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The International High School at Prospect Heights in Brooklyn is a school where students from forty five different countries, speaking twenty-eight different languages come together to learn English and become part of American society. By the time the students arrive at school, many have survived trauma and hardship that is hard for many of us to imagine. Though at times school life is chaotic and confusing, thanks to a very dedicated staff of teachers and administrators, this school often succeeds in teaching many students English. Despite language, social and political differences that at first seem insurmountable, students also learn how to integrate themselves into the wider global society . Tonight’s guest is writer BROOKE HAUSER, who spent years observing the daily life of the students at International High School and has written a wonderful, yet grittily realistic book about her observations: THE NEW KIDS: BIG DREAMS AND BRAVE JOURNEYS AT A HIGH SCHOOL FOR IMMIGRANT TEENS.
From the earliest times of the great explorer scientists like Darwin, Wallace and Bates, one of the key tools they have used to explore the natural world has been to keep a detailed field notebook. Sometimes these have been merely annotated lists of the new plants, animals and peoples, but at other times these field notebooks have been profusely and beautifully illustrated and then become unique works of art. To this day, many botanists, zoologists, paleontologists and anthropologists consider keeping detailed field notes an important art to not only record their observations but to also keep a lively record of the field experience for generations to come. Tonight on Inquiry we welcome MICHAEL R. CANFIELD, Lecturer on Organismic and Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University. He has edited a sumptuous volume of essays by some of the leading field researchers about how they keep a field notebook, why they do it and why these journals are critical. Canfield’s book, which includes numerous reproductions of scientists field notes and illustrations, is titled FIELD NOTES ON SCIENCE AND NATURE.