October Newsletter

Sandwich Middle School

6th Grade News

The students are now getting used to the routine of moving from class to class and are working to organize themselves and their assignments. Many are really doing well with this, and some still need to be sure to bring their supplies each day and to find a time after school to work on their homework so that it is completed on time, especially after an absence. It is their responsibility to get this work caught up and turned in. There are some rooms that offer additional help beyond Advisory time (during the lunch hour), and hopefully students are using that time to their advantage to ask questions and practice skills. They bring their lunch up while they work. The sixth graders have also completed the first round of MAP testing (fall) and received their spring PARCC scores last week. We also began the BULLY FREE program this week which will take place every Wednesday during Advisory.

Here are some of the AWESOME things taking place in the sixth grade classrooms academically this month:

Social Studies- Ancient Egypt

Science-Volcanoes and Earthquakes

Language Arts- Interactive Notebook: Figurative Language, Literature and Informational Text

Math-Integers, number sense and expressions

Instructional Math-Adding and subtracting fractions and simplifying

Instructional L.A.- Main idea and supporting details when answering questions based on text

***We would like to congratulate these two terrific students for their hard work and dedication to doing their best at school! GREAT JOB!!!



7th Grade News

As we fall into October, many things are happening with the 7th grade. Mr. Horton's Social Studies will begin their study of Native American cultures with a research project. Students will identify twenty facts about their Native American group that can be shared with the class. Students will then research the details and make a project to share with the class. Most of the project building will be outside of class time so check with them as to who their group partners are and what your child has decided to do. We will then move into our study of the events that led to the Revolutionary War.


For Language it seems that the students have started to settle into their new 7th grade routine. We have been working diligently every day in class. We have been reviewing the elements of fiction and apply them to our reading of short stories. We have also covered text features that are used in informational text. Your student will have weekly independent reading that is assigned the first day of the week.

Please check in with them regarding this assignment and discuss what they are reading and learning for that week. As we move into October, the students will begin reading the screenplay Brian's Song. They really enjoy this unit as the students will take turns reading the different parts. If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact any of the teachers in 7th grade.

In the math classes, we just finished up our unit on rational numbers. During this unit, the students learned about fractions and decimals. They learned how to add, subtract, multiply and divide rational numbers with like and unlike denominators. They also learned how to incorporate mixed numbers as well. The next unit we will be working on is ratios and proportions. During this unit, the students will learn about rates/ratios, unit rates, and how to convert unit rates. They will also learn about proportional and nonproportional relationships by setting up ratios, proportions, graphing, constant rate of change, and slope. After this unit is complete, we will begin working on percents.

In the pre-algebra classes, we just finished up our chapters on expressions, equations, integers, and exponents. During these chapters, the students reviewed how to evaluate expression and solve equations using the four basic operations. They also learned how to solve basic inequalities, combine like terms, graph on the coordinate plane and interpret graphs and tables. In the second chapter of the year, the students reviewed using the four operations involving integers and solving equations and inequalities using integers. They are also learned about exponents, properties of exponents, and scientific notation. The next chapter we will be going over is on rational and real numbers. During this chapter, the students will learn about using the four operations to solve rational number equations and inequalities. They will also learn about the squares of numbers, square roots and cube roots. We will then move on to ratios and similarity.

In science, we are continuing to work on the chemistry unit. We are discussing will be learning about elements, compounds and mixtures. We will do several labs to reinforce what we are learning. We will then move onto the atom and the periodic table.

Students of the month are: Briana Gibson and Eli Somlock

8th Grade News

First quarter is well underway and it’s been a great start to the school year! In math, we have been working on number sense and our real number system. Students are doing a great job jumping into algebra and solving for variables. In science, we’re working on the matter and then starting a unit on the periodic table. After the completion of this unit, we will be moving into chemistry. In language arts, the students are reading The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton. We’ve been working on our writing skills by analyzing literature—both fiction and nonfiction. In American History, we are studying industrialization of America and building towards an Urban America. Reminder, students are working toward their first semester reward. Also, progress reports are sent home every two weeks. Please, continue to check Tyler SIS to monitor your son/daughter’s progress.

Students of the Month are Lucia Towne and Jacob Scalf. We appreciate their great attitudes and work ethic.

Explore News

Art- Mr. Lay

6th grade has been working hard this quarter on a wide variety of projects. We started off with shading and controlling the pencils to create different values. This led us into portraits and eventually the students did a project where they drew half of a face that I printed out for them. Most students did an excellent job and hopefully they brought their work home to show off. After portraits we are continuing to work on a variety of drawing, shading, perspective, marker shading, and coloring techniques to improve our overall skills. We will be getting into painting and more drawings in the next few weeks.

7th and 8th graders continue to work on their skills in a variety of drawings and paintings. They also go done doing portraits that turned out really nice. Both grade levels finished up a pen drawing and a silhouette painting. Students in 7th grade will be getting into human figure drawings and possibly some more painting. 8th grade has a bit more freedom to draw or paint depending on their preference. Hopefully their work is making it home for you to see. 8th graders also have the opportunity to be in Art Club, where students work to do larger scale projects in groups such as murals and ceiling tiles that are displayed in the building.

Our Artist of the Month is 7th Grader Georgia Vehe. Her work will be displayed in our case outside the Dummer Gym near the Art room.

STEM- Mrs. Gregory

During the last month of the quarter, 6th grade students will finish practicing the engineering design process as they participate in exciting design challenges. They will also be introduced to computer programing using hands-on materials and interactive lessons from “Let’s Start Coding”. 7th grade students will apply what they’ve learned about design, technical drawing, and computer modeling as they complete their final project of the quarter, the Puzzle Cube Design. They will use TinkerCAD to design and 3D print their final projects. Finally, 8th grade students will learn to program robots using RobotC. They will be designing, programming and testing the robots they build.

Life Skills – Mr. Ryan

6th Graders are currently learning about nutrition labels, % daily values, and the effects of healthy eating on our bodies. Students are also learning about how food packages can be misleading and the only true information is found on a nutrition label.

7th Graders have been busy learning about puberty and hygiene. Students have been working in groups to research a hygiene topic and develop a skit/commercial which are being filmed and shared with their peers.

8th Graders: Have been learning about the dangers of drugs, alcohol and tobacco. Students researched environmental factors that effect a community which can potentially lead to a drug problem within a school or municipality.

Speech & Drama- Mrs. Sgiers

And as fast as that, half the quarter is gone already! I want to take a moment to congratulate the Speech & Drama Student of the Month, Adam Obradovic. Adam always comes to class with a great attitude and a sharp mind.

In Speech & Drama I we have finished reading Arsenic & Old Lace and learning about Plot Diagrams. We are moving onto adding vocal variety, gestures, and facial expressions into our delivery so we can then move onto monologues soon.

Speech & Drama II has finished trying to complete tasks while blind to show empathy for our protagonist in Wait Until Dark. From there we will present “How to” speeches utilizing props before we move on to applying our presentation skills to a duologue or triologue presentation.

Speech & Drama III is learning about what it takes to put on a play. From the different types of stages, stage directions, and blocking we will move onto scene work and in speech we are perfecting the introduction and conclusion.

Physical Education News

Welcome from the P.E. department. Classes are in full swing and the students have been moving right along! We have been very excited to see some development in each of our students already, and can’t wait to see more in the future. So far, our students have participated in a soccer and fitness unit, and will be diving into flag football and ultimate Frisbee. Our weather hasn’t cooperated that much as of lately…..wow it’s been very hot as of lately, but never the less, please have students prepare for the turning of the weather. We will try and be outside for Physical Education as long as we can. Please plan ahead and have warm clothes just in case.

Some students that deserve recognition for their above and beyond performance in class are 6th- Jacob Smith, 7th- Allison Olson, and 8th grade- Dominic McElroy. These students have shown great effort and pride in class. Keep up the good work!

LRC News

October in the LRC means the Fall Book Fair has come and gone and I can say THANK YOU to everyone who supported the fair. Thanks to your generosity we were able to add some great new titles to our library collection.

October is also the kickoff of the REBECCA CAUDILL YOUNG READER’S

BOOK AWARD program. Between October and February SMS students

will have a chance to read books from a list of nominated titles. The books have been nominated and chosen by students, teachers, and librarians all over Illinois. SMS students who qualify by reading at least three of the titles will be eligible to vote for a state-wide winner at our annual RCYRBA Vote & Celebrate Party in February. Information about the program will be shared with students soon. You can learn more @ rebeccacaudill.org

Hello from Mr. Mestemaker

I wanted to take the time to introduce myself as the new guidance counselor at Sandwich Middle School. I grew up and attended Sandwich schools until I graduated in 2001. In 2005 I received my undergraduate in elementary education from Eastern Illinois University. From there I went on to teach 4th grade and RtI (Response to Intervention) in the Spring Valley School District for ten years. I am really excited to be back in the Sandwich School District and meeting all of the terrific students in the district. If anyone has any questions or concerns you can contact me via e-mail jmestemaker@sandwich430.org or phone 815-786-2138. Looking forward to meeting all of you and have a great 17-18 school year.


Mr. Mestemaker


The Sandwich CUSD 430 Board of Education has approved a resolution to place a referendum on the March 20, 2018 ballot that would increase the District's Debt Service Extension Base (DSEB). Please click on the link below for more information.