Friday, November 3, 2017

Week of October 30, 2017

Purple Curriculum Updates
Pre-Algebra I with Seema:
This week we started chapter 5 on adding and subtracting fractions with like and unlike denominators and mixed numbers. We will wrap up the chapter next week after we have had a chance to learn about solving algebraic expressions with fractions and covered a unit on elapsed time. The students will have two in class review days and the chapter test will be on Tuesday November 14th. I returned the chapter 4 test to the students-please note that going forward they will no longer have the opportunity to earn back points for test/quiz corrections as today marks the end of the first trimester grading period for the Purple program.

Also, I want to let you know that I will be away starting next Friday and will return to the classroom the Monday after Thanksgiving break. The students will be in the able hands of Kerstin Roan who has generously agreed to take on my duties.  The students are all familiar with her as she has been a substitute teacher for various subjects.

Pre-Algebra II with Jared:
In Pre-Algebra II, this week we focused on Fractions. We started by looking at ways to estimate our solutions by using benchmarks, whole numbers, or compatible numbers. We then looked at adding and subtracting fractions by finding a common denominator. On Halloween, we worked on an activity packet, where most of the students eagerly threw themselves into solving sudokus. We then worked on adding & subtracting mixed numbers. On Friday we took a quiz on this material, before exploring multiplying fractions.

Pre-Algebra III with Ann:
We continued working with real numbers- this week, focusing on rational numbers.  Students reviewed addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division of fractions and decimals.  After their quiz, students chose from solving a fraction story problem from "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" or folding an origami rose and trying to figure out the fraction of the paper made up one petal.  It was exciting to see the students so enthralled problem solving that a few forgot class was over! I told them to work on the problems over the weekend and I would give them the answers on Monday!

Algebra I with Molly:

We began chapter 4 with a focus on fractions, ratios, and proportions. Students learned to use conversion factors to change units, for example from miles per hour to feet per second. Students set up proportions to solve for a single variable.

Language Arts with Jared:
In language arts we wrapped up our unit on analyzing the plot structures of short stories. Sixth and seventh graders had the "Tell-Tale Heart" (by Edgar Allen Poe) read to them on Halloween, and eighth graders had "The Yellow Wallpaper" (by Charlotte Perkins Gilmore) read to them. We also worked on plotting out our own stories. On Wednesday, students began working on typing their NaNoWriMo stories, with a goal of reaching 10% of their word count goal.  We also worked on wrapping up our grammar unit on prepositions, by reviewing the unit. Sixth graders took their test on Friday, and the other two grades will take it on Tuesday.

World Studies & U.S. History with Ann:
We wrapped up our study of industrialization in 7th and 8th grade.  The 7th graders took an open notes assessment requiring them to use historical data to back up their opinions.  The 8th graders will take the assessment Monday.  6th grade will finish up with industrialization next week.  All classes had time to work on NHD research. Next week, we will venture to Newman library to get books!

Our next topic is Immigration.  Students will look at immigration at a "big picture" level that will span different parts of history as well as a "close up" level focusing on the turn of the 20th century.  We will begin our study with busting some immigration myths.

Earth Science with Molly:

This week in science, students learned about tides, what causes them, and when they are especially high or low. They also learned about and compared solar eclipses with lunar eclipses. As an introduction to our next focus of study, the Sun, students heard new reports about power outages, radio and television service interruption, as well as cell service and pager service outages. They collected information from specific new reports and proposed ideas about what might have caused the problems. We’ll continue this project next week. Students completed a preliminary lab report, where they include their introduction (scientific question, hypothesis, and research) and their materials and proposed methods for their project.
Spanish with Corinne:
Sunshine Spanish
Sunshine A
This week students learned about subject pronouns (I, you, he/she, we, they, and you plural) in Spanish in preparation for learning regular –ar verb conjugations. On Wednesday both Sunshine Spanish groups combined to learn about and review conjugations. Students then completed several workbook pages and practice packets.

Sunshine B
This week we continued to work with the vocabulary in Chapter 6B, and reviewed the regular and irregular command forms. We also reviewed the conjugations of the verb “estar” (to be) in preparation for learning the present progressive tense. On Thursday students had a short quiz on the chapter vocabulary.

HS Spanish I, part II

This week we worked more with the vocabulary in Chapter 6A. Some of the technology in the chapter is outdated, but is still standard in the curriculum (such as VCR and videos), so I am providing students with many examples of the context in which they will see these words. We also began learning about special comparative forms and how to use them in sentences.

HS Spanish II, part I

This week we worked more with the vocabulary in Chapter 2A, daily routines. Many of the vocabulary words in this chapter are reflexive verbs, so they are also applied to the grammar unit. Several are irregular, stem changing verbs, so we reviewed the three types of stem changing verbs. This chapter also reviews the verbs “ser” and “estar” (to be). In this chapter, students will be expected to identify when to use each verb in a paragraph using the context. We will continue to work with this review as we move forward with the next grammar unit.

HS Spanish II, part II

This week we worked more with the vocabulary in Chapter 5A, a heroic act. Students are starting to show strong recall of the words, and how to identify the correct word based on a definition. We reviewed the conjugations and uses of the preterit and imperfect (past tenses), and added several new uses for the imperfect tense, when describing feelings, time, and weather in the past. We will continue to work with the difference between the preterit and imperfect throughout the year to help students feel comfortable identifying when to use each tense.

Art with Patti:
Sixth Grade: Art Journal: Starting on Watercolor Paper Students practiced a watercolor mingling technique by painting non-representational shapes that mix new colors when sharing areas. Art Journal: Student Share for Symbolic Portrait Talk with classmates about ideas for symbolic portrait. What are ideas in how they think of you? Project: Non-representational Artwork Exploring three different types of materials, create an artwork that focuses on shape, color, line, value, and emotion. You can reference the non-representational art journal pages for some of the technique exploration as possibilities to use. Your reflection will include what types of media you chose to explore, as well as which elements of art you used. Art Project: Symbolic Portrait Think about portraiture in an abstract way. What are likes, how time is spent, favorite foods, hobbies, family representation, favorite places to visit, personal beliefs, how you define yourself. Create an artwork that is a representation of yourself, combine several visual illustrations to convey a composition of imagery representing self without the focal point being a self-portrait. Paint, collage, draw, text and lettering can be used to create this work.

Seventh Grade (Part I, Art I):  Art Journal: Watercolor Finishing with Contrasting Line Students completed their 6 x 9" watercolor by adding a India ink lines. Students drew representational or non-representational designs to contrast with the colorful backgrounds. Project: Chalk Drawing Using Grid  Students created a drawing using white chalk on black paper. LIGHTLY draw a 2" grid on black 12 X 18" paper. Students chose an image to print out in black and white that has a range of values and shows contrast. Students drew a 1" grid (or adjust if necessary) on top of the image. Using pencil, LIGHTLY students drew major shapes seen in each square from the image onto your black paper. Move square by square, checked where the shapes meet the edges of the squares to scale correctly. Students used white chalk, and started filling in various values seen in each square, reference the value scale created in art journal. Students used a view finder (a card cut with a hole that matches the photo image grid square) to help focus on small pieces of information.

Eighth Grade Part II, Art I): Art Journal: Watercolor - finishing On the 6 X 9 watercolor, students added another layer. They chose a watercolor technique to add on to the alcohol base, and transparency layer to complete a watercolor artwork. Art Journal: Color Theory - Setting up the page Students created a composition with repeating shapes. They have 12 spaces to fill with color! Project: Charcoal Drawing First PROJECT assignment. You will create a drawing using charcoal on white or neutral paper. LIGHTLY draw a 2" grid on your 12 X 18" project paper. Choose an image to print out in black and white that has a range of values and shows contrast. Draw a 1" grid (or adjust if necessary) on top of your image. Using pencil, LIGHTLY draw major shapes you see in each square from your image onto your black paper. Move square by square, checking where the shapes meet the edges of the squares to scale correctly. Using vine charcoal,, start filling in shapes you see in each square. Use charcoal pencils and compressed charcoal to build a range of values in each square. Reference the value sphere you created in your art journal. Use a view finder (a card cut with a hole that matches your image grid square) to help you focus on small pieces of information.

Check out the art blog at

Computer Lab with Lorraine:
This week each grade level continued to work on their MyMaps project.  The students have found some interesting information about their research topic.
The link for my blog is listed below:

P.E. and Health with Matt: 

Life Skills / Sex Ed with Molly:

This week the gender groups were split. Each watched a video about the top ten changes that will occur during puberty. During independently time, they worked on a handwriting packet. Next week time they will focus on changes in the adolescent brain throughout puberty and after. This week 7th grade girls watched a video reviewing changes that occur during puberty and introducing them to issue of sexuality. The boys had an independent study hall. Over the next weeks they will focus on self-esteem. 8th grade boys diagramed male reproductive parts, while female students worked independently. The next topics for boys will be to learn about sperm production and ejaculation and girls will learn about female sexual anatomy.

Thank you from, 
The Purple Team