7th Grade Newsletter - March 10, 2014

Field School
7th Grade Newsletter  

March 10, 2014 
Daylight Savings Time 
has begun!
Did you remember to change your clocks and SPRING AHEAD Early Sunday Morning for Daylight Savings Time??
(...if not, your child probably missed the bus, or made it to school late today!)  
With more daylight in the evenings... that should make it much easier to get the lawn mowed! 
And... 45+-degree weather... It's like a heat wave compared to what we've had recently! What a nice break!
How nice it has been to have a couple full weeks of school, not broken up by heat-days, snow-days, or cold-days... students really do much better when we are able to be more consistent in our program and schedule. Let's hope it continues.
Spirit Wear Apparel A reminder to parents that we strive for everyone at Field (students, teachers, administrators, and school-support professionals) wearing "College" attire on Thursdays, and "Field spirit-wear" on Fridays. Please remind students to think about this while getting ready for school on these days of the week.

-  The 7th Grade Team


Language Arts 
In the past weeks I have noticed an increase in the number of late assignments students are turning in. This is creating a problem for students and at times for parents. Once again I would like to review my grading policy in hopes that it clears up any confusion. 

When grading on time work every attempt is made to get the grades in within 48 hours. With larger projects it might take up to one week to grade. 

When a student chooses to turn in work late it goes into the "late work box" and I grade those papers when I have time. Herein lies the problem. Time is not a resource that is unlimited. It takes about 3.5 hours to grade and input one assignment. With constant vigilance that time is adequate, but when students turn in late work the time allotted for their evaluation is passed and as we all know we can not go back in time.

The solution is two fold, 
1. Students who are not sick need to get their work in on time. 
2. Students who turn in work late need to be more patient with me as I am working on grades as fast as I can. 

Evaluating student work is a task I do not take lightly. I work as fast and as efficiently as I can, your patients in this matter is greatly appreciated. 


Feel free to e-mail me if you have questions or concerns this year.  mahal001@mpls.k12.mn.us is the best address to use.


- Ms. Halasz



This week we will begin Unit 5, Elements, Compounds, and Chemical Reactions.  Students will take a close look at 25 elements and how they are arranged on the Periodic Table of Elements



HOMEWORK RA10, Structure of the Atom, will be passed out on Monday and is due by Friday (turn in by Tuesday for a 4% bonus).


p style="margin-bottom: 0px; font-size: 11pt; margin-top: 0px;">Science Bowl Students - turn in ScienceSaurus to Mr. Boler or the library.


- Mr. Boler

  •  To increase content understanding visit the 7th grade science web site at the URL listed below.


Social StudiesSocial Studies
Congratulations to all the 7th grade students for the amazing efforts they put into their History Day projects! Students and staff have enjoyed viewing them as they walk through
the school halls.  Students may bring them home after school today and throughout the week.
We are into our unit on the Civil War.  This week we will learn about the differing economies of the North and South, the generals of each side and the turning points in battle.  No homework this week.  


- Mrs. Odermatt





Last week we began working on our new unit... "Moving Straight Ahead"... still working with proportional relationships, but with an introduction to linear algebra. Students will be turned in their old text books for the new ones. (If you find a "Comparing & Scaling" text in your child's binder, make sure they return it to the Field media center) We've just begun setting the stage for this unit, regrouping a bit to insure students are producing quality (and legible) assignments, and will attack it in earnest this week.


During this new unit we will be doing quite a bit of graphing.  I suggest that students purchase a supply of graph-paper 
(the kind that has light blue, green, or peach colored lines for the grid) for use in their assignments in class and homework. Students might also want to have a
small set of colored pencils with them to help with graphing. With these tools I have seen that students will do a much better job in their graphing, will accomplish it more easily, and the graphs will not only look better, but will also be more useful as a learning tool.

  - Mr Usem 


~   ~   ~ 

Click HERE for Mr. Usem's Webpage

  The webpage lists what classwork we've done in class each day, references students' homework assignments, lists an availability schedule for students who need extra help, and has resources for parents & students. 

Doing puzzles 
in Mr. Leavitt's room during recess

Puzzles in Mr Leavitt's room (Clairissa)
Contact Us
Leon Boler
Nicole Odermatt 
(Social Studies)

Mary Catherine Halasz
(Language Arts)

Mark Usem 
voicemail  612-668-7729
Heather Walker  
Other 7th Grade 

Char Swanson

Seth Leavitt


Other 7th Grade 
B.E.S.T. teachers: 

Seth Leavitt 
(Math BEST)



Tim Jungwirth

(Reading BEST)






Field School 

Student Resources




Wendy Wolff 

(612) 668-3640




Field School Site Council

7th Grade Parent Reps


Camille Holthaus




Eric Muschler




** Site Council meetings are held the 1st Wednesday of the month from 4:00 - 5:30 and are open to anyone wishing to attend.  If you have a topic to discuss you must be on the agenda prior to the meeting.  Please contact your grade rep. to be added to the agenda.



Field Community School
4645 Fourth Avenue S
Minneapolis, MN 55419


Click HERE for the 




Click HERE for Mr. Usem's Webpage


Dates to Remember

Dates to 



  • Mar 10-21: Hale/Field PTA SPRING FLING Silent Auction
  • Mar 22: Hale/Field PTA SPRING FLING (7pm)
  • Mar 27: End of 3rd Quarter
  • Mar 28 - MAKE-UP DAY... there is school! -This was previously scheduled as a day without students for teacher grading at end of the quarter, but has been CHANGED to be a day when STUDENTS ATTEND!
  • Mar 31-Apr 4: NO SCHOOL - Spring Break
  • Apr 7 - 4th Quarter begins




- Strategy Instruction



Good morning!    
This week we will be writing about a set of regular length (1,500+word)  "paired texts".  One text will be about Frederick Douglass and the other text will be about The Tuskegee Airman. We will write about the texts while responding to different difficulty levels of questions. We will then be finishing our writing with Connections we can make to the text.   This is the "L" in P.E.E.L., where the students try to generate a Link (L) that is a text to text connection they can make. 

Spring is coming (this time I really mean it!)  Our texts will help focus us as we move closer to engaging in the MCA-III state assessments which are coming soon.

Mr. J
Tim Jungwirth
K-12 Reading Specialist
Field Community School

from the Field School Counselor...



Wendy Wolff

Field School Counselor


MPS -MCA Ready


The MCAs begin this month for students throughout the state of Minnesota and Minneapolis Public Schools (MPS) has been working to help students prepare. We will be promoting the "

MPS MCA Ready" campaign to help our teachers, parents and students get ready for the assessments.




We want to do all that we can to provide all students with the resources and tools they need to realize their academic potential. We also want students to feel ready for the MCAs. It is important that we provide preparation resources to all families to support positive test-tasking habits and skills.


The enclosed booklet includes test-taking tips to help students and parents successfully prepare for and navigate the assessments - both at home and in school. Also included is a short article that you could email or send home to families.



The booklet gives information to families about what MPS teachers, parents and students can do to prepare for the MCAs.


The article gives an introduction to the MPS MCA Ready booklet.

English MPS MCA Ready!

Hmong MPS Npaj Tau Txaus Rau MCA!

Somali MPS waxay diyaar u yihiin MCA!

Spanish ¡MPS listo para los MCA!

English (body of the website)





As a public school system, we believe every assessment can be a piece of valuable information about a student. We know the MCAs are just one of the many tools teachers and parents use to communicate about students' academic strengths and needs.


As inventor and scientist Alexander Graham Bell said, "Before anything else, preparation is the key to success." MPS invites staff, students and families to work as partners in the success of all students. The more we know about where students are academically, the more intentionally we can respond to their needs.




Bernadeia H. Johnson, Ed.D.

Superintendent of Schools


Twins logo


Dear Parents/Guardians of Field Middle School Students:


The Minnesota Twins recognize that good performance in school begins with good attendance and they're excited to team up with Minnesota Middle School Association (MMSA) to create the

Perfect Attendance Incentive Program 


To become eligible, students must simply have "perfect attendance" for the 2013-2014 school year during quarters 3&4.   The reason the Minnesota Twins and MMSA have established this program is because they recognize the importance of having students in each class every day.


Hale read-a-thon surprise guest Twins

What are the Twins offering

Field Middle School will select one student to attend the game against the Seattle Mariners on Saturday, May 17, 2014

The Twins will provide 4 tickets for that student and up to three parents/guardians/siblings to attend.  


We would like to thank both the MMSA and the Twins for supporting the Attendance Incentive Program and our students.


If you have any questions regarding this incentive program, 

please feel free to call Mr. Norlin-Weaver at 612-668-3640 

or Ms. Julie Peterson at 612-668-3655.



Steve Norlin-Weaver                           Julie Peterson

Principal                                                                School Social Worker

This email was sent to seth.leavitt@mpls.k12.mn.us by mark.usem@mpls.k12.mn.us |  
Field School | 4645 Fourth Avenue South | Field PTA | Minneapolis | MN | 55419