Dear 6th Grade Parents,
We spotlighted conflict minerals in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and we considered the impacts, both positive and negative, that natural resources have on a country. We widened our scope by examining data, images, and materials showing diamonds, oil, and conflict minerals in Tanzania, Nigeria, and Sierra Leone. As we weigh the costs and benefits, as well as who pays and who benefits, we are asking ourselves, “Is having natural resources a blessing or a curse?”
We were extremely fortunate to have Dr. Omekongo Dibinga come and speak to our class and the middle school. He is a powerful spoken word poet also known as the UPstander. His life’s mission is to inspire all across the globe to take a stand when they witness an injustice, no matter how small or large. His visit launched a new project in theme, where the students began to work on campaigns to raise awareness about conflict minerals in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
In math we began exploring geometry and the relationship between shape and size. In science we have been learning about DNA in order to understand the evidence for human migration over the last 160,000 years.
In language arts we began a new unit in nonfiction. We read some news articles and discussed the main idea. We also looked back at a couple of Spotlights and gathered information to create a main idea around language and colonization.
Questions to ask your 6th grader:
- What is inside my cellphone that comes from Africa?
- What does DNA look like?
- What happens to the perimeter when a fixed area rectangle goes from being long and skinny to being more square like?
- What are your campaign ideas?
Have a good weekend,
The 6th Grade Team