Meeting in the Middle

May 2016

Dear Parent/Guardian

April flew by, and we are May is here! Where did the year go? It’s hard to believe that in just over a month we will be saying good-bye to our eighth graders and preparing for a new class of sixth graders!

As May wears on, we are moving along with the M-step testing. Eighth grade is completely finished, and the sixth grade is well underway. I appreciate all of the support from families and students during this testing time.

We are beginning to make plans for the traditional end of year eighth grade activities. We will hold the eighth grade recognition ceremony on Friday, June 10th from 8:00-9:30 AM. Students may be signed out of school after the celebration. The next parent meeting to plan the traditional Yearbook Signing Party is Monday, May 2nd at 6:00 PM in the media center. This celebration does not happen without eighth grade parent volunteers. Please help us get this event ready for our eighth graders!

To attend the annual eighth grade activities, students must return permission slips. Students will be given a letter and permission slip on Friday, May 6th. The permission slip must be turned into advisory teachers by the due date indicated on the slip. Students who do not return a signed permission slip will not be allowed to participate in the events.

Unfortunately, it is also that time of the year to consider student summer school requirements and retention. Toward the end of May, teachers will meet and make summer school recommendation. I will be in touch with families of those students who will be required to attend summer school to be promoted to the next grade. Our summer school dates are June 20-July 28th. We meet Monday-Thursday each week. This summer, we plan to provide limited transportation for summer school. Again, more information will come out toward the end of the month.

I continue to stress the importance of helping students stay focused and on-track as the year winds down. We have much to do before June 10th. Please continue to encourage your child to stay current with school work and continue communicating with teachers.

Thanks for a great year!


Julie Brown

Talented Talons (Beckman, Coleman, Cook, Smith)

Language Arts: In Language Arts, students just finished up their argumentative writing essays. Currently, the students are spending time studying the adventure genre. Students are reading tales of daring, danger, and triumph. While reading these stories, we will continue focusing on literary elements including static and dynamic characters, plot elements, themes, and vivid language. To end the year, students will be focusing on a poetry unit, which will include creating form poetry based on nature and the outdoors.

Social Studies: Economics has been the unit of study. It is very interesting to learn the reasons why some countries are developed and other countries undeveloped. We have learned about favorable trade and unfavorable trade; and students have learned what countries the United States trades with the most. Of course, two of our major trading partners are Canada and Mexico. The vocabulary terms that students have learned are challenging, yet very appropriate for how the world seems to be shrinking-called globalization.

Math: We’ve finished Geometry and are moving on to Data Displays and Statistics with a one week break in between for the M-STEP test. Be sure to get a good night’s sleep and eat a healthy breakfast to ensure you can perform at your best.

Science: In Science we are exploring the world of motion. To start, we have been looking at energy and the different types of energy that are around us. We will be continuing to do a lot of hands-on activities; including building a model of a roller-coaster out of general paper and plastic products. Working in a team is also an important part of Science class. The students have chosen roles in their groups that have different responsibilities, such as project manager, engineer, logistics, and scientist.

Winged Warriors (Adams, Baldridge, Kimball, Thorin)

Social Studies: The students are acting like political scientists as we study civics, government, and global issues this month. Our unit structures around three questions for investigation: (1) Why do people institute different forms of government? (2) How do nations of the world interact? and (3) How can people address global issues? It is important that students see that many global problems need governments to work together on solutions.

Language Arts: Students are continuing their study of historical fiction with a focus on characterization using the novel Al Capone Does My Shirts. Students will be following dynamic characters throughout the novel and analyzing their changes and growth due to the events that happen as the plot unfolds. Students should continue to read 15-20 minutes at home daily. Please continue to check the grade book on a regular basis.

Math: Classes finished up with the geometry topics last week. We will be finishing up the year with topics on data and data displays. In topic 15 we will be looking at different ways to graph data and interpret them. Students will learn about dot plots, histograms, and box plots. Students will also be finding mean, median, and ranges of data sets. Remember that students can re-take tests within a two week period of the original test.

Science: Students are finishing up their unit on energy and its forms. Students have tested their “Phase One” roller coasters and will continue to use their knowledge of energy and new ideas learned to create the perfect coaster in their last unit of the year which will be focusing on forces, gravity and Newton’s Laws.

Regal Eagles (Mason, Mazza, Packard)

We are in the home stretch, but there is a lot more information to cover. Here’s what is happening in our core classes.

In social studies, students are studying South Asia, focusing on Chapter 14 "India." We have learned about the physical features of the land, climate, resources, and are exploring the history and culture of the region.

Mythology is the last unit to cover in language arts. We will learn a little about the Greek culture and the reasons for writing myths. Continue to look for vocabulary and a piece to read at home each week.

In Science we are finishing up our unit on heredity and DNA. We will begin Ecosystems next week!

Don’t forget that we are headed to the Grand Slam School Day Event at the Cooley Stadium in Lansing, Michigan on May 25th. Dress for the weather and bring money to cover the cost of lunch and souvenirs.

Finally, set your goals for our last half of trimester three, and take steps to meet them each day.

Soaring Eagles (Allessie, Boyer, Marton)

The end of the year is quickly approaching, spring sports are in full swing, and it’s starting to feel like summer outside (some days). As the weather gets warmer, please encourage your student to stay focused on school. M-Step testing will begin for the 7th grade on Tuesday, May 10 and run through Friday, May 20.

When students aren’t testing, they are in class continuing to learn! In language arts, students are excited to discover more about Greek mythology and the heroes. Students are working on surface area and volume in math and will end the year with statistics and probability. In social studies, students will be visiting the country of India and then moving on to China. We will conclude the year by learning about the land down under…Australia.

On May 25th the 7th grade will be going to Lansing to see the Lugnuts play baseball! Please plan on sending money with your child for food and souvenirs. We are hoping for a warm, sunny day at the ballpark!

If you have any questions or comments, please contact your child’s teacher as soon as possible. Updated grades are available on ParentVUE. If you do not know your child’s log-in information, or are having difficulty logging in, please contact the main office at 591-0711.

Eighth Grade Newsletter

It has been a long winter and chilly spring but hopefully the Michigan warm weather will be here soon! Please make sure your student is properly dressed according to the school dress code. For your reference, use a 4 by 6 inch index card to measure the length of skirts, shorts (from the knee) and necklines!

Spring fever has hit the 8th grade!! It is more important than ever to remind your student that the school year is not over yet! It is never too late to check your student’s progress on ParentVue! (Synergy). Also, to keep you informed, teachers are posting homework assignments with due dates and upcoming tests/quizzes on ParentVue. If you still cannot access your account, please call the office. It is also important to keep checking your student’s Digits math account. This will help you check for missing assignments!

Language Arts is exploring the futuristic world of Science Fiction! We have been to Utopia, read about robots and much more. This trimester we will write a persuasive essay and read science fiction novels. May the force be with you!

Social Studies is beginning a unit on the Civil War. Ask your student about this time in history.

Eighth grade Science has completed their fourth Argument Driven Inquiry group lesson about climate change. This is a new way to discover science. The students are moving from learning about to figuring out in this approach.

Last but not least, CEDAR POINT! The trip will take place Tuesday, June 7th. The bus leaves LMS at 6:15 A.M. and returns @ 10:30 P.M. The cost is $87 and includes ticket, transportation and an unlimited drink wristband! Checks can be made payable to Linden Community Schools. Permission slips have been sent home!

April Writers of the Month

As part of the Writer of the Month program, each month students will be honored for completing an exceptional piece of writing. These selections will be on display in the Media Center. The Writers of the Month for April are:

Evan Katzenberger

Caden Ball

Casey Vadasz

Colin James Love

Kaitlyn Straub

Julia Wright

James Barrie

Kiylin Gaff

Austin Robbins

James Coleman

Quincy Marsden

Hope Webster

Kelly Wiknich