Specials Learning Previews - September 2019

Specials Learning Previews - September 2019
Posted on 09/24/2019
Spanish | Mr. Paras, [email protected]

Grade 6: Grade 6 has not begun Spanish yet. Once they begin next week, we will start by going over class rules and then getting into introductions. Students will learn how to greet each other, ask and answer questions about their names and where they are from. They will then interview others classmates and then have to answer questions about their partners. We will then move onto the Spansh alphabet. Students will learn how to say each letter and also how to spell words. We will watch videos on the Spanish alphabet and then play games where they will spell words using mini white boards. They will do this as a team to play games. They will also quiz each other on words. We will then move onto learning about the weather. Students will learn words to describe the weather and also for the seasons. What weather is typical for each season? Students will then create a four day weather forcast. We will also practice asking for the weather in different places. At the end of our weather, we will be creating posters for the weather in each season. Lastly, we will learn how to answer the question, how are you and use different ways to answer it.

Grade 7: In class, we will start learning about school and classes. Students will watch videos about schools in Spanish speaking countries. They will learn how to describe their classes and also say when and where each class is. Students will be introduced to placemats that will give them information to talk about what is in the chapter. These will help them use the Spanish language more. Students will also learn how to go from a novice low leaner to a novice mid learner to a novice high learner. On their placemats, there will be information to help them reach the next level of language learning. Students will talk about their classes with other classmates as well as the teacher. Students will also be asked to write a story about their classes which will include describing what they class is like, what they need for class, a description of the teacher and stating when and where the class takes place. In class, they will also be asked to create their dream schedule. AR verbs will also be introduced in this unit. With these, students should be able to start creating small sentences and they will be asked to create an AR verb book.

Grade 8: Students will be introduced to placemats. These placemats will include words and grammar points that will help them use the Spanish language much more. We will then move onto studying about families and family celebrations. We will watch some videos and discuss the roles of people in a Spanish speaking household. Students will research celebrations in other Spanish speaking countries and report back on what they learned. Since a quinceñera is such a big part of young women’s lives, we will learn about the celebration. Then, students will learn the conjugations of the verb tener so they can talk about the ages of people in their family. Students will then learn what a possessive adjective is and then talk about their families using the verb tener and possessive adjectives. Lastly, they will create a family tree by researching famous hispanics. They will also be required to create a family role for each person and then describe them.

French | Neil Pischner, [email protected]

Grade 6: Welcome to 6th-grade French! We have an exciting first month of introducing French to the students. We will be guided by essential questions, such as, “What does it mean to make mistakes in French?” and “What does proficiency in French mean?” Thus, practicing our classroom routines in French and cultivating a culture of proficiency are priority. Students will learn about the different levels of proficiency, be able to assess their own level, and be able to explain what they need to do to level up. Also, students will be expected to start making requests and expressing immediate classroom needs in French (and with plenty of help from didactic anchor charts on the wall) in order to keep us in the target language as much as possible (aiming for 90%).

Grade 7: It’s great to see the students back in French! Students are being guided by the essential question “What makes me unique?” and “What does family mean?.” Students are practicing describing themselves with new adjectives and challenging themselves to link ideas together and ask simple questions of one another, as we eye leveling up to Novice Mid proficiency. We will also continue to place priority on students interacting with one another in French to meet their everyday classroom needs.

Grade 8: It’s great to see the students back in French! Students will be guided by essential questions such as “Where does food come from?” and relate to them through new vocabulary of plants, animals, and prepared food items. Students will design a school lunch menu and use it to ask questions with interrogatives and three grammatical structures for asking questions in French (using the formula “est-ce que,” rising voice intonation, and subject-verb inversion), which will be an important skill as we eye leveling up to Novice High.

Art | Lucia Lee, [email protected]

6th graders have Art twice a week for one semester. In the past few classes, we played a few get-to-know-you games. Students have also worked cooperatively in table groups to create 2-minute animals/cartoon characters sculptures using found objects. In the upcoming week, students will work on a “police sketch artist” partner drawing exercise.

7th graders started the year working on two challenges using wire and related tools. In one challenge, students were asked to create an object that would stand on its own. In a separate challenge, students were asked to draw a continuous line drawing of an animal and re-create the drawing using one piece of wire. Students are now starting a relief-printing project in which they sketch and carve ¼ of a bigger design onto a 1x1-inch square block. This mini block-printing project demonstrates that the use of repetition can transform a simple design into a more intricate and interesting image.

8th graders started the year working on a blind contour drawing exercise of themselves and of a peer. They are now starting a Gustav Klimt-style portrait on gold scratchboard--they will first find head and hands of a human/animal from magazines. Then students will use scratchboard tools to draw and etch bodies, legs, and a background scene. Empty spaces can be filled with geometric/organic lines and patterns--similar to Klimt’s Golden Phase paintings. For this assignment, garments and body proportions need not be realistic. Portrait results tend to be either beautiful, quirky, fanciful, silly, or all of the above.

Drama | Ms. Elguindy, [email protected]

6th grade are working on becoming a strong, supportive ensemble in theater arts. In this first unit they are focusing on developing strategies for working well as a team in order to take creative risks. They will identify and practice the qualities of a great audience, develop strategies for group work and begin to explore the idea of what it means to be a creative risk taker.

8th grade is building core fundamentals in becoming a great ensemble. In the first unit we will review and build upon our acting toolbox of skills. Focusing on facial expression, body language and voice we will be improvising scenes and using scripts to tell stories on stage.

String Orchestra | Brittany Phillips [email protected]

It is an exciting time for our 6th grade orchestra students as they are eager to grow their skills. This year, we have a nice mix of returning musicians along with students who are brand new to their instruments. Our first few weeks are spent reviewing and learning what it means to be a member of an ensemble while refreshing our open strings, bowing and pizzicato techniques, and left hand finger patterns in first position. Our main focus for this season will be to grow in confidence with reading notes off of the musical staff,

The 7th grade orchestra started off the year strong and ready to dive into more challenging repertoire. We have been reviewing our D major notes through sight reading activities and rhythmic exercises. Students are currently having fun with our blues progression and walking bass line. Soon we will dive into our new repertoire as we look ahead to the Unity Concert in January. Pull out lessons have officially started, and will rotate every week so that students are not missing consecutive classes.

The 8th grade orchestra hit the ground running this year. Students are focusing on expanding their note reading skills before we dive into the more challenging repertoire that is ahead. Students will also dive into some exciting repertoire from around the world, as we study the impact of music on various cultures. This advanced ensemble will be pushed and challenged this year. I am confident that they will rise to the occasion, and grow in the process. Pull out lessons have officially started, and will rotate every week so that students are not missing consecutive classes.

Band | Patrick Wroge, [email protected]

6th Grade: 6th grade is a very enthusiastic group of instrumentalists! All of the instruments are handed out, and we are now starting our review of basic musical concepts such as literacy, ensemble playing, rest/play position, posture, and breath support.

7th Grade: 7th grade is up and running, and are eager to get to some of our new music! This year we are going to tackle ‘Eye of the Tiger”, “Havana”, “And All That Jazz”, “Mercy, Mercy, Mercy”, and “Shippiing Up To Boston”. In addition, we will continue our study of the blues progression and improvisation.

8th Grade: 8th grade is up and running, and are eager to get to some of our new music! This year we are going to tackle ‘Eye of the Tiger”, “Havana”, “And All That Jazz”, “Mercy, Mercy, Mercy”, and “Shippiing Up To Boston”. In addition, we will continue our study of the blues progression and improvisation.

Chorus | Joshua DeWitte, [email protected]psd.us

6th grade: 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 will listen to each singer to assess his/her range and assigned parts; soprano or alto. We will sing 2-part music throughout the year. I am impressed by the sound the choir is already making!

7th grade: Students continue to work on maintaining posture and proper breath support throughout a rehearsal. We move from singing 2-part to 3-part music. Students were divided into first and second soprano and alto. We began working on repertoire. We will focus on music literacy throughout the year, primarily using repertoire as our source material for reading music.

8th grade: 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 3-4 parts; first and second soprano, alto, and bass/baritone. We will sing a diverse range of repertoire this year. We started learning a few pieces of music including “99 Red Balloons.”

Urban Legends | Joshua DeWitte, [email protected]

7th grade: In Urban Legends this year, we will focus on building rudiments and fundamental techniques that form a solid foundation for drumming. Every class begins with a 10 minute warm-up. We then progress into working on certain rudiments and skills such as paradiddles and accents. We then move from practice pads to instruments and work on repertoire. While the weather is still warm, we will frequently go outside to work on marching.

8th grade: Students will build upon the progress they made last year. They will continue to learn new rudiments as well as master fundamentals. This month we are focusing on doubles and drum rolls. The 8th graders will perform outside the school on Curriculum Night to welcome our community to a new school year. This year, students will collaborate with CRLS’ Drumline as well as perform at various school events and out-of-school events. Students should practice at least 10 minutes per day to improve skill and facility.

Music Studio | Jamal Fairbanks, [email protected]

Grade 6th/7th/8th: Music Studio is a unique class that allows students to explore the spectrum of music. From playing instruments such as guitar, ukulele, and bucket drums, to creating music using computer programs, students get to dip their toes into a world of countless opportunities. We are starting the year off with bucket drumming, a fun and easy way to actively engage in music. We’ve played along to various songs and explored different rhythms while learning to build the strength in both our hands to create quality sound. In the upcoming weeks, we are going to dive into music literacy and begin reading drumming music! In this unit we will look at quarter/eighth/sixteenth-note patterns and play pieces of music that contain them.

Ukulele | Jamal Fairbanks, [email protected]

Grade 7th/8th: In this ukulele course, students have begun their journey on becoming great ukulele players and musicians. Though this 4-string instrument looks small and easy to play, the depth and possibilities of the ukulele are endless. Like all instruments, it will be challenging. However students have already begun reading charts and building their library of chords, the building blocks of all songs. We are currently working in pairs on our duets that we will perform for each other.

Physical Education, Chris Moore [email protected]

Grade 6: Students are starting off the year strong with Cooperative Learning unit.Students are participating in a variety of small group adventure activities, game play, and team-building activities. We are continuing to consider why cooperation is an important life skill, how rules help keep you safe, how actions have consequences, and how cooperation shows that you respect others. This will lead into climbing low and high rope elements

Grade 7: Students are also in their Cooperative Learning Unit. Students are partaking in game play, small-group initiatives, and adventure activities that foster problem solving in small groups. Challenges include crossing an area with limitations, also guiding a partner blindfolded across a maze. This will also lead into climbing low and high rope elements.

Grade 8: Students are also in their Cooperative Learning Unit. Students are partaking in game play, problem-solving initiatives, and adventure activities that foster building community in small and large groups. This unit will conclude with a challenge by choice high ropes course.

Health | Mr. McNulty [email protected]

Grade 6: Students have learned the 4 Dimensions of Health (Physical, Social, Mental/Emotional, and Spiritual) and the 5 Social Emotional skills (Self-awareness, self-management, social-awareness, relationship skills and responsible decision making). They will begin their Social Emotional Learning Unit, Second Step, next week.

Grade 7: Students have begun their Second Step Social Emotional Learning Unit. Students will be learning about how to challenge themselves, how to be a good friend and what to do when they are involved in a conflict.

Grade 8: Students have begun their Media Literacy Unit. They have learned the three types of mass media and the techniques companies use to advertise specifically to their age group. They will be learning about the media’s influence on gender roles, race and religion, and social media safety.

Library/Technology | Ms. Musher, [email protected]

Grade 6: For the first month of school, 6th graders take Intro to Middle School instead of their language. The goal of Intro is to get them set up with the technology and communication skills they need to be successful in 6th grade. Students set a strong password for their accounts, improve their Google Drive skills, and practice sending professional emails.

Grades 7 & 8: Students begun their reading Fridays last week in ELA. Most Fridays throughout the year, they’ll have independent reading time. I rotate through the grades to recommend books and help individual students find a book to read that they’ll enjoy and that will stretch their reading skills.
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