Middle School: Week of Apr 8


Thank you to Ms. Christa who subbed for me on Tuesday and helped students with the Stock Market Game and logic problems. There was no math Wednesday or Thursday to make way for our yearly IOWA assessments. We will be back to our regularly scheduled programming next week!


Students (and teachers) returned to school Tuesday morning excited to talk about the eclipse! At the beginning of the school day, they interviewed classmates about their eclipse experiences: Where did you watch? Who were you with? What interesting observations did you make? They recorded answers on a graphic organizer, but the main focus was on lively conversation and listening skills.

We also had book club meetings on Tuesday. Students, armed with reading logs and the novel, The Second Mrs. Gioconda, met in small groups to discuss plot points. They also worked together to complete a Venn diagram comparing and contrasting two sisters from the novel and supported their additions with text evidence.

Before we broke up into book clubs, each student reflected in their journals about a quote from the novel in which Leonardo Da Vinci’s apprentice notices how admirers shower the master with empty praise. The apprentice calls it “taste with no mind of its own.” I asked students to explain what they think this quote means and tell me any connections they could make to these words from other texts, themselves, or the big world. After writing, we discussed our thoughts and, as usual, they made very clever connections–especially regarding peer pressure and fads. The big takeaway: be an independent thinker!


What an awesome but crazy week with the Great American Eclipse starting us off! Theme work focused on finishing off the roots of the Renaissance. Students took time to create and gallery walk the topics that impacted the Italian and Northern eras. Working to outline the key ideas allowed students to make those important connections. We will be transitioning to the effects of the Renaissance next week.

It was Iowa Testing week and the Delta class kicked off the annual event with our traditional “bubble party”. After reviewing and practicing the procedures for the test, students gathered to have a little fun blowing bubbles and singing songs to get hyped up for the testing process.

After two days of testing, students continued to prepare to reproduce their Renaissance masterpieces. On their canvas, they created grids, learning to section out each part of the painting. We will be starting the painting process in a couple of weeks!

word image 15643 1
word image 15643 2
word image 15643 3

Delta students get psyched up for Iowa testing with our annual “bubble party.” After going over a lot of procedures and strategies, students got a chance to enjoy some time together blowing their bubbles. Find a video of the event here.

word image 15643 4
word image 15643 5
word image 15643 6

Students work in teams to gather information and create Anchor Charts outlining the reasons for the Italian and Northern Renaissance.

word image 15643 7
word image 15643 8

Da Sprouts meet in book clubs to discuss The Second Mrs. Gioconda.