Otsego Jr. High
Weekly Update - November 13, 2015
Mr. Wiley's Weekly Message
This week’s message is from Art Markman, professor of psychology at the University of Texas at Austin.
Create a Good Environment for Studying at Home
A core goal of education is to create lifelong learners. Success in the workplace requires an ability to pick up new high-quality knowledge. The foundation for these learning skills is the study habits that are acquired from early in school. After all, most learning in life takes place outside of the classroom.
We use the term study habits all the time, but we do not often take both parts of that term seriously. Clearly, we want students to study, but what about the habit component? Habits are actions that people perform automatically and without thinking. The human mind is a habit creation machine that looks for actions performed consistently in a particular environment and allows those actions to be performed again in the same environment without thinking. For example, you don't have to think about where the light switch is in your bedroom, how to press the gas and brake pedals in your car or how to type letters on your computer keyboard. You have done these actions so many times that they have become habits.
The study environment needs to harness the power of habits. We want students to think about the concepts they are learning, but we don't want the environment to suggest other actions that will get in the way of studying. Here are three things that can make studying more effective.
1) Minimize the Habits of Distraction
In the modern world, children are attached to iPods, smart phones, text messages, Facebook and instant message. From early on, children have developed the habit of checking these sources several times hourly. Those habits break into a child's concentration during study, reminding him or her that it is time to check the phone or computer.
Unfortunately, this multitasking gets in the way of acquiring high quality knowledge. It takes time to shift attention from homework to some other source of information and additional time to shift attention back. Not only does that constant shifting influence the amount of time it takes to get work done, it also affects the quality of the study itself.
To create a more effective work environment, create a distraction-free zone during work time. Park the portable technology elsewhere in the house. Keep the smart phones and iPods out of arm's reach. Remove instant messaging from the computer and ban Facebook during study time.
2) Create a Consistent Work Space for Study
The habits children create reach all the way down to the level of where they should look to find the tools and supplies they need to study. That means children's work space should be set up so that they do not need to search each day for pencils, erasers or calculators. Children who study at a desk should keep that desk set up the same way each day. Children who study at a communal table at home should have a nearby bin or tray with supplies where they can regularly find what they need without having to spend a lot of time thinking about how to prepare for studying.
3) Find an Effective Location and Posture for Studying
Modern technology is so flexible that it does not place many constraints on where or how children study. It is common to see a child writing briefly at a desk, then working from a laptop computer on the floor, and then lying down on the couch to read a book.
It is hard to maintain the same level of concentration when lying on the floor or propped up in bed as when sitting at a desk. The body's habit when lying down is to relax and sleep. It is not helpful for a child to have to fight that tendency when studying. In addition, lying down promotes passive reading. It is hard to take notes or type while lying down. So students who are lying down are playing a less active role in their learning than those who are sitting up.
The advantage of promoting these behaviors is that after a while the habit system kicks in. Eventually, sitting in a consistently structured environment free of distracting technology is simply how studying gets done -- now and for life.
Veteran's Day Ceremony!
Attention 7th Grade Parents: R.S.V.P Notification
The R.S.V.P (Responsible Social Values Program) will be held in Mrs. Kao’s classroom for three days during the week of Monday, December 14th, on that Monday, Wednesday and Friday (12/14, 12/16 & 12/18)
Responsible Social Values Program is an abstinence based program that has come to our school district for at least the past sixteen + years. Topics discussed during the three day presentation include goal setting, peer pressure, boundaries, delayed gratification, consequences of sexual activity, introduction to STI’s/STD’s (State of Ohio requirement), and respecting yourself and others.
If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact Mrs. Kao at 419-823-4381 ext. 3122. You can also go to www.rsvptoledo.org for more information about the program.
Parent Survey Information:
It is time to collect additional data to determine if the district is meeting needs of our families. Your feedback will help to ensure that we continue to provide high quality, rigorous learning experiences that meet the needs of the children of the Otsego Local School District. All individual survey responses are confidential. Your feedback will provide valuable information for us as we make decisions for the future. Please take time to complete the survey listed below. Please complete all electronic surveys on or before Friday, December 11th. Results will be shared through this weekly update and will be made available on the website.
ADAMHS Youth Survey
The ADAMHS Youth Survey, is a biennial survey which is the primary method by which the Wood County Alcohol, Drug Addiction and Mental Health Services (ADAMHS) Board monitors trends in alcohol, tobacco, and other drug use among adolescents in Wood County. The results of the survey are used by educators to integrate targeted prevention efforts into school curriculum, and as data for program planning, and other collaborative community ventures designed to reduce adolescent ATOD use. The survey covers a variety of points relating to drug use, mental health, bullying, school safety and prevention education that is currently in place. The survey is completely anonymous, and is given to all Wood County students in grades 5-12. The results are then compiled to discover trends in Wood County through all of the school districts. This year, the survey will be given on November 24th. The first link below directs you to the Wood County ADAMHS Board website, where you can find previous report and other information. The second link will direct you to the parent letter, which includes the denial form if you choose to not have your child/children not take the survey. If you have any questions please contact Mrs. Emily Cornish the On-Site Prevention Specialist. You may also view the survey, but you will have to set up a meeting with Mrs. Cornish. Email: email@example.com
ADAMHS Board Website:
Denial Form Link: (Form must be submitted no later than November 17th, 2015)
OTSEGO LOCAL SCHOOLS… There’s an app for that!
A SNEAK PEEK IN THE JH!
Mrs. Hamrick's Math Class:
OJHS Class Fun:
Working on complete subject & predicates in Ms. Hildreth's class.
Working on singular & plural possessives in Mrs. Wensink/Ms. Liverani's class.
Mr. Rohn's Class
Mrs. Wensink's Class:
Otsego 5th/6th grade girls basketball 2014-2015
2015-2016 Knights Biddy Wrestling
Jr. High Winter Sports Schedule & Forms
Athletic Attendance Policy (See item #4 in Athletic Responsibility Waiver)
To participate in a contest or attend practice, an athlete must be in school all day of the contest unless prior arrangements are made with the principal. In the case of a week night contest, an athlete or cheerleader must be in attendance the entire following day in order to participate in the next contest.
This eligibility policy will apply to any student athletes, managers, statisticians, cheerleaders, and other extracurricular activities at OJHS involving students in grades 7 and 8. The junior high school principal or district superintendent may declare a student immediately ineligible for involvement in a serious offense.