November 15

Monday, November 15, 2010

Dear Parents,

We enjoyed seeing you all at conferences.  It was very helpful to touch base with you regarding your child’s transition and progression so far this year.  It was also a pleasure to watch the students take you on a tour of the classrooms and show off their school work during parent-child night last week. Thank you to all who were able to make it.  If you were unable to attend, you are welcome to stop by any time after school with your child.

November continues to be a busy time in the middle school.  Our annual Concerns U food drive will culminate tomorrow with the students bringing the donations to the food pantry and stocking the shelves. Due to the large size of our class this year, we will be looking for student volunteers to travel to Concerns U and permission slips will be sent home with those students today.  We have collected about 66 jars of gravy and 65 boxes of mashed potatoes.  We were challenged to collect 100 of each this year. Staff member Roger Fallon has volunteered to donate the remainder of the goods necessary to reach our goal. We are very thankful for his generosity and the generosity of all who have donated.   

Our second middle school coffee house is this Thursday, November 18th. Due to the success of our last coffee house, we will continue to order our hot lunch and juice station supplies from Maria Papa.  Students should arrive to WHMS between 7:00-7:20 on coffee house mornings.  We open at 7:30 a.m.! Students should also continue their holiday green sales. Order forms are due by November 19th. Currently, we have sold 28 of the 96 items that we need to sell. Thank you again for all of your continued support which helps to make our micro-economy so successful!  

In social studies, the students have concluded their Civil War scrapbook project and their final projects are quite impressive! The Cycle 1 exam will be held on Tuesday, November 23rd.  Students have been provided with a study guide and study skills will be reviewed in class. Students should set aside proper time to study for this important exam.

In science, students will be continuing their work on accessing information from science textbooks. We learned how to use graphic organizers as an alternative to the SQ3R system that we have been using so far this year, so students will be able to choose how to take notes at times in the coming units of study. During November, small groups will be researching water-use issues that are pertinent to people’s lives in a variety of locations around the world. This project will mark the culmination of our Independence and Interdependence theme.

            In English, Students are writing their literary analysis papers about their novels that focused on independence and interdependence. They are doing multiple drafts and honing their peer editing and revision skills. We have started our next books focusing on historical fiction about the Civil War. Students will be able to use their new breadth of knowledge about the war to better understand the characters and story plots in their novels.

In 7th grade math, students are working through chapter 2 in the textbook, completing operations with rational numbers. There will be an exam before Thanksgiving break. In 8th grade, students started November by working on polynomial math– adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing complex polynomials. We have moved into graphing linear equations. When students have demonstrated competency on paper, they are being encouraged to use their graphic calculators to complete the same problems.

We look forward to seeing you at the upcoming coffee house. As always, please contact us with any questions or concerns.

Sincerely,

The Middle School Team