December 2, 2022
Notes and Upcoming Due Dates
As our semester quickly comes to a close, Mr. Cahn, Mr. Downey, Mr. Sbisa, and I wish everyone a joyous holiday season and a happy and healthy new year. Our team is sponsoring a family this year to help ease the burden heading into this holiday season. We are asking for gift cards or cash donations to help cover the cost of gas and groceries for this family. If you are able and feel moved to contribute to our sponsored family, please have your child drop off any cash or gift card(s) with Mr. Cahn, Mr. Sbisa, or Mr. Vorel before Thursday, December 15th.
The most useful gift cards for this family would be from the following businesses: Walmart, Target, and any major gas station
Any and all amounts are appreciated and will go directly to a WGSD family in need.
Please let us know if you have any questions, and may you and your family have a wonderful holiday season to come.
Mr. Cahn, Mr. Downey, Mr. Sbisa, and Mr. Vorel
Social Studies: Mr. Cahn
We began our mini-unit on Mythology this week. Students had the opportunity to select a culture/civilization they would like to learn more about, and created presentations on what part of the world their culture existed in, as well as some of the gods of that culture’s pantheon.
The presentation will be completed wholly at school and by the end of class on Monday, Dec. 5. Students will have a Gallery Walk Day Tuesday, Dec. 6 to take some notes on the cultures their classmates presented. This all culminates in a one-question summative on Wednesday, Dec. 7, which asks students to reflect on how the natural world helped shape the belief systems of these cultures. That will be the final summative of the semester and will also mark the cut-off for all late assignments from 3rd Quarter so far.
By the end of next week, we will begin our final unit of the semester–Ancient India.
ELA: Mr. Sbisa
Thank you for any assistance in helping your student conduct their conversation for the Great Thanksgiving Listen. My aim for this assignment was twofold: to give someone close to them the time and space to share their life experiences, and for your student to begin seeing the value of telling one’s story. We will not be sending these stories to the Library of Congress (as the app and NPR Program asks for), or sharing them with classmates, rather students will reflect on these conversations this month as a part of our character development.
This week we have begun our Memoir Unit, which is a creative writing unit where students will mine their life experience for formative moments, memories, and experiences in order to write a short memoir piece. I am so excited by this unit, as students are afforded the opportunity to explore and bring to life, on paper, important/formative experiences they’ve had. Everyone has a story worth telling!
Your student has homework for me every night: read at least 15 minutes in their independent reading book. This is in addition to the 10 minutes of reading we have at the beginning of most classes. Once completed, your student should fill out a Book Completion Form for that month.
Science: Mr. Vorel
We wrapped up all new chemistry content this week in science. Students spent most of the week learning about Kinetic Molecular Theory which explains thermal expansion and contraction. In addition to many laboratory demonstrations, I also took students on a walk through the school to point out many examples of architectural and engineering elements specifically designed for these phenomena. Ask your student about expansion joints! On Wednesday, students completed a hexagonal thinking activity to think through the many cross-connections of topics in this unit. We finished the week with review in preparation for our summative assessment which will be this coming Tuesday.
Next week, students will begin a multi-week project where they design and build hot air balloons. This project is a practical application of content they learned in our chemistry unit. Students will use tissue paper (like that used in gift bags, students will need about 24 sheets) and glue sticks (like the Elmer’s twist up kind, students typically go through 2-3 glues sticks). I greatly appreciate it if students can supply some of their own materials, or any donations of materials for the class. Your support is greatly appreciated. Thank you.