Weekly Update: Week of October 16, 2015


Students missed the first class this week because of MAP testing. The lessons begun with the introduction of our Unit on Innovations. We went over the essential questions and came up with class definitions on innovations, inventions, and discoveries. Students then were given a list of twenty inventions to rank in order of importance. This was followed with a discussion on what they thought was the most important invention on the list (most voted for either internet or irrigation). The next class students defined the word genius and came up with a list of features a genius should possess. They also completed a Marshmallow Challenge activity where they had to work in groups to build structures using pasta, string, and tape. The goal of this was to complete the tallest structure possible that would be able to hold a marshmallow on top without collapsing in just twenty minutes. This was followed with a TED talk video on the activity and a short discussion about the importance of innovating and team work.






Need To Know: 

This will be a busy unit with four performance tasks that need to be completed in just eight weeks. We will be starting work on the first performance task before the October break. I’ve attached it below for you to look over. Please make sure that the students spend a bit of their October break working on this.

Innovation in Time


We will be spending more time discussing current events and news during the second quarter. It would be great help if you encouraged your kids to spend some time every day looking at news. You can also have some family discussions about what is happening in the world and why those things are important.



Students completed a brain frame comparing and contrasting their culture with one of the other student’s cultures. This was the last part of the National Geographic Feature Assignment that students turned in on Wednesday. This completes quarter one and our unit on Identity. The end of the week was spend on completing end of the unit surveys and taking part in some  healthy competition using geography skills.

Completing National Geographic Feature Assignment and Working on a Compare and Contrast Brain Frame



Who said maps weren’t interesting?!




Need To Know:

Unit 2 Newsletter can be found here.  It outlines the plan for the second semester. Please let me know should you have any questions.


I hope to see all of you during the Parent Teacher conferences on Wednesday October 14, Monday October 21, and Tuesday October 22.

Weekly Update: Week of September 28, 2015

Overview This Week:

Students are working on a National Geographic Feature story about themselves. This assignment sums up our unit on the Identity and counts as a performance task. In short, students had to explain their identity using objects to represent their cultural features.  The assignment has a picture and a written component and requires students to complete work in and outside of the class. Students had time to work on the written component in class.  They should be completing the picture component of this assignment at home.

Need To Know:

National Geographic Feature Story assignment is due this Wednesday, October 7. Students should be turning this in via google classroom.


Parent-teacher conferences are starting next week, Wednesday October 14. I hope to see many of you to discuss the progress of your child.