Welcome to Heads Up, a blogging experiment that aims to:
- connect the people, parts, and principles of Durham Academy;
- share ideas about learning and human development;
- spotlight a few of the many wondrous things I get to see every day at Durham Academy.
Thanks for reading the posts below — and sending news, links and ideas worth sharing.
Michael Ulku-Steiner, Head of School
The grandest story there is
Among the best guest speakers I can remember at Durham Academy was E. O. Wilson, “the father of sociobiology” and “father of biodiversity.” Wilson was over 70 at the time of his visit. Still he riveted our students like few ever have – with tales of his research on ants, his travels to all parts of the globe, his love for various ecosystems, and his passion for the powers of simple, wide-eyed observation.
Click here for a great (multimedia) introduction to Wilson (named in 1995 by Time magazine one of the most influential 25 Americans and in 2005 by Foreign Policy one of the world’s 100 leading intellectuals).
This week DA parent Catherine Clabby was happy to announce a birth of sorts. For two years she has worked as Senior Editor on E.O. Wilson’s Life on Earth, a digital textbook available for free on iTunes and one of the most audacious educational projects I’ve seen in some time. Better still: DA's Science Department Co-Chair Trish Whiting contributed to the project by writing some of its review questions. From the Life on Earth web site:
Our living planet faces unprecedented challenges. The most important tool we have to meet those challenges is education. The E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation has gathered together a contributor team consisting of educators, multimedia artists, 3D animators trained in science and cinema, and textbook professionals, led by naturalist Edward O. Wilson. Our goal is to create a cultural landmark—a portal that will introduce students to the grandest story there is, the story of life on Earth, from molecules to ecosystems, from the origin of life to the modern awareness that we control the environment we live in. E.O. Wilson’s Life on Earth is a new digital textbook for high school biology students.
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