2020 Goals

The 8th grade students all set goals for themselves for 2020 that are featured on one of our giant bulletin boards at school. Many of our students have set academic goals and a lot have set personal goals. Check out the picture to see your child’s goal? Don’t see one for your child? All students were invited to participate, but some struggled to decide on something to focus on. I am so proud of them for setting their sights high. Click on the picture to see a larger view. I listed off some of the goals below the picture. Continue reading “2020 Goals”

Halloween 2019

I adore seeing the costumes kids come to school in on Halloween. We always spend just a few minutes snapping some pictures of each class. Our Halloween in math is limited to a Halloween activity that supports what we’re doing in class. After a brief lesson focus finishing up work from the day prior we moved into our Halloween part of the day.

In Algebra our focus was a graphing picture that reinforced domain and range; a topic that we’re discussing. A lot of different pieces of lines will ultimately come together to form a pumpkin face. That pumpkin face comes together with coloring based on the areas of the shapes formed. In Math 8 we used translations and reflections to draw a pumpkin face graph. Continue reading “Halloween 2019”

Spirit Week 2019!

I record all my fitness on Strava. Last week I noticed they had a contest – miles for pizza. The more you run the more free pizza you get from a pizza shop in the NYC area. Hmm … we haven’t been to NYC in awhile. Maybe we can plan a trip. Soon I had planned out a trip that would cost a fair amount of money to get my FREE pizza. No trip. No pizza. My common sense kicked in.

Still, Spirit week was coming up in our school. Some kids get really into it, but it is hard to get a critical mass of kids to really jump in with two feet. What about a little contest? I decided to offer the math class with the highest percentage of participation a sweet treat on the Monday after Spirit week ends. We had some great spirit in the 8th grade. I wasn’t so sure if my contest had anything to do with anything until kids started reminding me to count, take the picture and until one student said, “I’m only doing this for the contest.” Yup, that’s what I needed to hear.

Sometimes contests are important because life’s just more fun when you join in. We all need a nudge from time to time!!

Continue reading “Spirit Week 2019!”

7th Grade Interviews

It is official! Our 7th graders have all been interviewed. A group of students met with me every other Wednesday during lunch to share a little bit about themselves. We talked about their favorite things from 7th grade, shared some sports and hobbies and chose words to describe our personalities. Our time ends with enjoying a sweet treat before heading back for recess. These little write-ups have been on display in the 2nd floor hallway for the year. The first half of the grade was complete by the new year and the 2nd half of the grade just finished. Continue reading “7th Grade Interviews”

Halloween Pictures!

The 7th graders showed some great Halloween spirit this year by dressing in some fabulous costumes. In Math 7 we enjoyed Halloween by playing spooky music as we worked and enjoying a game of Trasketball, courtesy of Carlos and his 5th grade teacher Ms. Kempski. Early in the year Carlos explained this game to me. “We do math problems and when we get them right we get to wad up the paper and try to get a basket by throwing them in a bin.” I went to his teacher and asked about it. She shared its name and told me to check it out online. I didn’t but went by Carlos’ description and her info and adapted it for the day. Here’s how we played.

I played Halloween music and had the kids roam the classroom. Whenever the music stopped they had to partner with the closest person. I did this a few times to let them get their energy out and enjoy the wandering time. Then, once partnered they created addition problems for integers. Partner A made a problem for partner B. Partner B solved it on their paper and Partner A checked it using the calculator (we’re learning both how to do these problems on paper and how to do them with a calculator so this activity worked on both). If partner B gets it right they get to take one of the extra papers from our Module 1 stuff (destined for recycling) and toss it into one of 3 basketball “hoops” wrapped in Halloween lights. There were one point toss points and 2 point toss points. Prizes for beating your partner: bragging rights! The kids had fun with it and I can see a lot of other opportunities to use a version of this. I did get a short video from period 9 which is probably why I forgot to take their picture!

In Pre-Algebra we had Nico’s mom, Nana come in to work with us while we did an activity about income tax. The kids assumed Halloween jobs like “Dracula’s Dentist” and they calculated the income taxes that they’d be charged based on their salary. This was tricky work and started to lead us down a big conversation path. If only we had time for debate in math!! The kids had a good time with this and we appreciated Nana spending her morning with us. A bonus – she even dressed up!! This one day activity kicked off our unit on percents and percent equations.

Halloween Pictures!

I forgot to take a picture in period 9. I was SO bummed!! Here are pictures of the rest of the kids in costume.

Continue reading “Halloween Pictures!”

School Spirit Party (2018)

We had our 2nd school spirit week right before our holiday break. The first time the Student Council ran a spirit week, our team decided to host a party after school for the students who chose to dress up for at least 4 of the 5 days as a way to promote spirit with our 7th graders. The teachers kept track of kids dressed up, and students received an invitation to the party. We enjoyed cake, chips, cookies, cider and played games in the library at the first party.

For this spirit week we followed the same plan. The only difference? We’d be eating gingerbread house and all the other things. Every year my family makes a house and who better to eat it than the 7th graders? (This year it was a brownstone. Many kids were curious about how it was made, how long it took etc. Read about it here) Continue reading “School Spirit Party (2018)”