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Monday, April 17, 2017

Studying Science, History, and IEFA

The amazing Jim Schulz, who has just returned home from conducting trainings for us in Lewistown and along the High-Line, just introduced me to Threshold, a new podcast from Montana Public Radio, which explores issues surrounding bison in a seven-episode series.
"People and bison first met 75,000 years ago, and ever since, we've been hunting them, painting them, and walking with them into new lands. Before Europeans arrived in America there were more than 50 million bison here. By 1901, there were just 23 wild bison left. Now, we have some decisions to make. Can we ever have wild free-roaming bison in North America again? Should we? What does the history of bison have to teach us about ourselves?"
You can find all seven of the 30-minute episodes here. 

Another, extensive, cross-curricular study of bison can be found through Project Archaeology. The free curriculum includes five interactive, hands-on, and student-driven units highlighting bison’s integral role culturally, politically, socially, and ecologically both before and after Euroamerican contact. 

Have you ever noticed that once you start looking for something it seems to be everywhere? Just after I wrote this post, I heard NPR's "Code Switch" April 11, 2017 podcast, which focused the entire 21-minute episode to "The Beef over Native American Hunting Rights."

And then I saw this article in the Missoulian: "Zinke halts plan to transfer National Bison Range to tribal control." Bison is clearly topical.

On another note: Can you share this with your math and science teacher friends? Mobile Science Lab is a traveling trunk program developed as a joint project between the Carter County Museum and the Museum of the Rockies. It draws from the Carter County Museums' osteological collections to give students a hands-on approach to studying growth curves between maiasaura, cattle, chickens and deer. Through this program, students learn about agriculture and Montana's rich fossil history. It's suited primarily for high school math and science classrooms but has been adapted for younger students as well. Information on the trunk is available on their website at: http://cartercountymuseum.org/education/.

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