Posted: May 4, 2012 in Uncategorized
In the Idea Hive class we read the book Half Brother by Kenneth Oppel over Skype. The book is about a chimpanzee that learns to speak sign language. Then we watched the documentary on the true story, Project Nim. After that we were asked what similarities and differences did you notice between Half Brother and Project Nim? What surprised you most in the documentary? What were you most disturbed about? What were you happiest about? What did you learn from the documentary that you hadn’t thought of before?
The first similarity I noticed was in both stories the chimp started its life in a human household. Also both chimps were taken from their mother at birth. Both the chimps had similar first signs that they used frequently, for example hug and play. Next I saw that the chimps moved around a lot from home to laboratory to ranch. Right when they started to settle in their new home, they were moved again. The last similarity I noticed was how each chimp was saved from being at a lab with help from the media.
The first difference I noticed was that in Project Nim there was no logbooks and very little to no structure. In Half Brother every part of Zan’s life was recorded. The next difference I noticed was in the documentary the chimp, Nim, was allowed to smoke and do drugs which did not happen in the book Half Brother. In the story Nim was sold to a bio lab and in Half Brother Zan was saved before being taken to the lab. The last difference I noticed was that Nim seemed to need a lot more attention than Zan. Nim would get angry and break things if he did not have company.
I learned from the documentary chimps bite a lot. Next I learned that chimps are very forgiving animals. Nim was not mad when his previous owner Herb came to visit after leaving him at a “chimp prison”. Also I learned that chimps are very social animals and need attention. When Nim was left in a cage by himself he was very angry and smashed anything he could. Chimps are born to challenge other males. Nim was always trying to make any male figures in his life angry by knocking books off the shelf or biting. Finally I learned in the documentary no matter what you do if you’re testing medication on animals it will never be humain.
I found it disturbing that they allowed Nim to smoke and do drugs. Also I thought it was wrong to electrocute the chimps with a prod. If the chimps were misbehaving they would get a shock. Next I didn’t like it when Nim was taken to the Bio lab. He and other chimps were kept in tiny cages and had various things tested on them. Another thing I found disturbing was how after he was taken to the Bio lab, they just left Nim in a cage alone and angry. He needed contact with people or other chimps, but was just left by himself.
I found it happy how much Nim loved to stay at the University estate with Laura. Nim got to play and enjoyed the company of people. Also I was happy for Nim when even after all the time had past Bob came back and was Nim’s friend. I was happy when Nim was taken out of the Bio lab to the ranch but not after I realized he was going to be there all alone. It was really nice when Chris took over the ranch and got friends for Nim.
cc licensed ( BY ) flickr photo shared by timparkinson
Do you think it was right to move an animal around so much soon as it became accustomed to it?
Posted: May 1, 2012 in Uncategorized
Falling to sleep after a day of haying, collapsing into my bed. Proud of what you accomplish, while knowing how much more you still have to go. The smell of hay is stuck in your nostrils. Your muscles are incredibly sore. So exhausted that your eyelids feel like they’re holding the weight of the world. Before your head hits the pillow, you’re already in a deep sleep. Awesome
Posted: April 30, 2012 in Uncategorized
On Thursday April, 26 Turnberry Central Public School’s Gr. ⅞ class went on a trip to Tillsonburg to the Barker-James farm to partake in War of 1812 games and re-enactments against Americans students. We spent the day trying to outdo the Americans in different challenges like questioning skills and battling all in good spirited fun.
One of the best moments of the day were talking to the Americans students. I like talking to them because I got to learn the differences in our culture. Another fun moment was dropping a canon on a model of Fort Detroit. I thought it was a highlight of the day because it showed what it seemed like to General Hull while he hid in his quarters, drunk. Also it was great defending ourselves in the battle of Lundy’s Lane. I thought this because I think we did a great job of sending the Yankees back over the river.
We were taught the American perspective on the war. The Americans have an entirely different version of the war than in Canada. We learned how to reload a musket. To reload a musket you first open a paper cartridge that holds the musket ball and gunpower. Next pour a little gunpowder into the firing pan. Pour the rest of the powder into the barrel. Stuff a piece of wadding into the muzzle of the musket and packed down with a ramrod. Finally place the musket ball into the barrel. Also we learned how to do certain moves with a bayonet. For example lunge, parry, or neck slash.
The main message we learned was that our neighbors to the south weren’t that different from us in the war or after it. During the war many people had connections to the people they were fighting, such as family or friends. Some Americans even said they would protect their land but not invade others. On this day I made many new friendships and it showed how alike we really were.
Posted: March 1, 2012 in Uncategorized
Tags: kenneth oppel, zan
In the Idea Hive class we are reading the book Half Brother by Kenneth Oppel. We are reading the book over Skype with a class in Snow Lake, Manitoba. The book is about a boy named Ben who is helping his scientist parents raise a chimp, named Zan, to learn sign language and live a human’s life. We were given 3 question, and asked to answer one of our choice. The question I chose to answer was “Peter (One of the students working on the project) describes Zan’s situation – being taking from the wild and brought up as a human – as a “kind of slavery” (p. 161). What does he mean by this? Do you agree or disagree? Explain.”
(This video shows some of the Zan’s first signs.)
I agree with Peter’s statement and think he means that the chimp had no choice to be in the experiment, like a slave, and it is unfair and unjust to take a chimp from the wild. I think this because I think Zan would be happier in the wild because he is treated like just part of the project instead of an animal. For example the scientists tie him to a chair to learn sign language just hoping to increase their results. No pet or animal should ever be treated like this. Secondly if the experiment is abandoned (which may happen if they can’t afford to keep it running). Zan will never be able to survive in the wild again. In the story, Ben once tried to put Zan in a tree and Zan looked out of his element and even scared. No one ever asked Zan if he wanted to be part of their experiment and I think he should never have been taken out of the wild.
cc licensed ( BY NC ND ) flickr photo shared by ~Dezz~
If you were taken out of your environment when you were a child do you think if you were put back you could ever be able to be a normal human again?
Posted: February 2, 2012 in Uncategorized
In the Idea Hive class we are reading the book Half Brother by Kenneth Oppel. We are reading the book over Skype with a class in Snow Lake Manitoba. The book is about a boy named Ben who is helping his scientist parents raise a chimp, named Zan, to learn sign language.
In the story, Half Brother Ben learned not to judge something before in the beginning because you may discover that you enjoy it. Ben didn’t want to have any part of Zan, but he is realizing he might be fun to have around. This reminds me of how at first I hated going to the barn. After I spent more time there I found that I really enjoyed it.
cc licensed ( BY SD ) flickr photo shared by law_keven
Posted: December 20, 2011 in Uncategorized
It was Christmas morning when I woke up. I bounded down the stairs and ran straight for the Christmas tree, only to find no presents under it. I looked all around the room. There was no sign of the gifts. I had a mixture of emotions like sadness, confusion, even a little angered. I ran to my parents room yelling at them there were no presents. They replied that they forgot to bring them to the Christmas tree and they were just down stairs in the basement. Then they told me to bring all the presents. I was relieved to know that there were presents but I was not happy to have to get everyone else’s presents before I could play with my new toys.
Posted: December 6, 2011 in Uncategorized
In my class we are studying the effects of global warming on polar bears in the Churchill area. Polar bears have been effected by global warming because increasing temperatures make the ice freeze later in the fall and melt earlier in the spring. This shortens the period of time in which polar bears can hunt seals on the sea ice. Seals are the polar bears number one source of food and there is not many other things the polar bears could eat to support an animal of their size. If the polar bears can’t hunt they will starve and die off. With the polar bears extinct it will disrupt the food chain. Global warming is heating our planet and as a result creating an unsuitable habitat for polar bears to live. I created a Glogster
to summarize my research.
Our teacher got the idea for this project from her friend Mr. McKiel. He got an opportunity to spend a week in Churchill, Manitoba studying polar bears in their habitat on Tundra Buggy One. We followed the work done by Tundra Buggy One for one week by watching their pod-casts and reading their blog posts. While doing this project we learned about absolute and relative location, the characteristics of place, and the vegetation of Churchill. Next we did research and found out how serious this problem is for the polar bears.
During this activity, our class wondered what we could do to help solve this problem. We stumbled upon the Polar Bears International
website where we could adopt a polar bear. Immediately, we agreed to adopt a polar bear. In 12 days we had raised over $290. Then we sent the money to Polar Bears International who will now spend it helping the polar bears. After we skyped with Mr. McKiel and talked about our project. To celebrate our accomplishment we spent that afternoon drinking White Coke
and eating white donuts.
I was surprised by how much money we were able to raise in such a short period of time. Someday I hope to travel to Churchill to see the polar bears. I thought this was a great experience for our class do this and I’m glad I got to take part. In conclusion I think polar bears are the kittens of the north.