Saturday, February 28, 2009

Indie work

Research and compare . . .

- Gandhi and Siddhartha Gautama

- American Revolution against the British and the Independence Movement of India against the British

- Resources: the gem stones of India versus those of South Africa

- The British need for the resources of India and the America need for the resources of the Middle East

Friday, February 27, 2009

You may wear a Bindi if you please

Bindi Beauty...
Originally uploaded by cmac66
A bindi (from Sanskrit bindu, meaning "a drop, small particle, dot") is a forehead decoration worn in South Asia (particularly India)[1] and Southeast Asia, according to Wikipedia. Traditionally it is a dot of red color applied in the center of the forehead close to the eyebrows, but it can also consist of a sign or piece of jewelry worn at this location.

Nowadays, bindis are worn throughout South Asia (India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Pakistan) by women and girls, and no longer signify age, marital status, religious background, or ethnic affiliation.[2] The bindi has become a decorative item and is no longer restricted in colour or shape. Self-adhesive bindis (also known as sticker bindis) are available, usually made of felt or thin metal and adhesive on the other side. These are simple to apply, disposable substitutes for older tilak bindis. Sticker bindis come in many colors, designs, materials, and sizes. Fancier sticker bindis are decorated with sequins, glass beads, or rhinestones.

Lord Ganesh

Lord Ganesh
Originally uploaded by RedKen
Ganesha (Sanskrit), also spelled Ganesa or Ganesh is one of the best-known and most widely worshipped deities in the Hindu pantheon, says Wikipedia.[5] His image is found throughout India.[6] Hindu sects worship him regardless of other affiliations.[7]

Devotion to Ganesha is widely diffused and extends to Jains, Buddhists, and beyond India.[8]

Although he is known by many other attributes, Ganesha's elephant head makes him easy to identify.[9] Ganesha is widely revered as the Remover of Obstacles[10] and more generally as Lord of Beginnings and Lord of Obstacles (Vighnesha, Vighneshvara),[11] patron of arts and sciences, and the deva of intellect and wisdom.[12] He is honoured at the start of rituals and ceremonies and invoked as Patron of Letters during writing sessions.

Thursday, February 26, 2009


Originally uploaded by Fraenzi
Hinduism is the predominant religion[1] of the Indian subcontinent, says Wikipedia.

Hinduism is often referred to as Sanātana Dharma, a Sanskrit phrase meaning "the eternal law", by its practitioners.[2]

Hindu beliefs vary widely, with concepts of God and/or gods ranging from Panentheism, pantheism, monotheism, polytheism, and atheism with Vishnu and Shiva being the most popular deities. Other notable characteristics include a belief in reincarnation and karma, as well as personal duty, or dharma.

Among its roots is the historical Vedic religion of Iron Age India, and as such Hinduism is often stated to be the "oldest religious tradition" or "oldest living major tradition."[3][4][5][6] I

t is formed of diverse traditions and types and has no single founder.[7] Hinduism is the world's third largest religion after Christianity and Islam, with approximately a billion adherents, of whom about 905 million live in India.[8] Other countries with large Hindu populations can be found across southern Asia.


Originally uploaded by Pixelsior
Aum (also Om or, more rarely, Ohm; Sanskrit: ॐ) is a mystical or sacred syllable in the Hindu, Jain, and Buddhist religions, says Wikipedia.

It is placed at the beginning of most Hindu texts as a sacred exclamation to be uttered at the beginning and end of a reading of the Vedas or previously to any prayer or mantra and also is said in the beginning of any puja (religious ritual).

The Sanskrit name for the syllable is praṇava, from a root nu "to shout, sound, praise", verbal pra-nu- being attested as "to make a humming or droning sound" in the Brahmanas, and taking the specific meaning of "to utter the syllable om" in the Chandogya Upanishad and the Shrauta Sutras.

A Funny Thing happened on the way to the Forum in Roma, L'Italia

Italy map
Originally uploaded by Baby Boomers Travel Club
Vocab -

- farce
- schtick
- Sondheim


Originally uploaded by organic-tokyo
Namasté, Namaskar or Namaskaram (Sanskrit: नमस्ते [nʌmʌsˈteː] from external sandhi between namaḥ and te) is a common spoken greeting or salutation in the Indian subcontinent, says Wikipedia. Taken literally, it means "I bow to you". The word is derived from Sanskrit (namas): to bow, obeisance, reverential salutation, and (te): "to you".[1] Namaskar is considered a slightly more formal version than namasté but both express deep respect.

It is commonly used in India and Nepal by Hindus, Jains and Buddhists, and many continue to use this outside the Indian subcontinent.

When spoken to another person, it is commonly accompanied by a slight bow made with hands pressed together, palms touching and fingers pointed upwards, in front of the chest. The gesture can also be performed wordlessly and carry the same meaning.

In Indian and Nepali culture, the word is spoken at the beginning of written or verbal communication. However, upon departure the only the wordless hands-folded gesture is made.

In yoga, namasté is said to mean "The light in me honors the light in you," as spoken by both the yoga instructor and yoga students.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Who are the Sikhs?

Sikh is the title and name given to an adherent of Sikhism, says Wikipedia. The term has its origin in the Sanskrit śiṣya "disciple, learner" or śikṣa "instruction".[23][24]

According to Article I of "Sikh Rehat Maryada" (the Sikh code of conduct & conventions) a Sikh is defined as "any human being who faithfully believes in One Immortal Being; ten Gurus, from Guru Nanak Dev to Sri Guru Gobind Singh; the Sri Guru Granth Sahib; the utterances and teachings of the ten Gurus and the baptism bequeathed by the tenth Guru; and who does not owe allegiance to any other religion".[25]

The greater Punjab region is the historic homeland of Sikhism. Most Sikhs are Punjabis and come from the Punjab region, although significant communities exist around the world. Punjabis and the Punjab region's history has been tremendously important in the formation of Sikhism as a religion.

Review of the movie Ghandi

Gandhi Study Guide

"Do you fight to change things or do you fight to punish?"

"An eye for an eye only makes the whole world blind."

"If you are a minority of one, the truth is still the truth."

"Poverty is the worst form of violence."

1. The opening scene of the movie is a reenactment of Gandhi’s assassination. State 2 factors that make the murder a surprising one.
2. The next scene takes place in S. Africa when Gandhi was beginning his career as a barrister. What does his experience on the train say about British society?
3. When Gandhi meets with his colleagues in S. Africa he is shocked by the racism. What is Gandhi’s reaction?
4. During Gandhi’s first public meeting, he outlines his methods for fighting an unjust law. What is the outcome of his protest?
5. Gandhi meets a sympathetic English clergyman, and they walk through an impoverished and racist neighborhood. What book does Gandhi quote when they face a group of yahoos?
6. Life in the Gandhi ashram (a Hindi word for community) is an experiment. What is the great social class taboo he believes must be changed?
7. The Christian minister gives a sermon which supports Gandhi and his social protest. What is the reaction of the majority of attendees?
8. Compare the clothing of Gandhi to the dress of the other Indian leaders. What point was being made by Gandhi?
9. Describe the farming system established in India by British colonists.
10. Gandhi tells the American minister that he can do the most good by exiting the protest movement. Why did Gandhi push away this hard-working supporter?
11. Why does General Dyer massacre the gathering of Indian Sikhs in their non-violent meeting?
12. What are Gandhi’s 2 most important goals in building an independent India?
a) Hindu-Muslim unity b) Recognition for the Untouchable caste.
13. What is the purpose of Gandhi’s fast?

Identify the following with a brief phrase or sentence.
14. Kasturba “Ba” Gandhi - the wife and partner of Gandhiji.
15. General Jan Christian Smuts - governor of South Africa during Gandhi's protests.
16. Pandit Nehru - closest to Gandhi of all the Home Rule politicians; he was the first Prime Minister when India became independent.
17. Mohamed Ali Jinnah - Muslim leader in Gandhi's political circle.
18. Margaret Bourke-White - award-winning American photo-journalist and pioneer female photog.
19. Sikh - a religion of India that is blend between Hinduism and Islam and is common to the Punjab region.
20. Bhagavad Gita - an ancient holy book of Hinduism.
21. British Empire - the world's dominant power during the 18th and 19th centuries.
22. Ashram - a community in which a group of people share their resources.
23. Untouchables - the lowest caste of India.
24. Non-violent resistance - used by both Gandhi and MLK, Jr.
25. Indigo - plant that produces a blue dye.
26. Mahatma - "Great soul."
27. Dharasana Salt Works - site of the Salt Tax protest; near Porbandar.
28. Pakistan - nation partitioned from India in 1947 as a haven for Muslims.
29. New Delhi, India, January 30, 1948 - Gandhi's assassination.
30. Why does the director choose to open the biography with Gandhi’s death?
31. What is sedition? calling for the overthrow of a government.
32. As India’s independence becomes imminent, the conflict among Indians increases. What is the cause of the conflict? Hindu vs. Muslim, based on ancient grudges. How does Gandhi suggest resolving this conflict? He asks everyone to pray; to see their neighbors as brothers instead of people divided by religion. He goes on a fast to get everyone's attention.
33. In the 1930’s millions of Indians were unemployed. How did Gandhi protest the system that idled the farmers? - He proposed that Indians wear homespun cloth and use a spinning wheel to make their thread and clothing. In so doing they would boycott the fabric from England.
34. When India gained its independence from Great Britain, who started fighting? Rioting between Hindus and Muslims was widepread.
35. Why did British attempts to control India fail? Though they were successful in controlling India for some 300 years, the British eventually were repelled by Indian non-cooperation.
36. What lessons do you draw from Gandhi's life story?
37. Why did people follow Gandhi despite the difficulties in it?

Gandhi: vocab

Gandhi Statue
Originally uploaded by brothergrimm
- insurgents - rebels
- assimilating - blending in with the dominant culture.
- anarchists - radicals who believe that all government is bad and should be eliminated.
- Viceroy - English title for the governor of a colony such as India.
- monsoon - the rainy season.
- jasmine - garlands of jasmine are worn to symbolize joy; are also sweet smeling.
- namaste' - Hindi greeting
- rebate - money given back to you.
- passive resistance - to show your opposition by Not doing something.
- Mahatma - Great soul.
- indigo - plant which produces a blue fabric dye.
- seditious - advocating the overthrow of the government.

Gandhi's goals . . .
1) Hindu-Muslim unity
2) Ending of the caste system - especially of the unfair treatment of the lowest caste, the untouchables.
3) Defying British authority while they continued to control India.
4) Wearing homespun cloth instead of British textiles.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Gandhi offers many gifts to the viewer

Originally uploaded by elycefeliz
When you watch this movie, you are seeing a classic. Indirectly, you are learning and absorbing . . .

- cinematography
- videography
- story-telling through images
- biography and literature
- dialogue (through the captions that are on screen each day)
- vocabulary
- history

Spatial changes: a Gandhi map that crosses 3 continents

Because of the British Empire - see Union Jack here - Gandhi saw much travel in the beginning of his life.

For 3 pts make a map that shows his residence in
a) Porbandar, India
b) London, England
c) Pretoria, South Africa

- 3 seas
- 3 continents
- title
- rim of color

Notes -
a) symbol of Islam
b) symbol of Hinduism

British Empire was a globe-circling series of possessions.
- the Brits took control of weaker nations so they could make profit of these nations' natural resources, their labor and their markets.
- Brit possessions were on every continent: Europe, Africa, Middle East, Central Asia, East Asia, South America, North America and Central / Caribbean America.

"Home Rule" was the Indian term for independence from British control.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Experiement in learning styles with alternative to memorized map quiz

Heather Hasson, Shreveport
Originally uploaded by trudeau
As an alternative to the weekly map quiz, which is a quick check on your memorization, try this: an Artful Map in which the color and extra details demonstrate the learning. It is called portfolio style evaluation.

To get full credit please hit these benchmarks:
- colored borders around nations
- colored border around the map (see above)
- imaginative title
- illustration (ship or castle, etc) and compass rose
- neatness
- principal cities, neatly identified
- bodies of water, too.
- check spelling!

Thanks to Heather Hasson for an excellent example of this alternative.

Artist: Isabelle Vea, Cmhs class of 2012, Shreveport

Visual arts and communication and study skills are an important part of your future. One outstanding practitioner of all those items is Isabelle Vea. Is there any surprise that she always keeps an A average in geography class?

Hindu temple / Mystic India IMAX film

Quiz on Thur, Feb 26 -
a) carnival and India
b) map: 10 items on Afghanistan, Pakistan, India

Intro to the map of India -
- New Delhi
- Kolkata
- Mumbai (Bollywood)
- Bangalore (Microsoft, Dell, etc)
- Agra (Taj Mahal)
- Porbandor
- Mt Everest

Arabian Sea
Bay of Bengal
Indian ocean

- Democracy
- Impoverished
- Economy growing rapidly
- 1 billion population
- Hindu and Muslim
- MK Gandhi, 1869 - 1948
- Himalayas

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Boeuf gras, Krewe of Centaur, Shreveport

Killing the fatted cow as the last of the feasting on Fat Tuesday is the European tradition portrayed here. Those people accompanying the boeuf gras would be in butcher's costumes, according to tradition.

Friday, February 20, 2009

The most comprehensive guide to Louisiana's Carnival season: How To Mardi Gras

Christian world-wide celebration of pre-Lenten emphasis -

Begins in Europe Italy (Roma, Venicia), Germany, Belgium, France, Spain, etc.

Moves to New World along with the Roman Catholic religion: to the Caribbean islands, South America, the US (La and Mobile, Ala).

Carnival and Lent are a Catholic thing. N La is majority Protestant therefore has no direct connection to mardi Gras. Here it's for business, esp tourism.

Lent - fasting, abstinence and bona opera (good works). From Ash
Wed until Holy Week or Easter Sunday.

Fat Tuesday marks the end of Carnival season.
Ash Wed: priest marks parishioners with ashes and says "Remember, man, that from dust you came and to dust you shall return."

Carne: "meat"
vale: "goodbye," or "the end of."
Carnaval: "the end of feasting and partying."
Boeuf gras float: "fatted cow" to be slaughtered for final feast before Lent.

See Valedictorian and Salutatorian.

Blanc et Noir Marching Society: jazz band and New Orleans second line tradition.

Louisiana: triangular southern section is majority Catholic. School holidays!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Islamic terms from the Osama bio

- Sharia law - based on a book that is an adjunct to the holy Qur'an.
- jihad - "struggle" or "holy war." a controversial term of variable interpretation.
- Mullah - Islamic leader in matters of theology or the Qur'an,
See the term Imam.
- Usury - loaning money at interest.
- heretics - those against the common teachings.
- hijab - the veil and scarf typically worn by Muslim women.
- burqa - the robe and veil that covers a woman entirely - as used in strict Islamic nations such as Saudi Arabia and Iran.
- al Jazeerah - principal cable news network of the Midddle East.
- age 51 - the prime of a man's life, ordinarily.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Indie work: Osama Bin Laden story compared to Mohandas K Gandhi

Usāmah bin Muḥammad bin `Awaḍ bin Lādin; with numerous variations) (born March 10, 1957) is a member of the prominent Saudi bin Laden family and the founder of the terrorist organization al-Qaeda, best known for the September 11 attacks on the United States. Al-Qaeda has also been associated with numerous other mass casualty attacks against civilian targets.

Since 2001, Osama bin Laden and his organization have been major targets of the United States' War on Terrorism. Bin Laden and fellow Al-Qaeda leaders are believed to be hiding in the border region between Afghanistan and Pakistan, says Wikipedia.

Bin Laden believes that the restoration of Sharia law will set things right in the Muslim world, and that all other ideologies—"pan-Arabism, socialism, communism, democracy"—must be opposed.[21] These beliefs, along with violent expansive jihad, have sometimes been called Qutbism. [22] He believes Afghanistan under the rule of Mullah Omar's Taliban was "the only Islamic country" in the Muslim world.[23] Bin Laden has consistently dwelt on the need for jihad to right what he believes are injustices against Muslims perpetrated by the United States and sometimes by other non-Muslim states,[24] the need to eliminate the state of Israel, and the necessity of forcing the US to withdraw from the Middle East. He has also called on Americans to "reject the immoral acts of fornication (and) homosexuality, intoxicants, gambling, and usury," in an October 2002 letter.[25]

Probably the most controversial part of Bin Laden's ideology is that civilians, including women and children, can be killed in jihad.[26][27] Bin Laden is antisemitic, and has delivered warnings against alleged Jewish conspiracies: "These Jews are masters of usury and leaders in treachery. They will leave you nothing, either in this world or the next."[28] Shia have been listed along with "Heretics, ... America and Israel," as the four principal "enemies of Islam" at ideology classes of bin Laden's Al-Qaeda organization.[29]

Get to Know Your Government ACEOs : The Complete Set

Cabinet members and other cabinet-level execs: these are people to whom we must write with our thoughts and questions. Through the media we will watch their performance in office.

That's how Democracy ought to work.

An alternative to the map quiz: Artful map of Afghanistan and neighbors

Consider the learning styles that you may employ: does an art project bring you as much learning as does the traditional memorization quiz?
There's no easy answer and each student must answer that question for himself, but this is the time of your life to try the options.

An experiment: you may choose to sketch borders and add 6 identifications to the map quiz on
Af ghan i stan
on Thurs or you may choose to do homework of an artful map of the nation and neighbors.

- Title: Between Persia and India: Afghanistan
- colored borders
- nations
- major cities
- compass rose
- simple but decorative border.
- illustrations such as Arab dhow and flag.

Also be ready for a 12-question open notes quiz on the Holy Land similar to the last one we assayed.
- neatness and spelling!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Afghanistan and a review of 9-11

While I encourage my students and parents to read the background of the 9/11 attack at or, there are a couple of facts that I'd like to emphasize.

Osama bin Laden and most of the assassins were natives of Saudi Arabia. The average American probably thinks they were Afghani because many members of al Qaeda were trained in Afghanistan.

"Then why didn't we attack Saudi Arabia?"

We have an uneasy relationship with Saudi Arabia. The overriding fact is that we need their oil. The fact that al Qaeda got most of its money and philosophical support from Saudi Arabians was an inconvenient truth in the post-9/11 war on terrorism.

"Then why did we attack Iraq?" In my opinion, there's no satisfactory answer to that one aside from faulty intelligence and questionable judgement.

The mountainous, impoverished nation of Afghanistan remains a problem for the US. We used bombs and soldiers to get rid of the Taliban, the radical Muslim leadership group. The radical terrorist group called al Qaeda used this nation as HQ for training.

Subsequently we have tried to rebuild the nation. We have not been terrifically successful. Today, there are reports that the Taliban are again becoming a factor in Afghan life.

Overview of SW Asia

1. Find a Persian Gulf nation that is a peninsula: a) Yemen b) Oman c) Bahrain d) Qatar.
2. This city of the Black Sea was called Byzantium and Constantinople. Today it is a) Athens b) Beirut c) Cairo
d) Istanbul.
3. The capital of Iran is a) Istanbul b) Baghdad c) Tehran
d) Mecca.
4. Shreveport and Baghdad both lie upon latitude 32 degrees. Is that a) north or b) south of the equator?
5. Which terrorist group was directly responsible for the 9-11-01 attacks on the WTC and Pentagon? a) al Qaeda
b) Taliban c) Iraquis under Saddam Hussein.
6. City known as a French-influenced liberal Muslim tourist center on the Mediterranean:
a) Cairo b) Beirut c) Jerusalem d) Damascus
7. Name the small Egyptian municipality with an enormous and ancient tourist attraction. a) Cairo b) Alexandria c) Jerusalem d) Giza.
8. Minarets are towers that are built alongside a mosque and from which Muslims are called to prayer. The person who chants the prayer is called . . . a) Jihad b) minbar c) Muslim d) muezzin.
9. The terrorists of 9/11/01 were mostly from Egypt and mostly ill-educated family men. T / F
10. Location of the World Trade Center: a) Upper Brooklyn c) Lower Queens d) Upper Bronx d) Lower Manhattan.
11. The rebaba is a Middle eastern instrument of this type: a) drum b) tambourine c) fiddle d) lute.
12. Steve Irwin resided near a) Sydney b) Brisbane
c) Perth d) Cairns
13. Irwin’s death occurred in the a) Indian Ocean b) Pacific
c) Atlantic.
14. Nickname for Australians: a) Kiwis b) Ulurus
c) Digeridoos d) Ozzies.
15. Great Barrier Reef is made of: a) coral b) algae
c) seaweeds d) volcanic rock.
16. The most authentic of digeridoo players: a) diggers
b) Aussies c) aborigines d) Outbackers.
17. The loaf-like mountain in the central region of Australia: a) Outback b) Gold Coast c) Uluru d) Blue Mountains.
18. Major city that lies quite close to 30N, 30E: a) Jerusalem b) Cairo c) Beirut d) Istanbul.
19. Saudi Arabia, principally a vast desert, has no major bodies of water and one range of Western mountains.
T / F
20. Based on terrain, name the nation that will have the most rainfall: a) Oman b) UAE c) Kuwait d) Yemen.
21. The root word for the name Australia refers to a direction, which is a) north b) east c) west d) south.
The following questions will be answered by choosing:
a) Judaism b) Christianity c) Islam d) Hinduism.
22. The Western wall in Jerusalem, or “wailing wall,” is part of the ancient temple which was sacred to the __.
23. Developed some 600 years after the time of Christ: __.
24. Daily prayer, charity, belief in one god, fasting during Ramadan, the hajj: __.
25. The Bible contains a direct link to the religion called ___ , which preceded Christianity.
26. Origin of this religion is around 1000 BC: __.
27. The Torah is a holy book in __.
28. Belief in a single, all-powerful god: a) Islam b) Christianity c) Judaism d) monotheism.
29. A mosque’s tower is called: a) muezzin b) torah
c) Arabesque d) minaret.
30. Rank these nations in oil reserves based on the p. 432 symbols in World Geography (Prentice Hall):
a) Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Iran b) Iraq, Saudi Arabia, UAE
c) Iran, Kuwait, Oman d) Saudi Arabia, Iran, Kuwait.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Kibbe, felafel, dolmas, tzatziki, hummus, etc at Mona's cafe, Shreveport

Top geography student John Moufarrej wrote this review / comparison essay as indie work. Enjoy:

Mona's Cafe and Al Basha are both Mediterranean restaurants. Al Basha in English means The Man. Both of these restaurants have foods from different cultures including Lebanese and Greek.

Al Basha is just a restaurant while Mona's is a restaurant and has a little store in the back. Some foods from both of these restaurants include hummus, shish kabob, rolled grape leaves, falafel (which is one of my favorite dishes), and lamb kabob.

One interesting drink that is at both of these restaurants is Lebanese Iced Tea. In this drink there is orange blossom water and pine nuts.

The little market in the back of Mona's Cafe is great supplier of a lot of the foods used in my family including olives, olive oil, arabic bread, special cheese, and chick peas (garbanzo beans). Some of the desserts at these restaurants include baklava and mammoul cookies.

In conclusion, Mona's Cafe and Al Basha are both great restaurants that my family goes to, to enjoy a wonderful meal.

Friday, February 13, 2009

A bit of reggae in the old city of Jerusalem

Jerusalem from Team Explore on Vimeo.

More indie work: writing about eating out or writing about attending plays & movies

Comparison essays on the following will certainly be welcomed -

Any Mediterranean restaurant, examples being -
- Yeero Yeero
- Mona's
- Jerusalem in Bossier (new and recommended by student Mojdeh Efatien)

- Shakespearean or plays by other authors

- Geographic-minded movies such as Slumdog Millionaire (while violent at times, I thought it was acceptable for the average 14 year-old).

- Topics such as the tragedy of Masada compared to the mass suicide that ocurred under quasi-evangelist Jim Jones.

Indie work: comparison of Shai Agassi and Steve Jobs

Shai Agassi
Originally uploaded by Wa-J
Shai Agassi is the Israeli with the plan to make Israel into a nation where the mass of men drive electric cars - and where there are electrical filling stations across the country. It is called Project Better Place.

Steve Jobs is a hero of American technology; his company created the iPod, iMac and iPhone. Though facing health issues today, he has won fame as the successful founder and leader of Apple Computers.

Compare and synthesize their stories.

Flash: in reading the Jobs bio in Wikiepdia I found he was adopted by the Jobs family. But he knows his parents and evidently they are a woman of Jewish background and an Arab fellow, Joanne Carole Schieble and Abdulfattah Jandali.

Jerusalem & Israel Quiz / the post-quiz material

1. c
2. c
3. F
4. a
5. d
6. d
7. a
8. a
9. a
10. a
11. c
12. c
13. a
14. d
15. b
16. a

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Jerusalem & Israel quiz

View from Masada
Originally uploaded by Yelnick
J e r u s a l e m & I s r a e l / Trudeau
1. The region that we’re studying has a great rift - a crack in the earth’s crust. What would be the geographical evidence of this rift valley? a) Mediterranean coastline
b) border between Israel & Egypt c) River Jordan d) border between Israel & Lebanon.
2. Jerusalem and Natchitoches, La, have something in common. a) meat pies b) longitude c) latitude d) climate.
3. Jerusalem is, contrary to popular belief, not one of the oldest cities in the world. T / F
4. Jerusalem is considered the third-holiest city of the
a) Muslims b) Jews c) Christians d) Buddhists.
5. The status of ___ remains one of the core issues in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. a) the Dead Sea b) the Mediterranean c) Jordan d) Jerusalem.
6. The Roman emperor Constantine was associated with
a) Israel b) Dome of the Rock mosque c) ancient Jewish Temple d) Church of the Holy Sepulchre.
7. One of these Biblical municipalities is north of the disputed West Bank region. a) Nazareth b) Bethlehem c) Jericho d) Gaza.
8. Palestinians are like Israelis in their connection to
a) Abraham b) King David c) Muhammed the prophet d) Hebrew.
9. Jews who are passionate about having Israel as their homeland may be called a) Zionists b) Palestinians c) Arabs d) Muslims.
10. Born as a modern nation some 60 years ago: a) Israel
b) Palestine c) Jerusalem d) Lebanon.
11. The Jewish diaspora - mostly to Europe - took place because of harsh treatment of the Jews by the a) Egyptians b) Italians c) Romans d) Syrians.
12. The structure built at the terminus (end) of the Via Dolorosa: a) Dome of the Rock b) Temple Mount c) Church of the Holy Sepulchre d) Western Wall.
13. Built at the site of Muhammed’s ascension to heaven and the site of Abraham’s sacrifice of his son: a) Dome of the Rock b) Temple Mount c) Church of the Holy Sepulchre d) Western Wall.
14. Both Judaism and Islam look to __ as their founder.  a) Isaac  b) Ishmael c) Moses  d) Abraham.
15. The population density of Louisiana as compared to Israel: it is much  a) higher b) lower  c) the same.
16. The lower half of Israel is composed largely of a) desert  b) numerous ancient towns c) resort developments d) oases and irrigation systems.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The wandering Jew: a story of the Jewish disapora

Zionists: the Jews who want to make sure there is a homeland, a Jewish nation, in ancient Palestine. In the late 1800's and early 1900's they bought land in Palestine and made plans to "make the deserts bloom." They argued with the Arabs who had lived upon that land for centuries. Ultimately they fought a small war. When the smoke cleared, the Jews were able to expel many Palestinians (the population of Israel remains 20% Arab).

These refugees have caused never-ending problems for Israel.

The Jews originated in Palestine, parts of which were in ancient times called
a) Judah
b) Canaan
c) Zion and
d) Israel.

Why was it that Jews were returning to re-establish their homeland?

The conquerors of Palestine such as the Romans and the Persians were cruel to the Jews because the Jews were too independent to be fully obedient citizens. These conquerors retaliated against Jewish defiance by burning and otherwise destroying Jewish centers.

Masada: on a mesa in the rocky badlands of Israel were a Jewish group called the Zealots. They defied the Romans from their mountain stronghold, confident that no one could successfully attack them. But the Roman army besieged them. Cut off from food and water, the Zealots (the word zealous means "having great energy to accomplish a task") did not want to fall into the hands of the Romans, though they faced defeat. They instead burned their fortress and committed mass suicide. Some 936 went to their death rather than face torture
or slavery under the Romans.

For centuries the Jewish people were called Wandering Jews. They left Palestine in a great diaspora, or dsipersal. They migrated to many nations in Europe. Large numbers of Jews lived in Russia, Poland, Germany, France and Spain.

Jews typically lived in the least-desirable part of town. The Italian term for the Jewish Quarter was ghetto.

Jews loaned money and were the first bankers and pawn shop operators. In the Medieval era it was a a sin for Christians to loan money at interest. It was called usury. Jews were important to the businessmen of the city even though the Jew was mostly thought of as an alien.

Many Jews were not interested in assimilating into Western/Christian society. They were happy being outsiders.

The Holy Land Project / Google doc presentation

Assemble images in Google Docs under Presentation. Use large images - no less than 350X350.

- 12 images with
- 2 brief on-screen identifications for each image (changed to 2 from the earlier 3);
- and documentation plus titling.

2. Old City of Jerusalem
3. Church of the Holy Sepulcher
4. Via Dolorosa
5. Dome of the Rock mosque
6. Western wall of the ancient Jewish temple - Wailing Wall
7. Tel Aviv
8. Dead Sea
9. Negev Desert
10. Bethlehem or Nazareth or Sea of Gallilee
11. Palestinian
12. Mediterranean meal

Substitutions can be made to acccomodate special finds.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Notes on Israel -

Map in the RMQRWA, p. 25.
Ancient Palestine, Modern Israel
Dead Sea
Jordan River
Sea of Gallilee
West Bank region (disputed)

Jew vs. Palestinian Muslim Arab
- cousins in blood, language and heritage
- Hebrew & Arabic
- struggle for control of the land of Israel and city of Jerusalem - which has been going on since the Crusades, in the Medieval era.

The Jew vs Palestinian Arab skit:

a) Zionists are Jews who believe that a Jewish homeland in their ancient home of Palestine is important. In the late 1880's and early 1900's they gather funds and purchase land in Palestine.

b) Ottoman Turks owned the land of Palestine. They acquired it when they had a powerful empire. Jews purchase the land cheaply.

c) Palestinian Arabs were mostly shepherds and had overgrazed the land; palestine had become a dry, rocky place early in the 20th century. Jews promises when they got the land they will "Make the deserts bloom." They will use scientific farming to change the terrain.

d) The struggle between those who owned the land by virtue of their long residency and those who purchased it in the modern way is not easily solved. Jews push the Arabs. The Arabs fight back. The Jewish forces ovewhwelm the Arabs.

e) In 1947 the victory of the Jewish forces is complete. They declare a Jewish state to be called Israel.

f) Israel has continually fought to maintain its existence. Its army is called the strongest force in the Mid East. Its principal support - due to lobbying of the US Congress - is foreign aid from the US.

g) The Palestinians have fought back via the intifadeh. That term means a low-cost, terror-based rebellion against the well-equipped Jewish forces. The struggle - which includes suicide bombers - has focused on Gaza and the West bank region.

- Israel's population is not shrinking. They are up from 6 million to 7.3 million. The population comprises some 20% Arab people.
- Israel is a high-tech nation which might go to all-electric vehicles if the Better Place program, founded by Shai Agassi, is successful.

Monday, February 09, 2009

St. Constantine the Great and the Christiqan church and Jerusalem

Saint Constantine (/'kɒnstɛntaɪn/), was Roman Emperor from 306, and the undisputed holder of that office from 324 until his death in 337. Best known for being the first Christian Roman Emperor, Constantine reversed the persecutions of his predecessor, Diocletian, and issued (with his co-emperor Licinius) the Edict of Milan in 313, which proclaimed religious toleration throughout the empire, says Wikipedia.

His mother was St Helena, a convert to Christianity who built the Church of the Holy Sepulchre over the site of Jesus' crucifixion and burial.

Constantine left Rome and ruled the empire from the city of Byzantium, a metropolis he renamed Constantinople.


Originally uploaded by rquiring

Jerusalem (Hebrew: יְרוּשָׁלַיִםHe-Jerusalem.ogg (audio) , Yerushaláyim; Arabic: القُدس ArAlquds.ogg (audio) , al-Quds)[ii] is the capital[iii] of Israel and its largest city[2] in both population and area,[3] with a population of 747,600 residents over an area of 125.1 square kilometres (48.3 sq mi) if disputed East Jerusalem is included.[1][4][iv] Located in the Judean Mountains, between the Mediterranean Sea and the northern tip of the Dead Sea, modern Jerusalem has grown up outside the Old City, says Wikipedia.

The city has a history that goes back to the 4th millennium BCE, making it one of the oldest cities in the world.[5] Jerusalem has been the holiest city in Judaism and the spiritual center of the Jewish people since the 10th century BCE,[6] contains a number of significant ancient Christian sites, and is considered the third-holiest city in Islam.[7] Despite having an area of only 0.9 square kilometer (0.35 square mile),[8] the Old City is home to sites of key religious importance, among them the Temple Mount, the Western Wall, the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, the Dome of the Rock and al-Aqsa Mosque. The old walled city, a World Heritage site, has been traditionally divided into four quarters, although the names used today — the Armenian, Christian, Jewish, and Muslim Quarters — were introduced in the early 19th century.[9] The Old City was nominated for inclusion on the List of World Heritage Sites in danger by Jordan in 1982.[10] In the course of its history, Jerusalem has been destroyed twice, besieged 23 times, attacked 52 times, and captured and recaptured 44 times.[11]

Today, the status of Jerusalem remains one of the core issues in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Israel's annexation of East Jerusalem has been repeatedly condemned by the United Nations and related bodies,[12][13] and Arab Palestinians foresee East Jerusalem as the capital of their future state.[14][15] In the wake of United Nations Security Council Resolution 478 (passed in 1980), most foreign embassies moved out of Jerusalem, although some countries, such as the United States, still own land in the city and pledge to return their embassies once political agreements warrant the move.[16]

Jerusalem and the Holy Land: sacred to 3 religions

The Holy Land (Arabic: الأرض المقدسة, al-Arḍ ul-Muqaddasah; Ancient Aramaic: ארעא קדישא Ar'a Qaddisha; Hebrew: ארץ הקודש Erets HaQodesh; Greek: Άγιοι Τόποι Agioi Topoi; Latin:Terrae Sanctae), generally refers to the geographical region of the Levant called Land of Canaan or Land of Israel in the Bible, and constitutes the Promised land, says Wikipedia. This area, or sites within it, hold significant religious importance to at least four monotheistic Abrahamic religions: Judaism, Christianity, Islam and Bahá'í. Part of its sanctity stems from the religious significance of Jerusalem, the holiest city to Judaism and third-holiest to Islam.

The holiness of this land was the ideological driving force behind the Crusaders' re-conquest from the Muslim rulers who controlled it since the Islamic conquests. Numerous pilgrims visited that land throughout history.

Although the Zionism movement, the current State of Israel and the Israeli-Arab conflict are largely political, the dispute around the control of the Temple Mount in East Jerusalem is based on religious beliefs. Some have proposed the founding of a Federal Republic of the Holy Land as a one-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.[1]

Israelite kingdoms and states existed intermittently in the region for over a millennium, with Jerusalem as their capital. Following foreign conquests, Israelite presence in the Holy Land dwindled. In particular, the failure of the Bar Kokhba Revolt against the Roman Empire resulted in widescale expulsion of Jerusalemites. The Romans renamed this land Syria Palaestina, the origin of the name Palestine. Jerusalem was renamed Aelia Capitolina. The Mishnah and Jerusalem Talmud, two of Judaism's most important religious texts, were composed in the region during this period.

Jerusalem appears 669 times in the Hebrew Bible. Zion, which usually means Jerusalem, sometimes the Land of Israel, appears 154 times. In the first sections, the area of Jerusalem is called Mount Moriah, the location of the binding of Isaac, now called the Temple Mount.

In the Hebrew Bible, Jerusalem and the Holy Land are considered a divine gift, part of several covenants. Jerusalem has long been embedded into Jewish religious consciousness. Jews have studied and personalized the struggle by King David to capture Jerusalem and his desire to build the Jewish temple there, as described in the Book of Samuel and the Book of Psalms. Many of King David's yearnings about Jerusalem have been adapted into popular prayers and songs. Jerusalem is mentioned in many Jewish prayers; the Passover seder prayer ends with Next year in Jerusalem. Jews turn towards Jerusalem to pray. The Western Wall of the Temple Mount, nicknamed the "wailing wall", is the holiest site to Jews and a site of pilgrimage for centuries.

The Holy Land is significant in Christianity, mainly because it is the place of birth, ministry, Crucifixion and Resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth, the Saviour or Messiah to Christianity.

Holy cities for Christians of all denominations:

Sharing similar religious beliefs with Jews and Christians, Muslims consider the land west of (but not limited to) the Jordan River to be sacred, as mentioned in the Qur'an.

" Moses said unto his people, 'O my people, enter the Holy Land, which Allah hath decreed you.' " - (Qur'an 5:21)

The first few months of Islamic history saw the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem to be the first Qibla (direction of prayer), as opposed to the Kaaba in Makkah. Both Jerusalem and the Al-Aqsa Mosque, are considered to be the third holiest places for all denominations of Islam. In Arabic, the city of Jerusalem is commonly known as "al-Quds", meaning "the Holy".

Muslims believe that Muhammad journeyed from Masjidul Haram in Makkah, to the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem, and back, all in a single night. It was at the Al-Aqsa Mosque that Muhammad performed Salah (the prayers) with all of the Prophets of Islam, and thereafter ascended to heaven, called Mi'raj.

Muslims also consider the depression below Mount Sinai, known as "Tuwa", to be sacred as mentioned in the Qur'an as the "Holy Valley" (الوادي المقدس):

" Has not there come to you the story of Moses? How his Lord called him in the the holy valley of Tuwa " - (Qur'an 79:15-16)

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Indie work: comparison of the life of King David of the Jews and the prophet Muhammed, founder of Islam

Indie work: comparison of the life of King David of the Jews and the prophet Muhammed, founder of Islam (spelling varies, remember).

Certainly they are not held in equivalent status by believers, so I don't want to subtly create offense. Academically, this reading is designed to examine power and personalities in the ancient cultural confluence of the Middle East, more properly called Southwest Asia. .

Read, research, write and meditate.

Friday, February 06, 2009

Don't forget your Shovel for the crepe myrtle planting on Fri

E 205 with Shovel
Originally uploaded by trudeau
Shovel, 10 pts indie points.
Additional shovels: 2 pts each.

Buckets and parents welcome, too.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009

Mesopotamia / Iraq: hand-sketched map quiz Thurs

London 07
Originally uploaded by trudeau
Mesopotamia / Iraq Map quiz:
- 10 identifications
- borders denoting the nations (may be blocky or blobby but must be in correct relationship)
- spelling
- legibility

1. Euphrates
2. Tigris
3. Baghdad
4. Persian Gulf
5. Iran (Persia)
6. Syria
7. Turkey
8. Jordan
9. Saudi Arabia
10. Kuwait

Mandatory is that the center of the map is identified as Mesopotamia / Iraq.

15 pts.

Lawrence of Arabia Quiz / with answers

London 07
Originally uploaded by trudeau
Lawrence of Arabia quiz / Trudeau

1. The dates of WWI were 1914 - 1918. The US entered the war one year after the fighting in Europe had begun. The US began fighting in 1915. T / F
2. Lawrence grew up in the English county of a) Derbyshire b) Worcestershire c) Yorkshire d) Oxfordshire.
3. In the WWI era in Arabia the Middle Eastern conflict was between the nomadic, tribal ___ peoples and the Turks, rulers of the Turkish Ottoman Empire. a) Bedouin b) Muslim c) Persian d) Egyptian.
4. The Arabic word for a canyon, usually a dry, rocky area between mesas, is “___.” a) Guinea b) Ponzi c) Wadi d) Wog.
5. Salaam aleikum translates from Arabic into English as a) "Peace be with you” b) “If God wills it so.” c) “God is great; God is good.” d) the holy Qu’ran.
6. Monte Carlo is the capital city of the nation of a) Monticello b) Monaco c) Andorra d) Leichtenstein.
7. “Recite, then, as much as may be easy for you and seek ye the forgiveness of God. Verily, God is forgiving, merciful ...” These are the opening words of the a) Bible
b) Quran c) Baghavad Gita d) Aqaba.
8. The capital of Syria: a) Mecca b) Damascus c) Jerusalem .
9. The Islamic golden age lasted from about a) 750 to 1050 AD b) 1050 to 1500 AD c) 1500 to 1650 AD.
10. The first outside force to travel to West Africa in order to trade for gold, ivory and slaves: a) Europeans b) Arabs c) Hindus d) Swahilis.
11. The date palm is the principal tree in a desert ___. a) aquifer b) oasis c) wadi d) well.
12. British gold coin: a) Shilling b) Guinea c) Shekel d) Riyal.
13. A concord between major nations that establishes guidelines for treatment of prisoners and for ethical warfare was agreed to at a) Versailles b) Paris c) Geneva
d) London.

From Wikipedia’s biography of TE Lawrence:
Lawrence continued making trips to the Middle East as a field archaeologist until the outbreak of World War I. In January 1914, Woolley and Lawrence were co-opted by the British military as an archaeological smokescreen for a British military survey of the Negev Desert. They were funded by the Palestine Exploration Fund to search for an area referred to in the Bible as the "Wilderness of Zin"; along the way, they undertook an archaeological survey of the Negev Desert. The Negev was of strategic importance, as it would have to be crossed by any Ottoman army attacking Egypt in the event of war. Woolley and Lawrence subsequently published a report of the expedition's archaeological findings,[9] but a more important result was an updated mapping of the area, with special attention to features of military relevance such as water sources. Lawrence also visited Aqaba and Petra.

14. It seems that Lawrence indirectly worked for the British army prior to officially joining the British army. T / F
15. The Negev desert was part of Palestine in 1914. Today the nation of Palestine is called a) Israel b) Aqaba c) Petra d) Egypt.
16. The desert feature of greatest importance to the British in regards the Negev was its a) archaeology b) Ottomans c) water sources d) updated mapping.

1. false
2. d
3. a
4. c
5. a
6. b
7. b
8. b
9. a
10. b
11. b
12. b
13. c
14. t
15. a
16. c

Review of Mesopotamia / Open notes & map quiz Thurs

London 07
Originally uploaded by trudeau
Identify the nation in which these landmarks are found.
Choose from a) Iraq b) Iran c) Saudi Arabia d) Kuwait.

1. Tigris
2. Mesopotamia
3. Ur
4. Babylon
5. Baghdad
6. Nefud desert
7. Abraham
8. Euphrates
9. Fertile Crescent
10. cuneiform writing

11. Abraham the Patriarch is considered Father of the Jews. T / F
12. Abraham is also considered Father of the Muslims.
T / F
13. Who came first, chronologically? a) Jesus of Nazareth or b) Muhammad, prophet of Islam.
14. Which is on the west? a) Tigris b) Euphrates.
15. The Tigris & Euphrates flow into the a) Persian Gulf
b) Mediterranean c) Red Sea d) Arabian Sea.
16. In Mesopotamia about 4000 BC scientists find the birth of __ writing. a) hieroglyphic b) cuneiform.

Mesopotamia hand-sketched map quiz on Thurs
- 10 items surrounding and including the Tigris & Euphrates rivers.

1. Iraq
2. Iraq
3. Iraq
4. Iraq
5. Iraq
6. Saudi Arabia
7. Iraq (his birth)
8. Iraq
9. Iraq
10. Iraq
11. T
12. T
13. a
14. b
15. a
16. b

Monday, February 02, 2009

YA author Alan Gratz speaks Thur, Feb 5, 6:30 pm, at Cmhs in Mary Jane Malone Lecture Series

The 11th Mary Jane Malone Lecturer at Caddo Parish Magnet High school will be Alan Gratz, says Kris Clements..

Gratz is the author of one of the American Library Association's 2007 Top Ten Best Books for Young Adults, Samuari Shortstop, and a 2008 ALA Quick Pick for Young Adult Readers, Something Rotten. A sequel, Something Wicked was released this past fall. A fourth book, The Brooklyn Nine will be released in March.

Adds Clements, "An incredibly delightful gentleman, he has taught middle-schoolers (bless his heart!), written over 6000 radio commercials, and written a few episodes of A&E's City Confidential. Though a native of Knoxville, TN, he now lives with his wife and daughter in North Carolina."

On Thursday, February 5th, at 6:30 in the Performing Arts Center on the Magnet High campus, Mr. Gratz will give a free and open to the public lecture. His books will be available for sale in the foyer both before and after the lecture. Following the evening's lecture, hewill hold a book signing until approximately 8:00 PM.

He will speak to students at 1:30 pm.

Ten points bonus per shovel: Cmhs planting by Class of 2012 on Fri, Feb 6, during social studies classes

Crepe myrtles purchased with Class of 2012 funds will be donated to the Cmhs campus and planted by students in social studies classes on Fri, Feb 6, says class sponsor Robert Trudeau.

Shovels brought from home - on a one-day loan - offer the key to completing the project, says Trudeau. "My students can earn 10 pts indie work credit for bringing a shovel to school for the project. We will label the shovel and after the planting it is Extremely important that each student Bring the Shovel Back to the House."

Cmhs parents Barbara Meyers, Linda Kinnebrew and Renee Young have managed the project. Planting will be done on the north and south sides of E wing.

Comparison project: the achievements of Egypt in parallel with the accomplishments of Mesopotamia - Sumeria, Babylon and Assyria

London 07
Originally uploaded by trudeau
Using sources such as Wikipedia, World Book and, create a comparison graphic that will bring to light the significant advances of two neighboring civilizations: the Egyptian and the Mesopotamian.

Among the topics to be addressed:
- architecture
- law
- mythology
- economy
- mathematics & astronomy
- language & writing

Use at least one illustration for each culture.
8 pts.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

Indie work: compare Sumerian & Babylonian cuneiform writing to Egyptian hieroglyphics

Cuneiform inscription
Originally uploaded by Romanus_too
The most ancient scripts of historic mankind:

- Sumerian and Babylonian cuneiform
- Egyptian hieroglyphics
- Chinese hieroglyphics

Read. Research. Compare. Document.