10-Rep Learning ~ Teague's Tech Treks

Learning Technology & Tech Observations by Dr. Helen Teague


STEAM Icebreakers, Deep Space and Tolkien!

Let’s look at a few Icebreaker connections from Math… J.R.R. Tolkien… Deep Space!

The most distant individual star ever seen has been spotted by the Hubble Space Telescope, NASA said Wednesday, March 30, 2022. The star is believed to be 12.9 billion light-years from Earth and about 50 times as massive as the sun. The new star, coded as WHL0137-LS, was found on March 30, 2022 using gravitational lensing of a galaxy cluster.

In a wonderful STEAM connection, Dr. Brian Welch, lead researcher of the team of astrophysicists and astronomers at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore gave WHL0137-LS the star name, “Earendel.” (Remember our Tolkien Reading Day Icebreaker from March 25? )

The star’s name, Earendel, is inspired by J.R. R. Tolkien’s fantasy writing!
In Tolkien’s book, “The Lord of the Rings,” Eärendil is the name of a character, ahalf-elf mariner who travels the seas carrying a jewel, or “Silmaril,” called the morning star. This star “has the wonderful name of Earendel, and that’s actually from Tolkien,” NASA astronomer Michelle Thaller explained. “It means the dawn star, and it’s an Old English word. It’s lovely. And this is a star, literally, from the dawn of time, the dawn of stars forming. This is the first star, the farthest star we’ve ever seen, and I think Earendel is a beautiful name for it,” Thaller said.

Now, it’s your turn! What Icebreaker questions would you create? Consider the “7 Pieces of Art Inspired by the Night Sky” website and/or numerical data.

Artwork Resource: Show students some artwork from digital sources:

7 Pieces of Art Inspired by the Night Sky: https://www.darksky.org/7-pieces-of-art-inspired-by-the-night-sky/

From Space.com: https://www.space.com/hubble-most-distant-star-tolkien-name-earendil

Super short movie from the Wall Street Journal – https://www-wsj-com.cdn.ampproject.org/c/s/www.wsj.com/amp/articles/hubble-space-telescope-spots-most-distant-star-ever-seen-11648655351

From NetAtlas: https://newatlas.com/space/earendel-most-distant-star-hubble/

Here is some of the numeric data for the star, Earendel that would make great class Icebreakers!

  • 12.9 billion light-years from Earth – how many miles is this? (for an approximate result, multiply the length value by 5.879e+12). See more https://www.calculateme.com/astronomy/light-years/to-miles/
  • 1000 times brighter than our Sun.
  • 50 times the mass of the Sun
  • 2nd brightest star is Icarus, 9 billion light years away





Weekend Ed. Quote ~ March 25

In honor of Tolkien Reading Day, a quote from Bilbo Baggins

“Go back? No good at all! Go sideways? Impossible! Go forward? Only thing to do! On we go!”




Find your favorite quote at  35+ The Hobbit Quotes To Inspire Your Own Adventure






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Tolkien Reading Day, Friday March 25 – Activities and Scavenger Hunt

Tolkien Reading Day Art and Math Integration Icebreakers/Early Finishers Activity/ Extra Credit Scavenger Hunt

Personalized, shortened link to this post: https://tinyurl.com/HobbitTeague

Tomorrow, March 25 is Tolkien Reading Day, sponsored by The Tolkien Society. Tolkien Reading Day has been organized by the Tolkien Society since 2003 to encourage fans of all ages “to celebrate and promote the life and works of J.R.R. Tolkien by reading favorite passages.”


Icebreaker How-To’s: 

Project this book cover and, as students walk on (or after the bell, whatever is your instructional practice), ask students to go on a mini-middle Earth scavenger hunt.

Hobbit Book Cover

Image Source: https://www.dustjackets.com/pages/books/49742/j-r-r-tolkien/hobbit-the


Students find the following: 

  • All the triangles in the book cover (by number or diagram)
  • All of the circles in the book cover  (by number or diagram)
  • One other geometric shape (give the shape and the number)
  • An item represented 13 times
  • In what year was The Hobbit first published? 
  • Using our current year, how many years ago was The Hobbit first published? 
  • How old was J.R.R. Tolkien when The Hobbit was first published? 
  • Your Choice (consider sharing as a Reply to this post)
  • Your Choice (consider sharing as a Reply to this post)
  • Students write their own question and provides the answer


*****Be sure to honor the purpose of the day and read your favorite section of The Hobbit! Click here to go to the Library of Congress to see an excerpt of The Hobbit: http://catdir.loc.gov/catdir/samples/hm051/98102207.html


Happy Tolkien Reading Day!!




For More Information

Education World Hobbit Scavenger Hunt – https://www.educationworld.com/a_lesson/internet-scavenger-hunt/the-hobbit.shtml
PDF file of the Scavenger Hunt: https://www.educationworld.com/sites/default/files/Internet-Scavenger-Hunt-Hobbit.pdf 

The Tolkien Society ~~ https://www.tolkiensociety.org/

gif via GIPHY


Weekend Ed. Quote ~ March 18

“To develop a complete mind: Study the science of art; Study the art of science. Learn how to see. Realize that everything connects to everything else.” ~Leonardo da Vinci, artist-scientist


Teague Kindle Shelf



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Creating a Branching Scenario using Twine – Rough 1st Attempt

Here is the link to preview the first decision component on Neocities: https://10replearning.neocities.org/APAinTwine.html

Khalil works as a teller at a credit union in San Diego, CA while pursuing his graduate degree in Curriculum and Instruction. Some of his recent writing assignments in class have received low scores. Khalil would like to understand the problems he needs to address in his writing.
Follow Khalil as he understands how to correct assignment feedback.
[[Let’s Get Started]]
(enchant:?page,(text-colour:black)+(background:#fcfcfc))After a recent assignment, Khalil was checking his grades. He noticed assessment scores in the 70% range and assessment comments. Khalil knows that if he does not do something soon, his overall average will suffer. Khalil’s instructor told the students to check their TurnItIn reports for issues. Khalil knows that he did not cheat. He is increasingly frustrated that his assignment score is lower than expected. He made A’s in his undergraduate work.

How should Khalil proceed?

[[Call the professor to complain. He knows that he did not plagiarize.]]

[[Work harder on the upcoming assignment.]]

[[Click on the TurnItIn percentage icon to see the report.]]
(enchant:?page,(text-colour:black)+(background:#fcfcfc))Spending more time in proofreading and editing is a good idea. But there is more to graduate writing than proofreading and mechanics.

//Without looking at APA style and formatting, and attribution errors, Khalil might continue to make the same mistakes.//

[[Go back to the beginning ->Let’s Get Started]]
(enchant:?page,(text-colour:black)+(background:#fcfcfc))//Clicking the TurnItIn icon will display the assignment and show areas of attribution errors. Attribution errors can include an excess of quoted material (even if it is quoted correctly). It can also show text copied from other sources as well as errors of mechanics. It is recommended to check the TurnItIn report before submitting work to correct errors. Always check TurnItIn reports with scores over 20-22%.//

[[Restart->APA Style and Format]]
(enchant:?page,(text-colour:black)+(background:#fcfcfc))//This is Friday night and the Instructor does not have weekend office hours. Khalil needs answers now. //

[[Go back to the beginning ->Let’s Get Started]]




Weekend Ed. Quote ~ March 11

“Painting is poetry that is seen rather than felt, and poetry is painting that is felt rather than seen.”
~ Leonardo da Vinci


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Weekend Ed. Quote ~ March 4

“If you don’t have time to do it right, when will you have time to do it over?”
~John Wooden, Basketball Coach, Husband, Father, Author, Leader, Legend






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