Thursday, July 5, 2012

Class time in the back of beyond

Ah field work! well, less field work and more field sharing. This is the time of year where I head into the middle of the Colorado Plateau and share basic geology ideas with K12 teachers. We spend a day on campus at the Colorado School of Mines before we head to Moab UT to spend the next 5 days paddling down the Green River through Labyrinth Canyon. Our classroom is both the modern day transport of material down the river and the mid-Mesozoic climate of the dry arid sand dunes of the Entrada, Wingate and Navajo formations. But, it is not a one direction sharing, sure I do most of the talking but all of the teachers get together and share struggles, concerns, methods and triumphs of getting their students to understand the basic tenets of science. After a winter's worth of reading some newspaper's ideas of how our public schools are doing it is always refreshing to hear from the teachers themselves. It gives me hope about the next crop of scientists who are currently residing in Middle School.

It is truly a week of learning for all participants!

Sunrise on the river!

 Class time on the river.  We barge up and discuss the formations and their forming environments as we float past. 
 Hiking up a side canyon looking for petrified wood and dinosaur tracks. Did I mention that it was 113 degrees F that day? 

 The Wingate above the Chinle
 Moving between classrooms.

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