Miner Mondays

Placerita Jr. High School - May 5, 2019

Big picture

This Week at Placerita


Throughout the week we will be having various thank you for everything moments!

We hope you have a great week... ASB has some great things planned for this week but they are classified at the moment. You will be surprised.

We have completed the official weeks of testing and will be on a regular schedule all week. There are a few students that have some tests to complete but the large scale testing time is over. Remember Rosa is working hard on completing all the wrap-up and make ups throughout the week. We will also be wrapping up our Title I plan for next year this week so we may be scarce at times.

The Farewell Concert for Ms. Spula will take place this Tuesday Night at Hart Auditorium at 7:00. Let Kathryn know if you would like to attend. There will be lots of music and lots of presentations.

The Spring Dance Show will be taking place at the Hart Auditorium on Thursday evening at 7:00 PM. See Mrs. Sucheck for tickets. We would love to see you there!

Have a great week!

Congratulations to our Classified Staff for Exemplary Years of Service

Some of these staff must have started when they were teens...

Helio Gudino - 30 Years

Sylvia DeLeon Torres - 25 Years

Janice Dennington - 20 Years

Maria Lopez - 15 Years

Sal Berumen - 5 Years

They will all be recognized on Tuesday at 4:30 PM at La Mesa Jr. High MPR.

Congratulations to ALL!

Big picture

A Grading Strategy That Puts the Focus on Learning From Mistakes

Katrina Schwartz

Nov 15, 2018

Students in Leah Alcala's class work together to figure out what they did wrong on their math tests. (Teaching Channel)

Teachers know that students learn a tremendous amount from scrutinizing their mistakes, but getting them to take the time to stop and reflect is a challenge. Some teachers have stopped giving grades altogether to try to refocus class on learning instead of on grades. For others, that's too extreme. Leah Alcala, a seventh- and eighth-grade math teacher at King Middle School in Berkeley, California, developed a grading strategy that falls somewhere in the middle.

"What I was finding when I was handing back tests the old way, where I put a grade on it, was kids would look at their grade, decide whether they were good at math or not, and put the test away and never look at it again," Alcala says in a Teaching Channel video featuring her strategy.

Now when she returns tests, Alcala highlights mistakes and hands the tests back to students without a grade. She doesn't tell them what they did wrong; they have to figure that out.

"By not putting a grade on the test, I feel like what I'm allowing them to do is wrestle with the math they produced for me first and think of the grade second," Alcala said.

At first she got a lot of questions about how much things were worth and what grade they'd received. She had to continually remind them that in seventh grade it's more important that they learn the math than that they get a certain grade.

"I see that now when I give tests back, they're continuing to learn," Alcala said.

The students get their grade a day later on PowerSchool, and they're given opportunities to retake the test after they've digested their mistakes.

Alcala also projects "favorite mistakes" on the board that they talk about as a class. And students get time to look at their own mistakes and figure out where they went wrong. The other advantage of highlighting is that she can call attention to things that she won't necessarily take points off for, but that she wants students to notice. For example, she might highlight that they didn't put the correct units in a word problem. They got the math correct, so Alcala is not worried they won't be able to move forward, but she wants to remind them that units are important.

She grades in two go-rounds. First she reads the test from top to bottom, looking for the moment when the mistake gets made in each problem. Sometimes she sees what she calls "flow through mistakes," where the student made a mistake early on, thus got the wrong answer, but all the operations after that were done correctly. Other times a mistake was made early on, but more mistakes were made after that. Those two students would receive different grades on that problem, even though they technically both got it wrong.

After the first pass of the test, Alcala looks at the test as a whole for themes in the kinds of mistakes the child is making. Is she making the same mistake over and over? Or are there lots of different types of mistakes?

"It doesn't take longer to grade tests this way," Alcala said. "I think that was a big fear. It is a similar amount of time and it's far more enjoyable."

She's hoping her students will learn how powerful it can be to study their mistakes when the stakes are lower, in middle school, and continue the practice throughout their learning when they leave her classroom.

URL - https://www.kqed.org/mindshift/52456/a-grading-strategy-that-puts-the-focus-on-learning-from-mistakes?fbclid=IwAR25zstLTFfMweHYNgEMlOtcbj2YTmJjPkNXbqYBL3yj1ZJRNx3-z3lj7Og

Big picture

Student of the Month - Citizenship

Big picture

The Remainder of the Year at Placerita

  • Teacher Appreciation Week 5/6-5/10 All Week

  • Matriculation IEPS for 8th Grade 5/6-5/10 PCR

  • Farewell Concert 5/7 7:00 Hart Auditorium

  • Dance Show 5/9 7:00 Hart Auditorium

  • NJHS Rehearsal and Induction(7th) 5/14 2:45 Gym 7:00 HA

  • NJHS Rehearsal and Induction(8th) 5/15 2:45 Gym 7:00 HA

  • Faculty Meeting 5/15 2:45 Library

  • District Track Meet 5/16 COC Track

  • COC Field Trip (8th) 5/17 COC

  • All library books due 5/21 Library

  • ASB Leadership Conference 5/22 All Day

  • Final 8th Grade Fail List 5/22 Due at Noon

  • The Great Race 5/24 Extended Brunch

  • Textbook Returns (8th) 5/28 All Day

  • Team Champions Pizza Lunch 5/28 Tanner Hall

  • Textbook Returns (7th) 5/30 All Day

  • 8th Grade Awards Night 5/30 7:00 Hart Auditorium

  • Yearbook Distribution 5/31 Flipped Schedule

  • 8th Grade Bash 6/4 2:45-5:15 Quad

  • Magic Mountain Field Trip 6/5 @ MM

  • Last Day of School 6/6 Minimum Day

  • Snacks for Staff 6/6 AM Before School

  • Teacher Work Day 6/7 Check Outs

Big picture

Click Below for the Rubik's Cube Competition video from earlier in the week... Fastest Time was just under 32 seconds!


GO SEE Gerry Brooks in Person

Gerry Brooks is going to be at El Segundo High School on May 25th! I already have my tickets :)

Here is the link if you are interested...


In Honor of Teacher Appreciation Week check out Gerry Brooks Latest

Big picture

Placerita Jr. High School

Placerita has been serving seventh and eighth graders in Newhall for over 55 years. Placerita is just north of Los Angeles in the Santa Clarita Valley.