August 19, 2004

My Own Private Palagic

I love stuff like this: the Tagging Of Pacific Palagics site. They are tracking the comings and goings of over 1500 birds and sea creatures and making the data available to all of us, scientists and tuna-sandwich eaters alike. You can get a godseye view of tags reported within the last 10 days and pick out the critter of your choice.

I'm personally identifying with Elephant Seal #39456 at the moment. He (or she) seems to be marching to a different drummer by heading solo down the Baja coast having, I guess, a wonderful time.

If I had a middle school class to teach, I'd have every kid adopting their own critter, tracking it every few days, predicting where they're going next, writing diaries from the undersea point of view, relating the journeys to other datasets of water temperature, placing bets on when their fish would meet up with one of the others... lots of science, math and language arts wrapped around something interesting and real.

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