The incredibly quick transition to remote learning has been a big leap for many of us and much harder than anticipated. We have been staying connected through virtual meetings with our colleagues. We are conitnuing to plan for student learning and schoolwide strategic improvements, despite the circumstances. While this has become our new normal, we certainly hope to be back in-person soon. So thankful for such a wonderful group of educators who remain committed to providing our students with the best possible education!
Students in third grade read a biography called The Man Who Invented Basketball. They learned about James Naismith and his tough love and tough life in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. They used a graphic organizer to write about key moments in his life, major accomplishments, and the power of perseverance. Students worked together to come up with character traits to describe James Naismith. They learned that although he faced many hardships and challenges, Naismith rose above. Not only did he invent the game of basketball in 1891, but he also: became a minister, director of the YMCA, becomes a medical doctor, helped American soldiers in WWI as a military chaplain, and was honored at the Olympic Games in Berlin, Germany.
Second grade has been learning about famous African Americans throughout the month of February. In addition to learning about people like Marian Anderson, Wilma Rudolph, Duke Ellington and others, students also chose an African American person to research. They shared their new knowledge and doll replicas with each other last week! Below is a sample of a few of the projects.
The 6th grade science students are finishing up their introduction into Earth Science this week after studying the spheres of the earth and the layers of the earth over the past couple weeks. Students participated in many critical thinking concepts, focusing on the two questions: “What is inside our earth/Could we dig to the center of the earth?” and “What are the layers that make up our earth?”. During this time, we created a model of the earth on a small sphere. The students had to incorporate math to figure out the scale of the earth and the layers to the sphere they were given. The models turned out great! Students also spent a day using their creative side making a ‘graffiti wall’ where they expressed why it is important to know the layers of the earth. The 6th grade is looking forward to getting out of this world and leaping into the atmosphere next!
March 14 marked Pi Day, an annual celebration of the mathematical sign pi. Founded in 1988 by physicist Larry Shaw, March 14 was selected because the numerical date (3.14) represents the first three digits of pi, and it also happens to be Albert Einstein’s birthday—the perfect pi-incidence.
Sixth graders participated in Pi Week and all middle school math students participated in Pi Day on Friday, March 13. During Pi Week, math students were able to make discoveries related to the extraordinary number pi (π)! Students participated in the following activities: decorating Pi Day t-shirts that they wore on Pi Day, watching videos about Pi, completing a discovery activity involving circles, drawing a Pi City skyline, completing a creative research project about Pi facts, working on a collaborative Pi poster in small groups, writing Pi Poetry and much more! We also had our Annual Pi Bee (a memory competition where the student in each class who memorized the most digits of pi went home with an apple PIE)!
The 2020 Annual Pi Bee Winners are:
8th Grade Winners
- Chloe A. (71 digits)
- Mariah J. (63 digits)
- Gabi W. (24 digits)
7th Grade Winners
- Sebastian V. (135 digits)
- Brady A. (45 digits)
- Kevin G. (16 digits)
6th Grade Winners
- Danny M. (122 digits)
- Autumn E. (108 digits)
Students in 4th grade showcased their understanding of 2nd quarter’s theme: En la Ciudad by designing and building a 3D model based on Chicago, our city of study (Buenos Aires) or a fictional city. The students used their city models to discuss with their classmates the various activities to do, places to visit in their city, and the ways they travel to different places (modes of transportation). The students did a phenomenal job creating unique city models and are very excited to share them with you!
With careful calculations, 5th grade discovered that by this time in the school year, the students academic careers (k-5th grade) is 1,000 days long! We spent the afternoon of February 14th celebrating this!. Students attempted a 1,000 piece puzzle, a STEM activity with 1,000 toothpicks and marshmallows and tried to come up with 1,000 memories. We wrote letters to our future selves, and even made 1,000 day glasses to wear! Being 1,000 days smarter is truly a cause for celebration.
Fifth grade science students are learning about chemical reactions and properties of matter. In this lab, students investigated and modeled how gases cause explosions. In the activity, Bag of Bubbles, students experimented by combining baking soda and vinegar inside a sealed bag and observed how the gas bubbles produced caused the bag to inflate–and sometimes pop!