Posts Tagged ‘morse code’

We’re trucking along with STEM and tonight is all about communication (well, mostly).

6:30 arrival – Game is Quiet.  Update: the game sounded cool, but I misunderstood and wasnt’ able to communcate it clearly.  This devolved into Line Tag.

6:40 Inspection

6:50 Circle

7:00 Program.

Talk about different ways we communicate.  Technology – phone, computer, e-mail, texting; Talking – singing, speaking, shouting, language, sign language; Body language – frowning, smiling, standing confidently, vs being shy; Writing – newspapers, letters, mail; Ancient languages – things we don’t use anymore. Codes – have you ever had a secret code with your friends?

Because of the advancements in technology, sometimes something that was revolutionary in its day, is taken over by something that is newer and fresher.  Have you ever heard of Morse Code?   

Morse code is an alphabetic code of long and short sounds, originally transmitted by telegraph.  What is a telegraph you ask?  A telegraph was a communications system in which information was transmitted over a wire through a series of electrical current pulses.  These were used before telephones, almost 200 years ago.  Because the telegraph lines couldn’t carry voices, but could carry electrical pulses, morse code was possible. 

As I said, morse code is a code composed of long and short sounds.  The long sounds are called dashes, while the short sounds are dots.  Varying lengths of silence indicate spaces between words.   It was fairly simple, if you knew the code. 

Do you want to try it?

7:10 Morse Code Relay.  Snowy Owl made this up a couple of years ago. 
Supplies: Morse Code Key, Morse Code Words (this sample has 3, 7, & 8 letter words that you need to cut up into sections – be careful not to drop them, and keep each word separate.  You’ll have enough for three rounds); a pencil for each team.
Objective: Teamwork, deciphering a code
Instructions: Each girl gets a Morse Code Key.  Each group has a marker or pencil.

  • Round 1 – Three letter words.  The words are placed across the gym from three teams.  A girl runs to get the peice of the word, she runs back and the group has to decipher the letter.  Repeat until all the letters are deciphered.  Then unscramble the word.
  • Round 2 – Seven letter words – Repeat as round 1
  • Round 3 – Eight letter words – that may be actually two words.  Repeat as round 1. 

REVIEW after actual play last night – Awesome!  The girls had a little trouble with unscrambling… but they worked together and got it.  We asked if they wanted to go to round 3 or do something else and they were very excited to keep going.  Only thing is to remember to tell girls which side is up on the little cards. 

7:25 Morse Code Bracelets. 

Supplies – beads (we like Pony beads for dots and Two Pearler Beads for dashes), Gimp (I had lots so I gave them almost a metre last night), markers/pencils and Morse Code Key
Note – when I use wooden beads, I usually spend some time in advance testing the holes with a thin knitting needle.  A good job when I’m watching TV.  I’ve used Pony beads for dots and two pearler beads together for dashes, if you can’t find appropriate sized beads.  I recommend using beads that will take gimp – it is a big pain to have to thread needles (20! yeesh!).  Not to mention the horror of seed beads. 

Girls will need to figure out their name using a morse code key.  Each circle has a plate of dots and a plate of dashes.  They can assemble their bracelets in circle or in individual groups. 
What to tell them: You will be stringing your name on gimp.  Tie a knot about a hands length in – something that will stop your first bead.  String the beads letter by letter – putting a knot between each letter – when you’re done, tie both ends together (I’d like to say a reef knot works, but it does not work well on Gimp.  Just tie the ends together in an overhand knot and cut off the long end).  Here’s mine with C-A-R-A in Morse Code.  =)

Campfire if there’s time… (and there wasn’t).

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