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Issue 5, Spring 2010

Uganda Unpacked: A Mizungu Tale,
   Brian Delgado, Elika Dadsetan,
   & Nicole Pack
In the Circle, Janna Steffan
Engaging Students, David Price
How Do They Come Up With
   This Stuff?
, Sara Morgan
Disruptive Innovations
   in Schooling
, Michael Horn
Race and Ethnicity
   in an Integrated School
, Spencer Pforsich
Autobots in Action, Karl Wendt
Visions of Mathematics, Ben Daley
Judo Math, Dan Thoene
Family Mathers, Kristin Komatsubara
Writing About Math, Allison Cuttler
Going Gaga, Marc Shulman
The Agony and The Ecstasy
   (of Math)
, Jean Kluver

1: Bilingual Spoken Word
2: Children’s Astronomy Book Project
3: The Sangak{You} project
4: Geometric Mural Project
5: Physics A to Z
6: Philosopher Shrines Salon Night
7: Urban Homesteading Project
8: Illuminated Journals
9: The Hidden Garden

Children’s Astronomy Book Project

download pdf (1.5mb)

Students created an illustrated book to teach young children about our universe. In pairs, students chose and researched topics in astronomy. They wrote essays about their topics, learning about outlining, thesis sentences, topic sentences, supporting evidence, and MLA citation in their Humanities class. They then composed stories about their topics for 8-10 year olds, creating storyboards with scripts and hand drawn art, and editing mock books through several rounds of critique. Their stories and artwork, published through, are available at the HTH bookstore:

Teacher Reflection
The most rewarding aspect was the numerous drafts the students completed for their essay. I was glad they understood that correctness was the goal, and however many drafts it took to achieve that goal was what they had to do. Some students did more than eight drafts. Reading that many essays was a challenge, but by taking this seriously we sent the message that doing something was not good enough. It had to be done right.

—Aaron Commerson

Student Reflection
One important thing we got out of this project was realizing how to communicate and collaborate well. The idea of the story was hard to come up with, as well as editing it to ensure the content was correct and understandable. Even making pictures was a challenge, because we had a tough time deciding what to do and how to do it. In the end, we were able to learn some valuable skills that we will need to use in our future at HTH, including communication, time management and, if we create another product for children, the ability to simplify concepts.

—Ethan Chan and Michael Thompson, 9th grade

To learn more about this project and others visit and Aaron Commerson’s and Juli Ruff’s digital portfolios at &