Ready to Go

Finally the time has come to perform and explain the things that I learned and for which I came here in US. My aim of life “To find out the ways” in which I can teach Biology to my students in my home country “Pakistan”. The methods that I had in my mind before and the skills that I learned here going to be performed today.
I always seek these things in all my courses of Master’s degree, when I see smart boards here in my classrooms, its advantages, my brain goes back to my past experiences of teaching, my students, and my class. sometime I felt so sorry, or sometime I felt proud to learn at least the skills which someday will might be possible to perform in my hometown in my area.
I am excited and a bit nervous to explain the skills like how can we effectively teach our students science if there are less or no technology and resources available in the school, today in front of community people. It is exciting because I will see the views of many generous people of community tomorrow. And I will get a good chance to learn more practices by their sharing ideas to me.
It will be so beneficial and I am so thankful to God and the professors here providing us this opportunity.

So, “finger crossed” and lets see what will happen in tomorrow’s presentation.

Good luck to all my classmates.

New thing to experience makes me nervous.

After East High, Ethnographies and project 1 work. Here comes the new thing about presentation in front of the community members. It would not at all be a problem for me If I can speak in my native language “Urdu”. But, its of no use. Nobody will understand it and my table will be empty.So! its a bad idea. I am still thinking about the topic that can be useful and is more clear to me so I can speak with confidence. As others I have many of the issues in presenting any idea. If i am confused in one point about my topic of presentation in the start, I wil remain confused about that point. And pray in my heart ” O God! Please nobody ask me about that point”. That’s why I want to choose a topic that relate to me most. And i have experienced that most in my life. So, i can speak in any way without hesitation. Anyone want to share any idea with me, can comment on my blog.
In order to get the confidence.I started watching the presentations of the people(younger then me) on You-tube . I found Ted talks there. I heard about it a lot but never been a part of it or watched it before. I watched a presentation of an African American boy. And I can say about him “much younger then me”. He was speaking and explaining his ideas very confidently in front of the audience. he explained all of his story of getting scholarship and everything very efficiently. Even though he was also like me not a good speaker of English. I want to share that video. It was so interesting and made my confidence level so high.

A visit to Allendale-Columbia school

It is always so fascinating for me to see the new culture and people in US. Recently, I visited a private school in US “Allendale-Columbia” with one of my professors and classmates. Before that I have seen a public school “East High School” very closely and interacted with the students studying there. It is a big school and I always thought that in US every school is just like East High. But, when I went to Allendale-Columbia, i found myself wrong in many aspects. I came across that there is a big difference in these two schools as it is a private and East High is public school. But, the difference that I saw in both of them was not only of being the “private or Public”. The building, culture, discipline and many other things were also changed. It was a very good experience to see the difference between both of them. Allendale-Columbia has small building as compared to East High. And has a very much different culture then East High. The students are very much disciplined, well mannered and calm. I did not see a single student shouting or yelling even in the break time. It was so quite environment in the school. I entered a biology class there. I saw a teacher were teaching the “Mendel’s Law of independent assortment” I love to sit there and learn more. Nobody asked me to go out or something like that. I saw that one teacher was giving lecture by speaking to students and another was also standing at one side, giving lecture by signs. It was a very different and amazing thing for me. I came to know after class that was only one student who could not listen and for that student this teacher was appointed. So, the disable students were calmly learning in the same class with others. I did not see any disturbance or any issues of other classmates regarding that situation. There was also a new thing that two helpers of the teachers were also sitting behind. One of them was writing the lecture and one was recording. After class, I talked to the teacher and asked her, how it helps to students? She said I post the written and recorded lecture at schools online source for the students and anyone who missed the class can find it out. She told me that this biology class grades are counted in the college level also. i did not understand. I am trying to figure out its meaning, and I am again sure it will be another new thing for me. I love that school like East High and really enjoyed there.

Last day with science STARS

It was cool sunny day and our last day with SCIENCE STARS at East High School. I am gonna miss them all. They performed really well on Thursday Nov-5-2015. I can see the confidence level in our team STARS when they were telling the parents and community about their work in “Get Real Science project”. It was really appreciating. I can never forget the experience that I got here in EAST HIGH SCHOOL. The STARS were looking like little genius wearing the white lab coats and performing the experiments. Italia were looking like a demonstrator in our team and Nyeshia was telling the story line of what we did in the last few weeks. Ocean was explaining in her corner that how rain effects on the pollution and the pollution effects on plants. They all were giving the answers whatever they were being asked about the experiments. I liked the Dan B’s STARS team a lot. They are all boys in his team. They all were so quite and performing the experiments and producing energy. Every STAR was joyfully doing the work. I could see the parents reactions when these little genius were rotating the plates with the battery.
It was a very good experience with them and I really like the way as the project was going on and ended well.
Great opportunity for me and I will always remember when ever doing something big, interesting and with hard work that
“Go Team Go”

Ethics in Research Methods

Henrietta_Lacks_(1920-1951)
Henrietta Lacks

I found in this week that doing research work on any of the issues of human should be ethical. The information enclosed in the research inquiry should be confidential. The person should be informed on which the research is going on. I came to know this week that an African American woman “Henrietta Lacks” a woman in 1951, who was the unwitting source of cells from her cancerous tumor which were cultured by George Otto Gey to create the first known human immortal cell line for medical research.
The cells from Lacks’s tumor were taken without her knowledge or consent by researcher George Gey, who found that they could be kept alive. Before this, cells cultured from other cells would only survive for a few days. Scientists spent more time trying to keep the cells alive than performing actual research on them, but some cells from Lacks’s tumor sample behaved differently from others. George Gey was able to isolate one specific cell, multiply it, and start a cell line. Gey named the sample HeLa, after the initial letters of Henrietta Lacks’ name. They were the first human cells grown in a lab that were “immortal,” meaning that they do not die after a few cell divisions, and they could be used for conducting many experiments. This represented an enormous boon to medical and biological research.
http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v522/n7555/fig_tab/nature14408_SV10.html
The stable growth of HeLa enabled a researcher at the University of Minnesota hospital to successfully grow polio virus, enabling the development of a vaccine, and by 1954, Jonas Salk developed a vaccine for polio using these cells. To test Salk’s new vaccine, the cells were put into mass production in the first-ever cell production factory.
In 1955, HeLa cells were the first human cells successfully cloned.
Demand for the HeLa cells quickly grew. Since they were put into mass production, Lacks’s cells have been used by scientists around the globe for “research into cancer, AIDS, the effects of radiation and toxic substances, gene mapping, and countless other scientific pursuits”. HeLa cells have been used to test human sensitivity to tape, glue, cosmetics, and many other products. Scientists have grown some 20 tons of her cells, and there are almost 11,000 patents involving HeLa cells.
But the grave of that great lady was unidentified for many years and whose family did not get a single dollar from which the medical department is earning a lot and we all are getting benefit. I felt so sad when I read about her.
its unethical to work and get benefit of others genetic material without permission.

21st century classrooms in United States

This week I came to know about the 21st century classrooms arrangements and Education system in United States. It was a good experience. I came to know about it in a new course that just been started today EDF 444 with Warner International adviser “Lynn Kirst”. She showed us different pictures of classroom arrangements in different ages of American Education system. One of them was quite similar to the classroom arrangments that I do have in Pakistan. I learned there and still its common in our Government schools in my country Pkaistan. I become shocked by seeing the dates “1960s” when the classroom arrangement was in American Education system like that.
freshly-painted-classroom-in
And even some of the schools in my country do not have chairs or desks. Lynn told me that in United States some of the schools in remote ares are still like that but very few.
We discussed about it like the successful people, scientists and engineers that we do have in this century may have been students of that kind of classrooms in their school ages. But, they have done great Jobs. We came across by 4 “C” in the education system now that offers, collaboration, critical thinking, communication and cooperation. Today these 4 “c” should be fulfilled and the classroom designs should be according to 4 “C”. Bill Gates was out of the school because he wants critical thinking that was not offered in the older ages school and he made such technology who no one can beleive and his inventions are now in everyones hands.
I came across ” Home schooling” in American Education system too. It is a new thing for me that parents teach the children at their homes and they are acceptable to Higher schools in areas here. I will learn more about it as we also need “home schooling” in my country for those who live in remote areas or cannot go to regular schools, mostly girls.
I am learning day by day about Education system here and every time I got good ideas for improving the Education system in my country. I cannot change my whole country systems but I can play my part in the area from where I belong, where I live, where people know me. And I am hoping and praying One day we will also have the schools and classrooms like here not only for rich children but for poor children in my country.
The children are only children not concerned “poor”, “rich”, “Americans”, “Indians”, “Pakistanis” etc, all have same rights and requirements at education level.

A visit to Strong Museum

It was a wonderful day. I went to the strong museum with Lynn kirst and my friends this Friday. I traveled by bus and reached in the morning. I become so surprised by seeing the kids there in so early morning. All the kids at the main entrance were looking so excited and happy. Their eyes were shinning with the joy. I visited all the sections of the museum and watched the kids of different ages were playing there. There were Gallery section, game zone, Sesame Street, and butterfly garden. I saw different methods of learning for the kids there. They were learning by playing.I saw a shopping mall for the kids to play there, but they were actually practicing the daily life, how to grab the trolley, making of ques, how to stand at the billing counter. The kids were playing with other kids and with the toys. In the butterfly garden children were wearing costumes of the butterfly and watching the colors of the natures in butterflies and enjoying of being butterfly. It was so amazing in the game zone where a corner was made for the creativity of the children. A question was written on the wall of that corner ” what is your name?” and another was ” What you want to be?” there were a lot of stickers at the corner and name tags. The children were learning how to spell their names and what are the professions they would like. Every game was like a learning of different methods.There was 123 sesame street and children were talking to their favorite cartoon characters. I found some children were playing in the adventure land with sand. They writing in the sand, making mountains and doing different stuff in the sand. I know it does not look good to stare people or children in the public places but I loved to watch those cute children playing around. I could not stop my eyes to watch them. May God bless those cute fairies and angles forever. It was very good experience for me that how could we make children to learn by playing.I love that Warner school provides us the opportunity to visit there for free. I myself played a lot there with the kids, learned a lot and had much fun.

I love science labs here

It is actually the winter of December in Pakistan but In Rochester it is still October. Let’s see, what will happen to me in December here. The project with Science STARS in East High is going great. I have seen a lot of new things in East High as well as in Monday class there. I have never think about the precautions and safety measures in the scientific laboratory where students have to perform experiments in schools or universities. It was a very good experience of observing the Lab and learning about the safety measures in East High with April and two other professors. The lab is not at all designed according to the safety needs in my country in schools or universities. There is no corner for washing eyes, fire extinguisher blankets, and many other things that I saw in east High lab. In my country the labs of schools even universities are not so equipped with the scientific instruments and safety measures. I have used naked razor blades for cutting cross sections of leaves and flowers even in university, when I was doing my Masters of Botany there in Pakistan. We do not use protective glasses and gloves while doing lab experiments in Pakistan at schools or universities labs. The only thing that we use in Pakistan in labs is lab coat, that we wear during scientific experiments. I became so sad for my country, while observing these things here in East High and I was wishing in my heart that one day we might become aware of safety measures in labs of schools and colleges in Pakistan. I love that Americans care for the life of human beings. I have learned this thing here that our lives are so important. In the same way the student’s life is much important because they are future of a country. Parents send their children to school by trusting the teachers of the school. They think that teachers will take care of their loving children. So, it is responsibility of teachers and Institutions to provide safety to the life of a student in labs, in classrooms. I will go back to my country with many of the golden memories and knowledge. I am learning day by day that as a teacher we can show our love to students by caring them a lot. This is another way to bring the children to school.

Stars Expo and Class at East High, simply WAOW

Monday class was so refreshing. It was a stars expo in east High school, a very good experience for me. I interact with the students of East High and I found their different interests, like one of them was interested in space science and some others in biology and physics. It was quite a good experience to get real science in East High with stars. After having a great expo, we took class with April in a room of east High. It was so bad for me that I could not understand the schedule of class that day and could not bring food for my all friends.
We had a skype conversation with the great Jessica. She was actually a real person. In my country, I was always given by books and articles or research papers by our teachers, of very old persons or writers, but she was real and sitting just in front of us. I become so excited to see her and listen to her about her work.
It’s so interesting to know by April the basic technique of teaching and learning with three questions like “What”, “How”, and “Why”. If we are conducting some information to our students we should understand these basic things before.
I am learning a lot in East High with stars, preservice teachers, and actually in the course EDU 434 Theory & Practice in the Teaching & Learning of Science by doing science.
It was also a great week in the way that I had a festival in my country called “EiD”. I have celebrated first time here in US by making “HINA” at my hand and also at my room mate hand.20150925_104840

Never seen it before

Its gonna be my fourth week and I am learning day by day. I am excited to go to East high this Monday, i wish i could have transportation so, I can go sometimes to east high to view things happening there. As April said, we are doing science there, it sounds great to me because I have never seen science out of my books in my country. And I found it very important that teacher should appreciate the work of the student, whatever he/she did. The students should be provided with resources and authority that I was reading in the article of this week material, they approaches to my mind very quickly.
Recently I have seen a news that, A Texas teenager who was suspended from school for bringing a homemade clock to class received a 21st century invitation from President Obama to visit the White House.

Instead of making a traditional phone call, Obama took to his personal Twitter account to invite Ahmed Mohamed, 14, of Irving, Texas, to show off the device at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

“Cool clock, Ahmed. Want to bring it to the White House? We should inspire more kids like you to like science. It’s what makes America great,” the president tweeted.
Obama’s invitation placed him in the middle of a story that captured national attention and sparked a conversation about racial and ethnic profiling. The incident appeared to resonate with Obama, who has urged students to pursue education in the science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields and promoted diversity there.
The videos are here

This week I found it really different and great thing in my life and I must say that We should definitely do science.