HFS Weekly Collections

HFS News & Special Events
October 5, 2007

HFS Grade 6 Weekly Collections
(10/5/07)

NOTES from Technology…

Science: In 6th Grade Science we had our second quiz, and it was a clear learning experience for many.  We also began work on our project by talking about where our favorite rocks may have come from, and what kinds of rocks they were (sedimentary, igneous, or metamorphic).  The project, due Monday, October 8, is a one and a half to two page story about the possible history of their favorite rock, and a visual, probably a poster, that represents the rock cycle that traces the rock around from where it began, to where it is today and beyond.  We also began reading our next section on maps and geography.

Math: This week was devoted to common multiples (LCM) and common factors (GCF) with the goal of preparing for fraction operations. We analyzed common multiples through applications about events that repeat in cycles (Ferris wheels and cicadas), and common factors through sharing problems. Wednesday, October 10, is a quiz day on these topics in “Prime Time.” A reminder that the “My Special Number” project is due on Monday, October 15.

NOTES from Explorations…

Music: Completed a quiz on all information we have learned since the first week of school. This covered all notes and their names on the musical grand staff, treble and bass clef, quarter notes, half and whole notes and their equivalent rests. We spent a portion of class prior to the quiz to review all information. We will begin learning the time signature and composing a melody line in 4/4, 3/4 and 2/4 time signatures.

For additional information on the Maryland Conservatory of Music, please see www.musicismagic.com.

Choir: We are making great progress for our first concert on Wednesday, November 21st, which is Grandparents and special friends Day. We began some great work on a Welsh carol/lullaby “All Through the Night”.

Spanish: This week we’ve been maintaining the same themes we’ve been working on: greetings, colors, and shapes. Students were given a librito (little book) pertaining to the colors that they can read to you at home. Students were informally ‘quizzed’ during class and I am proud to announce that each of them know all of their colors! We worked on the pronunciation of the vowels and also of the letter ‘d’ when it is located in the middle of the word. Students have excelled! Bravo, 6th grade! We continue to work on the pronunciation of the shapes in Spanish, which have been a little tricky. Students are doing well! We re-read our ‘Las Formas’ book and read “Dónde está Spot.” We heard and danced to music from a famous singer from Colombia, Juanes. We also discussed the upcoming oral exam that we will be having on October 23rd. Review sheets will be handed out on Tuesday. Students have been asked to start researching el día de los muertos and are encouraged to find new Spanish vocabulary pertaining to the event, which we will be celebrating the last week of October to the beginning of November. Nothing written is required, but students should be prepared to offer ideas during group discussion of the topic. We already started with a great discussion today. One crossword puzzle was sent home as homework pertaining to las formas, the shapes. Parents, please take a moment to ask your child to recite their colors to you and share other things they have been learning. Give him/her a pat on the back. These kids have been working hard and are doing a great job! More to come!

For additional information on Fun with Foreign Language, please see www.funwithforeignlanguage.com.

Computer Technology: The last 2 weeks we have been working with a keyboarding skills program

called Ultrakey. We will continue to run weekly lessons to improve upon those techniques. Next week we will start working with Microsoft Word.

For additional information on MParr Solutions, please see www.mparrsolutions.com.

HFS Grade 7 Weekly Collections
(10/5/07)

NOTES from Technology…

Science: In 7th Grade Science, we had our quiz on kingdoms Fungi, Plantae, and Animalia.  Overall it was a great success.  Because we have two science related projects that are coming up, one that is purely a science project, our kingdom court date of Oct. 11, and the science/social studies Latin America project that is due Oct. 22, much class time has been dedicated to diligent work on our projects.

Math: 7th Grade Math has just finished up section 3 of our first Unit on Patterns and Variables.  We have been introduced, now, to equations, and where we can derive some simple linear equations from tables or “rules” that we find in examples.  We will be working with graphing calculators in the next section and so we are very excited at the prospect of calculators that you can write in letters on as well.  We will quickly learn that with great (graphing) power comes great responsibility.

NOTES from Explorations…

Music: We learned about the troubadors and trouveres from northern and southern France in the late Medieval period. They were usually upper class/nobles/kings who composed and performed music. This was not for the church and was set to secular, French poetry. We also have several instruments introduced such as drums, horns, vielle (early violin) organs, flutes, recorders, early reed instruments, lyre, harp. The grade 7 class will begin to compose their own Gregorian Chant and bring it to class next week to play on the keyboard.

For additional information on the Maryland Conservatory of Music, please see www.musicismagic.com.

Choir: We are making great progress for our first concert on Wednesday, November 21st, which is Grandparents and special friends Day. We began some great work on a Welsh carol/lullaby “All Through the Night”.

Physical Education:

Spanish: We listened to music from two popular singers from Colombia this week: Juanes and Fanny Lu. The students shared a little about their favorite types of music, some of their favorite singers and music groups, and singers or groups that these Columbian artists reminded them of. As some students were especially enthusiastic about the music we listened to, I would like to inform you that cds by these artists can be found on Amazon.com or at Best Buy in the Latin section. Music is a great method of exposure for the kids to get used to hearing the Spanish language more and understand concepts of Spanish pronunciation. Before you know it, your child will be singing in Spanish long before they might understand the lyrics if they find a song that they truly enjoy! For those so inclined, sometimes cds come with the lyrics written in them. A challenge would be to try to look up and translate some of the lyrics. If interested in finding out more about what might be suitable to purchase, I am available to assist students make selections of groups or artists I know of which have clean lyrics. Don’t forget: the library has a great selection of music in Spanish by popular artists for you to try. Our library can borrow from any other branch in Harford County, so requests can be sent to us! I encourage you to take advantage of this great feature the school has to offer! On Tuesday, we read a librito that was given to each student pertaining to our present topic: la comida (food), which your students may be able to practice reading to you. Students were encouraged to think and respond in spanish and share with the class their favorite vegetables, fruits, desserts, and/or particular dish. On Thursday we held great conversation pertaining to restaurants, learning new vocuabulary and phrases. Ex: When asked in Spanish if anyone had ever had a problem while in a restaurant, some responses and ideas shared were that a mosca (fly) was found in la sopa (soup), un pelo en la comida (a hair), la comida estuvo fría (cold), la cuchara estuvo sucia (dirty spoon). First oral exam will be on October 23. Review sheets will be passed out next Tuesday. Students have been asked to start researching el día de los muertos and are encouraged to find new Spanish vocabulary pertaining to the event, which we will be celebrating the last week of October to the beginning of November. Nothing written is required, but students should be prepared to offer ideas during group discussion of the topic.

For additional information on Fun with Foreign Language, please see www.funwithforeignlanguage.com.

Computer Technology: We will continue this week with learning new commands in Microsoft Excel to improve efficiency. We will create multiple spreadsheets that link totals/amounts from previous spreadsheets. We will also break out the Ultrakey program to improve typing accuracy and speed.

For additional information on MParr Solutions, please see www.mparrsolutions.com.

HFS Grade 8 Weekly Collections
(10/5/07)

NOTES from Humanities…

Social Studies: This Monday we reviewed progress to date on the research project, and then used Magellan’s voyage to the Orient to talk about the worldview of 16th-century explorers, aided by the writings of Vespucci, but hampered by distortion in the maps of the day. Tuesday, we introduced Show and Tell: students brought in articles about contemporary issues that connect to our reading in Hakim. We had a lively conversation, but students need to attend more to the overarching themes that make the connection between now and then. We ended with a map exercise—we located places in Harford County whose name spoke of the history of the place.

Wednesday we held a debate, the culmination of two homeworks that asked students to argue, first, why Spain should apologize to Mexico for Cortes’s treatment of the Aztecs, and, second, why Spain should not apologize. The debate served to review our reading on the Spanish conquistadors in South American, and to encourage discussion among students without my intercession. In general, the positions were well taken, and correctly supported with facts from the text. Some nuance of argument—for example, concession and refutation—were missing; on occasion points were made and not addressed. This gives us something to work toward.

Next week, we continue our reading of Hakim, following the Spanish west to California and the South West. Monday’s homework is to write one page on the themes that emerge in the Hakim text; if a theme is identified, it must be supported with examples from the text (with page numbers for reference). This assignment serves as a review of the material, and a practice for the research paper—supporting one’s assertions with evidence, corrected cited. For the research project, the expectation is that students have decided upon a topic, gathered some of the reference materials on it, and begun to collect data on their note cards. Monday we will review the note cards in class.

NOTES from Technology…

Science: Eighth Grade Science took a deeper look at wave vocabulary and concepts in order to help navigate other topics as they arise, such as the nature of the universe as manifested in matter, sound, light, spectra (rainbows, auroras), earthquakes, and water skiiing.  We re-touched gas behaviors and buoyant force, and parenthetically rediscovered not only Archimedes (eureka!) but the Greek alphabet and its use in science.  In Science in the News, we noted the commemoration and significance (both geopolitical and scientific) of the launch of Sputnik in 1957.  We took some time seeking (internet) and brainstorming individual science projects to be launched at a later date.  With a science test promised in the afternoon of October 11, each student was provided a small (about 4 X 5 inch) sheet of paper on which she/he may write anything or everything, and refer to it during the test; intended not as “cheating”, this is an exercise in review and prioritization.  Enough questions should be “beyond facts” to challenge even a microfiche crib sheet.

Math: We are wrapping up the unit “Thinking with Mathematical Models” and having a unit test on Tuesday, October 9. Our focus throughout the unit was on developing mathematical models for linear and inverse relationships. We have analyzed data through regression analysis, both by “hand” and on the graphing calculator. All is going well.

NOTES from Explorations…

Music: For additional information on the Maryland Conservatory of Music, please see www.musicismagic.com.

Choir: We are making great progress for our first concert on Wednesday, November 21st, which is Grandparents and special friends Day. We began some great work on a Welsh carol/lullaby “All Through the Night”.

Spanish: We listened to music from two popular singers from Colombia this week: Juanes and Fanny Lu. The students shared a little about their favorite types of music, some of their favorite singers and music groups, and singers or groups that these Columbian artists reminded them of. As some students were especially enthusiastic about the music we listened to, I would like to inform you that cds by these artists can be found on Amazon.com or at Best Buy in the Latin section. Music is a great method of exposure for the kids to get used to hearing the Spanish language more and understand concepts of Spanish pronunciation. Before you know it, your child will be singing in Spanish long before they might understand the lyrics if they find a song that they truly enjoy! For those so inclined, sometimes cds come with the lyrics written in them. A challenge would be to try to look up and translate some of the lyrics. If interested in finding out more about what might be suitable to purchase, I am available to assist students make selections of groups or artists I know of which have clean lyrics. Don’t forget: the library has a great selection of music in Spanish by popular artists for you to try. Our library can borrow from any other branch in Harford County, so requests can be sent to us! I encourage you to take advantage of this great feature the school has to offer! On Tuesday, we read a librito that was given to each student pertaining to our present topic: la comida (food), which your students may be able to practice reading to you. Students were encouraged to think and respond in Spanish and share with the class their favorite vegetables, fruits, desserts, and/or particular dish. On Thursday we held great conversation pertaining to restaurants, learning new vocabulary and phrases. Ex: When asked in Spanish if anyone had ever had a problem while in a restaurant, some responses and ideas shared were that a mosca (fly) was found in la sopa (soup), un pelo en la comida (a hair), la comida estuvo fría (cold), la cuchara estuvo sucia (dirty spoon). First oral exam will be on October 23. Review sheets will be passed out next Tuesday. Students have been asked to start researching el día de los muertos and are encouraged to find new Spanish vocabulary pertaining to the event, which we will be celebrating the last week of October to the beginning of November. Nothing written is required, but students should be prepared to offer ideas during group discussion of the topic.

For additional information on Fun with Foreign Language, please see www.funwithforeignlanguage.com.

Computer Technology:

For additional information on MParr Solutions, please see www.mparrsolutions.com.