Plate Tectonics

Article 1 (Current Event)

For the first time in 33 years, the highest volcano in the Galapagos Islands, rising 1,710 metres above sea level, erupted in late May 2015. The huge eruption of Wolf Volcano in Isabela Island sent volcanic gases and ash about 15 kilometres into the sky and the lava that flowed from the volcano flowed through a fissure, leading to the sea. Seismologists from Ecuador’s Instituto Geofísico-Escuela Politécnica Nacional (IG) had detected rising activity in the caldera from June 12~16. According to Loff (2015), “The 7-kilometer (4 mile) wide caldera is nearly 700 meters deep.” With broad but gentle slopes that are like a ‘Polynesian Warrior’s Shield’, one lava flow tends to spread out across the previous flows of the shield volcano. The eruption raised fears of the unique ecosystem that was the inspiration for Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution would be harmed and that the local population of Chelonoidis becki tortoises and yellow iguanas would be under threat. The island also holds the world’s only population of pink iguanas but according to the Loff (2015), “Neither species has been endangered so far by the eruption” as the ash and lava flowed towards the east and southeast whereas the animals live towards the north and west of the summit.

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Article 2 (Earthquakes)

On April 25th, 2015, a huge earthquake with a magnitude of 7.8 hit Nepal, destroying buildings/ houses in Kathmandu, harming World Heritage Sites and triggering violent avalanches near Mount Everest. The earthquake was  the largest since Bihar earthquake in 1934, which measured 8.3 on the moment magnitude scale and killed around 10,000 people. Sitting on the boundary of two massive tectonic plates; the Into-Australian and Asian plates that collided to build the Himalayas, Nepal is prone to earthquakes. The earthquakes are a clear “manifestation of the ongoing convergence” between the two massive tectonic plates; Indo-Australian and Asian plates that have progressively built the Himalayas over the last 50 million years. (Sandiford, Rajendran, Morell, 2015). However, earthquakes are only one of the hazards that the communities living in the mountains face. Occasionally, there are floods and monsoonal landslides.

The earthquake occurred due to strain building up in the Earth’s crust which gave away and caused a catastrophe. In this case, the cause of the strain was the collision or convergence of the two plates (Indo-Australian and Asian). One of the reasons that made the results of the earthquake even more devastating was the fact that the focus of the earthquake was shallow; approximately 15 km below the surface at the quake’s epicentre and the ruptured part extended under an area with a dense population in Kathmandu.

 

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Article 3

Recently, a research team consisting of five Taiwanese researchers from the Institute of Earth Sciences at Academia Sinica, as well as Department of Geosciences and Institute of Oceanography at National Taiwan University made a new discovery about how mountain belts on the island were formed. According to Huang Tzu-ying, researchers have been debating whether the deformation takes place mainly in the upper crust or the basement rocks are also involved in the process. “Both conceptual models explain only part of the phenomena, and that the real mechanism remains uncertain given the difficulty in making direct deep-crust observations to test the theories. But by measuring surface waves derived from ambient seismic noises, we developed a hybrid model that has aspects of both theories. (Huang, 2015)”

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Bibliography

Loff, S. (2015, June 30). Eruption of Wolf Volcano, Galapagos Islands. Retrieved August 29, 2015.
The science behind Nepal earthquakes | EarthSky.org. (2015, May 12). Retrieved August 29, 2015.
Www.taiwantoday.tw. (2015, August 19). Retrieved August 29, 2015.

Service Points 2015~2016

Service Points So Far

Paper Sorting (Day before school)– 2 points

New Student Tech Orientation– 2 points

New Student Orientation/ Open House– 4 points

Back To School Night – 3.25 points

Service Fair– 1 point

Kibou no Mori 1– 4 points

G4 Active Citizenship Fair– 3 points

Interview with teachers– 1 point

Eco Club Semester 1– 9 points

SBC Semester 1– 30

Tech Team Semester 1– 15 points (Tech Club= 5 points + 10 points)

Sakura Planting– 6

Google Summit– 17

IB Recital Accompaniment– 20

Elementary Concert-

WJAA Scoring-

SBC Semester 2– 25

Tech Team Semester 2– 9

Eco Club Semester 2– 6

Total so far- 157.25 points

Paper Sorting

On the day before school, I helped move carts with huge stacks of paper and cardboard and sort the cards that were given from the students in Thailand. Since the carts were very heavy, it was hard work moving it as it did not move as easily as I thought. Also, the cards from the Thai Kids which were left for months were dusty and it was uncomfortable as I could see the dust floating around in the air. However, I was able to talk with my friends after not meeting them for 2 months and it was great! Although I had to leave early in order to help set up for the tech orientation, I helped from 10:50~11:30.

As a member of eco club, I would like to continue my work this year and contribute to saving the environment!

Student Tech Orientation & Open House

One day before school started, the tech orientation and open house was held to welcome new students and parents to the CA community and help the new students log into wifi at school, learn the expectations/ rules when using a laptop at school etc. I arrived at 11:30 to welcome and direct new students and parents to the library on the front steps. As the meeting place was changed, a lot of the people were confused so we were busy guiding them to the library. We also told them to put name stickers on. Since it was the first day back from break, I was quite nervous and so excited to see my friends and teachers and of course, the new students that will be joining us. I knew a lot of the new students as they came from my former school and I was thrilled to know they were joining us. After the students and parents ate wraps prepared by Cezar’s Kitchen, the orientation started with Ms. Lemley introducing the tech team and welcoming everybody. I started talking with people around me and helping out. As I had the new student orientation, I left early but it was wonderful to meet the new students and parents and be back at school!

Back to School via thompsonschool.net

Back to School via thompsonschool.net

After the tech orientation, there was an assembly in the auditorium. Mr. Schatzky and the president of the Student Body Council welcomed the new students and parents with a speech. I was given the honor of giving a short speech to everyone and say hello.

After the assembly, I guided Chisato, a new student around the school, introducing her to teachers and showing different rooms where she will be taking lessons and places that will be useful to know such as the MS office etc. I also taught her how to use the locks and entertained her by telling her funny stories and experiences and useful info.  After the school tour, I was very exhausted as it was a long time since I walked for a straight 2.5 hours in heels and talked. However, I think it was worth it as it would help her get used to school more quickly.

Overall, it was a very busy and exciting day and I enjoyed it!. Also as an act or service, I earned 1.5 service points for the tech orientation and 2.5 points for the new student orientation.