Fabulous Friday!

November 1st, 2019

Full November Issue Available!

National Honors!

The Logan County National Honor Society celebrated its newest inductees and officers Tuesday evening, October 29th, at 6:30 PM. Hosted by the Indian Lake chapter, President Alexis Clem (IL), Vice President Mason Hammer (BL), and Secretary Lauren Johnson (Riv.) presided over the ceremonies, welcoming new members and “tapping” the newest officers. After exhortations to develop sterling character, pursue stellar scholarship, demonstrate wise leadership, and engage in selfless service, Clem, Hammer, and Johnson shared with each new officer the duties and responsibilities of his or her role and charged each one with excellence. The evening concluded with a reception in the gym.

Congratulations, NHS Officers! (Current and Officers-Elect, pictured above from left to right):

President~ Alexis Clem & Jacob McKenrick

Vice-President ~ Mason Hammer & Sierra Snow

Secretary ~ Lauren Johnson & Ella Wagner

Big picture

LEGO Scrimmage Spectacular!

On Thursday, October 31st, Honda’s Anna Transmission plant hosted the annual LEGO robotics scrimmage. Our talented students amazed the judges with their STEAM abilities, successfully programming robots to complete complicated missions. In short, teams of students ages 8-13 collaborated to write computer-based programs to direct a robot on a LEGO-based mission exploring space!. These robots then completed tasks and earned points for the team based on a creative problem.

Over 25 teams from three counties participated in the City Shaper problem. For this year’s challenge, students responded to two key questions: “What if you could build a better world? Where would you begin?” and answered these – through the robot game and projects – around FIRST’s “core values”: discovery, innovation, impact, inclusion, teamwork, and fun!

Many, many thanks to Honda of America, whose plant managers, Rick Riggle and Kazuhiro Ito, dedicated engineers, and event coordinator, Deb Kunkler, made this event possible. Thanks to Honda's generous sponsorship of our teams; provision of the awesome wellness center gym as location; and Ms. Kunkler's awesome event planning, the day went smoothly and successfully despite the fog! Some of the engineers are even serving as mentors to their teams throughout this season! We look forward to next year’s fun and challenging LEGO scrimmage! For additional pictures, click here: http://bit.ly/LEGOcityAnna

“Wonder-full” Math!

Dr. Raj Shah, founder of MathPlus Academy, math teacher, and overall lover of all things math, shared strategies and resources to infuse wonder and curiosity into the math classroom at the most recent gifted conference. As he shared, “In the place of curiosity, what we have is a culture of compliance,” that — in many cases — results in students seeking “right answers” and easy fixes. However, as we are aware, many of the most significant advancements in science and math have resulted from curiosity — whether in the space program, engineering, or architecture.

In order to cultivate curiosity and wonder, Shah suggests embracing uncertainty; asking fewer (but deeper) questions; asking “directed” questions; and utilizing the ever-awkward yet extremely vital four to five seconds of “wait time”.

Examples of such “rich tasks” are below.


1. Instead of: “Calculate the area of the rectangle with side a of 3 and side b of 4”, ask, “The area of a given rectangle is 12. What are its possible dimensions?” This open-ended problem provides room for curiosity … for wonder.

2. Instead of, “Johnny has five dimes and two quarters. How much does he have?” ask, “How much is a pound of dimes worth? A pound of pennies? Which would you rather have?”

3. Smudge Math: in these problems, parts are “smudged out” to create space for creativity and questioning. (Read more: https://fivetwelvethirteen.wordpress.com/2018/03/28/smudged-math-and-modifying-tasks/)

4. Broken Calculator: Show students a “broken calculator”. Ask them what they notice, what they can do, what sums they can create.

For more excellent ideas and links, visit Math Plus!

Shah, R. (2018). MathPlus Academy. OAGC Conference. https://www.mathplusacademy.com/math-resources-for-home/

Table of Contents (PDF Document)

Page 1: Features

National Honors

LEGO Scrimmage Spectacular

Page 2: Creativity Ideas

"Wonder-full Math"!

Creativity for Growth

Creativity’s 7 I’s

Page 3: LEGO Pictures!

Page 4: Timeline

All content (c) 2020 Erica Baer, MRESC Director of Student Achievement. ebaer@mresc.org

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