Life-long New York resident Christian Heesch knows that for many people, stamp collecting appears to be a frivolous hobby with no real-world implications. However, there are numerous benefits to those who enjoy collecting stamps that can easily be shared with children to create both learning and bonding moments, such as the following:
- There are many people who simply enjoy the process of making new discoveries, finding an old stamp that is particularly meaningful, or even those currently being used that are, for one reason or another, rather interesting. At the end of the day, it’s a treasure hunt, and engaging in an activity with children that requires curiosity and wonder helps them continue to think imaginatively as they grow up.
- Sorting and organizing stamps can relieve stress, as it’s a simple activity in which the brain can be turned off while working toward a tangible goal. Stress-relieving activities are both valuable for adults and children to maintain a healthy work/life balance.
- Collecting stamps can be educational if viewed through historical context. They are representative of history, art, environment, mythology, geography, and much more. Stamps tell the story of a specific place, and viewing them next to each other can even lead to a narrative arc if read carefully.
- Collecting stamps is a great way to connect with people across the world. Find a pen pal in a different country and write letters with your child.Christian Heesch is a marine biologist. He is a New York native and has just completed a Ph.D. program. He looks forward to teaching at the university level one day.http://www.stampworld.com/en/articles/why-people-collect-stamps/
Christian Heesch, a native New Yorker, is passionate about his home because he knows all of the special ins and outs of the city, and he enjoys sharing these special tidbits with those who have never experienced it before. He recommends considering New York as your next vacation destination for the following reasons:
- Visiting New York City is more like visiting a number of cities. Have a slice of pizza in Little Italy, or an authentic dish in Chinatown. It’s almost like having been in a number of different countries in the same day.
- New York City boasts the finest offerings in the world for gastronomy, shopping, museums, and more. There are so many opportunities to be glamourous.
- You can find anything and everyone in New York City. A true melting pot, you will encounter a variety of people coming from every walk of life imaginable. Celebrities blend in with the crowds, and you may even hear a famous musician performing on a subway.
- New York City is simply massive, and taking the time to get lost in it and find unexpected treasures is an excellent way to spend an afternoon.
- You’ll have the opportunity to see places where numerous movies and television shows have been shot to take the obligatory photo.
- In New York City, Christian Heesch says that you’ll have the opportunity to feel infinitely small while having the freedom to wear and do what you like without anyone thinking that you’re all that strange. The city is fully of characters, and you can be one of them.Sources:
Christian Heesch is a lifelong New Yorker and recent Ph.D. graduate who knows that helping young people become more successful and confident creates strong communities. He is a marine biologist who deeply enjoys sharing his passion for the field in the classroom. He has volunteered with numerous school districts and organizations throughout his academic career to ensure that children have both a knowledgeable professional who can introduce them to wonders of the marine world as well as a good role model with their success in mind. He recommends considering the following to those who are thinking about becoming mentors as well as those who already are:
- The most important part of mentorship is being able to actively listen and let children know that they have been heard and understood. It’s important that students understand that their voices and thoughts are powerful and valuable, as many children are used to the messaging that they need to be quiet and let the adults talk. Students often have insightful and innovative methods to solve meaningful problems, and helping them feel empowered to speak up begins with listening.
- Good mentors should challenge their mentees to think about the world and their role in it with new and fresh perspectives. However, it’s important that mentors do this in a safe manner, not pushing too hard or too little. Kids shouldn’t have to step so far out of their comfort zone to where they feel awkward and unprepared. Christian Heesch says that it’s important to help your mentee through this process and move gradually, taking steps that feel safe and comfortable while still making progress. Check in regularly with the child to see how they’re feeling about the pace of the work you are doing together, and adjust accordingly. Many children simply won’t say anything if they’re not asked.
- Good mentors are genuinely interested in their mentee’s interests and growth as a human being. Helping connect a child to opportunities that they may not have had otherwise are wonderful steps that a mentor can take, and informing yourself about the resources available can help your mentee develop a skill set or nurture a passion. Especially in low-income schools, children may not have a plethora of open doors that help them imagine themselves with a successful future in a career that they love. As a mentor, you are in a position to help them build meaningful bridges to their future success.Christian Heesch enjoys collaborating with teachers to provide a “field trip in the classroom” to help show children the wonders of the underwater world. He is dedicated to empowering young women to pursue the sciences as a career path, and he looks forward to future mentorship opportunities.Sources:
Christian Heesch, a native New Yorker, knows that supporting children to be lifelong learners is one of the fundamental aspects of building sustainable and thriving communities. He enjoys volunteering directly in classrooms to help open students’ eyes to the vast universe of the ocean. He knows that children have an appreciation for beauty that is lost on many adults because they still feel a sense of wonder, and the underwater world is full of many different types of life that continue to stun and excite. He enjoys serving in a role to help provide students with a “field trip in the classroom” where they can familiarize themselves with these ecosystems. He recommends that elementary teachers focus on marine biology and its applications during science units for the following reasons.
- There are numerous fields of study within marine biology that offer a variety of career opportunities. Those students who show an early love for nature and animal life will be able to see that there are good opportunities to have a job that is both enjoyable and fulfilling.
- Focusing on marine biology in the classroom is a good method to introduce numerous topics of sustainability and taking care of the earth, helping children understand how to be stewards of the planet. There are a variety of opportunities to develop lessons around pollution, recycling, and much more. Christian Heesch recommends that teachers use one or more of the numerous videos online presenting issues such as oil spills or litter to help children understand what actually happens in our oceans. There are many problems in modern-day society that gravely affect marine ecosystems and wildlife, and oftentimes, children have exemplary ideas about how to minimize some of these issues.
- Marine biology is an excellent subject to pair with other disciplines, such as art. Combining forces with an art teacher, or simply introducing an art activity, can help students apply their knowledge in a creative manner, which is becoming harder to do over time as standardized testing begins to eat up the available time that children have to play and imagine. There are numerous unique art techniques that children can use to create life-like fish scales, or a 3-D model of a type of plant, for example. The opportunities are endless.Having served as a volunteer with numerous school districts throughout his career, Christian Heesch has always dedicated himself to serving as a mentor in communities where children can really benefit from having another supportive adult in their lives. Christian Heesch is particularly passionate about empowering young women to enter into the science fields, a predominantly male community. He encourages scientists in all walks of their careers to share their expertise with young people whenever they possibly can.
The study of phylogenetic trees is important to all of the marine biology work done by Christian Heesch. Having received his doctorate degree in marine biology in New York, Dr. Heesch is well equipped to explain this scientific version of a family tree.
- Unlike a family tree where the diagrams demonstrate the relationships between individuals, a phylogenetic tree shows the evolutionary lines and intersections between species. A phylogenetic tree offers a wealth of information that is important to scientists and researchers.
- When documented correctly, a phylogenetic tree offers information about how old a species is, how it has evolved, and what other species are closest from an evolutionary perspective. When scientists create phylogenetic trees, they do not rely on guess work, but instead use DNA testing to map each organism’s rightful place.
- Each of the nodes or branches on a phylogenetic tree represents a different taxonomic unit and their common ancestor. When a phylogenetic tree is said to have roots, the scientist is referring to the broader picture of the tree.
- Phylogenetic trees are most often created by Phylogenetists to understand the delicate and sometimes not easily readable relationships between organisms. In some cases, those organisms only cross paths long ago in history and that relationship is only viewed through genetic testing.
- The phylogenetic tree first started as sketches and drawings from scientists and naturalists who wished to explain the “tree of life”. Some of the earliest noted people to create phylogenetic trees were Edward Hitchcock and Charles Darwin explains Christian Heesch.
Though not a scientist in the educational sense, Jacques Cousteau is an explorer that Christian Heesch holds in high regard. As a marine biologist born in the 1980s, the explorations and discoveries made by Cousteau played a big part in Heesch’s desire to study marine biology and underwater mysteries. Here he discusses some of Jacques Cousteau’s most impressive feats.
- After SCUBA diving was first invented, divers were unable to stay underwater for any lengths of time, and this was something that Jacques Cousteau found very frustrating. Working with a partner, Emile Gagnan, Cousteau developed the first regulator that allowed a diver stay underwater safely for longer periods of time.
- The Cousteau-Gagnon regulator offered divers clean, compressed air as they needed it. This was very different from previous systems that forced air at all times, even if it was wasted. Hooking a compressed air tank to his own regulator, Jacques Cousteau was able to film his first underwater documentary.
- His cinematic exploits continued with his 1950 film “Silent World” winning an Academy Award. Until this point, the public had never experienced moving images of the deep sea and its inhabitants.
- In the mid 1970s, Cousteau was broadcasting a regular program on PBS known as Cousteau Odyssey. His public broadcasting series won more than thirty Emmy Awards during its run. The program received special attention because it exposed the threats of pollution and marine exploitation. Many children, like Christian Heesch grew up watching and being fascinated by Cousteau’s underwater world.
Throughout his years of postgraduate study in marine biology, New Yorker Christian Heesch has spent many days hiking around the country. Throughout his many treks and trail adventures he has learned many interesting facts about hiking.
- The Appalachian trail, a two thousand two hundred mile route carved through the Eastern United States, runs from Mount Katahdin in Maine to Springer Mountain in Georgia. The trail passes through the states of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia, Tennessee, North Carolina, and Georgia. The fastest recorded hike through the Appalachian trail was set in 2011 by Jennifer Pharr Davis. She completed the entire hike in just over forty six days and eleven hours. To complete her trek, Ms. Davis needed five new pairs of shoes, a brand new set every nine days of walking.
- Hiking is a sport and recreational activity that is popular in the United States. In 2007, it is estimated that more than thirty one million Americans hiked a trail of varying length. These statistics were gathered by the American Recreation Foundation which is based in Illinois.
- The longest hiking trail in the United States is the North Country National Scenic Trail. This four thousand six hundred mile trek starts in Crown Point, New York and ends in Lake Sakakawea, North Dakota. Hikers who attempt this trail will pass through the states of New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and North Dakota. There are many outstanding national landscapes and environmental features to view while hiking this trail.
- The Continental Divide National Scenic Trail is three thousand one hundred miles long, or sixteen million three hundred sixty eight thousand feet. This epic trail runs from Mexico to Canada, following the geographic region known as the Continental Divide. For much of the trail, hikers trek in a parallel line to the Rocky Mountains. For the roughly two hundred people who attempt the Continental Divide National Scenic Trail each year, it takes them an average of six months to complete their journey.
- In the state of Montana, Glacier National Park offers hikers more than seven hundred thirty miles of trails. The park was named as a World Heritage Site in 1995, and sits close to the city of Columbia Falls, Montana.
- In the 1930s, the Mountaineers climbing organization created a list of ten essential items for hiking and mountaineering. These items are meant to be taken of every trip in case of emergency or an unscheduled overnight stay outdoors. The ten essentials are a map, sun protection, flashlights, fire-starter, a knife, a compass, extra clothing, first aid supplies, matches, and extra food. These are items that Christian Heesch always packs.