NFS Curriculum Update :: April, 2014
Eighth graders are wrapping up the polynomials unit and are then further exploring quadratic functions. Quadratics is a specific type of functions where the rate of change is not constant and the graph is a symmetric curve. The mathematicians will solve quadratic equations by completing the square, graphing, factoring and quadratic formula. Also, students will identify the axis of symmetry and find the maximum or minimum value corresponding with the highest and lowest value.
Students in 8-3 will solve system of linear and quadratic equations having one, two or no solutions, scaffolding on previous knowledge of linear systems. As a culminating activity, all eighth graders will connect quadratic functions to NASA’s C-9 jet’s parabolic flight pattern that completes between 40 to 60 parabolas in order for passengers to experience how it feels to be weightless.
Math App of the Month
The objective of the game is to get all of the trains to each desired station without any of the trains crossing paths. The task seems simple but gets very challenging as you achieve each level and more restrictions are added.
The cast of Guys and Dolls has tackled vocal rehearsals and choreography with Nolan! The month of April will be an intense month of blocking rehearsals. It is not easy to put vocals, choreography and blocking together, and it will take a lot of concentration and effort on the part of everyone in the cast. This group has been such a pleasure to work with thus far, and I am confident things will continue to progress smoothly. I will continue to update you on important dates and costume information using email.
The month begins with our unit on floor hockey. The students will learn and practice the skills of stick handling, passing and shooting. Game strategies will be reviewed with the basic understanding of the principles associated with playing offense or defense, followed by actual game play. Badminton is our next unit and probably the most popular unit of the school year. Students will review the basic grip of the racket and learn and practice shots like the underhand hit, overhand smash and drop shot, including the proper technique of serving. Game play and tournament play will follow.
The eighth graders are just finishing up a short chemistry unit where they learned to better understand the principles of the periodic table of elements and how compounds are “made” in the laboratory and the physical world. Going back to our quick study of “basic” computer programming in December, students will build upon their knowledge and understanding of code programming and become NASA (Newtown Air and Space Administration) engineers. The students will learn how they can build and remotely manipulate a Lego Mindstorm robot for a possible mission.
Eighth grade Spanish students will continue working on mastering the various tenses they have learned in oral conversations and focused practice sessions. Students will be introduced to new vocabulary dealing with illnesses and ailments. They will learn vocabulary to explain what hurts and how they and someone else is feeling. They will use the conditional tense to indicate what they would do under special circumstances and what they would like to improve their illness. They will also learn the subjunctive tense to make recommendations depending on the ailment. Students will receive a packet with Spanish 1 material to begin reviewing for the final exam. In the Spanish class, the work requires cumulative knowledge of material learned. The class is continuously reviewing and recycling concepts, structures and vocabulary; the review process should not be too arduous.