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Boys golf team wins state title

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Senior Matt McCarron wins individual medalist honors

Seniors Yale Fan and Kevin Ellis win top honors at international science and engineering fair

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First time in Intel ISEF's history that two of the top three winners are from the same school

Kevin Ellis and Yale Fan each received prizes of $50,000 from the Intel Foundation at the world’s largest pre-college science competition

Kevin developed a method to automatically speed up computer programs by analyzing the programs while they are running so that work could be divided across multiple microprocessors. Yale’s project demonstrated the advantages of quantum computing in performing difficult computations.

“The 1,600 youths from around the world who attended this week’s Intel International Science and Engineering Fair showed me that the next generation of scientific and technological innovation is exciting and thriving,” said Intel President and CEO Paul Otellini. “I hope that the energy these high school students exhibit about math and science will inspire yet another generation of innovators, scientists and entrepreneurs which will improve our world.”

This year, competition consisted of 1,611 young scientists from 59 countries, regions and territories.

Photo: Yale Fan, left, and Kevin Ellis celebrate their win in San Jose. Photo by Intel.

Oregonian article, May 14, 2010

 

Deschutes Bike Trip

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What a wonderful weekend! A stellar group, sunny skies, and scenic destination made for a trip full of laughter and smiles. We drove out past the Dalles to the Deschutes State Park where we loaded up our panniers and bike trailer and took off on the trail. The first few minutes were a little steep but we eventually made it to flatter ground. We rode to our campsite where we unloaded our gear, had lunch, and relaxed before heading off down the trail. We discovered two old rail cars and an old homestead. Relaxing in the grass at the homestead, we imagining the lives of the people who lived there, played games and laughed heartily.

We rode back to our campsite, the wind in our face. Sometimes it was so strong it stopped us in our tracks! We persevered, inspired by some Goldfish waiting at camp, and finally made it back to camp, where we set up tents and made dinner. As it got dark and we waited for hot cocoa heat up, we created a giant slide down a small hill in the tall grass. Shrieks of amusement echoed across the canyon.

The next morning we woke up to sunny skies and calm breezes. After breakfast we hiked to the top of the canyon, a mango in tow to celebrate Tango With The Mango Day. It was tough to get to the top, but we were rewarded by incredible views wildflowers, yummy treats. We returned to camp where we ceremoneously had a last tango with the mango and had an unusual lunch on our upside-down table before packing up and riding back to the bus, tired but happy.

Boys golf team advances to state after winning sixth consecutive district title

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Congratulations, Eagles!

Catlin Gabel won the district title at a two-day tournament at Quail Valley in Banks. Individual honors include league MVP for senior Matt McCarron, first-team all league honors for junior Philip Paek and freshman Conor Oliver, and second team all-league honors for sophomore James Furnary, and co-coach of the year for John Hamilton.

The Eagles established several records on their way to state. In round two the team recorded Catlin Gabel’s lowest 18-hole score of 311 breaking last year’s 315. Combined with the day one score of 330 the team achieved a new 36-hole record of 641, eclipsing last year’s 658 record. Matt McCarron shot a sizzling 69 on day two beating the previous record held by Gary Coover ’00, who shot a 71 at the 2000 state tournament.
 

Clint Darling Fund for financial aid reaches $22,000

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More than 100 generous donors have contributed $22,000 to the Clint Darling Fund for financial aid. This is a remarkable outpouring of support for one of the school’s highest priorities and a permanent need about which Clint is most passionate. Our goal is to raise at least $25,000 to establish an endowed scholarship in Clint’s name. We are so close! To honor Clint, make your gift today: call 503-297-1894 ext. 310, or donate online. Thank you!

Paul Monheimer reflects on Israel Fulbright research

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Last year I applied for a Fulbright Distinguished Award in Teaching.  Much to my amazement, I was awarded a grant to study for a little over three months in Israel. On the application, I wrote a proposal for connecting students using graphic arts software to help overcome language barriers. How naïve I was. The first issue my mentor, Jay Hurvitz, pointed out was that I had hardly proposed a topic which could be researched. No problem, I countered. Being a mentor teacher in the United States, I was more than willing to look at how student teachers were being trained to teach with modern technological tools. In my mentoring, I had discovered that student teachers were proficient at using technology, but had little training in how to teach with technology.  I told Jay I was also interested in how veteran teachers were acquiring the new skills necessary to teach with emerging technology. 

I was not a researcher prior to this Fulbright Award. I teach children. I have done so successfully by most measures for nearly thirty years. Teaching is about building relationships. My students learn because of the relationship I have with them.  In order to learn about the state of technology in Israeli education, I began developing a personal learning network (PLN.) I created a blog that, according to Google Analytics, has received more than 700 visits.  Each visit lasted an average of 2:36. Clearly, people are reading what I have written. 

Actually doing research was my problem.  I was going to be in Israel for 102 days.  I spent a week getting acclimated.  95 days left.  Israeli universities have a semester break in February. Down to 80 days left.  K-12 students have a spring (Passover) break. That left 70 days for me to complete my research.  I learned a great deal while in Israel. Yet I am just now beginning to understand how little I know, and I will be teaching Catlin Gabel seventh graders in 14 days. As a wise Israeli fifth grade teacher reminds her students, “When you travel, you learn a lot about other cultures.  But, you learn more about yourself.”  What did I learn about the Israeli education system?  What did I learn about myself?

I was eager to begin my research into the Israeli school system, but I don’t read, speak, or write Hebrew very well. I needed to talk to people who spoke English, read articles in English, etc. But Hebrew is an important part of Israeli culture. It is one of the ties that bind people. Speak Hebrew and one is seen as an Israeli or at least trying to be part of the culture. Speak English and people might be tolerant or even translate, but I was still an outsider. Fortunately, I met many people who talked to me in English, newspapers such as Haaretz and the Jerusalem Post have online English editions, and both Google and Microsoft have passable translators. Technology became my lifeline. It kept me afloat, yet did not quite allow me to swim. I could translate Hebrew into English, verify my understanding with Israeli colleagues, and e-mail people on my laptop. I had a cell phone for person-to-person conversations and interviews. I learned that Israeli educators deal with many of the same issues facing American educators. Finding similarities eased my language anxiety a bit and allowed me to focus more on some of the differences.

Education in Israel is a complex enterprise. I divided my study between higher education folks and K-12 schools. Beyond this basic divide, there also are secular schools, religious schools, ultra-religious schools, and Arab schools. Funding and political power are unequal. While much funding is federal, schools are administered by municipalities, which means wealthier neighborhoods have schools with more resources, parental involvement, etc. There are areas where the school is the only building in a village with electricity. I visited one Bedouin school, near Be’er Sheva, where a generator the size of a camping trailer was providing the school with electricity. Residents, by contrast, relied on solar power, if they had electricity at all.
Israeli schools are faced with a wide spectrum of issues. Often, technology isn't a high priority. I wanted to talk about technology and how teachers were being trained in its use and using it with kids. But I kept reading about violence in schools, poorly paid teachers, high teacher turnover, lack of qualified teachers, curricular differences between religious, ultra-religious, and secular schools, and schools refusing to teach certain students.  Perhaps most importantly, education in Israel has to deal with security measures unlike any I have ever experienced as a teacher in America.  Every school in Israel is not only fenced, it has an armed guard at the gate. The guard won’t actually admit anybody, but will allow visitors to contact the office. Even when I visited schools as part of a team of Israeli educators, we still had to be admitted by someone who worked at the school, not the guard. Schoolchildren on field trips are accompanied by at least two armed guards the entire time. While no one mentioned the effect of security on kids and most Israelis take security precautions in stride, it has to affect the kids and the adults.   Learning about Israeli schools is, as the ogre, Shrek, says, “Like an onion.  Peel it back one layer at a time.”

A good mentor tries to develop independence in his charge, and Jay was an excellent mentor. He accomplished four major tasks with me. Jay helped me become independent as a traveler. Israel has a terrific bus system, but it took a number of trips before I felt comfortable. I am now able to travel to any part of Israel to meet educators, visit schools and colleges, and return to Jerusalem safely. Jay introduced me to a few educators who are doing unbelievable work in the field of education technology.  Sometimes he attended these meetings, other times I met with people on my own. I joined Israeli educator forums, which required more Google/Bing translation work, and I have been a contributor to these forums since my arrival. One of my suggestions is currently being tried out on Edureshet, a Ning group of technology-using educators. Jay also introduced me to a group of college instructors who were learning how to use technology in their courses. My skills as a technology director and technology-using teacher came in handy, as I was able to participate in class even though my Hebrew was not up to the level it needed to be to participate fully. More than once, after I made a comment, someone would remark, “Oh, so you understand Hebrew.” I didn’t and still don’t, but I understand what is on a screen and have been a presenter often enough to correctly guess what was going on. Lastly, under Jay’s guidance, I attended conferences at Mofet, a unique Israeli institution. Meeting colleagues of all stripes at these conferences was a highlight of my time in Israel, and I look forward to keeping in touch with many of the fine educators I met. While I know Jay did his best to broaden the circle of people with whom I met, and even though he knows, in one way or another, many educators active in the education technology field, my exposure to these people was inevitably influenced by his circle of friends and acquaintances.

More than anything else, I treasured the time I had to read, think, and write. I have followed a few blogs for a number of years, but my blogroll has now grown substantially. Speaking with Israeli colleagues and observing teachers in their classrooms piqued my interest in areas of technology to which I had not previously paid much attention, including ways to incorporate Facebook, Diigo, and other social networking sites, Google forms, and submitting assignments via Moodle. School visits caused me to reflect on my own teaching methods and curriculum. Reading what others wrote on the subject and commenting on posts connected me to educators not just in Israel, but the entire world. I’m not sure where I will find the time to continue all of the reading, but I suspect I will find ways to keep up, or I will join the legions of tech folks who have way too much to read. Thinking about my own teaching, how I approach learning, how I incorporate programs such as All Kinds of Minds, how I utilize the rich resources available to today’s students and teachers, and which skills I want kids to have when they leave my class are all areas I have been lucky enough to explore during my Israel Fulbright.  I have shared some of these thoughts in my 33 blog posts. 

Now that I am preparing to return to the US, what have I learned about the topics I wanted to explore?  There are some Israeli schools engaged in global sharing projects. Perhaps Catlin Gabel will join the growing list of schools participating in global sharing when I return. Some of the software I wanted to share does not “accept” Hebrew input. I have an ongoing correspondence with three software companies encouraging them to tweak their programs to accept Hebrew characters. According to the Israelis, it should be no problem. 

There is an ongoing program in Israel, the Athena Fund, whose stated goal is to address the current poor state of the education system, wherein a gap of digital understanding exists between teachers and students, teachers showing fear of computers and not using them for the purpose of teaching and communicating, and their general status in the eyes of their students is at its lowest. The Fund's main project is "a laptop for every teacher."

The Athena Fund aims to complete its work by 2012. From my limited observations, most Israeli schools have a long way to go. Israeli student teachers are not part of the Athena Fund program. This is unfortunate because, if they were, they might be ready to teach with technology when they began their own teaching careers. Instead, they become part of the program only after completion of their training. If I could make one recommendation it would be to give every teaching candidate a laptop at the beginning of their training. Teacher training is stuttering. Early adopting teachers are moving ahead, but many teachers are simply hoping, “this, too, shall pass." What few in the education community are talking about is that Israeli kids already bring cell phones to school and the phones are creating the same problems as cell phones in schools do in the US – distraction of peers through inappropriate use, ringing during school time, class distinctions between students who have “cool” phones and those who do not, etc. There are so many “turf battles” being waged in the education sector that it is difficult for all the folks involved to move in the same direction. 

Cutting-edge teaching is always inspiring! I visited schools where creative teachers were involved in innovative programs. I observed students in middle schools where each family had purchased a laptop for their child to use, conduct research, create tables in a word processor and upload the document to Moodle, all in a 45-minute period. I met teachers whose students were creating audio files to go with their stories, which they then used as part of an English lesson.  I brainstormed with teachers who were setting up a program to get parents more involved in their local school by having parents and children learn together about using computers. I learned more about the importance of social networking in education than I can possibly recount. This is, of course, a two-edged sword. Students enjoy social networking because they use the tools all the time, they are familiar with them, and they don’t seem like “real work.” But teachers need to help students understand the responsibilities involved in using social networking sites in classes. This includes focusing on school projects, not just updating status, checking on friends, etc. The issues surrounding “proper use” of social networking are not limited to Israeli or American schools/students.  Increasingly, corporations are either filtering or intensively monitoring what employees are doing/viewing/ while connected to the corporate network. 

Teaching is about making connections. I have done that during the past three months in Israel. Current technology will allow me to stay in touch with the educators and students I have met here. As a Fulbright Distinguished Teacher, I have learned new ways of looking at my teaching, improved my teaching, and I have been fortunate enough to have begun working with others to collectively improve education in both the United States and Israel. As Brian Jones stated after he and his partner had just completed the first around-the-world balloon flight, “I am an ordinary person to whom something extraordinary has happened.”

 

Senior Yale Fan qualifies for 2010 U.S. Physics Olympics

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American Association of Physics Teachers announces the 2010 U.S. Physics Team Selection

Out of more than 3,000 students who undertook a rigorous exam process, Yale emerged as one of 20 students from across the U.S. who now make up the 2010 U.S. Physics Team.

The team training camp, which is a crash course in the first two years of university physics, is an integral part of the U.S Physics Team experience. Yale will attend the training camp for his senior project. Students at the camp have the opportunity to hear about cutting edge research from some of the community’s leading physicists. At the end of the training camp, five students will be selected to travel to Croatia for international competition, where more than 400 student scholars from 90 nations will test their knowledge in physics, competing with the best in the world.

The U.S. Physics Olympiad Program was started in 1986 by AAPT to promote and demonstrate academic excellence.

Read the Oregonian article from May 19.

Senior prank turns Upper School quad into petting zoo for younger students

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Bunnies, goats, lambs, chicks, a pony, and an alpaca, oh my!

Putting their own spin on the annual senior prank, the class of 2010 pulled off a stunt for the ages: a petting zoo in the middle of the quad! 

The seniors started with two simple questions: How can we turn the senior prank tradition into a community-builder?  How can we channel mischief toward a gift of generosity?

After several brainstorming sessions they had an epiphany: Petting Zoo! Quad!

During an Upper School assembly, a handful of seniors secretly zipped around putting down hay, erecting a tent, fencing off an area, and bringing in animals.

The hoax, funded entirely by the class of 2010, was a huge success. Weeks of planning paid off when hundreds of students and teachers passed by the surprise menagerie smiling and congratulating the seniors on their inspired idea. And the seniors thoroughly enjoyed bringing preschool, kindergarten, and first grade students to their magical on-campus surprise!

Click on any photo below to begin the slideshow of seniors and their first grade buddies at the petting zoo.

 

 

 

 

 

Class of 2010 Senior Projects

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May 7 – June 1

Toby Alden, Cistus Nursery

Zanny Allport, Organic Farm

Jasmine Bath, Portland Children's Museum

Erica Berry, Organic Farm

Sam Bishop, Gryphone NW

Rohan Borkar, Research/shadow surgeon

Reed Brevig, CGS Lower School Library

Ted Case, Recording Music & Concert

Koby Caster, Nike

Brynmor Chapman, Writing software at OHSU

Priyanka Chary, Berry Botanic Garden

Kalifa Clarke, Hillsboro Aviation

Margaret Clement, Saint Cupcake

Abby Conyers, Arbor School (Grades K-1)

Eli Coon, Community Cycling Center

Catie Coonan, Caldera Arts

Becky Coulterpark, Ziba Design/Catlin costume inventory

Lauren Edelson, Opolis Design

Christopher Eden, Artisan Organics farming

Kevin Ellis, Intel Parallel Processing Intern

Yale Fan, Physics fairs

Lucy Feldman, The Oregonian

Eddie Friedman, Lorence Construction

Sophie Fyfield, East Portland Surgical Center

Oliver Garnier, Book Designer and Food Stylist

Max Gideonse, 21st Avenue Bike Shop

Charlie Grant, Glass Blowing

Nauvin Ghorashian, Bonny Slope Elementary School

Duncan Hay, Upper Echelon Fitness - bikes

Molly Hayes, Working with ceramics artists

Kent Hays, Woodturning at OCAC

Sara Hensel, Basketry

Will Jackson, Pete Wilson Stoneworks

Keenan Jay, Adam Arnold (fashion)

Donald Johnson, Rexpost post-production

Joey Lubitz, Pok Pok Restaurant

Juliah Ma, Shoe Design: Tuan Le

Adam Maier, Bent Image Animation Lab

Ian Maier, Made-for-TV- Movie

Matt McCarron, Golf Club Maker

Carter McFarland, Portland Police Department

Matthew Meyers, Threat Dynamics

Irene Milsom, Grande Ronde Tribe

Luke Mones, Franks a Lot

Leslie Nelson, Girls Inc

Rahee Nerurkar, Caldera Arts

Maddy Odenborg, Max Sokol, photographer

MK Otlhogile, KBOO

Michelle Peretz, Darlene Hooley

Rose Perrone, IPhone App company

Devyn Powell, Sustainable agriculture

Jessica Ramirez, ESD in Clackamas

Emma Rickles, TAOW Modern Marketing

Luke Rodgers, Sockeye Creative Production House

Stephanie Schwartz, TBA

Samantha Selin, Teaching ESL in Taiwan

Alma Siulagi, Walker Macy

Olivia Siulagi, Forest Grove News-Times

Ben Streb, Model Trains

Kimmy Thorsell, Oregon Ironworks

Jordan Treible, E. Portland Surgery Center

Matthew Trisic, Glaucoma research

Sam Tucker, Delia Furniture and Craft

Ingrid Van Valkenburg, Portland Center Stage

Andy Vickory, Play Production at Catlin, off-campus

Maddy Weissman, OHSU Animal Neuroscience

Leah Weitz, Bienestar

Christine Weston, Campbell Group Environmental Department

Andreas Wilson, NW Film Center

Yannie Wong, International School of Beaverton

Tommy Young, Working with a House Framer

» Learn more about Senior Projects

 

 

PLACE director George Zaninovich nominated for leadership award

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Congratulations, George!

PLACE director and urban studies teacher George Zaninovich has been nominated for the Robert L. Liberty Regional Leadership Award for his significant contributions to Portland's livability. George is one of 11 citizens recognized by the Coalition for a Livable Future.

PLACE stands for Planning and Leadership Across City Environments. » Learn more about about Place

Environmental Club raises money for clean drinking water in Iraq

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Water sanitation unit provides 641 Iraqi students with potable water

The Upper School Environmental Club raised money through a series of bake sales and by selling smoothies at Spring Festival last year. The proceeds were used to purchase a water sanitation unit for a middle school in Najaf, Iraq. Here is a thank you letter and photo.

April 24, 2010
 
Dear students of Catlin Gabel School & the Environmental Club,

I am excited to inform you that the students of Najaf Middle School for Boys in Najaf, Iraq, now have clean drinking water because of your generous donation! Our partner organization in Iraq, the Muslim Peacemaker Team, has overseen the installation of a water sanitation unit which provides 641 students with safe and healthy water.

Rose, would you please pass on these photos and our message of thanks to your students? I understand that some of the students that worked on this gift may have graduated. Would you please pass along our deep appreciation and gratitude for all of the work they did as well? All of their support is not only improving the health, and lives, of hundreds of children, but they have helped to make the person to person connection that makes peace possible. Thank you so much!

Reconciliation is where we begin to imagine a better world. Reconciliation means opening ourselves to another person, another culture. It means economic and social connections that improve lives and create the substance of peace. Your gift is a catalyst for reconciliation, enabling Iraqis and Americans to connect and transform our societies – and the world – into communities of peace.

Thank you for supporting the work of the Iraqi and American Reconciliation Project. Your donation makes our reconciliation work possible.
 
Sincerely,
Mika Thuening             
Program Director
Water for Peace
 

Upper School Diversity Conference celebrated diversity in our community

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The April 23 Upper School Diversity Conference for students and teachers celebrated the diversity in our community – scholastic, civic, and global. Students determine the structure and thematic focuses of the event each year.

This year's Diversity Conference began with an assembly with performances by Catlin Gabel students and teachers. The Jefferson Dancers performed after morning workshops, and the Maru-a-Pula Marimba Band followed the afternoon workshops. (The marimba performance is open to everyone.)

Students and teachers worked together to design and lead the workshops.

Morning Workshops

Critiques of Notions of Diversity / Multiculturalism
Offering critiques of the notions of diversity and the multicultural model

Homeless Youth & Education
Learning about issues affecting homeless youth

Masculinity / Re-defining the 21st Century Man
MALE PARTICIPANTS ONLY Two opinionated guests lead discussion of American masculinity

Israel and Syria (The Syrian Bride - film)
The interaction of Israeli and Syrian cultures

Living with Blindness
Hands-on experience of living with blindness

Fashion Influences Across Cultures
Who influences whom in the world of fashion?

Vietnamese Cooking
Learn to cook Vietnamese cuisine

Un Dia Sin Mexicanos (A Day Without Mexicans - film)
Would America work without Mexicans? Watch the film…

Race, Drugs, and Prison Sentences (Snitch - film)
Film discussion on race, drugs, and prison sentences

The Genetics of Race (film)
Film discussion on the genetics of race

Dance with the Jefferson Dancers
Learn about dance with Jeff Dancers -- no experience needed

Diversity in France (The Class - film) 
How is France handling culture clash? Watch the film…

Surgery on a Shoe String
Medical adventures in sub-Saharan Africa

Minstrels to Gangstas – Race and American Popular Music
How does pop music create / reinforce racial stereotypes?

Mercy Corps – Global Conflict Resolution
Mercy Corps guest leads discussion of global conflict resolution

Southern African Cultures
An exploration of Southern African Cultures

Factory Farming & Monoculture
The problems inherent to large-scale monocultural farming

Global Cooking
Learn to cook dishes from around the globe

Afternoon Workshops

Access to / Progress of Technology Worldwide
Who has access to technology? Who uses what you throw out?

Child Labor & Human Trafficking
Study of human trafficking and child labor in today's world

Immigration in Context
Discussion of the contemporary immigrant experience

Hispanic Heritage
An exploration of Spanish-speaking cultures & cooking

Middle Eastern Cuisine
Learn to cook healthy food from the Mediterranean & Mesopotamia

The Modern Woman / Contemporary Femininity
FEMALE PARTICIPANTS ONLY What does it mean to be a woman in contemporary America?

Muslim Culture, in America and Abroad
A look at Muslim communities across the globe, perception vs. reality

The Sexes – How We See Each Other
An exploration of sex / gender relations at CGS

Contemporary Religious Practice
Panel discussion of contemporary religious identities at CGS

Use of Sexuality in the Media – Lady Gaga, Adam Lambert
SAFE-led exploration of sex / gender in the media

The Journey Towards a Multicultural Identity
Exploring biracial / multiracial identity

Political Diversity – Conservatives / Moderates at CGS?
Moderate and conservative political points of view, discussion

Bollywood and Bollywood Dance
Learn about Bollywood and Bollywood-style dance

Comparative Fairy Tales / Mythology
Learn about universal motifs in folklore from different cultures

Cognitive Diversity
Learn about learning styles and discover your own!

 

Upper School play: "The Women" photo gallery

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Senior Lucy Feldman directed Clare Boothe Luce's 1936 play about wealthy New York women. The comedy-drama explores family life, divorce, friendship, and cattiness.

Wild Eastern Oregon

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Breakaway trip to the Malheur WIldlife Refuge

Our caravan of minivans was greeted with a beautiful rosy sunrise early Tuesday morning as we headed out of town en route to the Malheur Wildlife Refuge. Student’s handled the long hours in the car well, entertaining themselves and training their eyes to look at the tiny details that make desolate Eastern Oregon fascinating. We arrived at the Field Station, our home away from home for the next few days, and settled into the dorms before exploring the surrounding areas. Around us we could see the snowy Steen’s Mountains, high buttes and low plains, and Malheur Lake. The sun set to a chorus of coyote howls. After dinner we played several wild games of hide and seek  and cops and robbers under the brilliant stars before going to bed for an early start the next morning.

We woke early the next morning (some would consider this still nighttime) to meet the naturalist who would teach us about the birds of the area. Some of us had an easier time getting up than others, but luckily nobody was left behind. The naturalist took us along a dirt road way up on a butte in hopes of finding a sage grouse lek (a gathering where males strut to impress females). Each van had a radio so our naturalist could tell everyone about the places we were seeing, and the birds we would hopefully see. After several miles he stopped us and as we peered out the window in the pale dawn light, the puffy white chests and radiating tail feathers of sage grouse appeared. We had found the lek! We listened to the clucking noises they made and watched as the birds strutted around. Our naturalist was so knowledgeable about the area and the birds and we were lucky to have him with us.

As we drove back to the Field Station we kept our eyes open for other animals. We saw some smaller birds and deer, but we were really hoping to see wild horses. We knew that of all the places we would visit, this was the only one we might have a chance to see them. As we got closer & closer to the main road our hopes of seeing the horses dropped. Suddenly, a voice over the radio announced that the first van had spotted wild horses! They were beautiful. A herd of pronghorn stood next to them, providing scale to the huge horses. The pronghorn raced off, but the horses stayed, and we got to watch them for some time as the stallion gathered his herd and studied us.

Back at the Field Station our naturalist set us several mist nets to catch birds so that we could see them up close. We caught about fifteen Dark-Eyed Juncos, a Spotted Towhee, a House Sparrow, and an American Robbin that we weighed, measured, and studied before releasing. Holding the wild birds was a truly incredible experience, and once again our naturalist was able to teach us so much. This was a wonderful example of experiential learning and the students loved it.
 
After a little free time and journaling, we took off to relax in some hot springs. On the drive there we kept track of when we were “in the middle of nowhere” and when we were “somewhere,” learning how people define “nowhere.” We played in the warm water for a while before showering and filling up our waterbottles, trying to find some water that was not “boring.”
 
We drove back through the Refuge and visited the Bird Museum at the Refuge headquarters where they had on display stuffed bird that we could look at up close. In the golden light of twilight we watched hundreds of snow geese flying through the air above us.
Back at the Field Station our dinner crew cooked up some yummy dinner, and also concocted a story about how one student on the trip somehow became Nutella. That student very graciously put up with the silliness. The night ended with a game of wildly chasing each other around under the stars again.
Luckily we got to sleep in a bit the next morning before setting off on an adventure. We had a few places we wanted to see but the itinerary was very flexible. All we knew was that we had to be in Frenchglen for dinner at 6:30. Students really appreciated the unscheduled time and being able to do things for as long or as short as they wanted.
 
Our first stop was the Round Barn where we were greeted by Sandhill Cranes. The students found an ingenious way to appreciate the Round Barn: blind races through the barn. One student would be the guide and the other would be the racer. It was terrifying, but also a great way to interact with the barn and to learn to guide and trust each other. We also got to see a raven and a hawk fighting in the air.
 
Our next stop was the Diamond Craters, huge depressions in the basalt flows found everywhere. We hiked to the top of a hill and soaked in the view, enjoying the spectacular weather we were graced with.
 
After the Craters we stopped Buena Vista pond which was filled with swans, ducks, and geese. We watched the birds and wrote in our journals before we went on a short hike to the top of a butte to find an incredible panorama view of the area and some rocks to scramble on. Our last little stop was a campground where we saw a hawk on the ground eating its dinner, and a Great Blue Heron.
 
We arrived at the Frenchglen Hotel for a delicious dinner, of which we all ate too much. After returning to the Field Station we played cards and ran around outside before settling into bed.
 
 
 
The next morning we packed up our belongings and cleaned our dorm before our long drive back to Portland. Overall the trip far exceeded my expectations. This kind of trip could easily bore many students but they learned to creatively entertain themselves and interact with such a spectacular place. The learned to look closely at the small details of a large scene. Students also learned to be more responsible for themselves by cooking and cleaning for themselves, all the while making it fun. They also learned the lesson of how when one person doesn’t fulfill their group responsibility, it affects everyone else. I certainly felt that the trip passed too quickly!
 

 

Sophomore Mariah Morton breaks CG's longest standing track and field record

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Mariah  jumped a whopping 17 feet, 2 ½ inches at the Lake Oswego Classic to break the school record set by Wendy Miller Johnson '68 in 1968. Mariah came in second at the meet.

Watch Mariah's jump on YouTube
 

Climbing and Mountaineering Winterim 2010

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 Climbing and Mountain Winterim 2010

Though our meticulously-laid plans were thrown out the window again and again, we somehow we pulled it all together and created an incredible adventure!

Our group of nine students and two leaders met on Tuesday morning at Catlin and loaded into two mini-vans for four days of climbing and road-tripping.  We drove to Smith Rock State park and hiked to Student Wall, where we did a safety de-brief and set up an area to teach climbing, belaying, moving over a fixed line, and rappelling.  It was the first time any of us had basked in sunshine for weeks!

That night we drove to Skull Hollow campground--we had the entire place to ourselves.  We went on a stealth (and my stealth I mean "playing techno as loud as possible in a minivan") mission to gather firewood and had quite the scorcher during dinner.

On Wednesday morning we drove back to Smith and headed off to the Dancer/Jete/Combination blocks area.  Students and leaders led climbs and toproped a number of excellent lines (note: Double Trouble is AMAZING!!!).  We ended our day a bit early to get to the trailhead of Mt. Washington before dark.

In driving to the trailhead, we found a viewpoint of Mt. Washington that showed that the peak would be impossible to climb.  Like "Mountain of Death" impossible.  We decided to try to another peak.  Driving back East, we called friends and family and used iPhones to find a peak in climbable conditions.  Peter suggested Mt. Thielson and the students made a decision to head South.  We drove to Thielson and slept in the parking lot.  

On Thursday we woke early and left the trailhead at 8am for our summit bid.  Snow conditions were not good for XC travel.  We gained the ridge below the massif and the students led up the southern slopes until 12:30 when we stopped for lunch (much of which had been forgotten!).  The weather had become ideal for spring mountaineering and we did some “snow school” training on the sunny flanks.  Though the summit pyramid looked snowy and daunting, we made our way upwards.
At 3:00 we arrived at the final pitch below the summit and scouted for a safe, clean line up the SE or SW ridge.  Neither offered safe climbing, so we backed in the sun below the summit pinnacle.  We boot-skied, glissaded, and plunge-stepped back to tree-line, putting our heads down for the long descent back to the car.

On Thursday night we found an incredible campsite up a creek off the Umpqua and enjoyed our last night out—all of the students slept under the stars!
Friday was  a final breakfast and a long drive back to Portland, dotted with stops for Ultimate Frisbee, gas at the slowest pumps imaginable, and AMAZING milkshakes.

Ultimately this trip was about getting a diverse group of students together and empowering them to create the most incredible road trip possible. 
 

Take a look at our journey by clicking any of the pictures below and watching a slideshow.  Put on some music (no techno, please) and enjoy!

Four CG students qualify for International Science and Engineering Fair

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Senior Kevin Ellis qualified to represent Oregon at the international fair after presenting his research at the Northwest Science Expo on April 2. Seniors Rose Perrone and Yale Fan, and junior Vighnesh Shiv, who had previously qualified for the international fair, also presented at the Northwest Science Expo.

Yale Fan won first place in physics and astronomy, the U.S. Army Scientific and Engineering Excellence Award, the Army Outstanding High School Project Award, and a scholarship to Lewis & Clark College should he choose to attend.

Kevin Ellis won the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Special Award in Computer Software Engineering and second place in computer science.

Rose Perrone won the IEEE Special Award for Best in Systems, Man, and Cybernetics Engineering; the IEEE Best in Engineering Award; and second place in electrical and mechanical engineering.

Vighnesh Shiv won the IEEE Special Award in Computer Software Engineering and an honorable mention in computer science.

Seniors Brynmor Chapman and Lucy Feldman won statewide awards at the expo. Brynmor won second place in biochemistry. Lucy  won honorable mention in animal sciences.

Senior Juliah Ma, juniors Anders Perrone and Anthony Eden, and freshman Terrance Sun also presented at the Northwest Science Expo.

Congratulations, all!

 

 

April is National Poetry Month

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The Upper School Library and Pegasus are jointly celebrating National Poetry Month. 


(Swans on St. Stephen's Green, Ireland.  Photo by Sue)
 

I cannot see what flowers are at my feet,
Nor what soft incense hangs upon the boughs,
But, in embalmèd darkness, guess each sweet
Wherewith the seasonable month endows
The grass, the thicket, and the fruit-tree wild;
White hawthorn, and the pastoral eglantine;
Fast fading violets cover'd up in leaves;
And mid-May's eldest child,
The coming musk-rose, full of dewy wine,
The murmurous haunt of flies on summer eves.

--excerpt from "Ode to a Nightingale" by John Keats (1795-1821)

Come see the transformation of the windows as students write their favorite poems on the glass. Pick up a volume of poetry from one of our book displays, and revel in the beauty of poetry. 

--Sue