Learning Previews - Specials - October 25, 2016

Learning Previews - Specials - October 25, 2016
Posted on 10/25/2016
Specials Learning Previews: Art

Lucia Lee, Grades 6-8

6th graders are continuing with their tissue paper “stained-glass” project that depicts either a representational or non-objective image. They have sketched the sections for the “glass” (color) and planned out where the borders will go. The borders serve structural support and holds the entire image together. In the coming days, students will begin to cut out the areas on which the color tissue paper will be glued.

7th graders have tested out various color schemes for their block print project and are working on the final draft. Most of them are discovering that as they print using repetition and rotation, their simple design is turning into a more complex and interesting image. On a side note, don’t forget to bring in your empty 1-gallon water jug soon! If for some reason you’re not able to bring one in, please see me so we can work something out together.

8th graders are continuing their work with the Gustav Klimt-style portraits. They are experimenting with basic scratchboard tools and using those skills to etch the bodies and background. The image will also include various types of lines, patterns, organic and geometric shapes.

Specials Learning Previews: French

Sarah Bilodeau, Grades 6-8,

6th Grade: This month we are learning how to say our name, the day and date, the time & the weather. We are performing dialogues about introducing new friends in school.

7th Grade: This month we are wrapping up our sports & society unit with an in-class, in French presentation about our favorite athletes. We will begin a new unit about eating out in a café in France.

8th grade: This month we wrap up our unit about housing & homes in Francophone countries with a project designing our ideal home. We will present our projects in French in class. We also begin a new unit about shopping at a farmers market. Students will teach the class how to make a favorite family recipe in French!

Specials Learning Previews: Spanish

Nick Paras, Grades 6-8, 

& Angela Green, Grade 6,

6th Grade: Grade 6 will start next week learning about the Mexican holiday, the Day of the Dead. We will then move on to working on weather and calendars. We will first learn the days of the week and the months of the year in Spanish. We have been working on weather terms in our daily greetings. To go along with the calendar, we will making a calendar/seasonal posters in groups. Students will be talking about their favorite seasonal activities, the weather, and special events that may take place during the year. We will also review a bit of the Spanish alphabet at the beginning of each class.

7th Grade: This week, we will be working with the verb ser and adjectives of description. We will also be working on noun/adjective agreement using masculine/feminine and singular/plural nouns. The students will be describing pictures and then they will make a diamond poem about themselves.

8th Grade: This week we will continue our work with family vocabulary and the verb tener - to have. We will work on how to write about family relationships and also the use of possessive adjectives when writing about our families. Also, with the verb tener the students will work on writing about how many family members they have and how to describe them.

Specials Learning Previews: 
Library & Technology

Sam Musher,

7th graders came to the library during ELA. I book talked Shadowshaper by Daniel Jose Older and students had the opportunity to explore new and old titles and check out books.

In science, 8th graders researched ways magnetism is used in the world, before brainstorming how they could use magnetism to build a new device. They reinforced effective web search strategies and citation skills.

Specials Learning Previews: Theater Arts

Summar Elguindy,

6th graders have completed their first unit on building basic actor skills such as facial expression, body language and ensemble strategies. They are beginning to learn how to use a healthy voice when on stage in order to be heard and help show emotion and character. They will begin short scenes focusing on showing strong character traits through the use of body language, facial expression and vocal choices.

Specials Learning Previews: Physical Education

Michael O’Connell,

Grade 6: Students are halfway through their Invasion Games Unit. This unit is designed for students to develop and demonstrate competency in a variety of movement patterns as well as apply knowledge of concepts, principles, tactics, and strategies common to invasion games and invasion sports.

Grade 7:
Students are halfway through their Invasion Games Unit. This unit is designed for students to develop and demonstrate competency in a variety of movement patterns as well as apply knowledge of concepts, principles, tactics, and strategies related to the sport of ultimate and the games of flicker and speedball.

Grade 8: Students are halfway through their Invasion Games Unit. This unit is designed for students to: 1) demonstrate competency in a variety of movement patterns; 2) apply knowledge of tactics related to the sport of ultimate; and, 3) apply knowledge of rules and etiquette by acting as an official during ultimate game-play.

Specials Learning Previews: Health & Wellness

Justin McNulty,

6th graders continue to explore mental and emotional health. They have been learning how to express their feelings and emotions in healthy ways, how to recognize how someone else is feeling and how body language, tone of voice and facial expressions have a lot to do with how they communicate with others.

7th graders have been studying how to read a food label, how many calories the average teenage needs to consume and what the six essential nutrients do for your body. Students have been asked to monitor their portions when they eat and try to identify what food groups they consume throughout the week.

8th graders have been analyzing messages that media sends us when we talk about race and gender roles. They have been identifying ways that media “codes” our brain to have preconceived notions about people. Students have been encouraged to critically analyze the media they view and decode what messages are being sent.

Specials Learning Previews: String Orchestra

Brittany Phillips, Grades 6-8,
6th grade is off to a great start. Students are getting into the swing of attending their pull out lessons once a week in addition to our full ensemble rehearsals on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Students are mastering their bow holds, playing posture, and correct left hand positions. Students are focusing on reading notes and rhythms off of the musical staff. Currently, students are working on the 3-part Nigerian spiritual, “Kum Ba Yah”. In addition to playing the piece as it is written, we are experimenting with percussion by tapping and knocking on our instruments.

The 7th graders are mastering the D major scale and learning about the importance of time signatures and key signatures. The RAUC Hip Hop Jam is proving to be a great exploration of improvisation. Additionally, 7th grade students are continuing their study of the Nigerian spiritual, “Kum Ba Yah”, and are just beginning to study their newest addition, “Rosintown Rock.” This new piece is written for 4-part string orchestra and drum set. It is fast-paced and high energy. It will be a great learning process for us to break down our individual parts fit them back together, but students are enthusiastic and up for the challenge! All 7th grade orchestra students should be signed into the Google Classroom and have access to the back track for our Hip Hop Jam.

The 8th grade orchestra has really taken off with our RAUC Hip Hop Jam. They are currently working on a project called “Speak Your Mind.” Through this study, students will write rhythmic spoken word stanzas to accompany our performance. Students are encouraged to write their thoughts about current world issues, and express how they are going to overcome them and make the future a better place. Their writing is inspirational, and will be a great addition to our performance of the piece in February. In addition to this project, we are focusing on reading notes, complex rhythms, and various articulations on the musical staff. We are learning music by ear AND through reading, and it is proving to be challenging, but fun. Students are putting this into practice with “Beethoven’s Lullaby,” a current piece we are studying inspired by L.V. Beethoven.

Specials Learning Previews: Band

Director of Bands Patrick Wroge, Grades 5-8,

6th Grade: In 6th grade we continue to reinforce the basics such as, posture, breath control, play position, rest position, and ensemble playing. By now, we are able to play “We’re On A Mission To Rock” with proficiency. We are still working to become proficient on our concert Bb major scale, but are very close. We have moved into the world of improvisation using our tune “We’re On A Mission To Rock” as a platform. Students are given the opportunity to create an improvised solo using the notes from this tune.

7th Grade: In 7th grade we continue to use scales as warm-ups before we begin rehearsing our ensemble pieces. We have a good understanding of “Raiders March” and will continue to refine each different section. We have also started working on “25 or 6 to 4” which promises to be a fun piece once it is up and running.

8th Grade: In 8th grade we continue to use scales as warm-ups before we begin rehearsing our ensemble pieces. Some 8th graders are working on the Junior District audition music. Auditions for this ensemble will take place in early February. “Raiders March”, “Star Wars”, and “25 Or 6 To 4” are progressing nicely. We have started working on “Kashmir” which is going to be fun when it is up and running!

Specials Learning Previews: Chorus
Joshua DeWitte, Grades 6-8,

Grade 6: Students are learning the fundamentals of proper vocal technique and choral singing. We have practiced posture and our vocal warm-ups focus on isolating the diaphragm and learning to tune vowels so our sound blends. I am impressed by the sound the choir is already making! We began our exploration of musical theater by watching excerpts from “Phantom of the Opera.”

Grade 7: Students continue to work on maintaining posture and proper breath support throughout a rehearsal. We have moved from singing 2-part to 3-part music. We continue to work on repertoire. We will focus on music literacy throughout the year, primarily using repertoire as our source material for reading music.

Grade 8: The goal of 8th grade chorus is to prepare students to be successful singers in high school, whether they pursue singing in musicals, acappella, chorus, or wherever their voices take them. We are singing in 4 parts; first and second soprano, alto, and bass. We are singing a diverse range of repertoire this year. We started learning “Stressed Out” by Twenty One Pilots, two traditional choral pieces; “Can You Hear Me” and “Winter, Fire, and Snow,” and a modern folk tune, “White Winter Hymnal.” All grade levels work on this repertoire and will perform them as a combined chorus of over 85 students. Our first performance will be at the Veteran’s Day Assembly in November where we are joined by the Early Bird Singers choir from Peabody.

Specials Learning Previews: Musical Arts

Cassandra McDonald, Grade 6-8,

6th Grade, Our Musical World: In the land of 6th Grade Musical Arts, we are making connections with Social Studies class using the Five Themes of Geography. We will be looking at different regions around the world, seeing how location, place, human and environment interactions, movement, and region affect musical cultures around the world. We are learning different dances and instrumental rhythms (real instruments and cups!) from around the world as well! This week we are doing the salsa and “Thriller.”

7th Grade, Musical Diversity: We have moved from hip-hop into popular music, looking at what makes popular music popular, and how long the genre has been around. This week, students will be doing group research on songs from different decades and preparing to debate in small groups which songs are “best.” We are also accompanying different pop songs using the “Cup Game” and learning the choreography from “Thriller.”

8th Grade, Music and Society: This week, we are finishing our look at John Williams. We have been talking about and listening to music in films and how it might affect our movie experience. Hopefully students will watch movies with more awareness of what is happening in the background! We will be learning the “Thriller dance as well as using the “Cup Game” and drums to accompany different songs like music from the “Pirates of the Caribbean.”