Friday, June 12, 2015

Math: Week 37

MSM2 Blocks 1/2 & 7/8
SOLs Covered:  Math 7 & 8
Math Packet:  None
Upcoming Assessments:  None

7H Block 5/6
SOLs Covered:  Math 8
Math Packet:  None
Upcoming Assessments:  None

We've made it!  The school year is finally over!  I won't bog things down with an overly long WCS since I know the kids are eager to start their summer break and be rid of all reminders of school until September (I know I am!).  In class, I taught the kids how to make two different origami pieces, linking it to our various geometry units.  While the kids worked on that (and to keep them occupied while I worked with small groups and individuals who struggled just a bit more with the intricacies), I had a few videos playing in the background throughout the week.

We started off with an episode of Extreme Couponing so they could see some of the work they've done with consumer applications at work.  We also watched an episode of Deal or No Deal to explore probability in action; there was a worksheet to go along with that and while the kids weren't thrilled about that, they were grateful from a break from the more intense work we'd been doing the rest of the year.  My block 1/2 class also got to watch Jumanji and were pushed to recognize the probability in that, but since that was part of the 7th grade treat to follow the awards assembly on Thursday while waiting for the pizza to arrive, they were able to have a little bit more time to just relax.

A favorite activity for some of the students was getting to explore video game creation through a wonderful app I just came across, Floors by Pixel Press.  Create a game is simple with this app; you can either create right within the app or draw everything out on a special grid paper.  The kids first worked on creating their games on the paper but found they're creations didn't work quite like they'd hoped once they were scanned into the app.  The app is free (though sadly only available on iOS devices), so I encourage the kids who enjoyed it to keep creating and playing!  I think some students might find they have a strong interest in programing and game design they might want to pursue in the future and I encourage those students to keep exploring this and other STEM fields!

I encourage students to periodically review and practice so they don't fall prey to "the summer slide" but can instead stay fresh and prepared for next year.  As I've mentioned before, I recently took over running the school website and I have plans to add a few more resources students can use for summer practice.  I encourage parents to explore the site as well; I know it hasn't been kept all that up-to-date in the past, but I can promise that will not be the case now that I'm running it.  Also, on August 1st the county is switching platforms and we'll be moving from using Edline for our sites to using Google Sites.  You'll automatically be redirected to the new one once it goes live, so you'll just need to update any bookmarks you have at that time.  I just got access to the new site earlier this week and I've started working on it at the same time.  I think everyone will love the new site and I can't wait for you all to get access!

Finally, I'd like to wish everyone a safe and happy summer!

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