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7th Grade Team

Discover what's happening in the 7th grade classes at Rye Jr. High (A Middle School) in Rye, NH, US.

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Article posted May 13, 2013 at 09:23 AM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 119

Upcoming events







  • May 24 - No School, Professional Development Day


  • May 27 - No School, Memorial Day


  • May 31 - Field Trip - Portsmouth Harbor - to kick off our Sense of Place Unit


  • June 13 - Sense of Place Presentations - 7-8 pm


  • June 19 - Funtown Field Trip


  • June 20 - Half Day, Last day of School.






 



Language Arts


 



This month in seventh grade language arts, students are investigating poetry techniques and using figurative language to add detail to writing.  The students recently found figurative language in lines from Shakespeare’s plays, and were quite surprised to find that not only could they identify similes, metaphors and hyperbole, they could actually understand the meaning behind the language! We will continue  Reading and writing poetry will finish out our year in language arts.


 



Social Studies


 



Social Studies classes have begun our Renaissance unit. The unit centers around a research project. The classes begin by watch a set of videos on the time period to learn about the isssues & events that shaped life back then.  Students are assigned a famous person to research and then portray in a mock TV show called A Meeting of the Minds. Each show begins with the students giving a short biography of their person’s life. The 2nd half of the show involves them answering questions about the major ideas, events, and inventions of the Renaissance and how they might have affected the person they are portraying. This year Ms. Gilbert (LA) will be helping the student’s to prepare their opening monologues  and  Eric Lawson (Tech Guru) will be helping to improve the technical side of filming the TV show.


 



Mathematics


 



Students are ending their unit on the Stock Market. They will be creating a Stock Portfolio to showcase their companies, list their gains/losses, and reflect on the experience. With the Dow at closing at 18,381 on the day they sold their stocks, most students saw significant gains. The one company that showed disappointing returns was Apple. Many students invested in this company and saw losses. Ratio, proportion and percent will be the next topics covered.


 



Science


 



We wrapped up our chemistry unit by determining if a water sample would have been potable on the westward trails back in the 1800’s. Each student had a trail sample to test using any indicator and their notes. Of course, the pioneers had other indicators around the watering holes, such as the types of rocks, signs and animal bones!


 



We are now working independently on the Roadkill Project. A high number of roadkill indicates a high population of that animal. There is a serious side to this project and our numbers are available to other organizations and schools to study. Each student chose one variable they believe  would affect the roadkill numbers. Data from over 15 years is available to the students. What do you think will affect roadkill? Moon phase? Temperature? Price of gasoline? Nocturnal vs diurnal?


 



Token Economy







We have started this activity with the students and it will continue to the end of the year. Each student has the "job" of student and will receive a "paycheck" at the end of each week. They have the opportunity to earn bonuses and debits, which further develops their responsibility in class. Each student has a checking account and a check register. They will be balancing their checkbooks weekly. Feel free to have a look at it to see how they are progressing. At the end of the year, the students can "pay" for full privileges on our last field trip on June 19th to Funtown in Saco, ME.


 


 



Article posted May 13, 2013 at 09:23 AM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 119



Article posted May 13, 2013 at 09:22 AM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 122

7th Grade News - April, 2013






Math





In 7th grade Math, students have been focusing on operations with rational numbers


as it applies to meeting the 7.NS.A.2c Common Core Standard. A Brain Pop video


introduced students to the terminology needed to discuss whether a number is


rational or not. They are responsible for the following “I can” statements as part


of this unit. “I can convert fractions to decimals and decimals to fractions.” “I can


multiply and divide multi-digit numbers that have decimals.” “I can estimate the


answers of such problems using powers of 10.” They practiced a written response


using a standards based rubric. A STEM career video was presented to give


them insight into why learning mathematics is important and what careers are in


high demand due to the explosion of technology. Homework groups have been


implemented as a means of encouraging students to work collaboratively.





Social Studies





Social Studies classes are almost finished up their unit on the Middle Ages. When


we return from April vacation we will be kicking off a major project about the


European Renaissance. In the project, students will research a famous person and


then participate in a mock TV show; where they will become that person. Each show


begins with the students giving a short biography of their person’s life. The 2nd half


of the show involves them answering questions about the major ideas, events, and


inventions of the Renaissance and how they might have affected the person they are


portraying. This year Ms. Gilbert (LA) will be helping the student’s to prepare their


opening monologues and Eric Lawson (Tech Guru) will be helping to improve the


technical side of filming the TV show.





Science





We concluded our Severe Weather Unit with a graded discussion. This was a new


experience for the students which addressed speaking and listening standards


from the Common Core State Standards. Small groups of students prepared notes


individually about a severe weather element and gathered to discuss them as the


rest of the class listened. We highlighted the dangers and safety procedures. Does


your family have an emergency plan in place?





We are currently working with chemistry concepts. The students created a unique


book about matter that has pages that open up, rather than turn. We are using


indicators to determine acids, bases and neutral liquids all the while learning safe


practices in the science room. The students will have a lab packet and a unique


piece of artwork to conclude the unit.





We are still counting roadkill in Rye and New Castle! In May, we will begin to


interpret the data. High roadkill numbers of an animal indicate a high population and


vice versa. Our data is also used by other organizations. We have been doing this


project over 20 years. We have lots of data!





***Earth Day is April 22th! Unfortunately, we will be on vacation, therefore, we will


recognize the day on Friday, April 19th. We are planning to webcast throughout the





day. Each class will be ‘on air’ during the morning beginning at 8:15 am EDT. We


will share live and recorded content from our school and guests. You can join us


by going to http://earthbridges.net/live. There will also be a chat room available to


say hi, add a comment or ask a question. I’m sure the students would love to have


an authentic audience from the seacoast! Please foward the URL to relatives and


friends.





Language Arts





Students are finishing up their novels set in the Middle Ages, and have been working


diligently on the various book projects they have created to outline connections


from their novel to the instruction in social studies. Projects are varied to appeal


to different learning styles, and students had the opportunity to create their own


project. Lastly, students posted to Edmodo, a web based sharing tool where we


compared characters, setting and themes of our novel. Students were motivated to


read others posts, and made thoughtful, insightful connections through comments on


others’ posts.





Narrative writing will be the focus of the third trimester, and currently students are


enthusiastically writing a memoir. Dialogue and figurative language will be used


to enhance the description and development of the plot of the memoir. Looking


forward, students will become amatuer bards as they delve into a unit on


poetry. Students will be exposed to talent from Shakespeare to our current national


poet laureate, Natasha Trethewey. Later on, skills learned to develop character and


enhance writing will be used to craft a monologue on a Renaissance personality.

Article posted May 13, 2013 at 09:22 AM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 122



Article posted March 15, 2013 at 10:55 AM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 79

In math, students have just completed Module 3. They are now learning about the Metric System. The will learn how to convert within the Metric System and use benchmarks to estimate lengths. They continue to follow the Stock Market and watched the market reach it all time and continue to rise. Each student has created a spreadsheet to calculate the gains and losses in their own electronic portfolio.



Social Studies classes are currently wrapping up their Roman unit.  The final project will be to research Gladiatorial combat and to create a fictionalized journal to show what they have learned about the topic. In addition, students have begun taking a series of quizzes on the physical geography of the Europe.  Using student created maps, they are responsible for knowing the names and locations of the important physical features of the continent.  The students will next be looking at the effects of the Fall of Rome and the period known as the “Dark Ages.”  Topics will include Feudalism, the Reformation & Counter Reformation, the Crusades and the Black Death. 



In science, the students have learned to predict nor’easters by examining the path of the low pressure system on a map!  The weather has been cooperating with us this year with storm after storm! We are beginning to research various elements of severe weather and will conclude with a graded discussion next week. This will be a first for most students. I hope to record the discussions and play them for our Earth Day webcast next month.



The science and language arts classes have teamed up. We are currently reading about the flash flood around Johnstown, PA in the late 1800’s. The students are learning that the waters are filled with debris that makes survival difficult during and after the event. They are also analyzing primary source documents (survivor accounts and photographs) about the flood.



In LA, students have finished their "book clubs" and will be presenting commercials to advertise their books next week. Their thoughtful discussions and insight into the themes of the novels were impressive.   We will be working on memoirs next, and adding figurative language to our writing in order to add detail.  Also, in order to connect to the social studies curriculum, students will be reading a novel that takes place during the Middle Ages.  Parents, please look for a reading calendar that will outline assigned reading.  Also, my website is up and running, please check for useful links and weekly homework.  



The 7th grade recently traveled to the McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center. We had a special showing in the planetarium that related to our science curriculum.  Afterwards, we toured the rest of the exhibits.



 









Article posted March 15, 2013 at 10:55 AM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 79



Article posted March 15, 2013 at 10:53 AM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 91

In 7th grade math, students have started Module 3 in their textbook. The


theme of the module is Math, a universal language. Students  will review


number theory topics, addition and subtraction with fractions and decimals, and


scientific notation. Student continue to follow the stock market and are using the


spreadsheets that they created to keep track of gains and losses.





This month in Language Arts, seventh grade students chose one of four novels


for our study of literary techniques.  Classes have grouped into four book


clubs, and will complete a series of tasks based around their novel.  Each


novel is centered around the theme of empathy, and book clubs will be


exploring that theme as they work with literary techniques such as character


development through actions and dialogue, author's purpose and use of


figurative language.  Each novel draws the reader in with a conflict that seems


insurmountable, but the character's determination and inner fortitude pushes


them to persevere.  Discussions in book clubs thus far have been lively and


purposeful.  Writing tasks will also be based on the novel, as we continue to work


on organization in writing, and varying sentence length through construction of


compound and complex sentences.





Seventh grade science classes are learning how high and low pressure areas


create our global winds and affect our weather. Perfect timing with this past


blizzard! We are also gathering photos of the snowy event to send to students in


Belize. Students have also created Science Valentines. This activity combines


science, art, language arts and critical thinking. Valentines incorporate the


science content from this year into those "corny" sayings. The students had to


be able to explain the science in terms of "love" by analyzing the concept and


interpreting it for a new context. I also limited the color choices to red, white and


black to challenge more creativity into their design.


Valentines


7th Grade Field Trip – McAuliffe-Shepard Discovery Center on February 15, 2013!

Article posted March 15, 2013 at 10:53 AM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 91



Article posted January 26, 2013 at 07:15 PM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 74

      In 7th grade science, we have been studying the atmosphere and the properties of air. We began with open inquiry investigations to discover air takes up space and presses in all directions. We’ve also experimented with a vacuum pump and bell jar, placing several objects in a vacuum to witness the power of air pressure or lack thereof! Students are creating their own review poster on the web using Glogster. The poster can be printed and posted to their blog.



     The tech club has created videos using the vacuum pump. The videos are posted on my new web page. These have been helpful if a student has been absent.





     Don’t forget to follow along with our twitter account at @7thscience or from the web page at http://twitter.com/7thscience.



     This month in seventh grade Language Arts, we are wrapping up an integrated unit on mythology. Students learned the purpose of mythology for the ancient Greeks and were exposed to a variety of myths. They were quite surprised at some of the behavior the gods displayed, and we had many discussions to explain that the gods were above the rules for mere mortals. We also read and watched a short film version of the same myth, and students learned how to organize comparison and contrast paragraphs. Included in that writing piece, students learned about transition phrases and varied vocabulary usage.



     Students are exploring Google Sites to create a web page based on the nonfiction book they read. It is a learning curve for everyone, but there are many valuable skills about appropriate technology usage that can be learned while creating a web page. Students are learning how to cite sources for pictures, video and audio content. Along with the web page, students will be reading book reviews for the book they read. Students will also be writing their own review by learning how to summarize information without giving away too much information, giving a clear, concise opinion about the information, and recommending the book to a specific audience.



     Social Studies classes have just finished looking at the lasting contributions made to world civilization by the Greeks. They saw how Alexander the Great took these advances in things like art, architecture, science, technology, mathematics and philosophy and spread them around the Mediterranean world. Our next topic will be Rome. While studying Rome, students will follow its rise as a democratic republic and see how the Romans transform their city-state into a massive empire. Finally we’ll trace the reasons for Rome’s downfall. During the unit, the student’s will be doing several projects including creating a large physical map of Europe and researching and writing a fictionalized Roman gladiator journal.



     In 7th grade math, students have completed Module 2. In this Module students investigated the mathematics related to search and rescue operations. They saw how angles, integers, graphing and functions were used to develop search strategies. Next, students will be learning how to use spreadsheets to calculate and analyze data. They will create a spreadsheet to calculate the gains/losses for their stock portfolio.

Article posted January 26, 2013 at 07:15 PM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 74



Article posted December 11, 2012 at 01:43 PM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 86

7th Grade students were in for a treat before the Thanksgiving holiday. A local chef, Peter Aikens, came in to work with every 7th grader to create a Thanksgiving feast. He has done this for several years and we so appreciate it!



All the students ended the meal, sharing what they were thankful for this season. They wrote it on a leaf and added it to the bare tree in our stairwell.



 



Try our slideshow creator at Animoto.

Article posted December 11, 2012 at 01:43 PM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 86



Article posted November 2, 2012 at 03:42 PM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 67

The 7th grade was able to investigate lunar samples from NASA. We also received 2 meteorites. The "Moon rocks" were encased in lucite to avoid the effects of our atmosphere and many hands!





Make your own slideshow with music at Animoto.

Article posted November 2, 2012 at 03:42 PM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 67



Article posted September 8, 2012 at 09:03 PM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 82

Do you know the parts of the eye? This assignment combined science and technology. The students learned various parts of the eye and labeled the visible parts on a photo of their own eye. 


 


The students used the built-in camera on the Acer netbooks to capture an image of their eye. Experimenting with a paint program, they created labels for their photo. Once saved, they loaded their photo to this blog. (Images can not be copied directly to their article or blog post. Several steps are involved. The process is more involved than it may seem.) 

Article posted September 8, 2012 at 09:03 PM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 82



Article posted September 2, 2012 at 09:22 PM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 60

Welcome to the new school year! We attend school from late August to mid-June. We are looking for blogging buddies and collaborators.

Article posted September 2, 2012 at 09:22 PM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 60



Article posted June 4, 2012 at 07:57 PM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 87

The circus is coming! We are getting ready, but it takes a lot of practice!









Article posted June 4, 2012 at 07:57 PM GMT-5 • comment • Reads 87



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