Electives Monthly MashUp

January 2021


Please take a look at the great things happening in Elective classes at Neal!


Students had a great end to the 1st semester and did an excellent job on their Youth Leader Project. 2nd semester is off to a great start with a new group of enthusiastic students!

Math Intervention

We wrapped up a great semester with adding and subtracting fractions in 6th grade, integer operations in 7th grade, and linear functions in 8th grade. We are now having fun getting to know each other in our new classes for the second semester!

Reading Intervention

Students have used the first two weeks of the new semester getting accustomed to their new digital classrooms and new classmates. Students completed assignments meant to encourage them to learn about one another, and hopefully find common interests. We have focused on building our fundamental reading and vocabulary skills by emphasizing the parts of a word-- prefixes, roots, and suffixes. Students have also begun their independent readings using Durham Public School’s reading program, Reading Plus. While using Reading Plus, students have the freedom to choose their own readings from a wide variety of texts.


As we close the first semester, students are learning more and more vocabulary to communicate in Spanish. 6th graders learned how to go shopping in Spanish, including discussing prices and types of stores. 7th graders learned words for their class schedules in Spanish and are moving into a unit about describing their families in Spanish. 8th graders finished a unit about pastimes and hobbies in Spanish and are moving into a unit about clothing and culture.

En la clase de español para hablantes nativos seguimos aprendiendo cómo leer y escribir en español. Los alumnos de 7.o están aprendiendo las partes de la oración (sustantivo, verbo, etc.) y cómo escribir en oraciones completas en español. Los alumnos de 8.o siguen leyendo la novela Diario de Pedro completamente en español.

Business and Entrepreneurship

We are learning about each other. Students are creating Who Am I Google Slides Presentation as a way to introduce themselves and learn about each other.


January has been a great month for Energy and the Environment and Design and Modelling. In Energy and the Environment, students have been watching October Sky and have also been reading selected articles on environmental issues. We also recently read about Gitanjali Rao, the young scientist who was recently selected as Time’s Kid of the Year.

Design and Modelling just completed a profile study of Tinker Hatfield, the Nike shoe designer who worked with Michael Jordan to create the famous line of Jordan shoes.

Green Architecture

The students are being introduced to Engineering Design Process

“It is not what you can do for your children, but what you have taught them to do for themselves that will make them successful human beings.” Ann Landers


Storyteller’s Project & The Water Challenge

This month, we’re getting to know one another and using music to tell our story. After our first two weeks of getting connected into the classroom, students will begin working on their first project - the Storyteller’s Project, wherein they will use music samples to share a bit of their past, present and hopes for the future. We’ll also be learning about Vocal Health and taking a Water Challenge to practice doing things that will support vocal health. Your child could win a prize sent to their home! The contest will be one week long, starting February 12th through February 19th. To help your child succeed this month, please complete this Communication Form with your email address, and join our Google Classroom as a guardian for your child.


Welcome! Welcome! Welcome! New Dance students: I am super excited to start a new journey in dance class as the beginning of second semester takes off! Students and I are getting to know one another and learning more about each other. I have already begun to love the personalities floating in each class! We are exploring my classroom norms, rules, and what it's like to be in a ‘dance’ class. PARENTS: If you would like, parents can assist with getting to know students by writing a short (or long) letter about your student here: Parent Letter. Students will not begin any movement until the week of February 1 - February 5th. Please feel free to remind students of their dress out requirements, encourage participation on camera, and take a look at the syllabus / espanol syllabus if you have not already! Happy January!