‘Rap teacher’ uses hip-hop to teach kids in algebra

During a recent class, Queen dons dark shades, sets his laptop to play a driving hip-hop beat and starts rapping about solving equations as he grooves up and down the aisles.

“Let’s talk about slope intercept.

I don’t mind if you interject,

Just don’t disrespect.

I say, you have a question for me?

What’s y equals mx + b?”

Follow the grain…

Dr. Curtis Pozniak, wheat breeder with the Crop Development Centre, gave us (course: AgEcon 315) a tour of the Wheat Breeding quality lab facilities at the Crop Science Field Laboratory at the University of Saskatchewan. Dr. Pozniak has the dubious distinction of being the youngest wheat breeder in the world. Prior to the tour, he gave us an overview of wheat and wheat breeding plus a bit on the processes behind transgenics and GMOs. Although we have made inroads in terms of enhancing crop productivity, I have underestimated the value that traditional breeding techniques bring to the table. The process of transgenic transformation are only a small (and costly) part of the entire process. Breeding is key.

Thanks to Clayton Jackson and Ken Rosaasen for allowing me to tag along!

Prize for GM Organics paper… winning compromise for food and food development

‘GM Organics’ Paper Awarded International Society of Bioethics 2009 Prize

The International Society of Bioethics has decided to award its 2009 prize to the paper entitled “More sustainable food: genetically modified seeds in organic farming” presented by Mrs. *Mertxe de Renobales Scheifler*, Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. You can find the announcement here: http://www.sibi.org/ingles/jgp/index.htm