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Showing posts from March, 2015

Haruki Ohigan Rain

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Dark skies and heavy rain accompanied the Ohigan cleaning of the Haruki cemetery. Although the weather was inclement at best, only a single student was absent. Although I noted that due to the wet conditions and the presence of rebar and pipe in the cemetery only experienced machete handlers ought to participate, the students all joined in with great enthusiasm.

The class began with Japanese-Chuukese student Miki Fritz explaining Ohigan.

I again cautioned the class to be careful in the wet and dark conditions.

Herpelyn and Esmirelda in the rain, the flash lighting individual raindrops
Miki explains Ohigan as Bryan, Stephanie, Patty and Beverly listen
Attendance in the rain was taken photographically. Patty, Beverly, and John Yilbuw.
Miki handles a presentation in difficult circumstances
Darlene, Kohsak, Simon, and Lerina Nena
Simon shelters from the rain with Lerina, Lilina at work
Herpelyn, Esmirelda, Lina Lawrence, Petery Peter
Bryan Mwarike, Miki Fritz, Bryan Wichep lurking in the …

Vegetative morphology

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To cover angiosperm morphology I took the ethnobotany class into the field, beginning class at the Eugenia uniflora (Surinam cherry). The cherries are in, so started from there. The leaf arrangement is opposite and the leaves are faintly pinnate. I then headed east to have a look at the Premna obtusifolia variant locally known as oahr, a variant for which there was some hope of resurrecting Premna serratifolia name. I also used the Spathoglottis plicata to show linear venation.

The day was sunny and hot, I headed down to the Pterocarpus indicus trees along the main entrance road.


 I then moved the class onto the uneven terrain north of the entrance road.


Footing was uneven, with the grass hiding the lumpy, bumpy terrain. The terrain appears smooth, but when your foot lands you are thrown in an unexpected direction. Hence Herpelyn and Petery work to regain their balance in the right background. Elizabeth and Simon Augustine on the left in the background appear to either be on more lev…

Capturing the population mean with paper airplane distances

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I put the population mean distance from the building on the board, 600 centimeters. Then I told the students to make a paper airplane and throw the plane from the second floor porch.

Victoria makes final adjustments in her plane
I did not tell them how to fold their plane nor what kind of plane to make. I told them only that I was measuring the distance of flight from the building (not the flight length, just the perpendicular distance).

Ugine prepares to launch her plane
The student's view of the measuring process is obstructed by the glare off of the top of my head.
A statistics instructor who is out standing in his field, but not outstanding in his field.
Distances being called perpendicular to the building
In all three sections the 95% confidence interval for the sample mean distance included the population mean as for that section. Details are in a Google Docs spreadsheet
I always point out that I will manage to do this only 95% of the time. The reality is that the bet is f…