TJ Today

Thomas Jefferson Middle School 2020 - 21


Oct. 9 - End of 1st 9 wks

Oct. 12-13 - Fall Break

Oct. 15 - 2nd rotation of AA starts for 7 & 8 grade

Oct. 21 Parent/Teacher conf. -details to be sent out

Oct. 22 Parent/Teacher Conf. Half day -11:50 dismissal - details to be sent out

Oct. 23 Half day of school dismissal 11:50

Oct. 29 - PSAT for 8th gr. only

Nov. 3 - election day - Remote Learning Day for all students

Nov. 4 - In School day for everyone

6th grade Cruising

6th Grade is Cruising Right Along!

Our 6th graders have done a great job adjusting to the new rules and expectations this school year. We are all very impressed. With that said, the first quarter is almost over! Who knew it’d go by so quickly? All late work/missing work MUST be turned in by Friday, October 9.


We are noticing that quite a few of our students are not working on or completing their eLearning assignments. Please know that these assignments are important to continue the flow of the curriculum. Our students need to know eLearning assignments are not optional and are due Thursday, unless their teacher tells them differently.

What’cha Reading?

All 6th grade students have been reading Touching Spirit Bear by Ben Mikaelsen. The students are really enjoying the story about troubled teen Cole and the challenges he experiences while finding himself and the elusive Spirit Bear.


Parents--if you could please:

Ask your students these two questions:

1. Do they have earbuds at school?

2. Do they have colored pencils at school?

Check grades and assignments on Skyward/Canvas weekly.

If you see a missing assignment, communicate with your child and let them know it needs to be completed/turned in.

Contact your child’s teacher with any questions/concerns if your child is struggling academically—We all want your children to be successful!

7TH Grade

In ELA, 7th graders have just finished our short story unit, reading some incredible tales like "The Treasure of Lemon Brown", "Rikki-Tikki-Tavi", and "The Third Wish." Students were able to learn and identify the elements of a short story, while also making inferences about characters. In the coming weeks, we will be entering into our poetry unit, where students will gain in-depth knowledge of figurative language and poetic devices.

Social Studies has learned about the beginnings of civilization in Mesopotamia and Ancient Egypt. We have looked at cultural aspects like religion, government, education, and inventions that these early locations created. We will be finishing the quarter looking at the transition to monotheistic religion, or the belief in one god, as they relate to the development of ancient cultures. We will be starting with Judaism, then looking at Christianity, and finishing with Islam. At the end of October, we will be taking a break from religions to cover aspects related to the Presidential Election.

In math class, we have been working hard on fraction computation using both positive and negative fractions. This requires students to remember and apply fraction rules, integer rules, and the order of operations simultaneously. We will be studying the Real Number System before moving on to our Ratio and Proportion Unit. Students are enjoying our flipped classroom and are taking advantage of the extra work time this provides them. The end of the quarter is right around the corner, so continue to work hard and stay caught up!

In science, students first did a unit on measurement, then learned about states of matter and phase changes, and now are learning basics about the atom. They will complete a drawing and research of an atom that is due next week. Some science students did a unit on Newton's Laws of Motion and are currently learning about energy to end this grading period.

Digital Responsibilities and Applications just completed the first Unit which included designing Virtual lockers, creating Infographics on Google Drawings, and developing a Public Service Announcement. DAR students also enjoyed a guest visit from Officer Morris where he discussed the legal aspect of Chatting Safely Online, Social Media Life, and Sexting - all topics covered in the Digital Citizenship portion of class. Unit two kicks off with How to Find Reliable Sources. Students can test their skills on how to Spot Fake News, Pictures and Social Media Posts.

The end of the nine weeks is coming soon on October 9th. 7th grade students will have many tests that they need to study for. Encourage students to finish strong!! Skyward can be checked for missing assignments. Please remind all students to turn in any late work and to take any quizzes or tests that are still missing.

8th Grade Happenings

It is hard to believe that the end of the first grading period is next week. We are sure that everyone is looking forward to a few extra days to relax and enjoy the fall weather. It also gives all students a fresh start with each of their classes when we return from break. Take a few minutes and look at grades in Skyward with your child. This is a good time to discuss goals with your child for the second quarter.

Upcoming dates:

Fri, Oct. 9 - Teacher Trivia during Viking Time. This contest is a fun way for students to learn some interesting facts about their teachers. This will also determine the order in which Viking Times will select the color of their Class of 2025 t-shirt that they will have the opportunity to order. More information will be coming home about this after Fall Break.

Thurs, Oct. 29 - PSAT 8/9. All 8th grade students will be taking the PSAT 8/9. Remote Learners will be given additional information about coming to school that day so that they can participate in this opportunity. The purpose of the test is to give students exposure to a college admissions test as well as give students and parents feedback on skills and knowledge needed for college and career readiness. For more information on the PSAT 8/9, please visit the College Board website (

Once score reports are available, more information will be sent home.

As a reminder, parent-teacher conferences are scheduled for Wed, Oct. 21 and Thurs, Oct. 22. Details and information about parent-teacher conferences under the current health situation are still being determined. TJMS families should receive details about conferences soon.

We are looking forward to a great second quarter!


Student Council has a spirit wear fundraiser to help rebuild our funds!

Last year we were able to give $300 to each team, and purchase all of the 8th grade yards signs.


The store is open until Monday, October 12th

If you have any questions, please let me know.

Builders Club News

Registration for 2020-21 Builders Club is underway, and it is not too late to join! Information can be found on each grade level Canvas page. Meetings are held on the first and third Tuesday of each month. We meet in the cafeteria from 3-3:45. Our first meeting is Tuesday, October 6. Plan on either getting picked up at door 1 or taking the late bus home. Members should be signed up on Canvas before attending. (This will allow us to space the seating beforehand.) There will be a Zoom link on the Builders Club Canvas page for Remote Learners.

Our first order of business is to elect our leadership team! Speeches will be presented at the October 20 meeting. October’s hike to care for our adopted trail at Meadowbrook Nature Preserve will be 9:30-11:30 on Saturday, October 24. Lastly, we will be collecting boxes of mashed potatoes for Thanksgiving Baskets and (most likely) candy for the Treats for Troops program.

“Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

~Mahatma Ghandi


We are strongly encouraging students to remember items for school so we can limit outside people from entering the building. Parents, please encourage and remind students to be prepared for that day of school. If something is forgotten the drop-off table will be set up in the front entry. Parents are to drop off the item with the students name and grade clearly marked on the item. There will be no pens or paper set up to write anything down. Please tell us your child's name and item and we will email them the item is to be picked up. We will not be delivering items to students. They will be responsible for collecting their items. Parents please remind your student to check the front table if they forget something. Students you must check your school email for all messages.

No student drop off in front of the building from 8:00 a.m. - 8:15 a.m. Buses are dropping off in this time period.

SCHOOL Pictures Delayed

School pictures will not be taken until November 10, 2020. Remote Learners pictures will be from 3:15p.m. - 4:30p.m. on the same day. More information regarding Picture Day will be sent out when we are closer to the Nov. 10 date.
TJMS Return to Learn Plan

Detailed information on returning to school safely. Please take the time to read all the information included in this packet. Hopefully, this will answer most of your questions on upcoming school this year.

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TJMS Aide Position

TJMS is looking for classroom aides. Person must have either 2 years of college or taken the state Praxis exam. If interested you can apply at the VCS website, job openings or you may contact the school. 219-531-3140.

Share your pictures

Parents and students--We KNOW you take amazing pictures--like those amazing action shots during sporting events, or group shots of you and your friends---and we want to publish your work in our yearbook!

Have you downloaded the Replayit app on your phone yet? No? No worries! You can upload your amazing photos by visiting

Thanks for sharing your moments with us!

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