By Catie Talarski
… They love us! They really love us!
Yesterday the Where We Live team was honored to receive a $100 check from the 8th grade classes of William J. Johnston Middle School in Colchester. Math teacher Maddalena Scrivano has gotten into the habit of playing the first few minutes of Where We Live during their morning classes, followed by a discussion – getting the students engaged and involved in local and national issues. They were excited to meet Dankosky, and had lots of questions about how the radio show works (and what kind of car he drives.)
The money was raised at the school snack bar: when a student bought a snack for .60 cents and paid with a dollar, they had the option of giving their remaining .40 cents to WNPR.
The ceremony yesterday included a number of students reading wonderful essays they wrote about Where We Live and WNPR. Some excerpts:
The importance of WNPR is that is helps you get your brain into the zone and back into a willing to learn state of mind. The walk from science class to math class can be very distracting and I am usually not ready to learn again by the time I get to math. So when I walk into math and something interesting is being said on WNPR, it kind of helps me focus again before we start class. This works for me anyway. So many kids aren’t as informed about what’s going on around them as they should be. No other news station covers as much news as WNPR does.
I don’t know a lot about other countries, so when something happens I’m clueless. NPR provides me with that extra information so that I actually know these things. For instance, Libya had all those riots and they wanted their president to step down. I would have never known all the tiny little details if I hadn’t listened to NPR. Every day our President makes important decisions or choices about the war and how to help other countries, of course with the help of congress. But by listening to this radio show I get a better understanding of the whole process and decisions… To be honest, I’m not that interested in the war debt, but I try to pay attention, our country has a lot of debt, that I do know, but NPR talks about that every show and keeps all of us aware of this problem.
You’re probably wondering, so how is this supposed to be fun? Well, NPR often acknowledges local or national events such as a new book signing or fun places to visit like Mystic Aquarium… NPR also features “Song of the Week” and reviews new released movies.
Above all, there is one subject that is always mentioned on NPR, math. It might not seem like it, but it’s actually true. Many aspects of mathematics are heard on NPR. First, proportions to different disasters and events are mentioned. Also, quantities of prices are mentioned when they speak about grocery shopping or real estate. Additionally, when they speak about the stock market, they mention how many points were lost during one day, and what percentage it was, and what fraction of it was gained back the next day. Finally, when they speak about Congress and government, they tell us the ratios of different political parties in power in Washington. Wherever you are, there’ll always be math that is somehow related to everyday life.
Thanks to the 8th grade students, English teacher Krista Farrell and principal Chris Bennett for inviting us in and for the generous donation! And they say our average listening age is over 50…