7th Grade Independent Research Projects
Studies show that when students have choice in what and how they learn, they are more invested in their education and therefore, more successful overall.
In 7th grade, we are working on our independent research projects. This unit allows students to take a deep dive into a personal topic that is of keen interest to them. Some topics include:
Fun with Flags!
Our 6th graders have been researching different types of governments and their flags. Once they identified their country, they recreated the flag of the country. They also learned about the symbols on the flags as well as the meaning of the colors used on the flag. This knowledge will help them as they think about what symbols have meaning to them and will be represented on their own created country's flag. I have seen a lot of stars, stripes, suns and flowers on their personal flags.
6th Grade Government
Happy Friday the 13th! In 6th grade, we are at the beginning of our "Create-A-Country" unit. This week, our 6th graders were introduced to different kinds of government. Though many wanted to create a dictatorship and become the supreme leader, it was soon realized that most dictators lives did not end well...
A lot of students liked the idea of a monarchy or democracy. Some students sided with socialism. Here is a picture of Wyatt who stuck to his guns and decided to create a communist regime despite the poor leader outcomes.
ChallengeFriday! Leaning Towers of Pool Noodles
For today's Challenge Friday adventure, students are building the tallest tower using only toothpicks and pool noodle rings. So far, the record tower is held by 6th-graders, Tae Han and Andrew with a tower measuring 49-inches in height. This challenge promotes collaboration, communication, creativity, and critical thinking - our 21st Century Learning Standards. Throw in a little friendly competition and you have a great day in SPECTRA!!!
Student Website Refresh!
7th and 8th grade SPECTRA students are refreshing their websites from last school year. As older and more mature students, some of their previous content may not be as current about the students as they could be.
Students are given a scoring guide that lists and describes the components of a quality website. The students then compare their current website to the components and expectations of the scoring guide. Finally, they make corrections and adjustments to their personal websites to meet the standards on the scoring guide.
This activity takes place after our public vs. private lesson that discusses what type of information is appropriate for students to post on a website that is aimed at a global audience. Below is the scoring guide, followed by pics of the students working on this back-to-school project. Enjoy!
Today, students in 6-8 are going to S.U.I.T. Up. It stands for Social Understanding Interactive Tools. We do this on the last school Friday of the month. To a lot of people, it looks like students having a game day, but there is a serious side to this type of play - often, gifted students have difficulty being social and positively interacting with one another, especially in situations where they win or lose. During this time, we work on our sportsmanship, our conversational skills, and the art of compromise.
To add to this, the games we use are higher-level games that stretch the mind. Logic games that use inductive reasoning, such as MasterMind, vocabulary-building games, such as SmartMouth and Mad Gab, to student-created mathematical games using basic card decks, our students are challenged intellectually and socially to prepare them for life outside the classroom!
Online Safety - 6th Grade
Today, 6th-graders are reviewing online safety procedures before creating their personal websites. The topics covered today was Digital Etiquette, Online Safety, Cyberbullying, and Information Privacy.
The main ideas from today's lesson include public information vs. private information - in other words, you wouldn't stand on the street giving out your name and address, so you don't to that online. That goes for any and all information that is personal and not for public knowledge.
We will use this information as we move forward into website creation and blogging! Happy Tuesday!
Five for Five Time
At the beginning of every class, we take 5 minutes to get ourselves organized. This is called Five for Five time. During the first 5 minutes, students are expected to do 5 things:
Today, we are completing our thoughts and ideas on Goal Setting. Every student was asked to think about their school performance in the past and especially over the first week of school. Most students put their best foot forward at the beginning of the school year and I want them to recognize this behavior and mindset to set them up for success throughout the year. Once this piece is finished, we will begin our grade-level units for the first trimester. Happy Monday!
Today was our first Challenge Friday! Challenge Friday is when SPECTRA students are given a STEM-Based challenge to complete - usually in a friendly-competition format.
Today's challenge was building the tallest tower using only 100 index cards and a lengthy piece of duct tape. The tallest tower in each class wins a piece of candy while the winning tower overall 7 SPECTRA classes will win an additional piece of candy on Monday, as well as ultimate bragging rights!
Work Ethic-Productivity was assessed during this time based on teamwork and building positive relationships within the team. You will see a 5-point grade reflecting this assessment in Infinite Campus.
Have an awesome weekend!