Thursday, April 24, 2014

Mathematical models exploration in lab 14

Laboratory 14 is effectively a practical laboratory where the students are given a somewhat ill-defined system and asked to explore that system, determine whether a mathematical model underlays the system, and if so, what is the equation for that system. Tagging onto a science video on flight and Bernoulli's law from last week, the class explored the launch velocity versus distance for Frisbees and flying rings. I was not clear at the start that the throwing angle should be zero, parallel to the ground, to remove the effects of a parabolic trajectory. The goal is to isolate the effect of the Bernoulli principle and not introduce the quadratic relationship of velocity to distance for an object thrown at an angle theta to the ground.

Throwers were lined up to throw at the radar gun holder. Johnson, Bertha, Terrance, Ryan, Serlyn.

Reed with the radar gun

Paul Cantero launches a flying ring directly at the radar gun. The radar gun was able to record the ring and Frisbee velocities. Triggering the radar gun at the right instant, however, was a source of error.

Johnson had some of the best "flat" throws. Others tended to throw the rings upwards at an angle theta to the ground. 

Kanisia recorded data obtained by JD Ringlen Lebehn.

As seen above, Ryan requested that Reed stand next to him to try to improve the accuracy of the launch velocity data.

Retrieving rings and Frisbees.

Comparing data.
Sample data sheet. The radar gun reads in kilometers per hour, hence the conversion. A spreadsheet was used to help handle conversions on the fly in the field.

Review for final in ethnobotany

The bulldozing of the ethnogarden led to shifting the final examination from the plants of the garden to the plants of the campus. This generated a new plant list. The class walked the campus from east to west, skipping the introduced ornamental plants. Fortunately my years of scattering plants around campus, and the planting of plants by others, have made possible the shift from a specific garden to using the whole campus as a garden.

KeyLatin binomialKeyLatin binomial
ALOAlocasia macrorrhizosGLOGlochidion ramiflorum
ALPAlpinia carolinensisHBRHibiscus rosa-sinensis
ANAAnanas comosus HIBHibiscus tiliaceus
ANNAnnona muricataIXOIxora casei
AREAreca catechuJASJasminum sambac
ARTArtocarpus altilisLYCLycopodiella cernua
ASPAsplenium nidusMACMacaranga carolenensis
BAMBambusa vulgarisMAGMagnifera indica
CAMCampnosperma brevipetiolataMELMelastoma malabathicum var. marianum
CANCananga odorataMERMerremia peltata
CANCinnamomum carolinenseMICMicrosorum scolopendria
CITCitrus aurantifoliaMORMorinda citrifolia
CLEClerodendrum inermeMUSMusa x paradisiaca spp.
COLColocassia esculantaNPHNephrolepis spp.
COCCocos nuciferaOCIOcimum tenuiflorum
CORCordyline fruticosaPIPPiper ponapense
CYCCyclosorus maemonensisPLUPlumeria obtusa
CYMCymbopogon citratusPONPonapea ledermanniana
CYRCyrtosperma merkusiiPREPremna obtusifolia
DAVDavallia solida var. solidaPGUPsidium guajava
DICDicranopteris linearisSENSenna alata [formerly Cassia alata]
FALFalcataria moluccanaTERTerminalia catappa
GARGardenia jasminoides [G. augusta]

Alpinia carolinense behind Merlina.

Rotick and Maylevlynn in front of the Ixora casei.

Carlinda looks at the Clerodendrum inerme.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Cultural ceremony in ethnobotany

Ethnobotany, being a Tuesday-Thursday 3:30 class, is always the last class in the last period on the last day before spring break. Attendance is usually low for the class. This term the extremely late date for Easter allowed the kava cultural ceremony to land on this day. With no class the next day, I did not have to be concerned that some students might linger after the ceremony. The field trip also solved the attendance issue. Twenty-five of twenty-six students were in attendance.

The class visited Nahnmadeu en Lehnpwel, Simion Nicholas, of Pehleng, Kitti, Pohnpei.

 Nahnmadeu en Lehnpwel


Class arrive led by Sother "Nahlik"Anton Jr.


Menindei in mwaramwar

Rotick and Rico

Sandra You on the right

Merlina, Hanae, Lilly Jane, Carie-Ann, Arlen

Benhart, (Sapino), Westcot, Leona Leion

Menindei in traditional garb

Westcot, Leona

Sakau enters the nahs with four stems

Under watchful eyes, some students clean the sakau in the traditional manner with coconut husk

Leona is tasked as an oaurir, does not yet know how to sit

McGurruth "Mikey" shows he knows how to serve as an oaurir

Menindei directs the sukusuk

Nahlik learns the four pwoaikoar.

Tehn wehd (toahn wed) refers to the four taro leaves (Latin: Alocasia macrorrhiza) are placed around the stone to catch pieces of sakau that fall. These are called pwei koar or pwoaikoar. Pounders should place their feet under the pwoaikoar. There is an order to the placement, and a name called out when the leaf is place: koaloal adak, koaloal epwel, koaloal leng, pwei koar di. The -di signifies completion (from the course text).

The four moahl (pounding stones) also have names: Moahl for Nahnmwarki: moahleina, moahlasang katau, moahleileng, (moahleiloang), moahleini. Moahl for Nahnken: moahleiso, moahlmwahu (moahlamwahu), souriahtek, (soauriahtik), souriahlap (soauriahlap).

Sother, Rico, pound.

Video of the sokamah or tempel being played on the peitehl

Jamie on the right.

McGurruth (Mikey) demonstrates his skill set in the nahs, knowing his arm positions

After nopwei the class was dismissed and returned to campus. Friends of the family stayed back for small talk and socialization. Sother remained as the squeezer.

Mikey took over later in the evening, demonstrating his own abilities at wungwung

Prayer at Japanese Haruki Cemetery

Twice a year the Japanese clean their ancestor's graves, make special food, and prepare for the visit of ancestral spirits. For the past few years the ethnobotany class has cleaned the Haruki cemetery at each Ohigan, most recently on Shunbun no Hi. This term, shortly after the vernal equinox, two priests from Japan were visiting the island. Arrangements were made for them to say a prayer in the cemetery.

Sano preparing to pray.

The cemetery was a civilian cemetery for Japanese living in Palikir (Haruki) Pohnpei during the Japanese era in Micronesia. In 1945 the adults were exhumed and the remains returned for reburial in Japan. There were, however, children and babies buried in unmarked graves. 

I only became aware of this in 2003 as the result of a visit of Kazuhide Aruga. His notes, in Japanese, speak of a younger sister Natsue and an elder brother whose name he never learned. 

Sano lights the incense.

Placing of the incense.

Video of the chant, focus was out. Sano and Aoki say a Buddhist requiem.

College of Micronesia-FSM student Hanae Shimizu explains the purpose of today's activity.

Aoki, said to be in his eighties, with Hanae. Japanese class instructor Akiko Kamikubo and student Jenny Gabriel on the right.



Inspecting the memorial stone.

A man from Paies noted a pre-existing older grave on the hill and expressed the opinion that the Japanese may have been using a pre-existing Pohnpeian cemetery to bury their dead.

Floral litmus solutions

SC 130 Physical Science laboratory thirteen is the most liked laboratory by the students and has been retained without significant modification since 2007.

In the mornign session students tested a variety of unknowns using their floral litmus solutions. Paul, JD, and Johnson can be seen on the right side of the image.

Tania, Jermy, and Brenda with rubbing alcohol, ammonia, corn starch, and bleach in front of them.

Serlyn and Reed boil flowers.

Kanisia boiling flowers.

Andrea shows Rilensha and Amy her results.

During laboratory eight three students opted to remain after the lab and made color key sheets using crayons from the new 150 crayon towers. One still had their color sheet, which proved very useful in laboratory thirteen. Not sure I would add this to laboratory eight intentionally.

Yvonne. Lilly adds PineSol (in a small bottle) to the litmus solution being held by Wendolin.

Rilensha, Afilina, Amyleen, and Diane.