As you are looking for patterns in your lives…

You might consider behaviors of those around you… or perhaps your own behaviors.  As you’re looking for the ways that pattern influences you, you might allow yourself to make connections between your reality and the economic realities around you everyday.  As we take a closer look at economic data and the role of the economist in our study of the Human Sciences, we are going to look carefully at the way an economist analyzes data and considers the patterns that might be drawn.  Today in class, we considered this data from the Seattle Times.  Later this week, we will be viewing the film Pi by Darren Aranofsky.

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For your ToK final…

Bring your Journal!!!  You may be required to turn it in.  Don’t worry about studying for the final, but do make sure you’ve read all the articles in your journal and have organized it for submission.

The Semester 1 ToK final for 2013-2014 will include:

  • Thirty or less multiple-choice questions based on our mathematics unit viewing and discussion of the film “Fractals: the colors of infinity”
  • A critical reading portion that demonstrates a students’ abilities to:
    • Identify significant passages
    • Identify the key words that clarify the passage
    • Paraphrase significant passages
    • Evaluate the author’s views in the significant passages
    • An intellectual, novel task (like a puzzle)
    • A written response that may require students to:
      • Recognize the Knowledge Issues inherent in a modern dilemma
      • Accurately identify the views of others
      • Compare and contrast the views of others
        • Distinguish the views of others from oneself
        • Evaluate the views of others
          • Create a concession statement
          • Craft a counter-argument
  • Express his or her view in a visual method like a mind map or an extended metaphor
  • Craft a quality thesis to express his or her analysis (synthesis)

As we look more carefully at mathematics

We have read several texts – “Think Maths” by Ian Stewart; “Why is math so useful?” by Michael Lemmonick, and an excerpt from a ToK text called “Discovered or invented?”.  Today, we watched a video about Fractals – “Fractals, the colors of infinity“.  The multiple choice questions for your final will come from this video.

Beyond this, it is worthwhile for you (especially those of you who enjoy math) to consider some of the following:

In case you missed Friday, January 10th

We submitted our ‘vote’ for the best history based on the presenations and read a document written by Richard Carrier from Columbia University – “The Function of the Historian in Society.”  If you missed class, click on the link and print it out,, critically read the document, and then include it in your journal.  If you’ve effectively read it, you should be able to identify Carrier’s arguments on the following topics imbedded in his exploration of the “vital functions a historian fulfills in a healthy society”:

  • How historians help us
  • History: science or art?
  • How the sciences and history differ
  • How historians establish truth
  • Pseudohistorians vs. true historians
  • The 5 services of the historian
  • The most important function of history
    • and the role of the historian
  • The requirements of a real history
  • The benefits of a true history