I jumped on my computer this morning and this contest pulled up on the main page of Google and I just have to say I LOVE IT! The premise of the contest is students K-12 need to design a Google logo with the theme of making the planet better. Not only does this get students to think about how they would make the world better, but also why that would make the world a better place. It’s not enough just to say everyone should eat peanut butter M&Ms everyday and that would make the world a better place, but why would that make the world a better place. (Personally, I’m all for this plan!!). Additionally, students need to be artistic and communicate their ideas in a picture. One of the most amazing things I learned in my very short teaching career was that the power of artistic vision and being able to reach students through this – and it’s not something the school system seems to appreciate, otherwise they would still be funding these programs if they saw their value.
I also love that there aren’t a lot of details on how the students should make the world better because the possibilities are endless!! It’s sort of amazing to see what children and students pick up from watching the TV, listening to their parents, or even just being at school and how they interpret that information into their own thoughts and ideas. The deadline is for submissions is the 20th of March so there’s still time if you know of any students who would like to participate. The winner gets a $30,000 college scholarship and that student’s school will also win $50,000 in a technology grant, and the winner’s drawing will be posted on Google for 24 hours that will I assume will accompany a huge story attached to it! Big bucks to make a small difference!
So I’ve been an avid Blackberry lover for 5 years, but I finally was persuaded to get an iPhone. I was determined to hate it, but it just so happens that I love this piece of technology, minus the texting. I still hate texting because I can’t feel the buttons, but that’s irrelevant at this point. Since having my iPhone, i’ve downloaded apps like it’s going out of style, but while downloading everything under the sun I came across 3 apps that I think are pretty interesting. The games are called Rescue Reef, Rescue Safari, and Fluff Rescue. The names are pretty self explanatory but it’s what the premise of the games are that I find so interesting.
In the Fluff Rescue game, their are too many dogs and cats and you need to rehabilitate them so they can get adopted. You don’t breed the dogs or cats because there’s already way too many of them for you to even rescue and take care of. This is true of real life, you shouldn’t breed cats and dogs because they are already way overpopulated. Example, over 2.5 million cats and dogs are euthanized a year because there’s already too many, yet breeders continue to pump more cats and dogs into the world, only to be abused, neglected, and eventually euthanized. It’s a very sad cycle that happens daily. But again, the beauty of the game is to rescue stray cats and dogs so they can be loved and taken care of and eventually adopted to live out the rest of their life with their forever family. There is no promotion of breeding these dogs and cats, at all!
The Rescue Reef and Rescue Safari games are very similar, except the scenery changes. In these two games you rescue, rehabilitate and then breed the different species to bring the species back from almost extinction. Again, this is true of what’s happening on our decreasingly beautiful planet. We are expanding and sprawling into rainforests and highlands, and technology and transportation are allowing us to expand into deserts and tundras. There are many consequences of expansion: we encroach on animal habitats, away animal food sources, pollute waters, and these animals eventually die off or are shot because they are “in our way”. This has happened to species in rainforests, deserts, the mountains, and so on. So the game premise is right in line with what is happening on the planet. People are finally starting to realize this impact and trying to rehabilitate species back from extinction. It’s funny because the basics of these games are what I did at Nat Geo a year and a half ago in the education department.
These games are called kid strategy games by iTunes and I like that they are educating people, not even just kids about the the overpopulation of domestic household pets and the the almost extinction of those species around the globe, including those underwater. I love these games!
It is amazing how one day you’re in DC and the next day it is a year and half later and I’ve been accepted to the University of Denver and starting my Master’s Degree. I feel like the day to day passes in the blink of an eye, and without a second look back so does the entire year.
I think I finally, truly understand the concept of creating goals and laying out a game plan to help accomplish those goals, because without doing so, it is so easy to get behind and thus never accomplish your goals in a timely manner. As an adolescent, goals were those annoying things you had to write out in seminar class, now it’s something I do on a daily basis, to make sure I get papers done in time.
So here’s to another school, another program, another year and hopefully a successful goal-planning adventure called my master’s program and my eventual career.