A few recommended readings for your weekend

1. Majority of U.S. public school students are in poverty – “The Southern Education Foundation reports that 51 percent of students in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade in the 2012-2013 school year were eligible for the federal program that provides free and reduced-price lunches.”

Last year I taught at a school in Nashville, Tennessee in which 99% of students were eligible for free and reduced lunch. Though it’s crucial to hold all students to high academic and behavioral expectations, it’s a near impossible challenge for students to learn when their concerned about their basic needs and too often experiencing great emotional trauma from the impacts of poverty on their lives. Even in developed nations such as the U.S., there’s still much to be done in regards to working towards sustainable development and equality.

2. Is a Climate Disaster Inevitable? –  An op-ed with an eye on the universe focused on the importance of studying sustainability: “Depending on initial conditions and choices made by the species (such as the mode of energy harvesting), some trajectories will lead to an unrecoverable sustainability crisis and eventual population collapse. Others, however, may lead to long-lived, sustainable civilizations.”

3. Entrepreneur Changes Life in Uganda by Turning Waste Into Fuel – Sanga Moses was tired of seeing the forests in his village disappear and children lose the opportunity of education because they needed to go farther and farther away in search of wood to burn for their family’s fuel. He developed an eco-friendly solution, recycling sugar cane and coffee waste to create charcoal briquettes.

4. The Ethics of the ‘Singularity’ – A brief piece on the possibilities in our future of super-intelligence and a need to consider the ethics of such a situation.

 

A few recommended readings for your weekend:

1. Control, Eliminate, Eradicate  A Disease: What’s the Difference? – An interesting look at the new exhibit opening at the Natural History Museum titled Countdown to Zero: Defeating Disease.

2. Pursuing the Impossible, and Coming Out on TopThe story of the incredible feat of Tommy Caldwell and Kevin Jorgeson, who successfully free-climbed the 3,000 ft* Dawn Wall.

*The article puts this distance into perspective–“3,000 ft is the equivalent to three Empire State Buildings stacked on top of each other”!

3.  NOAA Global Analysis – Annual 2014 – Or, simply jot down in your memory this key highlight: “The year 2014 was the warmest year across global land and ocean surfaces since records began in 1880.”