then we went outside, set up our own survey, and the students got to swing the sledgehammer and do their own noise tests. It went really well! The kids were attentive, engaged, and really enjoyed getting out of the classroom. This was by far the best day I have had in the classroom with all of the students.
One particularly good take away from today was one interaction I had with a student. This student has transformed a lot this year… when I first met him he was smart, doing his work, didn’t get in to too much trouble… but as the year’s gone on he’s gotten pretty involved in gang related activities from what I’ve seen and been told. His appearance changed a lot, he has become a huge troublemaker, in ISS all the time, talking out, not doing his work… and it’s been so heartbreaking because he is a really smart kid with potential! But for this seismic activity, he got really into it. After the demo, we went upstairs and were discussing what we did and he was actually raising his hand interested and asking me questions about geology and the earth, I was so excited. It doesn’t mean he’s not doing what he’s doing still… but at least for that 40 minutes I got him excited about learning again.