The Bruce Museum Exhibition gives Innovation Lab students a way to show their growth and collaboration in large teams. Starting in Late November, the junior class of innovation lab was split into teams and given the task to research a crisis of our choice and how the government responded to the crisis. Our group chose the BP oil spill of 2010 as it showed the governments response to a major environmental crisis. The BP oil spill is currently the largest environmental disaster in the U.S passing the Exxon Valdez Spill of 1989. As a group, we investigated the role of government in resolving a crisis and the role that the government holds.
(Bruce Museum, Greenwich CT)
The exhibition at the Bruce Museum holds the purpose of giving innovation lab students the ability to show students abilities working in groups, being able to receive feedback from an outside source and develop a better understanding of government actions. Going into the exhibition I felt that there wasn’t enough information about the spill, but during the night of the exhibition, onlookers gave us compliments and great feedback that made my thoughts of stress vanish. Onlookers saw the information we had as informative and descriptive of what happened before, during, and after the BP Oil Spill. The reason that I may have felt that we didn’t have enough is because of the research I had done, the research felt like background knowledge of the spill since I had been researching it for 2 months before we presented. I was also able to learn about the experiences many had as they had a better memory of the spill than I did which helped expand my understanding of the BP oil spill.
Project-based learning in innovation lab is an amazing way to learn while putting a piece of your interests into your project. In Innovation Lab, Instead of answering questions and doing worksheets, Innovation Lab allows students to be able to show learning through debates and large scale group projects. I enjoyed the Bruce Museum exhibition because after creating our project for the prior 3 months we were able to see that it was influencing others and creating an understanding of the BP oil spill to visitors.
The BP Oil Spill of 2010 was a catastrophic event that caused major environmental and economic impact, still having impacts on the environment today. Affecting mainly areas around the coast of the Gulf of Mexico, the BP Oil Spill leaked roughly over 210 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico. The rig’s leak and later explosion were due to the failure of the emergency closure valves located 1 mile below the rig, the valves had multiple faults, one being that the battery controlling the emergency closure system had been drained as it was wired incorrectly, and the motor was installed backward opening the valve rather than closing it. This resulted in the closure system failing, then resulting in an exposure of crude oil to the surface. Once the oil found an ignition source, 11 lives were lost on April 20, 2010. Mike Williams was the Chief Electronics Technician and starred in the movie “Deep Water Horizon” he recalls his experience from the chaos aboard the Deepwater Horizon, “The men who died that night, we were not able to recover – not one of the bodies. And so that’s probably the hardest thing, knowing they didn’t get a proper burial,” he says. “It was simply too much, we couldn’t get to them. Initially, we didn’t really know because there was such chaos. Once we realized that – that there were 11 men unaccounted for – it was impossible to go back. There was no way to get back up there, no way to go back and try to help them. That’s probably the hardest thing to deal with.” The spill and explosion were a result of poor management as over 11 inspections of the rig were missed going back as far as 2005, if not missed they could’ve have found the faulty wiring in the emergency system and avoided this incident as a whole. The aftermath of the spill resulted in multiple lawsuits against BP due to the lack of management and the environmental impacts caused by the over 210 million gallons of oil. The spill was found to have harmed or killed approximately 82,000 birds of 102 species, approximately 6,165 sea turtles, and up to 25,900 marine mammals, including bottlenose dolphins, spinner dolphins, melon-headed whales, and sperm whales. This had a major effect on the environment and caused major economic damage to fisherman and ocean farmers located on the coast of the Gulf of Mexico as all crops and wildlife were poisoned or killed.
Prior to the story we had heard rumours that they were poacher’s on our property and had seen evidence on trails and campsites…. During the past summer i spent some time in a hunting reserve that my father is a part of, the cabin is from the 1950’s and my grandfather helped build the entire thing. It rests at the bottom of a large mountain that we have campsites and tree stands scattered upon, the night I arrived we decided to head up and have a small campfire. We planned on heading up around 8 o’clock to have a small campfire with some other members. Me, my father, and his friend Bobby were heading to meet Paul(the president) and Paul jr, when we got up to the top of the mountain Paul and his son Paul jr were waiting in their car, we all got out and Paul immediately said “I see headlights down the trail!” everyone looked down the trail and coming over the hill saw light, everyone turned off their cars and ATV’s and began to look closer.
At the time I was around 13 or 14 so I was worried about what was going to happen, they could be poachers and may not be happy that we found them, my fathers friend Bobby pulled out his firearm in case things went south since we had no clue what was coming and dove into a bush, I put my Atv in the path of the trail and sat behind it, and my father put his on the path as well, Paul and Paul jr both stood on each side of the trail behind trees. All of us sat there for 15-20 minutes silent, you could hear the leaves scraping against each other in the wind, until the silence was broken by Paul and Paul jr screaming “HEY POACHERS!!!” we were all startled by this and my dad went over and said “Paul, What the H*ll are you doing” then he calmly replied “Neal…. There are no poachers…. What is in the sky in the night… the moon” And ever since that night we have always laughed about that incident but are currently plotting our revenge on the two for pulling that on us
June 13th, 3018….
It was a nice day. The sound of metal echoing throughout the corridors, the odor of grease and bleach filled the small space. Well this ain’t looking too good, the workers surrounded the generator in the center of the room, it bubbled with burnt oil and smoke as they tried reviving the old monstrosity. I exited the room as they started to take apart the engine, a raging inferno of floodlights greeted me as I entered the cafeteria, an officer rushed pass me a slip fell to the ground behind him and was absorbed into the puddle caused by the air conditioning unit, I continued to my compound passing by armed guards surveyed the containment chamber watching groaning in boredom. I made my way to my compound. I stepped inside and was greeted by my partner Richard. “What have you been up to?”, not much, I said as I stepped into the corridor, the same musty stale smell greeted me as we walked down to our dormitories. “What do you think happened to the power?” he said, I don’t really know all I was able to see was that the engine has given out, he groaned in disgust, Every damned week we go through the same thing, one of the damned generators gives out and we inch closer and closer to a containment breach, ever since the damned 05’s decided that it would be a smart idea to disconnect us from the “Main grid” to make it less susceptible to attacks. The things that they keep in this place could kill the damned human race, i replied. Yeah, I guess your right at least we don’t have to deal with them, yet. We had been standing outside our rooms for a few minutes now… well goodnight… goodnight Richard. I flashed my key card on my door, it flew open and the lights flickered on, I didn’t have much in my room for “safety” reasons. All I had was a small desk, a computer, and a bed, on my desk I had a few books on the SCP’S being held at the facility and that they were just underneath me but it didn’t phase me too much as I never had to go down there. I grabbed a change of clothes and headed down to the showers, oddly no one else was there so I was able to take a longer than normal shower. I dried off and headed back to my room and lay down. The facility didn’t offer much for “entertainment” they thought it was a waste of time and caused “mishaps” they never mentioned what happened. I drifted to sleep and was interrupted by the small beeping sound encroaching on me getting louder and louder until I woke up, a small red light flashed above my door as it stood wide open, what the hell: I head running down the corridor as I opened my computer and checked the information hub, I sat shocked, speechless as in red lettering the monitor wrote “ALERT!, CONTAINMENT BREACH, EVACUATE THE FACILITY WITH AN MTF UNIT” I heard the screams of SCP-096 down the hallway.
To Be Continued…
If I were to continue the story i would continue off by just missing being torn to shreds by SCP-096, learning about the roots of the breach, how I was able to arm my self, fend my self off from the SCP’s that had breached containment, be on a fine line of death and life, how I had outsmarted the “chaos insurgency” and escaped to the hands of the MTF before the facility was destroyed to prevent a containment breach and cause the death of humanity.
My physical happy place is the woods, I am able to relax and take in the calm scenery, the woods is my happy place as I can do just about anything.
My father’s side has a lodge in upstate New York where I can go almost anytime I want, the lodge is mainly used for hunting during seasons and for recreation. The lodge is from the 50’s and to be honest, has lasted very long and for how much use it has seen I am surprised it hasn’t burnt to the ground yet. We have done a lot to the cabin and keep it in very good condition and I elaborate on that as we recently did a lot of work to fix what wasn’t upkept. We replaced all of the ceilings and replaced the kitchen which has not changed since the 50’s. We have military style bunk beds small, durable, and easy to clean. Gun lockers and a lot of blankets spread all over during the winter. I also feel a sense of calm when I enter the cabin as when something needs to be fixed, being able to spend time contributing to the cabin calms my nerves. the cabin has a rustic but modern feel as a smoke smell is starting to embed itself into the furniture that we just replaced and the cabin for the first time in 70 years finally has Cable and Internet. Going into the wood room a distinct smell of pine and burnt wood is always filling the room. Going out from the woodshop/storage is a space about as big as 3 pickup trucks put next to each other. During the off-season this year we built a large roof to cover that space and it now protects all the outdoor equipment and extra wood that we have for the winter.
The cabin is the place I go when I am either really cold due to the frigid weather in the winter or really tired from being in the woods all day but, it is also a place where i can put in my piece of the “pie” and enjoy it.
I mentioned earlier that the woods was my “Physical happy place” that’s because there is not one “sanctuary”. I have a place in my mind where I go my “musical corridor” if you may, I go there when I need to cheer up or be in a good mood when feeling down or stressed.
Music is an amazing thing, it can swing decisions, change moods, and can set the mood of an area (Example Fast music in a club). I am mostly a fan of faster music and I don’t like anything below 70bpm (beats per minute) unless it changes during the song. I use slower music to pace my self or faster music to increase my heart rate getting me “pumped up” to do certain tasks like a night of homework, etc. There is almost a never-ending supply of music as something as simple as “Doe Rae Mi” could be interpreted into a song. Music is a passion that I love and many others love as well, I never really listen to a song but rather to the rhythm, taking parts of the symphony of instruments from the song and isolating them in my head.
My sanctuary is in many places and things, but I gain new sanctuary’s every day like Innovation lab as I can relax and complete work while not being distracted by others and in free time can communicate with classmates.
Turning over a new leaf I feel is a great way to reflect on previous actions and improve what you feel is “wrong” and needs to be corrected.
Procrastination, the worst thing a highschooler can experience. Even I procrastinate writing this as I felt that I didn’t know what to write about before getting an explanation from a friend and teacher. Procrastination can root from a lot of things and I have developed a solution for myself, I try to do my work right after school if I can and look forward to being able to have fun with friends later or go online and play some games with friends. Once your work is done it can put you into a good mood because you can be relieved that you no longer have to be anxious that you may not have enough time to finish or worry that you will be up late. Doing your work and looking forward to a good grade and being able to chill with friends is how I fight procrastination.
Turning over a new leaf can also be just about anything. You could make new goals academically or health-related goals like running every morning or better scheduling.
Creating better educational goals is a good way to revise and improve your lifestyle at school and at home, by avoiding procrastination you get one step closer to being able to live a stress-free life at home and at school. The next thing to do is create and finalize those goals and make a personal schedule for your lifestyle for instance, I have a part-time job after school from 4-6 on Monday,Tuesday,Wednesday, and Thursday so I need to be able to have the motivation to do my work after or before I go to work. Motivation can simply be thinking about everything you can do after your work is done and it all relies on what you think of as fun.
Recently I moved to a new apartment building and now cannot let my dog out in a backyard, instead I now have to walk him every few hours or so, so I have developed the new habit of going for walks and runs around the apartment building and getting some exercise as well as completing one of my chores hitting 2 birds with one stone.
Everyone can have their own perspective on the topic and some may disagree and fully agree with others on their opinions but no one is really correct when it comes to turning over their new leaf as it is what they want to do.
We had 4 small groups for our first activity in design studio, our groups were each given a task listing, “Make a container that will be able to take water from a stream, a device able to purify water from a stream, and keep a newborn baby warm without a baby.” this was a great way to learn how each person in our class communicates their ideas and problem-solving skills. For the activity, we were all given the same bag consisting of two plastic straws, a sheet of wax paper, two paper clips, a rubber band, a zip tie, and an index card. With these materials, we had the task of making a model of our solution.
Our model was a steam chamber that would purify the water from the stream. Our group drew a 3D model first and contributed ideas to make the model more detailed and then created a real model out of the materials we were given. We made a box to show the steam chamber using the wax paper, the plastic straws to show the nozzle and the entryway for the water, the rubber band to show a cooling chamber for the steam to condense the water, and the paper clips to symbolize the heating solution.
The Main purpose that our class did the activity was to share our ideas with each other and learn how we share those ideas. It also was a great way to introduce each other by having us work together on a project during the first day. The project also gave mr.gawle an idea of our teamwork skills and our working styles.
This introduction to innovation lab’s curriculum gave me a great idea of what to expect for the year ahead, I created the philosophy of when I am doing projects. During my group’s project we weren’t able to get past the final design phase because we weren’t able of finish our model to the full extent, therefore i want to create a time restraint where I have ¼ of my time dedicated to planning and ¾ of my time dedicated to creating.