Admin

Student Work

On Expedition: King Expeditions, Documentaries and Planning Resources

Our Past Expeditions

Spring 2014

York 6 -- WaterME

For our spring expedition, York 6 will be diving into the world of watershed sustainability by trawling for ways we and our community can keep things that are out of sight in mind. Service learning opportunities will provide students with real action for change, and we'll research solutions to current stormwater runoff issues in Portland that affect both local rivers and streams and Casco Bay. Partners from the City of Portland, USM, Cumberland County Soil and Water District, and others will guide us in considering how individuals and businesses in Portland can reduce negative impacts on the Bay. As a result of our research and learning, we'll write and submit editorials to local media, encouraging Greater Portland to become more involved in sustaining our beautiful Casco Bay and local rivers. Our culminating event will showcase student recommendations to reduce and slow down runoff from urban properties.

Windsor 6-- Greece is the Word

This spring, Windsor 6 students will experience their first history-based expedition. They'll examine daily life in Ancient Greece, and research how that culture influenced our modern world in the realms of art, government, literature, and theatre. Students will learn of the adventures of Odysseus through an abridged version of The Odyssey. The discoveries of Greek mathematicians and astronomers will form the basis for exploration in math and science, including a study of our solar system. To express the knowledge they've gained, students will create an educational and entertaining performance for the culminating event.

York 7 -- Secrets of the Salt Marsh

In the York 7 expedition, Secrets of the Salt Marsh, students will explore Maine’s salt marshes through the lens of 16 species from four parts of the food web. Our major learning targets are: 1) I can explain how salt marsh organisms interact with their living and nonliving environment to obtain matter and energy, and 2) I can explain why we should care about the salt marsh. We will travel to Scarborough Marsh for onsite explorations and meet with community experts for each species group. Students will use art, poetry, informational writing, and trophic classification to create and organize digital iBooks which will be offered to the Scarborough Marsh Nature Center for distribution to summer visitors and southern Maine marsh enthusiasts.

Windsor 7 -- Small Acts of Courage

The students of Windsor 7 are writing the book on Maine's contribution to the Civil Rights Movement. The students will first be introduced to historical events and leaders during the Civil Rights era, specifically 1954-1964. Focus areas include Brown Versus the Board of Education, the Montgomery Bus Boycott, the Supreme Court ruling on desegregation, the integration of Little Rock Central High School, the Children's March, boycotts, the March on Selma, the March on Washington and the Civil Rights bill. In addition, students will be reading biographies of leaders and influential people of this time period. Finally, they will investigate this era further by interviewing local citizens regarding their connection to this pivotal time. Students will integrate their understanding of the national movement and local stories in a four volume collection called Small Acts of Courage.

York 8 - Four Freedoms

In the Four Freedoms expedition, York 8 students will explore concepts of freedom by first looking at Norman Rockwell’s famous paintings of the four freedoms, printed in the Saturday Evening Post in 1943. These paintings -- Freedom from Want, Freedom from Fear, Freedom of Speech, and Freedom from Worship -- were inspired by Franklin Roosevelt’s State of the Union speech in 1941. As students examine these images and their historical context, they study the concepts and meanings of the same freedoms today through a variety of reading assignments, discussions with guest lecturers, movies and other research. Students then express their personal experiences and reflections on the ideas of freedom through a variety of writing and visual art projects, culminating with the Freedom Collages exhibited on First Friday Art Walk in June. Based on imagery gathered from a variety of contemporary media and commercial sources, the Freedom Collages are striking commentaries about how students view the nature of freedom in the world today.

Windsor 8 - reVOLT

Enough solar energy hits Earth in an hour to supply all of humanity’s energy needs for an entire year. Yet simple life sustaining tasks such as purifying water, powering lights, and transporting goods are difficult for a significant part of the world’s population. In their spring expedition, Windsor 8 students will reVOLT against the current limitations imposed by our ways of using energy. They will begin by investigating the science and social issues behind wind power. By combining knowledge from all classes, students will design and build a device that solves a modern-day energy need in a unique way. They will research the energy conversions shown in their invention and explain the social need behind their project. To culminate, they will pitch their designs and research to a panel of community members.

Expeditions from Fall 2013

Windsor 6 - Ripple Effect
Casco Bay is our home, and integral to the life of Portlanders. During the Ripple Effect expedition, students will learn about the ecology of Casco Bay, and its benefit to the community. They’ll discover how the organisms in the bay impact our local economy, and learn about the four physical habitats of Casco Bay (water column, rocky shore, sandy beach, and mudflats). In math, students will examine data sets on invasive species populations using random sampling. On the creative side, students will develop their sensory and figurative language skills as they study and write poetry about our marine home. Plans for our final product are in the works. Check back for an update.

Windsor 7 -- Alien Invaders
Windsor 7 is fighting Alien Invaders! The students and teachers of Windsor 7 are joining forces with the City of Portland, and the Gulf of Maine Scientific Research Institute to address Maine's invasive species epidemic. Along the way, we will be collecting data on invasive species in Maine. As scientists, we will work to study invasives at Biddeford pool and to reduce an invasive plant in Portland. We will be creating impact studies and will present our findings to local decision makers including the Portland City Council, the Gulf of Maine Research Institute, and Portland Trails.

Windsor 8 -- Truth or Consequences
What is the truth? Why and how do people manipulate the truth? These are the questions Windsor 8 will investigate during our Truth or Consequences expedition. The truth (or lack thereof) is pervasive, and we will examine media literacy, advertising, and, on a broader scale, propaganda. As a final product, students will choose a current issue and create a truth poster to uncover and communicate the truth behind a topic of their choice. They will be collaborating with Maine College of Art faculty and students to design, create, critique, and display their truth ads.

York 6 -- Our House
The students of York 6 will be exploring what a community is and how individuals play a larger part in a community during their fall expedition, Our House. Using If the World Were A Village as an anchor text, students will examine their house of 100 and discover commonalities among its members and celebrate its differences. To understand their community, students will survey themselves as well as the larger King and Portland community and interpret the data to calculate the measure of central tendency. Then working in small teams, students will create a picture book that reflects both themselves in the past, present, and future, and York 6 as a cohesive unit that devotes time to collaborating and to the success of all of the members of the King Middle School, York 6 community.

York 7 -- Seeds of Culture
In Seeds of Culture, York 7 students will examine the relationships among geography, food and culture. Our kickoff will take place in and around Portland, as small groups of students visit area ethnic restaurants and sample native foods. Each student will conduct an in-depth investigation of a country, and then create a character from this country that will be part of a sequel that we will write to the book Seedfolks, our anchor text. Students will then bring their characters to life in a series of monologues, to be performed in December. We will also be working with the Cultivating Community project in Portland, and work on our own garden at King Middle School.

York 8 - Engineering Your Energy Future
Will there be enough energy for our future? What source of energy is the best for our environment? Which source is the cheapest? Who is using the energy and what are they using it for? York 8 is spending the fall of 2013 researching and debating different renewable and non-renewable energy sources and their environmental, economic and social impacts to best prepare for our energy future. One of our experts will be Senator Angus King. Our guiding questions are: What energy sources will most sustainably take us into the future? And how does engineering impact our energy future? For final products, students will be making energy transfer machines, creating presentations, and participating in a wind turbine design challenge.

 

Expeditions from Spring 2013

Windsor 6 - Weathering the Storm
Windsor 6's expedition this spring is called “Weathering the Storm”. We kicked off this expedition with a visit from an ex weatherman Dave Santoro and Patty Wight. The students are studying weather and in particular storms that have hit New England over the last 200 years. We have gone to the Maine History Museum to research storms and discover information they have collected over the years. In science they have learned about weather, and how hurricanes and tornadoes form. In Social Studies they will choose a storm and research it. In Math they are graphing information about storms. In Language Arts and music they will be making podcasts of their story “I am the Storm” set to music they created. These will be presented at the Maine History Museum at the culminating event.

Windsor 7 - Ripple Effect
Casco Bay is our home, and integral to the life of Portlanders. During the Ripple Effect expedition, students will learn about the ecology of Casco Bay, and its benefit to the community. They’ll discover how the organisms in the bay impact our local economy, and learn about the four physical habitats of Casco Bay (water column, rocky shore, sandy beach, and mudflats). Students will conduct water quality testing on and around the bay, checking for salinity, dissolved oxygen and e. coli. In math, students will create a “Visual of Epic Proportions” by choosing facts about an organism’s appearance, attributes or capabilities to compare to their own. On the creative side, students will develop their sensory and figurative language skills as they study and write poetry about our marine home. Finally, each student will be creating an artistic piece based on the organism they are studying.

Windsor 8 - Happitude
Windsor 8 students kick off their spring expedition entitled Happitude: an exploration of real and lasting happiness. Students will discover the role empathy and compassion play in the continuous cycle of happiness through random acts of kindness and community service. By conducting surveys and drawing conclusions from data, students will seek answers to the guiding questions: What is happiness? What brings lasting happiness? In addition to examining the crucial chemicals in the brain connected to happiness, students will probe the past to determine the primary factors that have changed people’s views of happiness over time. In written narratives, students will bring to light universal themes and ideas connected to their understandings of what brings lasting happiness.

York 6 - Oceans of Air
For Oceans of Air, York 6 students are becoming atmospheric scientists. Students will be flying kites to collect air quality samples and data at various locations around Portland. Using the data we collect and analyze, students will  write recommendations to local and national organizations working on air quality. They will learn how and why air moves, what it is made up of and what we’ve inadvertently added. In math, will use metric and standard measurements, determine surface area, and discuss symmetry and geometry using the kites as the anchor.  In computer science, students will use Sketch Up to design their own three dimensional kites.  We will be working closely with our collaborating partners: the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, Maine Lung Association, University of Southern Maine, and Kites Over New England.

York 7 - Alien Invaders
They're Heeeere!!  Alien Invaders visit York 7 students during the spring 2013 expedition!  Working to provide the Gulf of Maine Research Institute with invasive species data cards for its online site, students in York 7 research species invasive to the U.S.  Using the scientific method, students tackle one of them - the invasive Japanese knotweed behind the KMS gym.  Building background knowledge, students are reading about and comparing two species of crab invasive to Maine.  They will use this information as they return to Biddeford Pool with UNE Marine researchers to collect data on these crab species.  The data will be used to generate mathematical models.  How do invasive species get to the U.S.?  Building on their learning about the Age of Discovery, students look at modern day vectors that move invasives around the world. 

York 8 - Engineering Your Energy Future 
Will there be enough energy for our future?  What source of energy is the best for our environment?  Which source is the cheapest?  Who is using the energy and what are they using it for?    York 8  is spending the spring of 2013 researching and debating different renewable and non-renewable energy sources and their environmental, economic and social impacts to best prepare for our energy future. 
Our guiding questions are: 
What energy sources will most sustainably take us into the future?
How does engineering impact our energy future?

 

World Languages -- Art through the Hispanic and Francophone World
8th grade World Language students will be participating in an Art Throughout the Hispanic and Francophone World expedition which will begin in January and will culminate in late March. The focus of this expedition is on the questions: "What connects you to an artist?" and "How does culture manifest itself in art?". Students will work with local artists, do independent research on a chosen artist, and will create a personal creative project that reflects their understanding of the two guiding questions and the life and work of their chosen artist. Students also will engage in an independent fieldwork activity and reflection, will compose a structured target language essay, and will compile an Artist's Declaration to explain the process of creating their personal project. The culminating event will feature a "student-as-artist" format where they will each present their creative projects and respond to visitor questions.

Expeditions from Fall 2012

Windsor 6 - Lead On

The first expedition for Windsor 6, Lead On, is about leadership. The students are using Americans Who Tell the Truth, by author and artist Robert Shetterly, as a core text. In October Robert Shetterly will visit King with an exhibit of about a dozen of the portraits, some of which are featured in this book. Next, the students will research a leader and will create a panel about that leader for our own leadership exhibit in December. Their panels will also include information about themselves as leaders and how they demonstrate respect, responsibility, and perseverance. All of the work from the fall will ad to an art exhibit in the evening, with Windsor 6 students serving as the docents. The focus areas for this expedition are writing, research and creating a cohesive community.

York 6 - Rock the Vote

York 6 will be paying special attention to the upcoming presidential and state elections as part of their Rock the Vote expedition. Not only will they be learning about the candidates and issues, they are hoping to teach the school about them, as well. Our students will work in committees to plan a schoolwide mock election, in conjunction with the nationwide Student Mock Election. Part of their charge is to inform the school about the candidates and the issues of the day. In their classes, they will be learning about the electoral process, civic responsibilities, local and national issues and candidates, media coverage, persuasive techniques, and number crunching, as major pieces of this expedition. Students will be visiting Republican and Democratic headquarters and will listen to a speaker from the Green Independent party. Students will also participate in a voter registration drive, setting up tables throughout the city to register new voters! Students will also study the election results at King and compare them to the national and state results, and prepare graphs that showcase the comparisons. Our results will be on display during parent conferences. We are planning to host an election night, inviting any and all King families to watch the returns come in. We’re excited to be part of an informed citizenry right here at King!

Windsor 7 - Branching Out

To kick off our Branching Out expedition, Windsor 7 students will begin by surveying city dwellers for their thoughts on this question: “How do trees make Portland a more livable city?” Students will gain knowledge about how to identify the trees of Portland and assess their condition. With this knowledge, they will take part in the City of Portland tree inventory, which is typically carried out by the city’s arborists. Targeting the Parkside neighborhood, students will add their data to the City of Portland’s computerized tree inventory. Land use issues will be studied, along with how trees abate the carbon level in our atmosphere. Students will use math skills to measure and map trees. Finally, students will survey a neighborhood in Bayside and, using the knowledge they’ve gained, make recommendations to city planners for tree plantings in that neighborhood.

York 7 - Winds of Change

Why does change happen? Is change beneficial? These are the questions we hope to answer by examining the elements of change through the history of Maine’s maritime industry. New learning includes boat-building geometry in Ms. Murphy’s math class, the relationship between the stars and the sea with Mrs. Roland, and examining with Mr. Michaud the events and catalysts that led to change along the Maine coast, with special attention paid to primary source documents. Throughout the expedition, students will be working closely with expert mariners and our collaborating partner -- the Maine Maritime Museum in Bath. We will conduct research at the museum and on the water. Every student will create a brochure chronicling their research process rooted in primary source photographs of maritime history in Maine. Student brochures, along with the "Winds of Change Kiosk" will be presented to the Maritime Museum at our culminating event.

Windsor 8 - reVOLT

Enough solar energy hits Earth in an hour to supply all of humanity’s energy needs for an entire year. Yet simple life sustaining tasks such as purifying water, powering lights, and transporting goods are difficult for a significant part of the world’s population. In their fall expedition, Windsor 8 students will reVOLT against the current limitations imposed by our ways of using energy. By combining knowledge from all classes, students will design and build a device that solves a modern-day energy need in a unique way. They will research the energy conversions shown in their invention and explain the social need behind their project. To culminate, they will pitch their designs and research to a panel of community members.

York 8 - Four Freedoms

In the Four Freedoms expedition, York 8 students will explore concepts of freedom by first looking at Norman Rockwell’s famous paintings of the four freedoms, printed in the Saturday Evening Post in 1943. These paintings -- Freedom from Want, Freedom from Fear, Freedom of Speech, and Freedom from Worship -- were inspired by Franklin Roosevelt’s State of the Union speech in 1941. As students examine these images and their historical context, they study the concepts and meanings of the same freedoms today through a variety of reading assignments, discussions with guest lecturers, movies and other research. Students then express their personal experiences and reflections on the ideas of freedom through a variety of writing and visual art projects, culminating with the Freedom Collages exhibited on First Friday Art Walk in December. Based on imagery gathered from a variety of contemporary media and commercial sources, the Freedom Collages are striking commentaries about how students view the nature of freedom in the world today. 

World Languages -- Art through the Hispanic and Francophone World

8th grade World Language students will be participating in an Art Throughout the Hispanic and Francophone World expedition which will begin in January and will culminate in late March. The focus of this expedition is on the questions: "What connects you to an artist?" and "How does culture manifest itself in art?". Students will work with local artists, do independent research on a chosen artist, and will create a personal creative project that reflects their understanding of the two guiding questions and the life and work of their chosen artist. Students also will engage in an independent fieldwork activity and reflection, will compose a structured target language essay, and will compile an Artist's Declaration to explain the process of creating their personal project. The culminating event will feature a "student-as-artist" format where they will each present their creative projects and respond to visitor questions.

Expeditions from Spring 2012

ELL -- Boats and Buoyancy!

How are boats adapted to their environment and their purpose? What is the law of buoyancy? These are the guiding questions which will steer us along our journey. Students will become research sociologists and discover how boats are adapted to their particular environment and their purpose. They will become boat builders as they collaborate with the Compass Project to build their own small boats. We will also be collaborating with the Maine College of Art to create "floatable" art. Finally we will be consulting with local fishing, lobstering and boating people to discover how boating connects to our local environment. All Aboard!!!

World Languages Department -- Art throughout the Hispanic and Francophone World

8th grade World Language students have been participating in an Art Throughout the Hispanic and Francophone World expedition which began in January and will culminate on Thursday, March 29th, from 5:30-7:00 at KMS. The focus of this Expedition is on the questions of "What connects you to an artist?" and "How does culture manifest itself in art?". Students have worked with local artists, done independent research on a chosen artist, and are creating a personal creative project that reflects their understanding of the two guiding questions and the life and work of their chosen artist. Students also engaged in an independent fieldwork activity and reflection, are composing a structured target language essay, and are compiling an Artist's Declaration to explain the process of creating their personal project. The culminating event will feature a "student-as-artist" format where they will each present their creative projects and respond to visitor questions. The Culminating Event is open to the public.

York 6 -- WaterME

York 6 students are plunging into a new expedition this spring. We will be diving into the world of watershed sustainability by trawling for ways we and our community can keep things that are out of sight, in mind. Service learning opportunities will provide students with real action for change, and our unique insight into possible improvements or solutions to current issues pertaining to Casco Bay health will grow. Partners from the City of Portland, Portland Water District, and YardScaping will guide us in considering how individuals in Portland can improve their impact on the Bay. We’ll be collecting data at Back Cove, traveling to the Audubon Society to see what watershed protection means outside of urban areas, and planning team service projects. Our culminating event will showcase student brochures which will encourage sustainable actions by the citizens of King Middle School and Portland.

Windsor 6 -- Greece is the Word

This spring, Windsor 6 students will experience their first history-based expedition. They'll examine daily life in Ancient Greece, and research how that culture influenced our modern world in the realms of art, government, literature, and theatre. Students will learn of the adventures of Odysseus through an abridged version of The Odyssey. The discoveries of Greek mathematicians and astronomers will form the basis for exploration in math and science, including a study of our solar system. To express the knowledge they've gained, students will create an educational and entertaining performance for the culminating event.

York 7 -- Secrets of the Salt Marsh

In the York 7 expedition, Secrets of the Salt Marsh, students will explore Maine’s salt marshes through the lens of 16 species from four parts of the food web. Our major learning targets are: 1) I can explain how salt marsh organisms interact with their living and nonliving environment to obtain matter and energy, and 2) I can explain why we should care about the salt marsh. We will travel to Scarborough Marsh for onsite explorations and meet with community experts for each species group. Students will use art, poetry, informational writing, and trophic classification to create and organize sets of Marsh Species Cards which will be offered to the Scarborough Marsh Nature Center for distribution to summer visitors.

Windsor 7 -- Alien Invaders

Windsor 7 is fighting Alien Invaders! The students and teachers of Windsor 7 are joining forces with the City of Portland, and the Gulf of Maine Scientific Research Institute to address Maine's invasive species epidemic. Along the way, we will be collecting data on invasive species in Maine and across the US. As scientists, we will work to study invasives at Biddeford pool and to reduce an invasive plant in Portland. We will be making Invasive Species cards for GMSRI to use in their Vital Signs program.

Windsor 8 -- Creating Currents

Windsor 8 students will be Creating Currents this spring with their latest expedition. They will be investigating ways to reduce their carbon footprint through energy audit data collection and subsequent analysis leading to informed conservation practices. Collaboration with experts in the areas of conservation, building products, design, and alternative energy will help each student create a net-zero home design. In addition, the students will investigate alternative energy production, the public policy decisions involving alternative energy. The expedition will culminate with a competition of electricity generating wind turbines built be the students.

York 8 --Four Freedoms

In the fall of 1941, as the United States considered it's probable entry into World War II, Franklin Roosevelt delivered a State of the Union speech outlining the four freedoms America would fight for: freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom from fear, and freedom from want. Norman Rockwell depicted these four freedoms in a now famous series of paintings as part of the U.S. war stamps effort. As students examine these images and what they meant in the 1940’s, they study the concepts and meanings of freedom today through variety of reading assignments, discussions with guest lecturers, movies and other research. Students then express their personal experiences and reflections on the ideas of freedom through a variety of writing and visual art projects, culminating with the Freedom Collages seen in this exhibition.

Based on imagery gathered from a variety of contemporary media and commercial sources, the Freedom Collages are striking commentaries about how students view the nature of freedom in the United States today.

Expeditions from Fall 2011

IYork 6 -- Taking Care of Business

The students of York 6 will be exploring the world of business through the five themes of geography.  Each student will research a non-profit business and develop a strategy for starting his or her own non-profit in an area of the world that reflects a need.  The students will be responsible for constructing a formal business proposal, and presenting the plan at the culminating event, where guests can invest in the enterprise of their choosing. The expedition is literacy-driven with plenty of math concepts and other exciting learning opportunities.  

Windsor 6 -- Me to We

Windsor 6 is kicking off our two years together with Me to We. Students will have the opportunity to learn about themselves and each other, become familiar with the Expeditionary Learning process, and develop a sense of self and community. Students will investigate family histories, dominant genetic traits, and personal character traits to help them discover what they have in common and how they are unique. Each student will create an iCard, a visual resume depicting her or his individuality, including what she or he brings to the King community. Another aspect of the expedition is an in-depth exploration of each of Expeditionary Learning's ten Design Principles; students will hear from experts, do a variety of field work, and eventually share their knowledge in the form of multimedia illustrations accompanied by "kid-friendly" translations of those Design Principles.

York 7 -- Pivotal Moments

The York 7 community will research specific events of social reform that were a part of larger movements during the 60’s and 70’s, from equal rights movements to movements to protect the environment. Students will analyze histories that led to these events and how these movements affect their lives today. Students will decide for themselves what is worth fighting for and the steps that they can take to create change.

Windsor 7 -- Small Acts of Courage

The students of Windsor 7 are writing the book on Maine's contribution to the Civil Rights Movement. The students will first be introduced to historical events and leaders during the Civil Rights era, specifically 1954-1964. Focus areas include Brown Versus the Board of Education, the Montgomery Bus Boycott, the Supreme Court ruling on desegregation, the integration of Little Rock Central High School, sit-ins, boycotts, the Freedom Rides, the March on Washington and the Civil Rights bill. In addition, students will be reading biographies of leaders and influential people of this time period. Finally, they will investigate this era further by interviewing local citizens regarding their connection to this pivotal time. Students will integrate their understanding of the national movement and local stories in a four volume collection called Small Acts of Courage.

Windsor 8 -- Truth or Consequences

What is the truth? Why and how do people manipulate the truth? These are the questions Windsor 8 will investigate during our Truth or Consequences expedition. The truth (or lack thereof) is pervasive, and we will examine media literacy, advertising, and, on a broader scale, propaganda. As a final product, students will choose a current issue and create a truth ad to uncover and communicate the truth behind a topic of their choice. They will be collaborating with Maine College of Art faculty and students to design, create, critique, and display their truth ads. Students will seek out area businesses and public spaces best suited for displaying their truth ads in order to reach and impact a wide audience.

 

Expeditions from Spring 2011

York 6 -- Seeds of Culture

In Seeds of Culture, York 6 students will examine the relationships among geography, food and culture. Our kickoff will take place in and around Portland, as small groups of students visit area ethnic restaurants and sample native foods. Each student will conduct an in-depth investigation of a country, and then create a character from this country that will be part of a sequel that we will write to the book Seedfolks, our anchor text.  Students will then bring their characters to life in a performance that they will put on at Portland Stage Company in May. We will also be working with the Cultivating Community project in Portland, and work on our own garden at King Middle School.

Windsor 6 -- May the Forces Be With Us!

Gravity, Heat, Wind, and Water are a powerful troupe of forces at work in the universe. Individually and as partners, they cruise the cosmos creating change. "May the Forces Be With Us!", Windsor 6's winter expedition, encourages students to ask themselves the following questions:" How do these forces shape Earth and all the other objects in space?" , "How do these forces impact human cultures and history?" and “How does measurement help us understand these forces?”

We will travel to the Southworth Planetarium at USM to see how astronomers explain the creation of objects in space. Throughout the expedition we will examine the forces at work in several different settings. We'll find out how early humans described these forces in myth and story. We'll learn about objects in space and how these forces created them. We'll learn how to measure distances in space and how to translate those vast distances into numbers we can handle. We'll research the forces at work on Earth in specific events such as hurricanes and volcanic eruptions.

The concrete knowledge gained about human descriptions of gravity, heat, wind, and water will, in the final product, be translated into a narrated dance.

York 7 -- Alien Invaders

York 7 is fighting Alien Invaders! No, not from outer space.... The students and teachers of York 7 are joining forces with the City of Portland to address Maine's invasive species epidemic. Along the way, we will be collecting data on invasive species in Maine and across the US. As scientists, we will work to study invasives at Biddeford pool and to reduce an invasive plant in Portland. We’ll become science reporters and newspaper editors to bring you breaking news of this world-wide issue.

Windsor 7 -- Greece is the Word

This spring, Windsor 7 students will experience their first history-based expedition. They'll examine daily life in Ancient Greece, and research how that culture influenced our modern world in the realms of art, government, literature, and theatre. Students will learn of the adventures of Odysseus through an abridged version of The Odyssey, and write their own adventure story. They'll become familiar with the gods and goddesses of Mount Olympus, and as part of a unit on ceramics, students will make Greek vases in art class. The discoveries of Greek mathematicians and astronomers will form the basis for exploration in math and science, including a study of our solar system. To express the knowledge they've gained, students will create an educational and entertaining performance for the culminating event.

York 8 -- Motion Commotion

What is engineering?  How does engineering impact our lives?  How does the design process incorporate math and science?

York eight students will put math and science to work as they design and engineer three dimensional solutions to various problems and challenges during the “Motion Commotion” expedition.  Activities from the PBS show “Design Squad” will acquaint students to the engineering process, as they gear up for the much bigger engineering design challenge: Project Gizmo! We will also make connections to real life engineering challenges, such as: How to stop an oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico?  How to rescue trapped miners in Chile?  How to clean up after an earthquake? And other real life challenges.

Windsor 8 -- Truth or Consequences
 

What is the truth? Why and how do people manipulate the truth? These are the questions Windsor 8 will investigate during our Truth or Consequences expedition. The truth (or lack thereof) is pervasive, and we will examine media literacy, advertising, and, on a broader scale, propaganda. As a final product, students will choose a current issue and create a truth ad to uncover and communicate the truth behind a topic of their choice. They will be collaborating with Maine College of Art faculty and students to design, create, critique, and display their truth ads. Students will seek out area businesses and public spaces best suited for displaying their truth ads in order to reach and impact a wide audience. 

Expeditions from Fall 2010

York 6 - The Faces of King

Our first expedition, The Faces of King, will teach the Expeditionary Learning model. While experiencing the parts of an expedition, students will meet the many people who create the culture at King. We will examine the rights and responsibilities of a King student, as well as of a citizen of Maine and the United States. Students will explore the demographics of our population here at King, and in science they will study the interdependence of systems, applying that to the inner workings of King. Our students will create brochures that will be distributed to new students and visitors to our building. In our culminating event, parents will participate in the “fastest expedition ever”, an interactive student-led presentation designed to teach our parents how we learn here at King.

Windsor 6 - Lead On

The first expedition for Windsor 6, Lead On, is about leadership. The students are using Americans Who Tell the Truth, by author and artist Robert Shetterly, as a core text. In mid-September Robert Shetterly will visit King with an exhibit of about a dozen of the portraits, some of which are featured in this book. Next, the students will research a leader and will create a panel about that leader for our own leadership exhibit in early December. Their panels will also include information about themselves and how they will contribute to the King community. All of the work from the fall will lead to an art exhibit in the evening, with Windsor 6 students serving as the docents. The focus areas for this expedition are writing, research and creating a cohesive community.

York 7 - 1000 Years without a Bath

York 7 will soon kickoff their medieval expedition, A Thousand Years Without a Bath. Students will examine life in the middle ages and take a close look at the genre of historical fiction. Our research will not only cover medieval life, but also the process of writing historical fiction. Students will use their research to write a memoir in the genre, which will be presented at the culminating event. We will also be editing and performing a musical at the culminating event. Author and actor visits, field work at local theater companies, and The Society for Creative Anachronism are all planned for York 7 students this fall. Students will also be creating their own costumes in art class, so if you can sew, we need you! Stay tuned for more information coming soon!

Windsor 7 - Branching Out

To kick off our new “Branching Out” expedition, Windsor 7 students will begin by surveying city dwellers for their thoughts on this question: “How do trees make Portland a more livable city?” Students will gain knowledge about how to identify the trees of Portland and assess their condition. With this knowledge, they will take part in the City of Portland tree inventory, which is typically carried out by the city’s arborists. Targeting the Parkside neighborhood, students will add their data to the City of Portland’s computerized tree inventory. Land use issues will be studied, along with how trees abate the carbon level in our atmosphere. Students will use math skills to measure and map trees. Finally, students will survey East Bayside and, using the knowledge they’ve gained, make recommendations to city planners for tree plantings in that neighborhood. To culminate the expedition, family and friends will be invited on a tree tour through the Parkside neighborhood.

York 8 - Four Freedoms

In the fall of 1941, as the United States considered it's probable entry into World War II, Franklin Roosevelt delivered a State of the Union speech outlining the four freedoms America would fight for: freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom from fear, and freedom from want. Norman Rockwell depicted these four freedoms in a now famous series of paintings as part of the U.S. war stamps effort. As students examine these images and what they meant in the 1940’s, they study the concepts and meanings of freedom today through variety of reading assignments, discussions with guest lecturers, movies and other research. Students then express their personal experiences and reflections on the ideas of freedom through a variety of writing and visual art projects, culminating with the Freedom Collages seen in this exhibition.

Based on imagery gathered from a variety of contemporary media and commercial sources, the Freedom Collages are striking commentaries about how students view the nature of freedom in the United States today.

Windsor 8 - Creating Currents

Did you know that imported oil is the source of 90% of Maine's energy consumption annually? More significantly, the amount of potential clean and renewable energy from wind in the Gulf of Maine could meet the state's needs one hundred times over. The students of Windsor 8 are going to confront both of these facts during their expedition WINDSor in Motion. They will be collaborating with former governor Angus King and local energy experts to address Maine's impending energy crisis. They will analyze the current wind farm debate in Maine, and culminate the expedition with presentations of their own electricity generating wind turbine models before an audience of energy experts at a homegrown Green Expo with local energy industy representatives.

World Languages Department - Art Throughout the Hispanic and Francophone World

8th grade World Language students will participate in an Art Throughout the Hispanic and Francophone World expedition beginning in January. The focus is on the questions of "What is art?" and "How does art reflect culture?". Students will learn from local artists, do independent research on a chosen artist, and create a personal creative project that reflects their understanding of the two guiding questions and the life and work of their chosen artist. Students will be "front-loading" some skills before the actual start of the expedition, such as independent fieldwork and interviewing. The culminating event will feature the "student-as-artist" where they will present their creative project and respond to audience questions.

Expeditions from Spring 2010

Windsor 6 - Riverworks

Working with partners to restore the Presumpscot River to a more pristine state, the students of Windsor 6 will collaborate with and take on the roles of scientists. The Presumpscot River, which flows from Sebago lake, through industrial towns like Westbrook and Portland, and empties into the Casco Bay, has been recognized as one of America's most endangered rivers (American Rivers Annual Report, 2000). As stewards of the natural world, we will walk the paths on the river to develop a relationship with the river. We will look at the history of the river as well as explore current issues. We will canoe the Presumpscot to Minnow Brook, a tributary that was tested for the first time by King students in 2002, and conduct on-site water quality assessments using contemporary scientific instruments, and collect water samples for further testing back at school. The data we obtain will be used by community groups that work to improve the quality of life of the river and its ecosystem. Gathering, analyzing, and processing information using the latest technology, we'll develop web pages that will link to our partners' web sites. We are fortunate to have community partners such as Presumpscot River Watch, Friends of the Presumpscot, Idexx Laboratories, and Cumberland County Soil and Water Conservation District. These organizations will partner with us throughout the expedition, sharing their expertise along the way, allowing us to make real connection with scientists and citizens who have dedicated themselves to improving the Presumpscot River.

York 6 - Urban Oasis
 

Students at King Middle School in York 6 have connected with Friends of Deering Oaks for their spring expedition, "Urban Oasis". Students will be collecting data about the health of the trees, conducting a tree inventory and testing soil samples in Deering Oaks Park. Students will assume the role of steward, arborist and soil scientists. They will report their findings to city officials and Friends of Deering Oaks. York 6 will also archive their information through a link on the Friends of Deering Oaks website and the KMS website. York 6 students will be busy this season providing spring clean up and becoming life-long stewards of Deering Oaks Park!

Windsor 7 - Small Acts of Courage

The students of Windsor 7 are writing the book on Maine's contribution to the Civil Rights Movement. The students will first be introduced to historical events and leaders during the Civil Rights era, specifically 1954-1964. Focus areas include Brown versus the Board of Education, the Montgomery Bus Boycott, the Supreme Court ruling on desegregation, the integration of Little Rock Central High School, sit-ins, boycotts, the Freedom Rides, the March on Washington and the Civil Rights bill. In addition, students will be reading biographies of leaders and influential people of this time period. Finally, they will investigate this era further by interviewing local citizens regarding their connection to this pivotal time. Students will integrate their understanding of the national movement and local stories in a four volume collection called Small Acts of Courage.

York 7 - Alien Invaders

No, it's not an expedition about science fiction. Rather, the students and teachers of York 7 are joining forces with the City of Portland and the Maine Volunteer Lake Monitoring Program to address Maine's invasive species epidemic. Along the way, we will be collecting data on invasives in Maine, working to reduce invasives in Portland and at Biddeford Pool, and disseminating our findings through the design and production of a 21st century newspaper (front page only).

Windsor 8 - Creating Currents

Did you know that imported oil is the source of 90% of Maine's energy consumption annually? More significantly, the amount of potential clean and renewable energy from wind in the Gulf of Maine could meet the state's needs one hundred times over. The students of Windsor 8 are going to confront both of these facts during their expedition WINDSor in Motion. They will be collaborating with former governor Angus King and local energy experts to address Maine's impending energy crisis. They will analyze the current wind farm debate in Maine, and culminate the expedition with presentations of their own electricity generating wind turbine models before an audience of energy experts at a homegrown Green Expo with local energy industry representatives.

York 8 - Four Freedoms

In the fall of 1941, as the United States considered it's probable entry into World War II, Franklin Roosevelt delivered a State of the Union speech outlining the four freedoms America would fight for: freedom of speech, freedom of worship, freedom from fear, and freedom from want. Norman Rockwell depicted these four freedoms in a now famous series of paintings as part of the U.S. war stamps effort. In the Four Freedoms expedition, King students examine Rockwell's paintings and the historical origins of the four freedoms in the context of their own values, images, and perceptions of the world today. A visiting expert for the expedition will be Mary Beth Tinker, defendant in the landmark supreme court case Tinker vs. Des Moines. Like Rockwell, each student will create a piece of art that captures her or his interpretation of one of the freedoms. Their work, and the students' artist statements, will be hung at the Portland Public Library and on display for the community at Portland's First Friday Art Walk.